In my last post we looked at Peter’s call on our lives to remove/overcome malice, guile, hypocrisy, envy and slander.  We posed the question of how to do that.  Here we begin to look to some possible ways.

One way that we may be able to overcome these sins is by realizing who we are called to be.  Peter goes on to give us an idea of who need to be and a small snapshot of how get there.

2 like newborn babies, long for the pure milk of the word, so that by it you may grow in respect to salvation, 3 if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.

The first and sort of common sense way for us to rid our lives of these sins is to crave the word of God.  The closer we walk with Christ, the closer he is to us.

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded.

James 4:8

In order to have clean hearts and minds we have to mold our minds like the mind of Christ Jesus.

Craving the Word of God is kinda a no-brainer for us.  We have to dig a little deeper and get further into why it is so important to remove these sins from our lives.  As we previously discussed these are sins that are community-busters.  When we get a little further into the text, Peter reminds us that we have a specific calling on our lives as Christ-followers.  Look at where Peter goes in verse 9:

But you are a chosen race , a royal priesthood , a holy nation , a people for God’s own possession

Peter reminds us that we have a calling to be a part of a community.  We ARE a chosen race, we ARE a royal priesthood, we ARE a holy nation.  We ARE a part of a community that is bigger than ourselves.  We have to rid ourselves of these sins that affect our ability to have community because this community is of the utmost importance for us to be able to.  More than just being called to be a part of this community, this community is special, unique and has its calling rooted in God (verse 10 tells us: for you once were not a people , but now you are the people of God ; you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy), and we are a community that has a purpose.  God has called us to reveal his excellencies, reveal the awesome gift of salvation, reveal to a world full of darkness that there is a way out, a way of hope amidst the chaos that surrounds our life.

so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

As Christ-followers, it is our responsibility to engage and be active in a community of believers, it is our responsibility to actively partake in the action of proclaiming the saving grace and incredible work that God has accomplished in us through his Spirit and son.

Community-busting sins have to be removed, because when they are allowed to fester they become like cancers eating the body from the inside out.

Think about your faith community, is it being all that it can be for God?  Or is it plagued by the community-busting sins? If your community isn’t moving forward or making any progress for the Kingdom of God, it might be time to look inside and cut out the cancer that is destroying from the inside out.

Are you willing to rid yourself and your community of these sins?

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