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crsschk
Member



Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Re: How to Handle Gossip, Slander and Discord

Quote:
A.Is it Kind?


If what we have to say about a brother or sister is kind, then by all means we should say it. We should encourage, extol and praise one another often. However, if what we have to say about
another is unkind, we may be involved in slander.



Have heard this put this way before and it's curious. Mean spirited, ill-willed ... an intent to injure for self gratification, envy, slander, gossip, discord, quarrels ... All these things understood completely.

'Is it kind?' though seems to do the opposite of it's intent far too often. That is, withholding things that need to be addressed because they are perceived as being 'unkind'.

So we halt at calling sin sin fearing being 'unkind'. Pride as pride. A haughty spirit as just mere circumstances. Gossip as information. Meddling as being helpful. Stirring up strife as righteous indignation. On and on. Few love to be corrected and take as first instance "What have I done wrong?" over "Is it I?"

Not to forget ... "And who are you to say?"

[i]Later on, Jesus found him in the temple and told him, "See, you have become well. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you."[/i] ~ Joh 5:14

This verse has for some reason been quite loud in my hearing for a number of days. Has me wondering what a collection of the threats of Jesus might look like ... collectively.

Maybe it is only to say is it 'kind' to stay silent for the sake of a false sense of unity and fellowship ... Maybe it's the ordering;

Is it True?
Is it Necessary?

Still can't fit it in there last. It must be the definition and that which it conjures up. A great kindness was shown me the other day, a kindly rebuke; [i]"Ah ... you are right!"[/i] And it was so welcomed I had to set it right, straight away. What kindness it was! I think this generation, even many right here cannot stand to be stood down and must throw their emotions and personal effrontery, their offendeness into everything. Everything must then be turned to accusation and suspicion of ill-will and evil motivation ... [i]unkind![/i]

We can hardly speak of humility without a contest. Bring something about authority as authority, as order, and watch out. Maybe the word ought to be not used at all except on the receiving end. Maybe it could be put differently;

Is it True?
Is it Necessary?
Is it full of venom?


_________________
Mike Balog

 2008/2/15 8:50Profile
SimpleLiving
Member



Joined: 2008/1/11
Posts: 375
Minnesota, USA

 Re:

Quote:
Mean spirited, ill-willed ... an intent to injure for self gratification, envy, slander, gossip, discord, quarrels ... All these things understood completely.

'Is it kind?' though seems to do the opposite of it's intent far too often. That is, withholding things that need to be addressed because they are perceived as being 'unkind'.



I agree. Political correctness has caused most everyone, including Christians, to be so careful about what they say, lest they "offend" someone or hurt their feelings. There are things that need to be said. There are times to be bold. There are even times to be angry. (Bearing in mind Ephesians 4:6a [i]"Be ye angry, and sin not:"[/i])

Most of what needs to be said can be said kindly. I'm reminded of the great French statesman named Richelieu (1585-1642) who was known as a man of great courtesy. On one occasion, someone applied to him for a job, knowing that he would be turned down. Richelieu's manner of speech was so warm and accepting that it was worth having a request denied just to hear how graciously he expressed himself -- even when he said no.

We as Christians ought to be so sensitive to the needs, hurts, and disappointments of others that no unkind words come from our lips and no harsh tone is heard in our voices -- even when we find it necessary to be firm.

Quote:
So we halt at calling sin sin fearing being 'unkind'. Pride as pride. A haughty spirit as just mere circumstances. Gossip as information. Meddling as being helpful. Stirring up strife as righteous indignation. On and on. Few love to be corrected and take as first instance "What have I done wrong?" over "Is it I?"

Not to forget ... "And who are you to say?"



Unfortunately, this thin-skinned form of political correctness has invaded the church. People will take you to court just for saying something they don't like! However, sin is sin and must be called so.

"Is it I?" is a question asked by mature Christians. Others play the blame game.

Quote:
A great kindness was shown me the other day, a kindly rebuke; "Ah ... you are right!" And it was so welcomed I had to set it right, straight away. What kindness it was!



This [i]really, really[/i] is a kindness isn't it?! It gives us an opportunity to make the necessary correction and repentance. If we don't receive it in this form of kindness, it will come back to us in a stronger way at another time, so yes, it [i]is[/i] a kindness!

