It is reported among the nations – and Geshem says it is true – that you and the Jews are plotting to revolt, and therefore you are building the wall. Moreover, according to these reports you are about to become their king and have even appointed prophets to take this proclamation about you in Jerusalem: ‘There is a king in Judah!’ Now this report will get back to the king; so come, let us confer together.
False rumors can be one of the most destructive tools in the arsenal of the enemy. They sometimes begin with a half-truth or a twisting of the truth, but just as often they are not based on truth at all. Rumors often have no validity but are taken as fact. The “rumor mill” can only take root if there is a conduit for the rumor to be spread. It is our responsibility as Christians to stop the gossip. Nehemiah again models godly leadership as he confronts the rumor that his enemies are spreading about Nehemiah himself and the Jewish people. He does not seek to justify his actions by telling them that the project is legitimate because the king gave him authority and supplies to do the work. He does not run to his friends and tell them what terrible things his enemies are saying about him. He goes directly to the source and refutes the lie. The enemy is empowered in darkness; he creeps around in the dark seeking whom he may devour. (I Peter 5:8) Scripture tells us to bring all things into the light. That is how we must combat the enemy. Nehemiah brings the truth into the light and then prays that the Lord will strengthen his hands.
Perhaps you have been the victim of vicious rumors, or perhaps you have been a part of spreading false rumors. Ask the Holy Spirit to forgive your participation in spreading rumors through gossip and seek to forgive those who have spread rumors against you.
Forgive me for spreading rumors or for gossiping. I forgive those who have spread false rumors about me. Let me be a godly leader like Nehemiah who chose to live above reproach in all that he did.
In Jesus’ name, Amen