“I learned this lesson the hard way. Someone launched a slander campaign against me which destroyed many of my relationships. I was so stressed out that I was having heart palpitations.”
As we saw in Psalm 31, when people slandered David, he didn’t waste his energy arguing with his enemies or defending himself. He got alone with God and laid it all out before him.
Proverbs 18:21 declares, “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, And those who love it will eat its fruit.” Yes, our words have power – but over ourselves more than others. We will eat the fruit of our lips, whether good or bad. When we are slandered, we need not fear the words spoken against us. We can speak what God says about us in His Word, which is far more powerful – to do us good and not evil!
God holds a beautiful promise for us in Isaiah 54:17:
“No weapon that is formed against you will prosper; And every tongue that accuses you in judgment you will condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, And their vindication is from Me,” declares the LORD.
What to Do with Slander
No weapon formed against us – no accusing tongue – will prosper. Slanderous words will fly toward us like arrows and give us a choice. Will we let lying words pierce our hearts? Or will we do as God says? We are to condemn those words as guilty, for God has made us righteous through Jesus Christ.
Anything other than what God says about us is a lie. The only power that slander has is the power of deception. When we know the truth, falsehoods will have no control over us. Slanderous arrows aimed at us will boomerang back to those who spoke the slander. According to God’s justice, they will eat the fruit of their words.
We can choose not to react to the slanderers. Instead, we can obey God’s Word of love.
Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. (Luke 6:28)
A Hard Lesson
I learned this lesson the hard way. Someone launched a slander campaign against me which destroyed many of my relationships. I was so stressed out that I was having heart palpitations. My Bible study leader shared Luke 6:28 and told me to pray for them.
“What, Lord?” I cried. “You want me to pray for those who curse me?” As difficult as it was, I obeyed and prayed. The Lord filled my heart with compassion and understanding. After all, who else would see the evil but me, who was wronged? Who else would pray for them? Their buddies? I realized that I was in the best position to see the gravity and consequences of the evil they were invoking upon themselves. I learned to genuinely pray for them with compassion, asking God to have mercy on them and grant them repentance.
2 Timothy 2:24:
And the Lord’s servant must not quarrel;
Take the Higher Road
We can’t change a defamer’s mind and will only wear ourselves out by arguing with them. Only God can work in their heart to bring about change. When we take the higher road of the Scriptures and speak the truth in love, God can powerfully work within His spoken Word to change the slanderer’s heart.
2 Timothy 2:24-26:
instead, he must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful.
Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth,
and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.”
Our Real Enemy
We must recognize who our true enemy is. It is not people, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12)
Our slanderers don’t realize that without Jesus Christ, they are merely pawns for Satan, speaking his will against the saints of God. We need to understand that the hurtful words are not originating from the person’s mind but are from the father of lies.
Those who speak against us have no power to accuse us before God.
Romans 8:33-35, 37:
Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies.
Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died — more than that, who was raised — who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.
Conquerors through Love
Through the living Lord Jesus who loves us, we are more than conquerors over anything anyone can say against us. We can speak what God says and not what maligners say at the devil’s whims. What wisdom is there in repeating their words of death and risk eating the rotten fruit of our lips?
After all, love covers a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8). It doesn’t spread them around.
We don’t have to be wearied out and exhausted by the accusations of others. We can take it all to God and trust Him to strengthen and encourage us, for He is faithful to His Word.
O my people, trust in him at all times. Pour out your heart to him, for God is our refuge. (Psalms 62:8)