The LDS Daily WOOL© Archive - Gossip

"We will be held accountable for all that we say. The Savior has warned 'that every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment' (Matthew 12:36). This means that no communication shall be without consequence. This includes the slight slips of the tongue, the caustic communications that canker the soul, and the vain, vulgar, and profane words which desecrate the name of Deity. Un-Christlike communications There are certain kinds of un-Christlike communications which destroy relationships and are not for our development but are for our destruction. They result in a diminished opportunity of returning home safely to Heavenly Father. One of the major ways that Satan uses to retard the development of righteous relationships is in the use of gossip, rumor, and slander on his communication network."— Elder L. Lionel Kendrick, Christlike Communications, General Conference, October 1988

"How damaging is a habit that permits fault-finding, character assassination, and the sharing of malicious rumors! Gossip and caustic comments often create chains of contention. These chains may appear to be very small, but what misery and woe they can cause!"— Elder Marvin J. Ashton, "Shake Off the Chains with Which Ye Are Bound", General Conference, October 1986

"Gossip is the worst form of judging. The tongue is the most dangerous, destructive, and deadly weapon available to man. A vicious tongue can ruin the reputation and even the future of the one attacked. Insidious attacks against one's reputation, loathsome innuendoes, half-lies about an individual are as deadly as those insect parasites that kill the heart and life of a mighty oak. They are so stealthy and cowardly that one cannot guard against them. As someone has said, 'It is easier to dodge an elephant than a microbe.'"— President N. Eldon Tanner, "Judge Not That Ye Be Not Judged", General Conference, April 1972

"It is the lie on the lips of the neighborhood gossip that brings character assassination to many innocent victims."— Elder Mark E. Petersen, Honesty, A Principle Of Salvation, General Conference, October 1971

"Boys flying kites haul in their white-winged birds; You can call back your kites, but you can't call back your words. 'Careful with fire' is good advice, we know; 'Careful with words' is ten times doubly so. Thoughts unexpressed will often fall back dead. But God Himself can't kill them, once they are said! (Will Carelton, The First Settler's Story)."— Elder Boyd K. Packer, Balm of Gilead, General Conference, October 1987

"We have discovered, in mingling among the Saints, and in seeking to adjust among them troubles that are continually arising, that it frequently happens that wards, or branches, or districts become divided in sentiment in regard to the character of the treatment that the Bishop and his associates, or the Presidency of the Stake and the High Council, may have prescribed in the case of some individual, and, as a result of this continued agitation and gossip an effort is made to overturn the Church government in the ward or stake and belittle the officers, who should be respected and esteemed in the positions that they occupy. Recognizing the fact that in the Church of Christ it was the design of Providence to guard sacredly the rights and liberties of every man, woman and child, He placed upon us the responsibility of seeking, so far as lay in our power, first to adjust our own troubles. If we have wronged one of our neighbors, or if, perchance, we may imagine that our neighbor has wronged us, the obligation rests upon us to seek to adjust those matters and preserve our individuality intact."— Elder John Henry Smith, Collected Discourses, Vol.4

"Think of the sorrow and distress in the world, as a result of men and women gossiping about their neighbors, testifying to things, or referring to things that are not true, and implying that they are true. But they never get any happiness out of it. You never saw a gossip in your life that was happy. He is just as unhappy and miserable as the devil all the time--and of course he is in Satan's company when he is gossiping about his neighbors."— Pres. George Albert Smith, Conference Report, April 1944, p.29

“Why did the Lord give the commandment?

“’Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.’ (Exodus 20:16.)

“He gave it because of the subtle methods of the adversary in his effort to divide and tear asunder the love and the unity of the Lord's people! To bear false witness may not appear to be a very serious offense, but its results are far-reaching and cruel, hence, the use made of it by the instigator of evil. The Lord warns us against this evil practice. Bearing false witness, talebearing, slander, gossip, scandal, fault-finding, backbiting, and evil speaking are in the same category of evil practice and are some of the means employed by Satan to disunite us as a people and destroy brotherly love, kindness, and helpfulness toward one another.” - George F. Richards, “Conference Report,” April 1947, First Day—Morning Meeting, p. 24

“We are seeking to build up and to establish righteousness in the hearts of the people, and I want to see you, as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, male and female, so industrious, so active in the discharge of your duties as Latter-day Saints, so humble, so submissive to the will of the Lord that you will not have time to spend in magnifying the weaknesses, the follies and the faults of your neighbors and of your fellow members of the Church. The Lord knows there is evil enough said in the world thoughtlessly; and without any particular intent to do wrong, but merely through the weakness of men to talk, talk, talk and say nothing–let us work and not talk.” - Joseph F. Smith, “Conference Report,” October 1911, p. 10

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