What Does The Bible Say About Gossip
What Does the Bible Say?
Brother Todd  

What Does The Bible Say About Gossip

Is Gossip a sin?

Gossip can range from idle talk or rumors about the personal or private affairs of others to more serious offenses such as perjury. Gossip can cause harm to individuals, destroy trust, and divide communities and relationships. Continue reading to see what the Bible says about gossip.

The Bible contains several verses that condemn Gossip, such as Proverbs 16:28: “A perverse person causes conflict and gossip, separate close friends.” Furthermore, Proverbs 11:13 states: “A gossip betrays a confidence, but a trustworthy person keeps secrets.”

As Christians, we are called to love our neighbor as ourselves and treat others with respect and kindness. Gossiping about others goes against these principles and can cause harm to individuals and communities alike; thus, we need to avoid Gossip and instead focus on encouraging one another with words.

What does the Bible say about gossip: The Bible’s view on Gossip

The Bible has plenty to say about Gossip, and it’s usually not in a positive light. Gossip can be defined as idle talk or rumors about another’s personal or private affairs. Here are a few verses from Scripture that address Gossip.

  1. Proverbs 16:28 says, “A perverse person stirs up conflict, and gossip separates close friends.”
  2. Proverbs 20:19 says, “A gossip betrays confidence; so avoid anyone who talks too much.”
  3. Proverbs 11:13 says, “A gossip betrays confidence, but a trustworthy person keeps a secret.”
  4. James 1:26 says, “Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless.”

From these verses, we can see that gossiping is not encouraged in the Bible. It causes conflict, betrays trust, and even undermines one’s religious beliefs. As Christians, we are called to love our neighbors as ourselves and treat others with respect and kindness; gossiping about others goes against these principles and causes harm to both individuals and communities alike. Consequently, it’s essential for us to avoid Gossip and instead focus on building up others through words.

Is Gossip a sin? The pain that Gossip may cause

Many people have been hurt because others have spoken negatively about them. If they were honest, most people have experienced the unpleasant experience of hearing others talk about them. It is all too common, But Is it a sin?

The Bible is clear that Gossip is, in fact, a sin, and Christians should avoid it. Gossip often involves mockery, slander, and denigration. It exposes gossipers’ insecurity, jealousy, envy, and hatred of another person. The Bible encourages healthy and holy communication.

Also check out “Is Cussing A Sin” for more.

What’s the harm in gossiping?

“Gossiping” is “casual, unconstrained conversation about other people or reports about them that involve details that cannot be confirmed to be true” (Oxford Languages). People are hurt by Gossip.

Through rumor, conjecture, and Gossip, it damages the character and reputation of the gossiper. It can also cause embarrassment to gossipers by inflaming and exacerbating their self-importance.

Rick Warren says, “Gossip is passing on information when you are neither part of the problem nor part of the solution..” Billy Graham concurs, saying, “A real Christian is someone who can give his pet parrot to the town Gossip.” 

Be Impeccable With Your Word. Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.” -Don Miguel Ruiz

A person might try to make their Gossip positive by saying: “I can’t believe that the Williams just bought a new house. I hope that they can get out of debt quickly.” If they are good friends with the Williams, they should express their concerns directly without involving anyone else.

Is there a way to tell negative information about someone? Sometimes, loved ones have to share something that isn’t flattering about someone they care about. These situations require that context, relationship, and motive be considered.

Relational investment is vital: It is a sin to Gossip about William’s finances with people who aren’t relationally invested. If the Williams are not friends or acquaintances, their decisions won’t be the gossipers. Proverbs 18-24 says, “A man who has many friends may end up in ruin, but a friend who stays close to him will be more successful than a brother.” 

It is essential to have a healthy environment. A close friend or relative may privately say, “I’m worried about some of my friends’ decisions, and I want to find advice on how to approach it lovingly.” This would not be considered Gossip. Proverbs 10-13 says, “On the lips he who has understanding, wisdom can be found, but a rod for the back he who lacks knowledge.” 

Inward motivation is essential: People should prioritize integrity over the immediate self-gratification that comes with sharing secrets. 1 Peter 1:22 says, “Love one another with all your heart from the bottom of your heart.” 

Why do people gossip?

Pride is the root of Gossip. The gossiper gains self-importance by sharing antagonistic and secret information about another person.

People gossip for many reasons, which can vary from person to person. Here are a few potential explanations:

  1. To feel important or influential: Some individuals may spread rumors or Gossip to attract attention and boost their self-worth. They may use the information to manipulate others or enhance their social status.
  2. Gossiping as a form of bonding: Gossiping can be an excellent way for people to form connections with others, particularly in social settings where they may not have much in common. By sharing information or opinions about others, one may feel a sense of belonging or camaraderie with those around them.
  3. People may use Gossip as a form of entertainment or distraction: when feeling bored or uninspired, If the Gossip is particularly scandalous or juicy, it could be an entertaining distraction.
  4. Dealing with Insecurity: People sometimes turn to Gossip to deal with their own insecurities or negative emotions. They may feel better about themselves or their situation by talking about others.
  5. Lack of Self-Awareness: Some individuals may not even be aware that they are engaging in Gossip, as it may be disguised as harmless chatter or small talk.

Charles Spurgeon, an English pastor, said, “Remember that, as the receiver is as bad as the thief, so the hearer of scandal is a sharer in the guilt of it. If there were no listening ears, there would be no talebearing tongues. While you are a buyer of ill wares, the demand will create the supply, and the factories of falsehood will be working full-time. No one wishes to become a creator of lies, yet he who hears slanders with pleasure and believes them with readiness will hatch many a brood into active life.”

See “What Does The Bible Say About Complaining.” For further reading.

10 Bible verses about gossip

  1. “A perverse person stirs up conflict, and gossip separates close friends.” – Proverbs 16:28
  2. “The words of a gossip are like choice morsels; they go down to the smallest parts.” – Proverbs 18:8
  3. “Without wood a fire goes out; without gossip a quarrel dies down.” – Proverbs 26:20
  4. “Whoever conceals hatred with lying lips and spreads slander is a fool.” – Proverbs 10:18
  5. “Gossip betrays confidence; so avoid anyone who talks too much.” – Proverbs 20:19
  6. “They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are Gossip.” – Romans 1:29
  7. “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” – Ephesians 4:29
  8. “Besides that, they learn to be idlers, going from house to house, and not only idlers, but also gossips and busybodies, saying what they should not.” – 1 Timothy 5:13
  9. “Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge.” – James 4:11
  10. “For we hear that some among you walk in idleness, not busy at work, but busybodies. Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living.” – 2 Thessalonians 3:11-12

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