Recently I over heard two ladies talking, the one lady was attempting to share a “juicy” bit of gossip. The other lady attempted to stop her “sharing.” The “tale-bearer” responded , “This isn’t gossip; it’s the truth!” Interesting concept but is it alright to share if it’s true?
The Bible has much to say about the proper (and improper) use of the tongue. Our culture sees nothing wrong with sharing someone’s “dirty laundry.” In fact, there companies that make their livelihood sharing gossip. One secular Psychology magazine went as far as saying “tale-bearing” is not only acceptable but beneficial. Really?
It can also be defined as, malicious or slanderous talk or writing about another person or situation with desire or intention to hurt them. It can also be defined as talk or writing about another person or situation in order to turn another’s opinion against that person or situation. Gossip can be truth or falsehood, but it is still gossip. [Bible study on Gossip]
Because of our fallen nature, gossip appeals to us. Proverbs 26:21 Before You repeat something ask yourself:
- Is it true? When something is passed on repeatedly often the facts become distorted. Don’t be guilty of spreading a lie.
- Is it loving? Ephesians 4:15 , 1 Cor. 13:6 Everything we do and say, should be loving.
- Does it edify (Build up)? Eph. 4:29
- Is it “shameful”? It is shameful to talk about what some people do in secret. Ephesians 5:12
Do you know how to stop gossip? Don’t repeat it yourself. “If you don’t have wood, your fire goes out. If you don’t talk about others, arguing dies down”. Proverbs 26:20
Just recently the Republican presidential candidates participated in a debate where they were asked a series a difficult questions over a variety of topics. The purpose of the debate was to help the general public understand how the candidates stood on issues that affect our country. Some of the candidates “skirted” the question and tried to avoid answering truthfully.
I could not help but notice the parallel (and difference) between this debate and the series of questions (61) that were asked of Jesus, Some were honest inquiries. John 3:4, 9, Matthew 8:14. Some were not so honest; they were asked with the wrong motive. They were using this question as a trap, in order to have a basis for accusing him [Jesus] John 8:6 But Jesus saw right through their questioning. “But Jesus, knowing their evil intent, said, “You hypocrites, why are you trying to trap me? Mt. 22:18 Mark 12:15
Here are somethings we need to remember:
- Some people think that to ask God a question shows a lack of trust. but Jesus never condemned anyone who came to Him to ask a sincere question, so ask.
- Unlike presidential candidates, Jesus has the answer for every question, for He knows all things. He never is caught by surprise by anyone. He can handle your “toughest” questions.
We have this promise, “For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds;..” So bring your questions to Him.
Have you ever told someone a secret? They promised they would not tell a soul but shortly after sharing your secret, it seems everyone knew your secret! Secrets are hard to keep secret. The CIA, NSA, FBI all have secrets. They are kept classified so no one knows their plans. These agencies also try to uncover the secrets of other countries.
In 2 Kings 6:8-13 is a story about the prophet Elisha and the King of Aram, Israel’s enemy. Every time this king made plans to attack Israel, God revealed those plans to Elisha, who in turn told the King of Israel. Needless to say, this frustrated the King of Aram. He suspected a spy in his midst! ““Tell me! Which of us is on the side of the king of Israel?” Vs.11. One of his commanders said, “Elisha, the prophet who is in Israel, tells the king of Israel the very words you speak in your bedroom.”
How would you feel if God revealed everything you said or did to your pastor? Scary huh? But even more disturbing is God, who will judge us all, DOES know everything about you.
- In John 2 we read “No one needed to tell him [Jesus] about human nature, for he knew what was in each person’s heart.”
- He knows about everyone, everywhere. Everything about us is bare and wide open to the all-seeing eyes of our living God; nothing can be hidden from him to whom we must explain all that we have done. Hebrews 4:13
- for he knows the secrets of every heart. Ps. 44:20
Now that is good and bad news. It is good news that God knows you so well, He can meet your every need. It bad news because sees every act of disobedience. Ps.94:7
And your Father, who sees in secret, will reward you. Matthew 6:18
Milwaukee has gone crazy over a very large feline — a cougar, a panther, or maybe a real lion — first spotted July 20 roaming through the back yard of Bill and Annie Nolen’s neighbor. “I was afraid to move,” Annie Nolen said. “I thought, what am I looking at.” Their daughter’s grainy video went viral. CNN
Any time a mountain lion enters an urban area it makes headlines. Some people are afraid (understandably) to venture out at night. But did you know that there is a lion stalking every city, every town, every state? As a matter-of-fact, there isn’t a place on earth that you will not find him. “Be alert, be on watch! Your enemy, the Devil, roams around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” 1 Peter 5:8
Did you know that in a pride of lions; it is the lioness (female) that does must of the killing? The male lion’s job is to roar fiercely causing their prey to be confused and fearful. And in their fear, the herd panics and stampedes into the lioness’ ambush. Satan’s role is similar: He causes Confusion 1 Cor. 14:33; Deception: Even Satan tries to make himself look like an angel of light.” 2 Cor.11:14 See also Rev. 12:9. He brings Division: Satan will use false doctrine to divide the Church. In the animal world, the lion pride will single out one of the herd to attack but they must get him away from the rest of the herd before they attack. There is safety in numbers. Hebrews 10:24-25
But there is another Lion mention in Scripture; the Lion of Judah (Jesus Christ). Hosea 5:14 Rev.5:5 His strength will be yours in time of trouble. He will guard and keep you!
God’s will is something that every true Christ-follower is extremely interested in. Many find it as mysterious as the Holy Grail (and just as allusive). Others think that only through agonizing will God reluctantly reveal His will to them. But God’s will is not something mysterious, nor is God reluctant to reveal His will. John 7:17 “If anyone chooses to do God’s will, he will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own.”
But I have found that the difficulty in knowing God’s will is often within ourselves, not with God. Often, we want God to reveal His will for us before we decide if we will obey. Unfortunately, the Kingdom of God does not operate this way. Obedience must come before revelation. When God wanted to reveal His will to the Apostle Peter in regard to the Gentiles receiving the Gospel, He did so through a dream (vision?). Acts 10:9-15 God commanded Peter to kill and eat animals that every orthodox Jew considered “unclean.” Peter replied to God, ““No, Lord,” Peter declared. “I have never eaten anything that our Jewish laws have declared impure and unclean.”
You cannot use NO and Lord in the same sentence. Saying NO to the will of God is not an option. God is responsible to reveal His will and our responsibility is to obey. So, if you are trying to find His will for your life, you must decide that you are willing to obey even before you know what that will is.