Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Family Matters Part 1 : Gossip

This message was preached by Colin D Cruz at Word of Grace Church on the 7th of July 2013. You can listen to the audio by clicking here. Family is all about relationships and communication. Good relationships and healthy communication keep a family close and strong. This is true for the Church family as well. More churches are torn apart from within than an outside attack. the deadliest enemy of a healthy church is an uncontrolled tongue. 






There is something that we do that takes up 1/5th of our life i.e talking. Every day we speak between 18-30,000 words  ( For men  the average is 25,000 and for women its 30,000) In a year you could fill 66 books of 800 pages each of all the conversations you have.

Speech has incredible power. Talking always existed. In the beginning was the WORD. The Trinity was always in communion and communication with one another. Talking was involved in the fall : Satan and  spoke to eve. Talking is involved in salvation: you have the hare the message and you have to confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord.

Talking is the essence of fellowship. Its unnatural not to talk specially in a Christian community situation. Talking is one of the secrets to good leadership. A good leader communicates. Proverbs 10:19 also warns us that where words are many sin is not absent.
We can be rude, harsh, unkind, and critical with our tongue.

James refers to the tongue in every chapter of his book. If you want to know the spiritual state of a person check their speech.
James 1:26 your tongue is your spiritual thermometer. Therefore we need to control our tongue and what we speak.

Today I want to focus on Gossip and Slander

How do we relate in a church family in a wholesome way?
What is gossip and how do we handle it and avoid it?
James 3 Compares the tongue to a bit in a horse’s mouth. With the small bit a horse is controlled. Its also like the rudder of a ship. In the same way the tongue will determine your spiritual state : present and future.

What does God think about gossip? Rom1:29 Gossips are bracketed with murderers. The sin of gossip is not minor but a serious sin.

2Cor12:20 What is gossip?: “ It is the spreading of unfavorable information about someone else even if that information is true “ Jerry Bridges.
Rick Warren: When we are talking to someone who is neither a part of the problem nor solution  it is gossip.
Gossip does not build up.

SLANDER: When you know it’s not based on facts and you do it to tear someone down. Slander has the same root word as the devil.
Rev 12:10 the devil is the accuser of the brethren.
Busy bodies – they get involved in everyone’s business “Have you heard?”
1Tim 5:13 This could be anyone- men, woman, young and old.

Gossips can also happen with legitimate negative information but we spread it.
Gossip can happen when we have a disagreement with someone. A hurting party goes to 10 other people and shares their side of the story. What we need to do is what is in Matt 18. However sometimes weak/timid people cannot handle it on their won. Then you can talk to someone who can help you to resolve the issue.
The accuracy and the motive are important.

Gossip is like a choice morsel Proverbs 26:22. There is something about gossip that is attractive. It goes down to the inmost parts.

HOW DO WE HANDLE IT?
WE are all susceptible to this. James 3:2 one who has control over their tongue has maturity.
1.      When we realize it is wrong
2.      Everything we say is being recorded Matt12:36-37  we need to give an account for every careless word spoken.

What can we do if we have gossiped?
Gossip will destroy the body of Christ. It is like cancer or gangrene that has to be dealt with.
What can you do when someone starts to gossip?

Ask them these questions: Why are you telling me this? I am uncomfortable with what you are saying. Now that you have told me this what are you going to do about it before I do?
If a person has been hurt and unburdens on you, you have a responsibility to now help that person reconcile the situation. If you can’t do it,  get someone who can involved.
Prov 20:19 A gossip betrays confidence.

What do I replace gossip with? Here is a helpful acronym
T- Is it True ?
H – Is it Helpful ?
I – Is it Inspiring?
N- Is it necessary?
K- Is it Kind?
We need to excel at building each other up Eph 4:29We are the body of Christ. When Paul was persecuting the church Jesus said to him “why are you persecuting me?” When we  harm the church, it the body of Christ we are harming.
What is not gossip? When you tell a person, who can do something about the situation.
Eph 5:
Let’s practice speaking positively and encouraging one another.
We have a deadly weapon with us – the tongue. Your tongue can lift up the whole congregation or it can tear it down. Let’s do the former.


Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.

English Language Service 10am. Please check google maps for directions