Pearls of the Word

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The slanderer

by Jean-Louis Coraboeuf

"For men will be... slanderers [diabolos] ... And from such people turn away" (2 Timothy 3:2-5).

The Greek word diabolos is always translated as 'devil', except in these two verses where it is translated as 'gossipers' (1 Timothy 3:11 Amplified Bible) and 'slanderers' (2 Timothy 3:3). Slander is a false accusation that affect reputation and honour, while gossip is a revelation of true things with malicious intent.

The Greek word diabolos comes from the verb ballo meaning 'to launch darts', 'to throw', 'to hit'. Whoever slanders or gossips is launching darts (arrow, spear) against the person who is the object of the bad talk. Satan will always try to use men to accomplish his evil plans. But God has given us the shield of faith to quench all these fiery darts (Ephesians 6:16).