Slander – An Act of Hate and Not of Love

Last update: Sunday, October 11, 2015
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Titus 3:2 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) to slander no one, to avoid fighting, and to be kind, always showing gentleness to all people. [‘speak evil of‘ (KJV)]

Something to think about
Slandering someone is normally telling a lie about a person to damage their reputation. Would you want others to treat you that way? Your words are powerful, use them to build people up (Romans 14:19; 1 Thessalonians 5:11) and not tear them down.
Key Points
  1. To slander is to say negative things about another person with the intent to hurt. Is it a sin? YES
  2. ‘never talking trash about anyone for any reason’ (GOGIC); as children of God, we should always do our best to say things that are helpful to others.
  3. One Greek word for slanderer means devil, false accuser, backbiter; Jesus says “The Devil is a liar and the father of it” (see John 8:44).

If you have more time please continue or jump to the end to give feedback in the comment area at the end of the post. Go to end.

picture for slander - early moon with palm trees

“The result of not living a Spirit-led life; you become: Slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, – Slander”
Romans 1:30 (RKJNT)

Romans 1:28-32 (RKJNT) And as they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper. 29 They were filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, covetousness, malice; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malevolence; whisperers, 30 Slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, 31 Without understanding, untrustworthy, without natural affection, unmerciful: 32 Who knowing the just decree of God, that those who commit such things are worthy of death, not only do these things, but applaud those who practice them.

NOTE: verse 30 the KJV and NKJV translators used ‘backbiting’; the NASB and NIV use ‘slanderers’

Corrupt / Evil Speaking – Slander

Slander is the last part of the ‘Corrupt / Evil Speaking’ series (see ‘Gossip‘ and ‘Backbiting‘). In this study we will review nine Greek words used in the Scriptures related to slander: 1) blasphemeo 2) blasphemia 3) blasphemos 4) diabolos 5) katalaleo 6) katalalia 7) katalalos 8) loidoria 9) loidoros. In the conclusion we will point out the differences between slander, gossip and backbiting; I pray that you will have a clear understanding of corrupt / evil speaking after reading / studying this series.


Saying false, harmful and damaging things about another person intended to smear their character or status. Slander is an act of hate and not of love.

  • Calumny – Slander; a false accusation of a crime or offense, knowingly or maliciously made to hurt someone’s reputation.
  • Censure – To find fault with and condemn as wrong; to criticize adversely; to blame; to express disapproval of.
  • Defamation – The offense of writing or saying something bad about someone that is not true and makes people have a bad opinion of them.
  • Scurrility – The quality of using low and indecent language; vulgar.
  • Slur – To disparage (disparage defined: to speak slightingly of; to show disrespect for; to belittle) or discredit; to depreciate; to calumniate; to traduce; to asperse; to speak slightingly of.
picture for slander - point dume state beach

“But now put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and filthy speech from your mouth. – Slander”
Colossians 3:8 (RKJNT)

Colossians 3:8-11 (RKJNT) But now put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and filthy speech from your mouth. 9 Do not lie to one another, seeing that you have put off the old man with his deeds; 10 And have put on the new man, who is being renewed in knowledge after the image of the one who created him. 11 Here there is neither Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian or Scythian, slave or free: but Christ is all, and in all. [‘blasphemy’ (KJV); ‘slander’ (NASB)]

Two Greek words blasphemeo and blaphemia, both often translated ‘slander’, are connected to the sin against the Holy Spirit for which there is no forgiveness; blasphemy. The Pharisees claimed the miracles of Christ were from the Devil (Beelzebub); this is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit (see Matthew 12:22-32).

1) Strong’s number G987 – βλασφημέω blasphemeo (blas-fay-meh’-o) v. 1. to vilify 2. (specially) to speak irreverently; 3. to slander, hence to speak lightly or profanely of sacred things 4. to be slandered ♦ ‘to be evil spoken of‘ (KJV) – Romans 14:16 ♦ reviled (KJV) – Matthew 27:29 ♦ railed (KJV) – Luke 23:39 ♦ ‘being defamed‘ (KJV and NKJV); slandered (RKJNT and NASB) – 1 Corinthians 4:13 ♦ ‘am I evil spoken of‘ (KJV); slandered (NASB); denounced (NIV and RKJNT) – 1 Corinthians 10:30 ♦ blasphemed (KJV and NKJV); slandered (HCSB); ‘to speak evil of‘ (DAR, GNV and YLT) -Titus 2:5.

Jesus accused of blasphemy

Matthew 26:64-65 (KJV) Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven. 65 Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy.

