Bible Study - 06/05/2014
Gossip is a combination of lying, exaggeration,
and rumor spreading with the intent to hurt!!
Read the scripture below. Now look at the picture above and what do you think the young ladies are engaging in? (No it’s not what they are going to wear to Sunday School)
Proverbs 11:13 GW
 Whoever gossips gives away secrets, but whoever is trustworthy in spirit can keep a secret.
Now if you picked any answer other than GOSSIP, you are wrong, wrong, wrong! I like that picture. Why? Because you don’t need to say a word. You can look at the picture and tell what is going on as well as the impact. The two girls in the background are involved in gossip about the girl in the foreground……The impact is, they are hurting the girl by what they are saying.
I also want to stress something else. Everyone is guilty of gossip. Gossip is NOT isolated to either sex, age, or religion. Besides everything that has been said so far, gossip is something that does need to be taught. We all come about it naturally. We can also tack on one more aspect to all of this. That’s being two faced.
Being two faced not only includes the gossiping factor, but adds dishonesty to the mix. You pretend to be someone’s friend, and then you stab them in the back by taking an embarrassing moment and spreading it around. And as we said before, there is only one reason for doing any of this and that is to hurt. Now if the tables were reversed, and the one gossiping became the object of the gossip, the gossip would quickly end. I wonder why they failed to see the humor if it was so funny.
Last week we talked about being held accountable by God, for our words. Gossip sort of employs most of the evil things we can do with our words. Again let’s look at the list….
Gossip employs all of the below…..
So basically gossiping is composed of lies……There are two different types of liars here…
So when we work this down to the basics, gossip is just another form of lying with the intent to hurt and NOT to save our skin. What does the Bible say about liars?
Revelation 21:8 NIV
 But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars---they will be consigned to the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”
Read it again…..It says ALL liars….That takes in people who gossip!
But gossip goes a step or two beyond lying. Yes gossip is a form of lying, but we still have to deal with the intent; to destroy or injure someone else’s character. Yeah I hear you now…But a lot of it is done in innocent fun. Really? Is it innocent fun when something that someone else says finds itself on your credit report and drops a hammer on a loan application?
Is it innocent fun when some dumb rumor (gossip) starts and spreads and gets exaggerated, and the recipient takes their life? Some innocent fun! Is it innocent fun when a bit of gossip starts and the end result is getting someone kicked out of school? Oh yes….There is also the gossip that started and ended a minister’s career….Permanently! Some innocent fun. These examples are NOT fictions….They have actually happened.
Let’s take a few minutes out and see what God’s word says about gossip…..Okay
Romans 1:28-31 NIV
 Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done.  They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips,  slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents;  they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love, no mercy.
So we see here that all who gossip are placed into a class of others who God considers having a depraved mind….How is your pride now?
And in some cases I am certain that some gossip does start out innocently….When I say innocently, I am talking about someone starting something they think is funny or cute about someone else. However there is that other form of lying called exaggeration. Now when you compound a bit of gossip with some exaggeration and pass that around for a while, what comes back to you will more than likely not even resemble the original story.
Why do we feel it is necessary to do things like this? Why do we feel it is necessary to hurt others? Also another thing to ponder is why do Christians involve themselves in activities like this? I will give you a very basic and simple answer….It is a three letter word called SIN.
There are a few Proverbs that deal with our old friend gossip…..
Proverbs 16:28 NIV
 A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends.
Yes a gossip separates friends. Actually when found out, a gossip would have NO friends. Gossips can not be trusted. Being a gossiper is a very bad reputation to have…..And one that is hard to recover from.
Proverbs 18:8 NIV
 The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the inmost parts.
If you have been the victim of gossip then you can relate to this Proverb. When you realize you have been betrayed by someone, especially someone that you thought was your friend, it cuts deep and hurts. It even grieves the soul to think that someone you trusted violated and betrayed you. Then you still have to be a good Christian and do what God commands…..Forgive the person of their sin against you and pray for them. Yes I know that is a hard one to swallow, but don’t forget that God says that in order to be forgiven you MUST forgive others. Yea I know….BUMMER!
Proverbs 26:20 NIV
 Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down.
If you search through the entire Bible you will find that it has nothing good to say about gossip or the people who involve themselves in it. We also endanger ourselves of spending eternity in hell. So is gossiping really worth it? I think not.
As Christians we should let love rule in our lives and not hate. Jesus loves each and every one of us. Have you ever seen Him involved in gossip? Of course you have not. Have you ever seen the devil do things like gossiping?.....The devil is referred to as “The Accuser”. And with that title you can include gossiping. So gossip is motivated by hate.
Let’s be like Jesus and be motivated by love….Do you see gossip in any of this?
1 Corinthians 13:1-7 NIV
 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.  If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.  If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.  Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
I think that you will agree that you can read this passage forwards, backwards, and inside out and you will not find gossip in anything that has to do with love. Also remember that we are commanded to love just as much as we are commanded to forgive.
Even a more difficult situation than gossiping is to be nailed to a cross. But even while He was dying, Jesus said, “Father forgive them because they do not know what they are doing.” So in the same Spirit we need to forgive others of their sins against us….And that includes being a victim of gossip
As we start to wind down this SBS I do want to remind all of you that even though gossip is sin and not the correct thing to do…..Just as bad is to be the victim and seek revenge. Sorry to say, but two wrongs do NOT make a right. We then fall back into an eye for an eye and that just does not make it. So don’t even go there.
So of you are a Christian and have been involved in gossip, stop and reflect on what you have done. Then repent to God and ask His forgiveness. If you are not saved, then pray the Prayer of Salvation below and mean it as you pray!
Dear Jesus I know that I have sinned and I am a sinner. Forgive me of my sins. I believe that You gave Your life for me on that cross so ,long ago. I also believe that three days later You were raised to life. Come into my live. Be my Lord, my Savior, and my God!
Now if you have done that, then I welcome you to the family of God. Please contact us and let us know about your decision. You can call the Christ Life Fellowship Church by dialing 937.660.8580. Or you can email me at email@example.com . We would love to hear from you. If you know of someone who would benefit from our weekly SBS, please contact me and let me know. We will add them to our distribution list.
Be blessed until the next SBS
Pastor Keith D, Hardin