I saw this post Monday from noted and respected Greek scholar Bill Mounce. It deals with gossip in the church and its devastating effects on churches and pastors alike.

Bill states:

A friend of mine just left the ministry. This is a young man who felt the call of the Lord, and committed his undergraduate education to Biblical Studies. His wife and he made an additional commitment to go to seminary, a decision that involved major sacrifice on their part. It was interesting, they said, to live with all the hookers in their town. But the rent was cheap.

And when his young wife’s health continued to deteriorate, they move to another seminary to finish his education.

The point of all this is that we are looking at about six years of significant sacrifice. Six years. Perhaps more.

And then the time comes; they graduate, and move to their first pastorate. He lasted about four years, and when he and his wife couldn’t take it any longer, he resigned and is going into some other area of work, and the church is robbed of a bright and passionate young man who deeply loves the Lord and wants to serve the people.

And what was the cause of this man’s and woman’s loss of a dream? Gossip…….

I am totally convinced that the church visible it its greatest enemy. I am confident that the prophecy of Acts 20:29-30 is paradigmatic of how Satan works.

And what is at stake? The lives of our young ministers? Much more than that. The very mission of the church is that we are to so love each other that those outside the church will see our love and be convinced thatGod the Father sent his Son into the world to make for himself a people of his own possession. It was Jesus’ one prayer for you and for me (John 17).

And yet the evil and the sin persists. The critical backbiting and slander just don’t stop. The sin is relentless.

When will we learn?

Read the whole thing here.