April 15, 2019 by Kgalalelo
The above scripture which is in the Lord’s prayer was impressed in me by the Holy Spirit as I was praying, He wanted me to preach the message today. The Word of the Lord says in Luke 4:18 "The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free”. I was rebuking the spirit of gossip in the workplace during prayer, in the church and every area of life for its ungodliness. We fall into the trap of gossiping about each other daily and justify it as a way of expressing frustration about another. Talking about one another in a negative way is never justifiable.
1 Thessalonians 5:11 says “encourage one another and build each other up”. This is what God expect of us instead of useless chatter that adds no value to each other’s lives.
When we speak lovingly about each other, the spirit of gossip cannot be. Ephesians 4:29 also says “Let no unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building up the one in need and bringing grace to those who listen”. Hebrews 3:13 also says “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness”.
We habitually talk about each other whenever the opportunity presents itself, that is, what people should or shouldn’t have done, what they should or shouldn’t have said, how they should dress and behave and we are never satisfied with the way people are. We always find fault with everyone except ourselves. As much as we gossip about others, they can easily gossip about us, it is a ripple effect which has far reaching consequences because whatever we say, is said back at us and even more damaging. We do not understand the laws of the universe.
Jesus says in Luke 6:31 “And just as you want men to do to you, you also do to them likewise”. This is the law of love that holds no malice. There is no gossip in love; love is pure and the ultimate, for God is love. When you do not demonstrate love in your heart, you are not illustrating who God is. We all have love in our hearts; however, we need to put it in action.
1 Corinthians 13 portrays the qualities of love and this is probably one of the most quoted scriptures in the temples, however, reading it without understanding and acting upon it makes it just a good read. It says “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails”.
Lead me not into temptation, the Holy Spirit explained to me, is what we should pray for when we have the hunger to talk about others maliciously, finding fault and saying unnecessary things about people as well as seeking another with whom we can gossip with. When we ask God to lead us not into temptation, we are requesting Him to help us focus on Him, on the good of others and on the purpose that He has called us to.
When we are tempted however, scripture says in 1Corinthians 10:13 “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it. God provides alternatives and strength when you are tempted but we need to keep on praying, “lead me not into temptation Lord”.
The bible also says “deliver me from evil” (Luke 11:4). When we gossip and speak spitefully about others, we are falling into the trap of the devil. The devil loves nothing more than to see the children of God go astray. The devil is well aware that whatever we do and say to each other boomerangs and when it does, causes more destruction. He is interested in setting us against each other and destroying one another and ours is to keep on praying “lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil”.
The cry of our hearts should be “God seal our mouths” when we are tempted to speak unkind words about others and may we walk away from a potential situation that gives the opportunity to speak ill about another. Instead, we should glorify God and say “For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, forever and ever” (Matthew 6:13). Ours should always be an attitude of worship, when you are praising and worshipping God, there’s no time for gossip.
The world is the way it is today because we fail to see the good in each other and instead of supporting each other we destroy each other by the power of our tongues. Proverbs 18:21 says “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.
James 3 speaks about taming the tongue. It says “Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, a world of evil among the parts of the body. It corrupts the whole body, sets the whole course of one’s life on fire, and is itself set on fire by hell. All kinds of animals, birds, reptiles and sea creatures are being tamed and have been tamed by mankind, but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison”.
It further goes on to say, “With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing” (James 3:5-10).
David says in Psalm 23:2-3,
“He leads me beside still waters”.
“He leads me in paths of righteousness
for his name's sake”.
This is the direction that God leads us as His children, it is for His name that He shows us the right path, which is the path to right living. His ways lead to life everlasting. Jesus says in John 10:10 “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly”. Abundant life and gossip are diametrically opposed. It means focusing on what God is doing in your life and not on others. There is no growth in gossip, no prosperity and your focus is simply misplaced.
Let us all clean up our act and come before God with hearts full of repentance that He may give us a fresh start and when He does, we should change our ways. He says in Isaiah 1:18 “Though your sins are like scarlet,
they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red as crimson,
they shall be like wool.
God is faithful and when we make it a habit to sit in His presence, evil has no business with the presence of God. In the place of gossip, you introspect that God may remove the thorns and thistle in your heart. David says in Psalm 51:10 “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me”. David was honest with his shortcomings and the bible says he was a man after God’s own heart. He always ran to God and we should cultivate the habit of soaking ourselves in the presence that we may receive more from Him and be cleansed from our iniquities.
Footnote: Scriptures taken from the The Holy Bible, New King James Version, 1982: Nashville, TN, Thomas Nelson, Inc. & The ESV Global Study Bible®, ESV® Bible, Copyright © 2012 by Crossway. All rights reserved & The Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. www.zondervan.com The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™
Kgalalelo Saane Mphephuka
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