(October 28, 2020) Dr Jim McClure, straight shooting theologian, shares a scriptural warning…
Have you heard any gossip lately? More to the point, have you passed on any gossip lately?
I am using the word ‘gossip’ in the commonly understood sense of making derogatory and slanderous comments about other people. While gossiping is endemic and ‘highly contagious’, it should find no place among Christians – but sadly it does!
Speaking against others
In his letter James made some pointed comments to the Christians in his day. He wrote, ‘Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it’ (James 4:11).
The Greek verb which has here been translated here as ‘slander’ literally means ‘speak against’ and James used it three times in this verse. The word can refer to slander, gossip, insult, or to talking in ways that are belittling or damaging to others, or even to hinting at something concerning another person.
The J B Phillips translation of these words incisively states, ‘Never pull each other to pieces, my brothers.’ Paul and Peter gave a similar warning to the Christians to whom they wrote (2 Corinthians 12:20 and 1 Peter 2:1). (more…)