Gossip is a huge word.
What exactly is gossip?
Isn’t it just an unimportant little thing?
Is it really a sin?
Has it put it’s clutching hands about our lives?
Let’s start with the definition of the word gossip.
casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details that are not confirmed as being trueOxford Languages
Ok! Some of us may look at this definition and think whoa, that steps on my toes a little harder than I thought it would. That is a great definition of gossip though!
How often do I find myself walking down those paths?
Do I tell everyone the news I know?
Do I add things to stories to make them more interesting?
Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace into the hearers.Ephesians 4:29
Here we are told that not only are we to not talk bad about others but to actively encourage others with our mouths. What a contrast!
An hypocrite with his mouth destroyeth his neighbor: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered.Proverbs 11:9
He that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that uttereth a slander, is a fool.Proverbs 10:18
That verse states it pretty strongly!
So if the Bible talks a lot about gossip and states very clearly that it is a sin then why is it such a problem in so many Christian circles? I don’t know the answer to this myself although I will give a few of my ideas, so please comment below why this is such a problem and practical ways that we can stop it!
I think one of the reasons gossip is so common is because it comes so naturally. We as people love to know things. It gives us a sense of power. Also, lots of people on this earth also love to talk. So when we have a lot of people who like to know things, a lot of people who like to talk, and a lot of people who are doing interesting things there is most likely going to be a lot of gossip!
Another reason gossip isn’t stopped is because we don’t pause and think about our gossiping habits and when we do we often don’t see gossip as the serious sin it is. Recognizing gossip can be difficult as we like to spread news in the form of “prayers requests” or “concerns,” trying to disguise it to look godly.
One more is that we don’t like to admit when we gossip. We think oh, it’s totally true so it’s not gossip. Well, as we saw in the definition above, gossip is simply talking about others. What we’re talking about may be totally true, but if it’s someone else’s private affairs, it’s wrong!
And then there’s the other side of the issue. Listening to gossip without stopping it is just as bad as actually doing the gossiping. This is where it comes the closest home for me.
Therefore, to him that knoweth to do good and doeth it not, to him it is sin.James 4:17
What I take from this verse is that if we know what we should be doing, yet don’t do it, we’re straight up sinning. So if I listen to someone gossip and don’t stop them, I’m sinning.
Keep the tongue from evil and the lips from speaking guile.Psalm 34:13
Wow! Life would be a lot simpler if we all just obeyed that simple verse!
Written by Kinza