Rid yourselves, therefore, of all malice, and all guile, insincerity, envy, and all slander.—1 Peter 2:1
It’s not hard to see how these evil behaviors cannot coexist with love. Malice refers to having evil intentions toward someone. Guile refers to lying or deceit. Insincerity or hypocrisy is what results when we try to hide things like malice and guile underneath a false appearance. Envy makes it difficult for us to work for the good of someone else because we’re jealous of the good that they already have! And slander is an active effort to harm someone else through the things that we say about them.
Peter’s solution is for us to rid ourselves of such evil by putting it away. The word picture behind the verb “rid” is the action of taking off a piece of clothing and setting it aside. When your clothes are really filthy and stinky you don’t just put something else over them to cover it. What should you do instead? You take them off and replace them—you change into something new altogether.
Likewise, when you discover that one of these evil behaviors exist in your own life, you need to lay it aside and go on without it. You must not tolerate it and carry it around with you any longer. Let these things disgust you the way filthy and stinky clothing might disgust you. Get rid of these evil things! Remove them from your lives! Put them far away from you! Confess them to God and ask for his forgiveness. And if you have done harm to someone else, like through deceit or slander, then confess your sin to that person, ask for his or her forgiveness, then undo the damage that your words or actions have done.
First Filipino American United Church of Christ
461 Linden Avenue
San Bruno, California 94066
Sunday service 10:45am