1Pe 2:1-3 “Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings, As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby: If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.”
In the previous chapter of First Peter, we have been given encouragement and instruction. We have been assured that God the Father, and our Lord Jesus Christ, are active in our lives. We have been given the word, both as the Divine Expression of God and the preached gospel of that Expression. All of this has brought us to obedience and the sincere love of our brothers and sisters in Christ.
For this reason, we are instructed to put away some things. From our childhood, we have been taught what it means to put something away. We are to remove it to its proper place. It is not to be left lying around to clutter things up or for someone to trip over. If we are told to put it away, it also implies that we have the knowledge, training, and ability to take care of that. Through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and the giving of the word, we are equipped to put away trouble (malice), deciet (guile), false pretense (hypocrisy), jealousy (envies), and backbiting (evil speakings). We are all prone to these things by our Adam nature. Having received the mind of Christ (1Cor 2:16), we now have the ability to rise above these things.
While it is wonderful to be brought to the point in our lives that we can put these things aside, this is not the end. Peter says when we have come to this point, then we need the sincere milk of the word. We should crave (desire) the simple word of God and the simplicity that is in Christ Jesus! We all know what it is to have a craving for something. No matter how many substitutes we may try, nothing truly satisfies us until we get what we are craving. As babes, this is made very simple; newborn babies desire milk. They don’t want candy; they don’t want a soft drink; they don’t want a steak. They desire milk and they won’t stop making a fuss until they get it. If babies are blessed with good parents, the parents make haste to satisfy this desire of their newborn. They want to quiet the child, but they also want to know that the child is not hungry and is receiving what he or she needs to grow. We have the best Father (God) and Mother (the Church) that has ever been! When we are crying out with a desire for the pure milk of the word, we will receive it. Our spiritual parents are going to provide us what we need to increase (grow), so that we can go out and serve God and His Church.
There is a caveat to all of this. It only applies to those who have tasted that the Lord is gracious. If you have not experienced the grace of God in your life, then you have not yet heard the word with understanding. If you have not experienced the grace of God in your life, then you are not equipped to put away anything on the list that Peter opens this chapter with. If you have not experienced the grace of God, then this writing is just so much rambling of words. Have you experienced (tasted) the goodness of God? Then you have no excuse for being mean, decietful, and gossiping about your neighbor. Instead, you have the ability to be an encourager to God’s children!
May we put away the things that might cause others to trip and show that we have tasted the goodness of our Heavenly Father!