What Exactly is Gossip?
When we mention gossip as sin.
A question people often ask is,”What exactly is gossip?”
Because very often the definition can be blurry and confusing.
I would describe gossip as revealing negative information about someone with a malicious motive to destroy their reputation.
It could involve speaking negative things behind people’s backs,yet pretending to them and it’s an act of betrayal.
Sometimes you can reveal negative information to people who are in a position to help the person with the motive of your heart being to seek help for this person,that is not gossip.
Or you can reveal negative information regarding something that transpired between you and someone else with a clear motive of seeking help on how to solve the problem.
For example,the bible says when your brother or sister wrongs you and you fail to solve the problem between you,go and tell two others in church so that you all sit together and solve the problem.(Matthew 18:15-18)
Clearly the reason of revealing this information to the others was for correction,not to gain pleasure out of it,and God will truly see your heart and know the real motive.
God cannot be deceived and sees the real motive of the heart on why you revealed that information.
Gossip involves getting pleasure out of revealing negative information with no intention to help whatsoever.
Sometimes people can try to cover up gossip and say,”oh we need to pray for him/her” after gossiping someone,but in reality the intent of the information they revealed was to hurt the person’s reputation, not to help or pray for the person.
People can try to deceive themselves but deep down their hearts they always know what they are really trying to achieve and God also sees their hearts.
Information shared through gossip is always meant to destroy,not with a motive of love or kindness.
Gossip is betrayal because the person entrusted you with information about themselves,but you betray that trust and use it against them.
The best way we could deal with it is to do to others as we would have them do to us.
If we would be hurt if someone revealed such information about us,it means the person we are talking about with no intention to help whatsoever would also be hurt.
The motive of gossip is always negative,meant for harm, never to build and help.
When you are revealing information about people,deep down your heart you will always know the reason you are revealing that information,even when you can lie to people, your heart knows the truth.
“He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets; Therefore do not associate with one who flatters with his lips.”
“Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.”
2 Corinthians 12:20
“For I fear lest, when I come, I shall not find you such as I wish, and that I shall be found by you such as you do not wish; lest there be contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, backbitings, whisperings, conceits, tumults;”
“You shall not go about as a talebearer among your people; nor shall you take a stand against the life of your neighbor: I am the Lord.
‘You shall not hate your brother in your heart. You shall surely rebuke your neighbor, and not bear sin because of him.”