Quote:
I think this generation, even many right here cannot stand to be stood down and must throw their emotions and personal effrontery, their offendeness into everything. Everything must then be turned to accusation and suspicion of ill-will and evil motivation ... unkind!



Sadly, this is true. And how unnecessary for it to be! I will never stop saying that our motives and attitudes are [i]so very important[/i] to God! They matter - in everything!

I have learned something about debates. Don't take "de-bait." Very, [i]very[/i] few people online debate properly or in a Christlike way. Sly cutting remarks said in a "friendly way" do not fool God. We shouldn't be stumbling blocks to each other.

We should always remember Romans 12:18, [i]"If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men."[/i]

When it comes to posting in a debate, a mature Christian will use the [i]Preview[/i] button to read their posts before submitting them. Check for tone of voice. Is there something written that may be taken differently than we intended? Is what's said necessary, kind, edifying, Christlike, etc.? Is it [i]true[/i]?

A question I like to ask myself, especially regarding doctrine and scripture, is: "Is this just [i]my[/i] opinion or have I prayed about this topic and heard from God about it?"

Some debates here begin with a phrase like: "I'm just asking what others think." I don't believe that's an honest remark because that's where the debate challenge begins. Debate has its place. It [i]can[/i] be productive and enjoyable. But it should be conducted [i]honestly[/i] and with integrity, and spoken in love.

Thankfully, we are all growing in this grace and being daily transformed into the image of Jesus! May the Father be glorified in all things!


_________________
Keith

 2008/2/15 13:34Profile









 Re:

"Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee:[b] rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee. [/b]
Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be yet wiser: teach a just man, and he will increase in learning.
The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding." Proverbs 9:8-10


"He is in the way of life that keepeth instruction: but he that refuseth reproof erreth." Prov. 10:17


"The way of a fool is right in his own eyes: but he that hearkeneth unto counsel is wise." Prov. 12:15


"But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and [b]easy to be intreated[/b], full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.
And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace." James 3:17-18



"[b]Let the righteous smite me; it shall be a kindness: and let him reprove me; it shall be an excellent oil, which shall not break my head:[/b] for yet my prayer also shall be in their calamities." Psalm 141:5

[i]Let the righteous smite me, it shall be a kindness...[/i]

“We should be ready to welcome the rebuke of our heavenly Father, and also the reproof of our brethren. It shall not break my head, if it may but help to break my heart: we must show that we take it kindly. Those who slighted the word of God before, will be glad of it when in affliction, for that opens the ear to instruction. When the world is bitter, the word is sweet.” – Matthew Henry



“Debate thy cause with thy neighbour himself; and discover not a secret to another: Lest he that heareth it put thee to shame, and thine infamy turn not away. A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver. As an earring of gold, and an ornament of fine gold, so is a wise reprover upon an obedient ear.” Prov. 25:9-12



“He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips.” Prov. 20:10



“Ye shall do no unrighteousness in judgment: thou shalt not respect the person of the poor, nor honour the person of the mighty: but in righteousness shalt thou judge thy neighbour. Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people: neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy neighbour: I am the LORD. Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.” Lev. 19:16, 17

“To be a tale-bearer, and to sow discord among neighbours, is as bad an office as a man can put himself into. We are to rebuke our neighbour in love, ver. #17. Rather rebuke him than hate him, for an injury done to thyself. We incur guilt by not reproving; it is hating our brother. We should say, I will do him the kindness to tell him of his faults. We are to put off all malice, and to put on brotherly love…” – Matthew Henry



“Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass against thee, rebuke him; and if he repent, forgive him.” Luke 17:3


“Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness.” Colossians 3:12-14


“Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.” Galatians 6:1


“He that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth very friends. A reproof entereth more into a wise man than an hundred stripes into a fool. An evil man seeketh only rebellion: therefore a cruel messenger shall be sent against him.” Prov. 17:9-11


“A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends.” Prov. 16:28

“Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins.” Prov. 10:12


“He that speaketh truth sheweth forth righteousness: but a false witness deceit.” Prov 12:17


“An hypocrite with his mouth destroyeth his neighbour: but through knowledge shall the just be delivered.” Proverbs 11:9



That is but the very tip of the iceberg in exploring this topic in Scripture. And this ought to be our guide. I keep thinking of things I could say here...yet, do not the Scriptures speak for themselves? If we would but give greater attention to God's Word then we do to man's word...ah, wonder how different our conversations and interaction with one another would be. Obedience to this Book...that's what is needed.

