Proverbs 16:28, NIV:  A perverse man stirs up dissension, and a gossip separates close friends.

All the sugar coating in the world does not change the truth about gossip. Your words may be dipped in honey, and spoken softly, light-heartedly to another. But don’t be fooled. For many there are of us who justify ourselves, slipping our words beneath the cover of so called concern. What is it that stirs in us a need to gossip? Is it envy, anger, jealousy, or strife? Is it an insatiable curiosity that peaks and all the more when we peak the curiosity of someone else? Whatever the reasons, all are rooted in sin. It is truly amazing how powerful words can be--and how easy it is for some to act as though their words are no big deal. Gossip is spread, the damage is done, and when caught by our words we say, “Oh, you’re blowing it out of proportion.” Do we blame the victim as though he somehow deserved it? Do we try to act as though we did nothing wrong? Jesus does not take a soft position on such things. He tells us, “But I say to you that for every idle word men may speak, they will give account of it in the day of judgment,” and, “with what judgment you judge, you will be judged.” It is trouble enough as we look on others with the sinful judgments of our hearts, but how much more terrible for us to allow the cancerous thoughts to be spread from our lips to the ears of others.