The outward appearance of man is in many instances deceiving . . . appearing to be righteous to others but full of iniquity in his heart.
One of the most common manifestations of this deadly spiritual problem is malicious gossip. For some reason, some people feel it is their duty to keep the embers of controversy stirring. They thrive on tidbits of juicy gossip, putting on a righteous air and going to others with a pious attitude spewing their poison. The sad thing is that they don’t even consider what they’re saying as gossip but put on a mask of spiritual maturity in order to gain the confidence of those to whom they speak.
More harm has been done in the Body of Christ through the mouths of malicious gossips than through any other means. Innocent people have been wrongfully accused, young Christians have been crushed, and even some of the most mature, Godly people have been horribly wounded through the words of gossipers.
Take note of the words that come from your own mouth. Are they from a heart of love for God and fellow-man, or are they from a heart corrupt and seeking its own pleasure at the expense of others?
“Even so ye also outwardly appear righteous unto men, but within ye are full of hypocrisy and iniquity.” (Matthew 23:28)
Examine yourself carefully today to make sure you are not one of those who appear to be righteous but whose heart is full of hypocrisy and iniquity.
Father, I confess that I have been known to say things that I knew would wound or hurt others. Please forgive me for my part in inflicting deep wounds and scars on people for the momentary pleasure of appearing “righteous.” Lord, cleanse my heart from all unrighteousness; help me to be to all what and who You have called me to be. I long to be a clean vessel through which You can minister to your beloved children. Cleanse me, O Lord, from all my offences that I may be free to serve You with all my heart, soul, mind and strength. Lord, I love you more than anything, amen.
“The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.” (Proverbs 18:8)
© Jan Ross
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