PrayerConnect for January 31, 2017

Gossip or Gospel?

“But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters” (I Peter 4:15).
What shall it be for you, the gossip or the gospel? Gossip is “bad news,” but the gospel is “Good News.” Gossip will hinder an individual’s prayer life, making it less effective!The Bible admonishes us in I Peter 4:15 not to be a busybody. In fact, such prejudicial behavior is included in the same listing as a murderer, thief, and evildoer. Don’t be a busybody in spreading gossip, but rather be a busy body in spreading the gospel! Be busy in the work of the Lord. Jesus said in Luke 2:49 “wist ye not that I must be about my Father’s business?” If you be about your Father’s business (gospel), then you will not be about other folks business (gossip).
Exodus 20:13 says, “Thou shalt not kill.” One Hebrew rendition of “kill” means to murder, slay, or assassinate. The means of an unruly tongue can bring an end,resulting in murder. Proverbs 18:21 says, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.” Don’t allow your tongue to be a fatal weapon (sword). Stop killing your brother or sister…or anyone. Speak life, not death! Matthew 12:37 says, “For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” God will hold you accountable for what you say. A Christian that gossips can potentially destroy an organization, a church, a ministry, a person, but more specifically, oneself!
When one gossips it is sowing seeds of discord. The Bible states, “These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him: A proud look…and he that soweth discord among brethren” (Proverbs 6:16-19). Why resort to gossip? Some people, because of pride and arrogance, thinking they are better than others. In II Corinthians 10:12, the Bible warns, “comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.” Beware of a pharisaical spirit. Remember, your strength may be another’s weakness, but your weakness may be another’s strength. Don’t differentiate and judge others based on your personal opinions. Jesus said, “he that is greatest among you shall be your servant” (Matthew 23:11).
I’ve heard the expression, “The difference between news and gossip is whether you hear it or tell it.” Also, “If you don’t have anything good to say about someone, don’t say nothing at all.” How do you endeavor not to gossip? Stop it! Just stop it! Bridle your tongue. Gossiping with your tongue and speaking in tongues, just do not align. James 4:17 says, “Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.” Psalm 141: 3 says, “Set a watch, O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.”Gossip creates disunity and conflict (Proverbs 16:28). Some people even try to disguise gossip in the form of a prayer request. Stop it! Gossip will hinder your prayer life. So what shall it be for you, gossip or gospel? Choose the Gospel…of Peace!
Flo Shaw
World Network of Prayer