I had an interesting insight the other day, during our faculty devotion. We’re reading through John’s Gospel together. At the end of John chapter 2, Jesus was involved in keeping the 8th Commandment. He did not entrust Himself to anyone else, because when you entrust yourself to someone, especially by listening to their gossip or the “news” they have to share, you give that person a measure of power or control over you. If you lend your ears to gossip, you take in what that other person tells you into your inmost parts, your heart of hearts — and that can be disastrous, especially since so much gossip is untrue or a twisting of the facts.
The words of a gossip are like choice morsels;
they go down to the inmost parts. — Prov 18:8
The words someone uses about another also reveal what that person is like. If someone runs down another person, or attacks their character, that shows that they are untrustworthy. Also, as our mothers correctly pointed out in the past, that means they will have the same treatment in store for you.
Jesus bypasses all of that, in the interest of the gospel. He did not need to consult with anyone else to make up His mind; He knew, simply and completely, what was in another person’s mind and heart. We might not have that same immediate depth of insight as Christ did — anyone who claims omniscience is usually humbled in a hurry — but God’s Word is a double edged sword that penetrates to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; divining the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Through the guidance of the Holy Spirit in Scripture, we have insight into those around us. Motives become clear, and thoughts are laid bare. We are as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves, and thus have no need of gossip or attacks on character.
Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover, in the feast day, many believed in his name, when they saw the miracles which he did. 24 But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men, 25 And needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man. — St. John 2:23-25