<<falsely damaging statement>>

Slander is a verbal attack, done with the intention of hurting another’s reputation and smearing their character by poisoning the minds of the hearers (Ps 109:1-3; Jer 18:18; Act 14:2). Gossip is passing on someone else’s secrets, while slander is fabricating secrets and passing them on in a negative light to deliberately do another harm.

The Bible condemns spreading false reports – only a fool does this (Ex 20:16, 23:1; Prov 6:16-19, 10:18; 1 Pet 2:1). Jesus said slander is one of the things that pollutes our character (Mk 7:21-23). For believers this destructive trait of the old sinful corrupt nature

Would I like others to do this to me?

must be put to death as it is a mark of those not walking with God and the Bible states "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths..." (Rom 1:28-32, 6:11-14, 12:1,2; 2 Cor 5:17; Eph 4:29,31; Col 3:7,8; Tit 3:2; Jas 4:11). If we are tempted to speak untruths about someone we must examine our hearts to discover and deal with the root cause (Mt 15:18,19; Jas 3:9,10). It could be we are jealous of them, have unresolved hurts, harbour unforgiveness and bitterness, or some other sin we have not brought to the cross, because, as believers, we are to love each other for love does no harm to a neighbour but wants the best for them (Jn 13:34; Rom 13:10; 1 Cor 13:4-7). Jesus’ instruction is “Do to others as we would they do to us” (Lk 6:31).

See also: criticism, golden rule, gossip, speech, tongue, truth, words.