What the Bible Says About Gossip
The Bible has a lot to say about gossip. In fact, the word “gossip” appears in the Bible over 50 times. And it’s not always in a positive light. So what does the Bible say about gossip?
The definition of gossip according to the Bible
Gossip is best described as speech that seeks to injure another person’s reputation. It is talk about someone behind their back with the intent to damage their good name. Scripture is unequivocal in its condemnation of gossip. In fact, the Bible has a lot to say about gossip and its destructive nature.
Proverbs 18:8 says, “The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the inmost parts of the body.” This verse compares gossip to food, and just as our physical bodies digest food, so our hearts and minds “digest” the words we speak about others. Just as physical food can be nutritious or poisonous, so our words can either build up or tear down.
Proverbs 16:28 says, “A perverse man stirs up dissension, and a gossip separates close friends.” Gossip often causes division among people who were once close friends. It is the enemy of unity. And when our words tear people apart, we are acting in opposition to what God desires for His children (Ephesians 4:3).
Proverbs 11:13 says, “A gossip betrays a confidence; so avoid a man who talks too much.” When we share secrets with someone who then goes and tells others what we said, we are betrayed. And once that trust is broken, it is difficult to repair. So, it is always best to be judicious in who we confide in—we should only share personal information with those who have proven themselves trustworthy..
The consequences of gossip according to the Bible
Gossip is harmful and divisive. It’s one of those things that seems harmless at first, but can quickly spiral out of control. Gossip is often spread through casual conversation, and it can be difficult to avoid getting caught up in it.
The Bible has a lot to say about gossip. In Proverbs 18:8, we are warned that gossip is like a fire that burns up the one who spreads it: “The words of a gossip are like delicious morsels; they go down to a man’s inmost parts.”
Gossip can also have serious consequences. In Matthew 12:36-37, Jesus says that every idle word we speak will be judged on Judgment Day: “I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak. By your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”
In James 3:5-6, we are warned that the tongue is a fire that can set our whole lives on fire: “Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the course of nature on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell.”
Gossip can destroy relationships, damage reputations, and create an atmosphere of distrust and suspicion. It’s best to avoid it altogether!
The antidote to gossip according to the Bible
Gossip is often taken lightly, but it’s a serious issue that can tear apart relationships and even damage reputations. So, what does the Bible say about gossip?
The Bible has a lot to say about gossip, and most of it is not positive. In fact, the Bible warns against gossip several times. For example, Proverbs 11:13 says, “A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter.” And Proverbs 18:8 says, “The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.”
In addition to these verses, there are several others that mention gossiping. For example, Leviticus 19:16 says, “Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people.” And 1 Timothy 5:13 says, “And withal they learn to be idle, wandering about from house to house; and not only idle, but tattlers also and busybodies, speaking things which they ought not.”
These verses make it clear that God does not approve of gossip. He desires for us to live quiet lives and mind our own business (1 Thessalonians 4:11).
While the Bible does condemn gossiping, there are also verses that offer guidance on how to deal with it. For example, Matthew 18:15 says, “Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother.” This verse teaches us to confront someone who has sinned against us privately in an effort to resolve the issue.
In addition to this verse, there are several others that offer wisdom on how to deal with gossip. For example, Proverbs 26:20 says., “Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer,. contention ceaseth.” This verse teaches us that when there is no one spreading gossip,. disputes will cease.
How to Respond to Gossip
The Bible doesn’t specifically mention the word “gossip,” but it has a lot to say about the behavior. In general, gossip is anything that isn’t true and is meant to hurt someone’s reputation. Christians are called to avoid gossip because it hurts people and doesn’t glorify God.
When you’re the one being gossiped about
It can be difficult to know how to respond when you’re the one being gossiped about. You might feel anger, hurt, or betrayal. You might want to confront the person who is gossiping about you or spread rumors about them in return. But it’s important to remember that gossip is harmful and destructive, no matter who is the target.
If you find yourself on the receiving end of gossip, there are a few things you can do to respond in a way that honors God:
-Pray for the person who is spreading rumors about you. This might be difficult, but it’s important to remember that they are likely struggling with their own insecurities and need God’s love and grace just as much as you do.
-Speak kindly to the person who is gossiping about you. It’s possible that they are only repeating what they’ve heard and don’t actually believe it themselves. By responding with kindness, you can help diffusing the situation.
-Avoid spreading rumors about others in return. It can be tempting to want to retaliate when we’re hurt, but that will only make the situation worse. Show grace and love even when it’s hard.
When you’re the one gossiping
When you find yourself gossiping, it’s important to take a step back and ask yourself why you’re doing it. Maybe you’re feeling left out and are trying to make yourself feel better by putting someone else down. Maybe you’re just bored and looking for something to do. Whatever the reason, it’s important to remember that gossip is hurtful and can damage relationships.
If you catch yourself gossiping, try to change the subject or find something else to do. If you’re with a group of people who are gossiping, you can try to steer the conversation in a different direction. You could also excuse yourself from the conversation or leave the room altogether.
Remember, it’s okay to talk about other people—just make sure you’re doing it in a positive way. Complimenting someone is a great way to start a conversation and it will make you feel good too!
When you’re overhearing gossip
Overhearing gossip can be tricky. If you choose to say something, you may be seen as nosey or as judging the person who is gossiping. If you don’t say anything, the person gossiping may think you approve of what they’re saying or that you will spread the gossip yourself.
The best way to deal with gossip is to nip it in the bud. Talk to the person who is gossiping and let them know that you don’t want to hear it. You can say something like, “I don’t want to hear about other people’s business” or “I don’t like gossip.” If the person doesn’t stop, you canwalk away or change the subject.