All that to say, I count it a [b]great[/b] kindness when the righteous rebuke me, it hurts, it's painful, it's humbling, but it's good, and it's love. And if I respond correctly to it, it will bring spiritual growth in my life. The difficulty for me is knowing when to give a rebuke to a brother or sister, that is hard. Yet, according to Scripture, there is responsibility to do this for one another.

Much to think about.



 2008/2/16 13:59









 Re:

Thought this fit in with the topic of slander, gossip and discord.

~~~~~~~~~

[b]Speak Evil Of No Man- Charles Spurgeon [/b]
November 29

Morning
“Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people ... Thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbour, and not suffer sin upon him.”
- Lev_19:16, Lev_19:17

Tale-bearing emits a threefold poison; for it injures the teller, the hearer, and the person concerning whom the tale is told. Whether the report be true or false, we are by this precept of God’s Word forbidden to spread it. The reputations of the Lord’s people should be very precious in our sight, and we should count it shame to help the devil to dishonour the Church and the name of the Lord. Some tongues need a bridle rather than a spur. Many glory in pulling down their brethren, as if thereby they raised themselves. Noah’s wise sons cast a mantle over their father, and he who exposed him earned a fearful curse. We may ourselves one of these dark days need forbearance and silence from our brethren, let us render it cheerfully to those who require it now. Be this our family rule, and our personal bond-SPEAK EVIL OF NO MAN.

The Holy Spirit, however, permits us to censure sin, and prescribes the way in which we are to do it. It must be done by rebuking our brother to his face, not by railing behind his back. This course is manly, brotherly, Christlike, and under God’s blessing will be useful. Does the flesh shrink from it? Then we must lay the greater stress upon our conscience, and keep ourselves to the work, lest by suffering sin upon our friend we become ourselves partakers of it. Hundreds have been saved from gross sins by the timely, wise, affectionate warnings of faithful ministers and brethren. Our Lord Jesus has set us a gracious example of how to deal with erring friends in his warning given to Peter, the prayer with which he preceded it, and the gentle way in which he bore with Peter’s boastful denial that he needed such a caution.



 2008/2/26 11:42
SimpleLiving
Member



Joined: 2008/1/11
Posts: 375
Minnesota, USA

 Re:

Quote:
Be this our family rule, and our personal bond-SPEAK EVIL OF NO MAN.



I've lived by this guidance for a long time. It's served me well. I haven't always been successful, but when I haven't been, I've always been repentive.


_________________
Keith

 2008/2/26 14:13Profile
TheophilusMD
Member



Joined: 2003/12/1
Posts: 124
New Jersey

 Re:

I am reminded of Carter Conlon's preaching about kindness last January 27, 2008. This one's highly recommended.

[url=http://downloads3.wrtbooks.com/16/SID16792.mp3][b]Lifting Up Jesus in the Gates[/b][/url]

Quote:
January 27, 2008 - It is time for the Church of Jesus Christ to bring honor to His name by manifesting the law of kindness. We, as a church, are called into moral and spiritual excellence through which God is glorified. The law of kindness radiates through the mouth of those who are one in heart and mind with Jesus and whose deep desire is to live a life that is conformed to the cross of Christ. When we speak with the law of kindness we take our Savior and put Him in the gates in a place of honor. Kind speech puts a crown of glory on Jesus and those around us have to take notice. What does your speech reveal to those around you?



_________________
Rey O.

 2008/2/26 16:25Profile
wallbuilder
Member



Joined: 2007/2/15
Posts: 44


 Re:

I listened to this message by Keith Daniel-it was great, almost exactly what has been going on with this 'prayer leader' at church.

My pastors response to the prayer meeting (that I mentioned earlier) was to preach on submission to authority. This was his main point-and I quote, "To be under authority is more important than being in the will of God". Honest-he actually taught this. And his Scriptural points to back this up were,

-Jesus at the temple, at age 12, submitted to his parents and went with them, even though he wanted to stay at his Father's house (the temple).

-Jesus giving into his mother Mary, turning water into wine, even though it wasn't his time. To my pastor, this event equated submission to his mother (even though he was a grown man, 30 years old), even though he wasn't released to his ministry yet.

So if the church leadership starts selling indulgences again (the Catholic church) as in the dark ages, then according to my pastor we need to submit to their authority and not question what's being taught. (scary)

I guess Martin Luther was in sin when he came to the conclusion of "Sola Scriptura" -that is Scripture alone is the hightest authority, not men.

I'll see how this all pans out.

 2008/2/26 16:29Profile
PreachParsly
Member



Joined: 2005/1/14
Posts: 2164
Arkansas

 Re:

