Summary: Rumors - Weeds and what the bible says
I like the looks of a green lawn, nicely cut, pretty flowers blooming in the flowerbeds.
I don’t have that at my house, in fact I don’t have a lawn at all. Weeds, privit, poison Ivey, But I like a nice lawn. Have you ever noticed how quickly weeds can take over a lawn?
Today I want to talk about weeds. Not the kind that affect our lawns but another kind.
To get us started I want to quote the lyrics to a song. I have never actually heard it I found the lyrics on-line.
It is a kids song, Titled – “The Rumor Weed Song”
It starts as a story.
Maybe it’s true, maybe not,
but once you repeat it it’s hard to defeat it.
Now look at the mess that you’ve got!
I’m a rumor weed! I’m a rumor weed!
A tiny little story is all I need to make a big mess.
I’m a rumor weed!”
A rumor, as this song implies, is kind of like weeds that grows so fast that it gets out of control, until you are left with a big mess. The mess is that once it is out of control you can’t stop it even if it is completely false. It can lead to a mess that destroys carriers, lives, families, companies and even Churches
This morning we are going to look at what the Bible has to say about spreading rumors.
First of all, what is a rumor?
According to Webster, a “rumor” is “a current story passing from one person to another, without any known authority for the truth of it.”
Closely related to rumor is gossip. “Gossip” is defined as “running from house to house, tattling and telling news.”
A gossip” is “a person who habitually reveals personal or sensational information.”
I believe that we can all agree that going around telling stories that have no facts behind them can make some big messes.
However, some of us would say that it’s not gossip if what we share with others is factual.
Gossip, as we just heard in some of our definitions, is sharing “any” personal or confidential information. It does not have to be nonfactual information to be considered gossip or rumors.
Gossip, therefore, is openly sharing both nonfactual and factual personal information about someone else. Rumors and gossip are things that we should avoid at all cost because the information we spread can be destructive to those individuals when shared with others.
We are supposed to try to be like Christ in all that we do and our God is not in the business of tearing down lives. He’s in the business of rebuilding and making all things new.
This morning we are going to examine Proverbs 26:20-22 as our focal passage in discussing the destructive nature of rumors, however, we are also going to look at a many other verses as well.
(Read Proverbs 26:20-22)
“Without wood, a fire will go out, and without gossip, quarreling will stop. Just as charcoal and wood keep a fire going, a quarrelsome person keeps an argument going. The words of a gossip are like tasty bits of food; people like to gobble them up.”
These verses tell us that whenever we gossip and spread rumors that it is like throwing wood or fuel on a fire. Let me provide you with an illustration.
Let us suppose that a fellow church member messes up and commits some sort of sin. If we know that this person has done something wrong in the eyes of God then we should first pray about it and then confront the person by ourselves.
Dealing with the person’s sin discretely will help him to be less defensive. It will also help the person to be much more humble in admitting their sin and accepting God’s forgiveness.
If we first go and tell everyone else about what the person is doing, then he or she will become angry that people are judging him and condemning him, and talking behind his back. And he might build a wall of anger and ignore the offence and will probably retaliate by spreading rumors about his attackers, and then people start growing to despise one another. It’s like a fire that just keeps growing higher and hotter.
Rumors themselves become like a growing fire, because the longer they circulate the bigger and more ludicrous they become.
It has been said, “
Rumor is one thing that gets thicker when you spread it.”
You have probably had a schoolteacher or Sunday school teacher demonstrate the effects of gossip to you before. If the teacher starts on one end of the classroom and tells a student a secret, and then has this student to pass the secret along from student to student, then by the time it reaches the other end of the classroom the story is completely twisted. It is not what it was when it first began.