Today's reading has several parts and messages. A main one, and a famous one, is Peter's portrayal of the church as a living, spiritual house, with Christ as the foundation and cornerstone and each believer as a stone in the house. This is a very similar analogy as Paul uses when he portrays the church as a body, with Christ as the head and each believer as a body part. These descriptions are widely quoted and very important, but not what I want to concentrate my comments on today. I would like to discuss the very first words of today's reading.
The first verse in today's reading list five sins that we must rid ourselves of if we are to grow spiritually. And after all, we need to grow, we are called to grow, in order to move closer to Christ. It is easy to overlook these items in the first verse, but I found them insightful and worthy of discussion.
The sins Peter lists are:
Malice - which is an attitude similar to hatred. This is an attitude of revenge.
Deceit - or deliberate dishonesty. Anything less than full and honest truth.
Hypocrisy - acting in a way to conceal ones true motives.
Envy - resentful discontent in ones, or with ones, status or possessions.
Slander - speech that assaults the character of another.
This list, I find, is a great list. None of these sins will allow us to become the person God wishes us to become. Now I am not naive enough to think that it is easy, or even humanly possible, to completely rid ourselves of these five sins. However, Christians should yearn to grow spiritually; yearn to grow closer to God. By moving away from these sins is an enabler to that growth. And a powerful way to grow!
Wishing you the best in your walk with Christ,