I thought this article would go good in this thread.
--------------------


Don't Argue
by Samuel Logan Brengle

"The servant a" the Lord must not strive (2 Tim. ii. 24).

In seeking to lead a holy, blameless life, I have been helped at one point by the advice of two men and the example of two others.

1. -- COMMISSIONER DOWDLE

Some years ago, in Boston, I attended an "all-night of prayer." It was a blessed time, and scores of people sought the blessing of a clean heart that night. The Scriptures were read, many prayers were offered, many songs were sung, many testimonies and exhortations were given; but of all the many excellent things said that night, there is only one I now remember: that burned itself into my memory never to be forgotten. Just before the meeting closed, Commissioner Dowdle, speaking to those who had been to the Penitent-form, said, "Remember, if you want to retain a clean heart, don't argue!"

There were twenty years of practical holiness behind that advice, and it fell on my ears like the voice of God.

2. -- PAUL OF TARSUS

In writing to young Timothy, the aged Apostle poured out his heart to one he loved as a son of the Gospel. He sought to fully instruct him in the truth, so that, on the one hand, Timothy might escape all the snares of the devil, and walk in holy triumph and fellowship with God, and thus save himself; and, on the other hand, be "throughly furnished" (2 Tim. iii. 17) to instruct and train other men, and to save them. Among other earnest words, these have deeply impressed me: "Of these things put them in remembrance ... that they strive not about words, to no profit, but to the subverting of the hearers (2 Tim. ii. 14).

I take it that Paul means by this, that instead of arguing with people and so losing time, and maybe temper, we are to go right for their hearts, and do our best to win them for Christ, and get them converted and sanctified.

Again, he says: "But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes. And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, in meekness instructing those that oppose themselves" (2 Tim. ii. 23-25).

Plainly, the Apostle thought this advice important for he repeats it in writing to Titus (iii. 9): "Avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law, for they are unprofitable and vain."

I am certain that Paul is right in this. It takes fire to kindle fire, and it takes love to kindle love. Cold logic will not make a man love Jesus, and it is only he that loveth that "is born of God" (I John iv. 17).

3. -- MARQUIS DE RENTY

We who have had the Gospel taught us in such simplicity and purity can scarcely realize the awful darkness through which some men have had to struggle, even in so-called Christian countries, to find the true light.

Some hundred years ago, among the luxurious and licentious nobility of France, and in the midst of the idolatrous forms and ceremonies of the Roman Catholic Church, the Marquis de Renty attained a purity of faith and a simplicity of life and character and a cloudless communion with God that greatly adorned the Gospel, and proved a blessing, not only to the people of his own community and age, but to many people of succeeding generations. His social position. his wealth and his great business ability led to his being associated with others in various enterprises of a secular and religious character, in all of which his faith and godly sincerity shone with remarkable luster.

In reading his life a few years ago, I was struck with his great humility, his sympathy for the poor and ignorant and his zealous, self-denying efforts to instruct and save them, his diligence and fervor in prayer and praise, and his constant hungering and thirsting after all the fullness of God. But what impressed me as much, or more, than all the rest was the way he avoided all argument of any nature, for fear he should grieve the Holy Spirit and quench the light in his soul. Whenever matters of a business or religious nature were being discussed, he carefully thought the subject over, and then expressed his views, and the reasons upon which he based them, clearly, fully and quietly, after which, however heated the discussion might become, he declined to be drawn into any further debate whatever. His quiet, peaceful manner, added to his clear statements, gave great force to his counsels. But whether his views were accepted or rejected, he always went to his opponents afterward and told them that, in expressing sentiments contrary to their own, he acted with no intention of opposing them personally, but simply that of declaring what seemed to him to be the truth.

In this he seems to me to have been closely patterned after "the meekness and gentleness of Christ" (2 Cor. x. 1), and his example has encouraged me to follow a like course, and so "keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace" (Eph. iv. 3), when otherwise I should have been led into wranglings and disputes which would have clouded my soul and destroyed my peace, even if the Holy Spirit were not utterly driven from my heart.

4. -- JESUS

The enemies of Jesus were constantly trying to entangle Him in His words, and involve Him in arguments, but He always turned the subject in such a way as to confound His ides and take every argument out of their mouths.

