The parental proverb of “He who repeats a matter has no thoughts of his own” is a somewhat demeaning way of putting an end to gossip, but there is some truth to it. In a more sanctified manner Proverbs 15:14 says,

The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge,
but the mouths of fools feed on folly.

Proverbs 15:14 (ESV)

In a world where ‘sharing’ or ‘forwarding’ a saying is as simply as a single screen-touch, the wisdom of this proverb is self-evident. How many a Facebook post, tweet, or WhatsApp message fall into the category of “feeding on folly” instead of “seeking knowledge”!

Instead, wisdom promotes experts. Experts are those who have enough personal understanding of a topic to speak with personal insight and personal accountability for their words. Experts speak from investigated knowledge. Experts speak with personal conviction and belief in what is shared.

Fools on the other hand repeat all that they themselves have fed on. It might correspond to actual facts, or it might not. For a fool the simple experience of reading or hearing something makes it worth repeating. Fools “feed on folly” in that they take it in without any reputable discernment. Fools also “feed on folly” in that they thrive on daily gossip, opinion, and social media—it is like energy to their existence.

Christians are called to fall in love with wisdom, not folly (Proverbs 9:1-18). Speaking with knowledge; refrain from opinion. Write what you believe with conviction yourself; stop repeating the senseless sayings of others. Be known for having insight and understanding more than you are known for sharing everything that comes to your mind and attention.