James 3:5-10 says:
5 Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth!
6 And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell.
7 For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind:
8 But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.
9 Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God.
10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.
‘The Tongue’ is a deadly scorpion. It’s poison is apart of each and everyone of us. It poses as an innocent member of our body but the results of it can have deadly and long lasting effects. One of the evils of this little member is slander and gossip.
Recently God has been impressing me more and more about how dastardly gossip is. Many times we look at sins such as murder, theft, adultery etc as heinous and heartless and over look sins such as gossip as either not sins or harmless pastimes. What we fail to realise is that these sins which we consider ‘small ‘ often lead to the ‘bigger ‘ ones being committed.
1 Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work,
2 To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men.
3 For we ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving divers lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.
And in 1Peter 2:1 it says:
Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and evil speakings
What about in Numbers 12 where God’s anger was kindled because of gossip.
1And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman.
2 And they said, Hath the Lord indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us? And the Lord heard it.
3 (Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.)
4 And the Lord spake suddenly unto Moses, and unto Aaron, and unto Miriam, Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation. And they three came out.
5 And the Lord came down in the pillar of the cloud, and stood in the door of the tabernacle, and called Aaron and Miriam: and they both came forth.
6 And he said, Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the Lord will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream.
7 My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house.
8 With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the Lord shall he behold: wherefore then were ye not afraid to speak against my servant Moses?
9 And the anger of the Lord was kindled against them; and he departed.
10 And the cloud departed from off the tabernacle; and, behold, Miriam became leprous, white as snow: and Aaron looked upon Miriam, and, behold, she was leprous.
11 And Aaron said unto Moses, Alas, my lord, I beseech thee, lay not the sin upon us, wherein we have done foolishly, and wherein we have sinned.
12 Let her not be as one dead, of whom the flesh is half consumed when he cometh out of his mother’s womb.
13 And Moses cried unto the Lord, saying, Heal her now, O God, I beseech thee.
14 And the Lord said unto Moses, If her father had but spit in her face, should she not be ashamed seven days? let her be shut out from the camp seven days, and after that let her be received in again.
Since we are all guilty at some time in our life of this grievous sin we all need a revival of the tongue. The only way this can be done is to constantly allow God to dwell in our hearts so that we receive His character. Every evil word spoken about another is an offering to satan. It is a seed that destroys families, friendships, entire communities. The restraint God allows us to place on our tongue is to make us and others around us happy. It allows us to live in peace and surrounds us with an atmosphere of love for our fellow men. Let us keep these texts close to our heart this week as we strive to become ex-slanderers!
9 An hypocrite with his mouth destroyeth his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered.
21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.
20 Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.
28 A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends.
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