SLANDERER and the SLANDERED
WHAT should a Christian do when
others speak evil of him falsely Godly people have always been the subject
&f criticisms and abuses. It will be useful to examine the great men and
discover their response as a guide for our behaviour.
But in order to know what to do when we are slandered, it is necessary to know
why others would want to slander us.
Why Are We Slandered?
1. For believing in Jesus
The Lord Jesus said, “Blessed are
ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of
evil against you falsely, for my sake” (Mt 5:11). Peter also has this to say,
“For the time past for our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the
gentile when we walked in licentiousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings hanquetings and
abominable idolatries; wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them
to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you (1 Pet 4:3-4). The people of
the world hate those who believe in Christ Jesus.
2. For preaching the
One sabbath, Paul spoke the words of God in the synagogue
Many gentiles became interested and wanted to hear more of the truth. They
persuaded Paul to speak again on the following sabbath,
hut there were others who became envious of Paul and spoke evil against him (Ac
13:42-45). On another occasion Paul spoke in a synagogue in Ephesus for three months. Some who did not
believe spoke evil against Paul (Ac 19:8-9).
3. Due to jealousy
The Song of Solomon says,
“Jealousy is cruel as the grave”. One who is jealous over another will loose
his senses thus resulting in dissatisfaction and hatred. Moses was the most
faithful servant of God. God on many occasions spoke to Moses directly. Both
Miriam and Aaron became jealous and they slandered Moses (Num 12:1-5).
4. Out of ignorance
David escaped to Bahurim after Absalom had usurped his throne. While he was
there he met Shimei, of the house of Saul. Shimei cursed David as he went, saying, “The Lord hath
returned upon them all the blood of the house of Saul, in whose stead thou hast
reigned; and the L rd hath delivered the kingdom into the hand of Absalom thy
son : and, behold, thou art taken in thy mischief, because thou art a bloody
man” (2 Sam 16:5-8). in fact David was very loyal to
Saul. This could he seen from the two confessions made by Saul to David. In his
first confession he admitted that David was more righteous than he. in his second confession he said that he had erred
exceedingly (1 Sam 24:16-17, 26:21). Shimei, unaware
of the fact, had slandered David out of ignorance.
What To Do When We Are
1. Hold fast to what we believe and be cautious in
our words and conduct
One should not feel dejected when
slandered. Instead he should be strong and to hold fast to the Words of God and
to also be cautious in his speech and action. if one
can endure to the end, things will turn out well. Apostle Peter has this
exhortation, “Having your conversation honest among the gentile: that, where as
they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they
shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation (1 Pet 2:12). Paul also
exhorts us saying, “In all things shewing thyself a
pattern of good words: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity. Sound speech that cannot
he condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no
evil thing to say to you’ (Tit 2:7-8).
2. To endure and to give
The word of God is also known as
the word of patience (Rev 3:10). Only through patience can one keep the word of
God. The gospel was preached far and wide through the great patience and
sufferings of the saints in the past. Paul said, “We are fools for Christ’s
sake, hut ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised. Even unto this present
hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no
certain dwelling-place. And labour, working with our
own hands being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it: being
detained, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the
world, and are the offscouring of all things unto
this day” (1 Cor 4:10-13). Paul said again, ‘Whom we
preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may
present every man perfect in Christ Jesus” (Col 1:28). Therefore, when we are slandered
we must on the one hand exercise patience and on the other give exhortation so
that those who speak evil against us may come to know the truth.
3. To check our conscience
The Lord said, “Hearken unto me,
ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law; fear ye not the reproach of men, neither he ye afraid of their revilings” (Is 51:7). If we are accused of having done
something bad to others, it does not matter if our conscience is clear. Mephibosheth, the son of Saul, was thankful to David. Later
David fled from Ahsalotn and departed Jerusalem. Mephibosheth did not follow 1)avid
because he was lame, However, Mephihosheth felt sorry
for David. He had nor dressed his feet, nor trimmed his heard, nor washed his clothes
from the day the king departed until the day he returned to his palace in
peace. Despite all this, Mephihosheth’s servant had
spoken evil against him. David did not know about this until he personally
asked Mephibosheth the reason he had not followed him
during his escape. From thenceforth. David came to understand Mephihosheth better (2 Sam 16:1-4, 19:24-30).
4. To examine ourselves
Human nature is such that we like
to receive praise from others, hut when we are defamed we feel upset and even
angry. As a Christian this should not he the case. The Bible says, “For it is
better if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, then for evil
doing” (1 Pet 3:17). As such, we should examine ourselves if we have done any
harm to others.
If one is slandered for the sake
of the Lord and the Word, then it is a worthy cause and his conscience will be
clear also. The Scriptures say, “They also that seek after my life lay snares
for me : and they that seek my hurt speak mischievous
things, and imagine deceits all the day long. But I, as a deaf man, heard not : and I was a dumb man that openeth
not his mouth. Thus I was as a man that heareth not, and in whose mouth is not response” (Ps 38:12-14).
Everything will he made clear eventually. When the Lord comes again we all
shall appear before Him. He will reveal every secret that has been hidden. Then
every one will go through the righteous judgment of God.