We are studying 1 Pet 2:1-3. “Wherefore” refers back to 1 Pet 1:18-25 which we studied last week. Remember that we are redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus, the lamb without blemish and spot; we are purified through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren; we are born again by the incorruptible seed of the word of God which endureth for ever. Wherefore (for this reason) we are to do what Peter said in the first three verses of chapter 2.
Peter gives you three things to do “that ye may grow thereby.”
First, we are to lay aside our selfish behavior – 1 Pet 2:1 – since ]we are to love one another with a pure heart fervently, therefore, we are to lay aside that behavior that is unloving.
- Lay aside all malice – malice is the desire to cause pain, injury or distress to another. Malice is what we had before we were saved [Titus 3:3]. Now that we are saved, we need to put it away [Eph 4:31]. We have no reason to injure or cause distress to another.
- Lay aside all guile – guile is deceitful cunning. We should in no way fool or deceive the brethren [1 Pet 3:10]. We are to be absolutely “up-front” with each other.
- Lay aside hypocrisies – hypocrisy is feigning to be what you are not. This is what the Pharisees did [Matt 23:28]. When you are saved you don’t need to pretend to be spiritual if you are among brethren who love each other with a pure heart. Just be who you are.
- Lay aside envies – envy is resentful awareness of an advantage enjoyed by another joined with a desire to possess the same advantage or to dispossess them of their advantage. Anything you have or another has that’s worth having, God gave to you or them [1 Cor 4:7]. Thus, you have no reason to envy them for what they have or for a position they hold.
- Lay aside all evil speakings – evil speaking is gossiping and speaking evil of another. Charity shall cover the multitude of sins [1 Pet 4:8]. He that covereth a transgression seeketh love [Prov 17:9]. You have no business running down another person.
We have seen all this behavior among brethren before. However, you and I are not to hurt others, trick others, pretend to be somebody we’re not, envy others, or talk bad about others. Rather we are to love others.
Second, we are to “desire the sincere milk of the word” – 1 Pet 2:2 – you cannot grow apart from the words of God. It is impossible. And when you are young in the Lord, you need milk and lots of it. You don’t need meat. The trouble with being in a Bible believing church for some folks is that they want the deep, meaty stuff, first. Knowledge puffeth up. Meat won’t help you; it will choke you. What you need is basic, practical instruction from the word of God which you can do [Jas 1:22] and by which you can live [Matt 4:4]. If you are going to grow, you must start out right.
Third, we are to taste that the Lord is gracious – 1 Pet 2:3 – if you get into the word but you don’t taste that the Lord is gracious, you won’t grow. You must get to know and understand him [Jer 9:24]. He reveals himself to you in his words. We must experience for ourselves the graciousness of God. The Lord is gracious. He is kind [Lk 6:35; Eph 2:7]. He is merciful [Lk 6:36; Heb 4:16]. He is compassionate [1 Pet 5:7]. When we “taste that the Lord is gracious,” we become kind [Eph 4:32], merciful [Lk 6:36]; and compassionate [1 Pet 3:8].
Conclusion: By these three means we grow. Therefore, lay aside your selfish behavior. Desire the sincere milk of the word. Taste the graciousness of the Lord.