Outline Number 17




(Talebearing, Slander, Etc.)



A. God’s commandment in the Law


"You shall not go about as a talebearer among your people; I am the Lord"

(Lev 19:16)


B. Causes of Backbiting


1. Lack of love (1 Cor 13:6; Gal 5:14,15)


2. Failure to remember that God hears it and the Holy Spirit is grieved

(Num 12: 1,2; Eph 4:30,31)


C. Effects of Backbiting


1. It deeply wounds the heart. (Prov 18:8)


2. It is the cause for many a strife. (Prov 25:23; 26:20)


3. It is a hindrance to personal spiritual growth and affects the ministry in the church. (1 Pet 2:1,2; Psa 15:1-3; 2 Cor 12:20,21)


D. Backbiting and other evils


1. Backbiting and flattery (Prov 20:19)


2. Backbiting and hypocrisy (Psa 41:6; Jer 9:4,8)


3. Backbiting and position-loving (3 Jn 9,10)


4. Backbiting and idling (1 Tim 5: 13; 2 Thess 3:11)


5. Backbiting and backsliding (Jer 6: 27-30)


E. Lessons from an Old Testament Example


Read Numbers 12:1-16. Miriam and Aaron backbit Moses!


1. Not Moses, but the LORD heard it (v 2).


2. The anger of the Lord was kindled (v 9).


3. The glory of God departed (v 10).


4. Miriam struck with leprosy—Loss of spiritual sensitiveness (v 10)


5. Miriam shut out—Fellowship broken (v 15)


6. People’s journey delayed—Hindrance to progress (v 15)


F. When you want to backbite...

Ask yourself these questions:

(a) Is it true?

(b) Is it needful?

(c) Is it kind?


G. When a backbiter comes to you...

Ask him these questions:


(a) Will it do me any good if you tell me that story?

(b) Will it do you any good to tell it?

(c) Will it do the person about whom you have come to tell me, any good?


H. When you are backbitten...


(a) Don’t defend!

(b) Don’t offend!

(c) But bless!


I. Severe punishment for backbiting


Psa 50:20,21; 101:5; Prov 6:12-15; Rom 1:30,32; 2:1


J. Some positive counsel


1. Tell your brother’s faults to him alone in private. (Mt 18.15,16)


2. Confess your faults one to another and pray for one another. (Js 4:11; 5:9,16)


3. Think on virtues. (Phil 4: 8)


K. The Greek word for "devil" is "diabolas" which means SLANDERER!