They came to Him one day (Matt. xxii.) and asked whether it was lawful to pay tribute to Caesar or not. Without any discussion whatever, He asked for a coin. He then asked whose image was on the coin.

"Caesar's," they replied.

"Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's and to God the things that are God's," said Jesus.

Again, they brought to Him a woman taken in adultery. His loving heart was touched with compassion for the poor sinner; but instead of arguing with her captors as to whether she should be stoned or not, He simply said, "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her" (John viii. 7). And the whole crowd of hypocrites were so convicted and baffled by His simplicity, that they sneaked out one by one till the sinner was left alone with her Saviour.

And so, all through the Gospels, I fail to find Jesus engaged in argument, and His example is of infinite importance to us.

It is natural to the "carnal mind" to resent opposition. But we are to be "spiritually-minded." By nature we are proud of our persons and vain of our opinions, and we are ready to stoutly resist him who sets himself against either us or our principles. Our object at once is to subdue him -- by force of argument or force of arms, but by some means subdue him. We are impatient of contradiction, and are hasty in judging men's motives and condemning all who do not agree with us. And then we are apt to call our haste and impatience "zeal for the truth," when, in fact, it is often a hotheaded, unkind and unreasoning zeal for our own way of thinking. Now, I am strongly inclined to believe that this is one of the last fruits of the carnal mind which grace ever subdues.

But let us who have become "partakers of the Divine nature" (2 Pet. i. 4) see to it that this root of the carnal nature is utterly destroyed. When men oppose us, let us not argue nor revile nor condemn, but lovingly instruct them -- not with an air of superior wisdom and holiness, but with meekness, solemnly remembering that "the servant of the Lord must not strive, but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient" (2 Tim. ii. 23-25).

I find that often, after having plainly, fully and calmly stated my views to one who is opposing the truth as I see it, I am strongly tempted to strive for the last word; but I also find that God blesses me most when I there commit the matter into His hands, and by so doing I most often win my adversary. I believe this is the way of faith and the way of meekness. While it may seemingly leave us defeated, we generally in the end win our foe. And if we have true meekness, we shall rejoice more over having won him to an "acknowledging of the truth" (2 Tim. ii. 25) than in having won an argument.


_________________
Josh Parsley

 2008/2/29 14:43Profile









 Re:

Quote:

Roniya wrote:

Good Example: The Jones boys were fighting in the bathroom. I told them to stop and they said, “Get a life, old man!” I am going to talk to their father about their rebellion, strife, and disrespect for their elders.




Good Example: Unless you’ve seen this feud firsthand, you have just engaged in gossip. You need to stop this conversation, repent of your sin, confront the person who told you, then go to the Hatfields and McCoys and confess to them that you’ve been gossiping about them. I’ll give you three days to get this done before I intervene.




Good Example: I confronted Mr. Jenkins about his treatment of his wife and he told me it was none of my business. I have to confront the issue again and I need someone to go with me and call him to repentance.





These examples you have given have alot of holes in them. First of all:

Example #1 Whos is the person who is making the accusation talking to when they say "...I'm going to talk to thier father..." This shouldn't be said to just anyone.

Example #2 This example leads one to think it is ok to talk about a feud so long as you have witnessed to it which is not scriptural, unprofitable and sinful. Also telling someone they have three days is a little much don't you think? You should just tell the person you believe what they have done is gossip and leave it in the hands of the Lord. It's only when things continue or escalate that you would have to take matters in your own hands. You cannot play the part of the holy spirit here. You must be careful.

Example#3 Again who is this person talking to when they say they are "...going to confront Mr. Jenkins wife..."

Now who's being the gossip here in these three examples? It looks as though you!

 2008/2/29 15:13
PreachParsly
Member



Joined: 2005/1/14
Posts: 2164
Arkansas

 Re:

Hello,

It seems your new here. Welcome to SI.

Quote:
Now who's being the gossip here in these three examples? It looks as though you!



These are not real stories... only examples. Although I may be misinterpreting what you are saying. Maybe you are saying that if this were a real example it would be gossip? (edit: That's probably what you mean.. )


_________________
Josh Parsley

 2008/2/29 16:20Profile





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