Eph 5:11 Take no part in the unfruitful works of darkness, but instead expose them.
Many years ago not long after I came to this church as a pastor, a man (who we finally realized years later was a reviler, as the bible terms such a person), accused me of gossiping when I was explaining to him (he was on the church board) about some of the evil I was seeing and experiencing in the church. Right in the middle of my sentence, he said (these kinds of people don’t even have to stop and think, the reviling just spills out of them)…he said “I don’t think it is right for you to be telling me these things.”
Evil hates exposure. And we are to expose it. Think for example of the OT prophets and their preaching. If we removed all words from their sermons about the sins in the midst of the Israelites, there would hardly be anything left. Or think of the Apostle Paul telling Timothy to beware of Alexander the coppersmith, or of the Apostle John warning the church about Diotrephes, who “loves to be first.” This is not gossip. The words were truth and they were spoken for good motive – to expose evil.
Most all abusers and the churches and other allies who take their side, want to silence anyone who brings their evil into the light. And one favorite weapon they use is that gossip card. Never mind the evil – you become the target and must be silenced.
I have had victims tell me that their abuser spouse would say things like “what goes on in this house stays in this house. You are never to speak to anyone about our marriage or family or home.” How convenient – for the wicked one. The great sin is not the sin, it is YOU if you talk about it.
The wicked are very, very adept at effecting this blame shift so that very quickly, no one is even thinking about the evil the victim exposed. They are only concerned to prosecute and convict the victim who “gossiped.”
My ex told me repeatedly that I was not allowed to talk about our marriage to anyone because I would be hurting his reputation as the head of our family. When I finally went to the church about the abuse I was told I wasn’t allowed to talk to my friends about it or I would be brought up on charges for gossiping.
That is the devil in action. Darkness. Secrecy. Evil
Lee- So pastors and churches as well as wicked abusers so often work to keep evil secret. This tells me that they are not of the Kingdom of Light, but are of the devil’s kingdom of darkness. It is not slander to speak the truth for the right reasons. It is not gossip to expose evil – if it were, then Jesus would be the biggest slanderer and gossip of all time.
Early in my marriage to my abusive ex, the first church we attended made it clear that it was gossip to speak badly about my then-husband. So, I kept my mouth shut for years until one day, twenty years into that marriage, he walked out on me and our two boys. When I tried to get help from the church we were attending at that time (a different church), I was met with resistance if I tried to talk about what was and had been going on in my marriage, abuse! Most just closed their ears to me and some even said they could not take sides, which they were already doing by choosing not to listen to me.
It took me years after that to realize it is not gossiping to bring to light evil happening in our life.
Much of today’s church doesn’t really understand what gossip is. They assume that if you are sharing information that exposes an abuser or an abusive church that it is gossip. It’s not.
The Oxford dictionary defines gossip as casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details that are not confirmed as being true.
Victims of abuse who share their stories or who try to warn others of those who are behaving in an evil manner are not engaging in casual or unrestrained conversation. They are not sharing untruths. They are exposing evil, which is why it’s so opposed. If it really was just gossip, most people who hear it would gobble it up. Most people don’t typically oppose gossip because it gives them a sense of power by having this new “supposed” knowledge over whoever is being gossiped about.
For example, if Jane and Deb were chatting at church about how they overheard that Alice is struggling in her marriage from Suzie, and they began to snipe at how Alice must not be doing enough to keep her husband happy. That’s gossip. If Alice told Suzie that she is struggling in her marriage because her husband is verbally abusive and she doesn’t know what to do, that’s not gossip. If Suzie told Deb and Jane about Alice’s struggle in her marriage without the full context and without Alice’s permission, that’s gossip.
Telling the truth about something that happened to you is never gossip. It is more akin to whistleblowing. Most people don’t like whistleblowers. They expose evil. They bring to light what the abusers meant to keep hidden in darkness. That is why they are opposed. That is why some are hunted down and silenced for the truth they are bringing to light. Unregenerate people hate the light and anything that can take away their power. They will stop at nothing to get their own way and keep their evil acts hidden.