Christian should not slander anyone

Titus 3:1-3 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work, 2 to slander no one, to avoid fighting, and to be kind, always showing gentleness to all people. 3 For we too were once foolish, disobedient, deceived, enslaved by various passions and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, detesting one another. [NOTE: verse 2 ‘slander no one’  (NIV) – ‘speak evil of’ (KJV, RKJNT and NKJV); ‘never talking trash about anyone for any reason’ (GOGIC)]

2 Peter 2:9-10 Modern English Version (MEV) then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trial, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the Day of Judgment, 10 especially those who walk after the flesh in pursuit of unclean desires, and despise authority. They are presumptuous and arrogant, and are not afraid to slander the angelic beings. [Read 2 Peter 2:4-17; slander in verse 10 is ‘speak evil of’ (KJV)]

2) Strong’s number G988 – βλασφημία blasphemia (blas-fay-mee’-ah) n. 1. vilification, defamation (especially against God); slander, detraction, speech injurious, to another’s good name.

Matthew 15:19 (RKJNT) For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, sexual immorality, thefts, false witness, slanders: [‘blasphemies’ (KJV); ‘slanders’ (NASB)]

Ephesians 4:31 (RKJNT) Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and quarreling, and slander, be put away from you, along with all types of malice: [‘evil speaking’ (KJV); ‘slander’ (NASB)]

3) Strong’s number G989 – βλάσφημος blasphemos (blas’-fay-mos) adj. 1. scurrilious, i.e. calumnious (against men) 2. (specially) irreverent (against God) 3. slanderous, evil-speaking

Acts 6:10-12 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW) They couldn’t argue with Stephen because he spoke with the wisdom that the Spirit had given him. 11 Then they bribed some men to lie. These men said, “We heard him slander Moses and God.” 12 The liars stirred up trouble among the people, the leaders, and the experts in Moses’ Teachings. So they went to Stephen, took him by force, and brought him in front of the Jewish council. [NOTE: slander in verse 11 is ‘speak blasphemous words against’ in KJV, NIV, NASB, RKJNT and NKJV]

2 Timothy 3:1-3 Common English Bible (CEB) Understand that the last days will be dangerous times. 2 People will be selfish and love money. They will be the kind of people who brag and who are proud. They will slander others, and they will be disobedient to their parents. They will be ungrateful, unholy, 3 unloving, contrary, and critical. They will be without self-control and brutal, and they won’t love what is good. [NOTE: slander in verse 2 is ‘blasphemers’ in KJV and NKJV; abusive (NIV and RKJNT); revilers (NASB)]

Evil Speaking / Defamation
picture for slander - north beach oahu

“Brothers and sisters, stop slandering each other. Those who slander and judge other believers slander and judge God’s laws. If you judge God’s teachings, you are no longer following them. Instead, you are judging them. – Slander”
James 4:11 (GWT)

James 4:11-12 Catholic Public Domain Version (CPDV) Brothers, do not choose to slander one another. Whoever slanders his brother, or whoever judges his brother, slanders the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law, but a judge. 12 There is one lawgiver and one judge. He is able to destroy, and he is able to set free.

4) Strong’s number G1228 – διάβολος diabolos (dee-ab’-ol-os) adj. 1. a slanderer 2. (specially) devil, Satan; 3. metaphorically applied to a man who, by opposing the cause of God, may be said to act the part of the devil or to side with him 4. devilish, malicious, slanderous; as a noun, the devil, Satan, or a wicked person who is like the devil. 35 KJV references = devil

1 Timothy 3:8, 11 (KJV) 8 Likewise must the deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; 11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things. [Read 1 Timothy 3:8-13; slanderers in verse 11 = ‘malicious gossips’ in (RKJNT)]

2 Timothy 3:1-3 (NKJV) But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: 2 For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3 unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, [NOTE: blasphemers in verse 2 is ‘blasphemers’ in KJV ; abusive (NIV and RKJNT); revilers (NASB). Slanderers in verse 3 is false accusers’ in (RKJNT and KJV); slanderous (NIV); ‘malicious gossips’ (NASB)]

5) Strong’s number G2635 – καταλαλέω katalaleo (kat-al-al-eh’-o) v. 1. to be a traducer, i.e. to slander 2. to speak against, slander, accuse, to blab out 3. to defame, slander (backbite).

1 Peter 2:12 (NASB) Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation. [‘speak against’ (KJV, RKJNT and NKJV); accuse (NIV)]

1 Peter 3:16 (NASB) and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame. [Read 1 Peter 3:13-17; slandered in verse 16 is replaced with ‘they speak evil’ (KJV); ‘they defame’ (NKJV)]

6) Strong’s number G2636 – καταλαλία katalalia (kat-al-al-ee’-ah) n. 1. defamation; evil speech 2. evil-speaking, backbiting, detraction, slander (railing, defaming talk).

