Proverbs 11:13 (New Living Translation)
13 A gossip goes around telling secrets, but those who are trustworthy can keep a confidence.
Proverbs 13:3 (New International Version)
3 He who guards his lips guards his life, but he who speaks rashly will come to ruin.
Proverbs 16:28 (New International Version)28 A perverse man stirs up dissension, and a gossip separates close friends.
Proverbs 18:8 (New Century Version)8 The words of a gossip are like tasty bits of food. People like to gobble them up.
Proverbs 20:19 (New International Version)
19 A gossip betrays a confidence; so avoid a man who talks too much.
Proverbs 26:20 (New Century Version)20 Without wood, a fire will go out, and without gossip, quarreling will stop.
We all like to "stir it up". From the time we were in school we all have been involved in talking about other people. Now as adults we all take part in the what goes on in the office. Maybe not maliciously, but a "juicy" and "scandelous" story is sometimes too hard to resist. Some of us though say things about those we want to hurt.
Maybe they took our position, or they attained a something we wanted very hard to get. Maybe they even hurt us before, and we feel it is "high time they got what is coming to them". This thing can really burn, and it can do extreme damage. It can even ruin someone's life. And I am sure that we do not want to be the center of it.
God has a lot to say about that little "fireball" gossip. Here are just of few statements about it from Proverbs. God calls this destructive activity by its more revealing name "sin", and as believers in Jesus Christ, we are supposed to avoid this like the plague. We are to run as far from gossip as we can. And if we find ourselves in the middle of a malicious conversation we should pretend like we haven't heard a thing.
The key to putting out the "fire" of gossip is to be the end of it. Don't let it spread any further, and encourage others not to go there. Your life will be much happier and you will have many more friends if you become known as the "firefighter" rather than the "arsonist".