Pecking the weaker chicken until she bleeds to death
I normally would not quote a church that holds the “homosexuality=sin” belief (since I do not share that belief), but other than that, I agree with this article and think it is worth repeating.
If I could draw, I’d draw a chicken yard with chickens pecking one chicken until she bleeds to death. That’s what I think of gossip.
Here is most of the article:
The Gossip Test
“Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” (Eph. 4:29)
Gossip is destructive
Gossip is one of the most destructive forces in the world. It destroys innocent lives and careers; divides families, marriages, businesses, and churches; and it betrays confidence, keeps the embers of a fire stirred until it is out of control, and it is a gross sin … And the worst part of gossip is that most people don’t even recognize when they are doing it. Of course, gossip always hurts the worst when it is directed against us.
Gossip is the antithesis of loving one another
I know many of you have been victims of the loose tongues of others. I know I have. And never once have I ever felt like I benefited from the gossip’s snare … it is the antithesis of loving one another …
Test #1 – “Is it true?”
… there are three tests all repeated words should undergo before they come from our mouths. And I believe those three things are very Scriptural. First, “is it true?” In other words, when we repeat something, will the person we are telling the story about be in complete agreement with it. Nothing untrue about another person should ever come from our lips. I believe that perpetuating a lie is a grievance to both God and the one the lie is told about. And even if the lie is exposed, not everyone who heard the lie will hear the rebuttal. But even those who hear that the lie is just that – a lie – so often they think, “where there is smoke there is fire.”
Test #2 – “Is it useful?”
The second test for repeating words is, “is it useful.” In other words, if it doesn’t meet Paul’s test above – “. . . [is it] helpful for building others up according to their needs, . . .” then it has no place … So often we are quick to criticize others, without finding out the validity of what is spoken. But Scripture is clear, that gossip betrays (Prov. 11:13) and destruction is around the corner … So even if something might be true, will it serve a useful purpose in repeating it?
Test #3 – “Is it kind?”
The third test, akin to the second, “is it kind.” …The words of our mouths should be words which not only build up another person but meets the test of kindness. Mr. Webster defines kindness as the act of being considerate, loving, and generous to another person. Paul says kindness is a fruit of the Holy Spirit of God, (Gal. 5:22) and an act of love (1 Cor. 13:4).
Gossip is only repeated to a listening ear.
Let me add one more admonition. Gossip is only repeated to a listening ear. If someone comes to you with a choice morsel of news … ask them before they say it, “Does it meet the gossip test?” If it does not, then you have no business even hearing it. And if you do hear it, take the person on a biblical walk. Let them know what Scripture says about gossips and gossip. And it has much to say – none good.
Posted by Zion Church at May 4, 2006 10:46 AM