2 Corinthians 12:20 (RKJNT) For I fear that when I come, I shall not find you as I wish, and you shall not find me to be as you wish; lest perhaps there may be quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of wrath, rivalries, slander, gossip, conceit, disorder: [‘backbitings’ (KJV); ‘slanders’ (NASB); ‘defamation of character’ (WUEST)]

1 Peter 2:1-3 (RKJNT) Therefore, laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisy, and envy, and all kinds of slander, 2 As newborn babes, desire the pure milk of the word, that you may grow by it in your salvation: 3 Since you have tasted the kindness of the Lord. [‘evil speakings’ (KJV); ‘slander’ (NASB)]

7) Strong’s number G2637 – κατάλαλος katalalos (kat-al’-al-os) adj. 1. talkative against, i.e. a slanderer, backbiter 2. slanderous, back-biting; subst: a railer, defamer evil speaker.

Romans 1:30 (RKJNT) Slanderers, haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, [‘backbiters’ (KJV and NKJV); ‘slanderers’ (NASB and NIV)]

8) Strong’s number G3059 – λοιδορία loidoria (loy-dor-ee’-ah) n. 1. slander or vituperation (bitter and abusive language) 2. abuse, railing, reviling

1 Timothy 5:14 (ESV) So I would have younger widows marry, bear children, manage their households, and give the adversary no occasion for slander. [‘speak reproachfully’ (KJV)]

9) Strong’s number G3060 – λοίδορος loidoros (loy’-dor-os) adj. 1. abusive, i.e. a blackguard {A person of stained or low character, esp. one who uses scurrilous language, or treats others with foul abuse; a scoundrel; a rough. from Webster’s 1913 Dictionary} 2. a railer, reviler, abuser

1 Corinthians 5:11 (RKJNT) But now I write to you not to keep company with any man who is called a brother if he is sexually immoral, or covetous, or an idolater, or a slanderer, or a drunkard, or an swindler; with such a one do not even eat. [‘railer’ (KJV)]

1 Corinthians 6:10 (RKJNT) Nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor slanderers,, nor swindlers, shall inherit the kingdom of God. [‘revilers’ (KJV)]

Scriptures to read and study

Romans 1:18-32 (focus verses: 28-32; key verse: 30); Colossians 3:1-11 (key verse: 8); Romans 3:1-8 (key verse: 8); Matthew 26:57-68 (key verse: 65); 1 Corinthians 4:6-13 (foucs verses: 8-13; key verse: 13); 1 Corinthians 10:23-33 (focus verses: 27-30; key verse: 30); 1 Timothy 6:1-2; James 2:1-13 (focus verses: 5-7; key verse: 7); Revelation 13:1-10 (key verse: 6); Matthew 15:1-20 (key verses: 19-20); Acts 6:8-15 (key verse: 11); 2 Timothy 3-9 (key verse: 2)

picture for slander - blood moon

Corrupt/Evil Speaking

Romans 1:29-30 Amplified Bible (AMP) Until they were filled (permeated and saturated) with every kind of unrighteousness, iniquity, grasping and covetous greed, and malice. [They were] full of envy and jealousy, murder, strife, deceit and treachery, ill will and cruel ways. [They were] secret backbiters and gossipers, 30 Slanderers, hateful to and hating God, full of insolence, arrogance, [and] boasting; inventors of new forms of evil, disobedient and undutiful to parents.

Corrupt / evil speaking: (wicked/malicious) gossip, backbiting and slander are not helpful as shown in the Scriptures. Wicked / harmful / evil gossip is spreading rumors or secrets, true or false, about another person usually when they are not present; to slander the absent secretly; a busybody. When gossip is sharing or spreading information about another person with the intent to help, it is not a sin (see the Bible study). Backbiting is very similar to evil gossip; however, it is always considered a sin as it is always secret slander. Slander is also always a sin; the goal of slander is to damage, destroy and/or hurt another person. The thing to remember, they are all acts of sin.

1 John 3:7-11 (OEBus) My children, do not let anyone mislead you. The person who lives righteously is righteous — as Christ is righteous. 8 The person who lives sinfully belongs to the devil, for the devil has sinned from the first. It was for this that the Son of God appeared, that he might undo the devil’s work. 9 No one who has received the new life from God lives sinfully, because the nature of God dwells within them; and they cannot live in sin, because they have received the new life from God. 10 By this the children of God are distinguished from the children of the devil — No one who lives unrighteously comes from God, and especially the person who does not love others. 11 For these are the tidings that we heard from the first — that we are to love one another.

We do not gossip about, backbite, or slander those whom we love. Learn to love each other my friends and be blessed Tim.

Related articles:

Gossip || Backbiting

Question for “Slander – An Act of Hate and Not of Love”: Slander damages and hurts, do you know what it feels like, are you careful not to do it?

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Scripture quotations marked HCSB®, are taken from the Holman Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2009 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. HCSB® is a federally registered trademark of Holman Bible Publishers. || Scripture taken from the Modern English Version. Copyright © 2014 by Military Bible Association. Used by permission. All rights reserved. || Scripture is taken from GOD’S WORD®, © 1995 God’s Word to the Nations. Used by permission of Baker Publishing Group. || Common English Bible (CEB) Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible || (NKJV) Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved. || (AMP) Scripture taken from the Amplified Bible, Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.

Bishop Pettiford

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