The unregenerate love the darkness more than the light. They will do everything in their power to shield their evil deeds from seeing the light. But that doesn’t stop the Lord from seeing all that the wicked do and keeping record of it in heaven for their appointed day of judgment. He laughs at the wicked and their antics as if they can hide anything from Him.
How a church responds to abuse being exposed is one way to test the authenticity of a local church. How do they handle matters when evil is exposed? Do they minimize it? Do they deny it? Do they ignore it? Do they cover it up? Do they make excuses? Do they support the brave victims who shine the light of truth on the evil or do they turn and attack the person or people who are exposing the sin in order to make it go away? This test is a quick way to know whether the church you are attending is a genuine church or a synagogue of satan.
A genuine church will respond to the abuse and support the victim and remove the abuser. A synagogue of satan will oppress and even excommunicate a victim while supporting the abuser.
Those who call victims gossips are slandering the victim and bearing false witness against the victim. They are insinuating that the victim is a liar because they don’t like the words they are hearing from the victim. That is an evil act. They are breaking the 9th commandment, adding to their pile of sins, if they do not repent and turn from them.
If you’ve ever been falsely accused, called a gossip, been slandered, know your vindication is coming. It will be swift, perfect, and just. It is okay to seek God for vindication, to pray that God will pour out his perfect justice upon all who have harmed you. I know I do. I’ve had wolves masquerading as sheep at church threaten to slander me in order to silence me from speaking out against their evil and to avoid paying back the debt they owed me, So now when I think of those people, I pray that God brings about his perfect justice against them now. That their evil is stopped and exposed so that there will be no one around to help them get out of the pit they dug for themselves. That everyone whom they meet would see through their disguise, leaving them stuck in the mess or their own making, caught in the trap they’ve laid for others.
Remember, those who are slandering you by calling you a gossip are reflecting who they are, not who you are. Yes, the accusation may hurt, but remember it’s not true. It’s okay and even godly to remove those in your life who harm you by their words and/or actions. You shall know them by their fruit. Slander, gossip, false witness are not fruits of the Holy Spirit.
In Christ, you will find freedom. You will be vindicated. You will be fully restored and made whole from all the hell that this life throws at you. So cling to Christ. Grow in wisdom. Be wise as a serpent and innocent as a dove. For who the son sets free is free indeed.
I feel the distinction you make is accurate. I find that my background in communication theory ( speaking words in order to transfer meaning) has informed my opinions about gossip over the years. As do the perspectives of other people. As does a little math.
I feel there’s idle gossip and then there is slander. They accomplish the same thing: Through second-, third- or nth-hand information, which is inherently the more inaccurate the higher n is, misinformation is transferred around to other people, with the falsehood becoming ever falser every time n becomes n+1. n doesn’t have to very big for the situation to be unrecognizable to any eyewitness. Whether done idly or more deliberately, the expansion of falsehood is in direct opposition to the idea of truth and even Truth. nth-hand info is always a lie.
Since truth sets us free, Jesus is the….Truth, the spirit gives us ….a sound mind, it seems to me that any practice providing for the expansion of falsehood directly opposes all of the identity facets of Christianity.
Therefore, the best practice I’ve come up with is to hesitate to believe, act on or draw conclusions about any nth-hand info until i have a chance to verify it. Contrasting to that would be first-hand accounts. Hope that helps. Good night.
Amen! The truth hurts. Abusive people shut down when they start hearing the truth. A truly repentant heart would listen and learn from what they have done. Not shift blame or make dumb excuses like “Gossip” or “that’s the way I am”. Most people that cover up other peoples sin are partakers in that persons sin. I have personally seen it in church’s that I have been to in the past. Mostly from False Church leaders.
Nothing is covered up that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. Therefore whatever you have said in the dark shall be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in private rooms shall be proclaimed on the housetops.