Faithlife
Faithlife

Anti-Social Networking

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Reformada Armada  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  40:24
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Introduction

Something came to our attention this week that made this message tonight particularly important. Someone in this room managed to get access to everyone’s social media accounts and text messages. All of them. Public, private, group, individual - everything. It was all recorded permanently. We’ve seen some of it, and from the bits we’ve seen, there are some major concerns with how our ministry is communicating online.

An Ancient Problem

Let me define the first problem I want to talk about. The problem is gossip.
There are lots of definitions of gossip. Here are a couple.
A person who habitually reveals personal or sensational facts about others. - Merrian-Webster.com
Someone who enjoys talking about other people’s private lives. - Cambridge Dictionary
Here is a definition that I think communicates the biblical idea of gossip:
To say anything negative about someone behind his or her back for any reason other than love.
This isn’t a new problem, it goes all the way back to the Garden of Eden.
Genesis 3:1–5 NASB95
Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’ ” The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! “For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
Satan’s lies were a form of gossip behind God’s back called slander. What he said wasn’t true. However, gossip can also be things that are true. It isn’t what is said that is important, it is why it is said.

A Biblical Guide to Gossip

God Hates Gossip

Psalm 15:1–3 NASB95
O Lord, who may abide in Your tent? Who may dwell on Your holy hill? He who walks with integrity, and works righteousness, And speaks truth in his heart. He does not slander with his tongue, Nor does evil to his neighbor, Nor takes up a reproach against his friend;

Gossip Is an Enemy of Love

Proverbs 16:28 NASB95
A perverse man spreads strife, And a slanderer separates intimate friends.
Proverbs 11:13 NASB95
He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets, But he who is trustworthy conceals a matter.
Proverbs 17:9 NASB95
He who conceals a transgression seeks love, But he who repeats a matter separates intimate friends.

Defeat Gossip by Starving It

Gossip-tellers need gossip listeners - so don’t be one
Proverbs 20:19 NASB95
He who goes about as a slanderer reveals secrets, Therefore do not associate with a gossip.
Deal with issues face to face
Proverbs 25:9 NASB95
Argue your case with your neighbor, And do not reveal the secret of another,
Be okay with not being “in the loop” - curiosity didn’t kill the cat, it killed your friend
Proverbs 26:20–22 NASB95
For lack of wood the fire goes out, And where there is no whisperer, contention quiets down. Like charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire, So is a contentious man to kindle strife. The words of a whisperer are like dainty morsels, And they go down into the innermost parts of the body.
Recognize gossip as evil, not harmless, interesting, etc.
Jeremiah 9:3 NASB95
“They bend their tongue like their bow; Lies and not truth prevail in the land; For they proceed from evil to evil, And they do not know Me,” declares the Lord.
Romans 1:28–29 NASB95
And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips,

Application

Never Underestimate the Power of Words
(Prov 18:21 - death and life are in the power of the tongue. Michelle Carter convicted of involuntary manslaughter for texting her boyfriend and leading him to commit suicide. Blue Whale dare.)
Respect Your Family
Protect Your Family
Avoid Gossips, Especially Online
Shut Down Gossips, Especially Online
Choose Your Companions Carefully, Especially Online
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