1Pe 3:10-11 “For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it.”
When we turn on the news, pick up a newspaper, or log on to the Internet, do you see good days? Do we talk with our friends about the good in our community and the world around us? Do we speak to one another about how merciful and mighty God is, or do we focus on the deplorable condition of society? If we think about loving life, is it our life we think of or the things we have accumulated?
Peter, through the Holy Spirit, gives us a simple formula for loving life and seeing (or knowing) good days: don’t engage in worthless or deceitful speech. We should be determined (will) to love life. It is a gift from God, and the scripture assures us that our Heavenly Father gives good gifts to His children (Mat 7:11). Every day we spend in His service, seeking His face, praying for His will in our lives and His blessing upon our brothers and sisters, is a good day. When the days seem dark and worthless, it is because we have determined to give heed to the evil in the world.
I am not advocating that we stick our head in the sand and pretend there is no evil. Since Adam’s transgression, there has always been evil in the world. The word of God tells us to avoid (eschew) evil and do good. Our love of life and knowing good days is not just a matter of avoiding being dragged into the worthless speech and activity of the world around us. We must also do good in the face of the evil we see. Do we fall into the pattern of talking about how wrong or bad or stupid our leaders are, or do we fall on our face before God and truly pray for them? If we do the first, then we will not see good days, but if we do the later, we will find peace. If we see someone harming another person, do we look the other way because we don’t want to get involved or do we ask God to give us the courage and wisdom to intervene? The first will cause us to only speak of the evil in the world, but the later will encourage us in our walk with God. On a spiritual level, we are to refrain from engaging in speaking of God as though He were waiting on us to make a decision or cannot act unless we allow Him to do so. This is worthless (evil) speech, since He works and none can hinder Him (Dan 4:35).
Will seeking God by refraining from joining the world in evil speaking bring peace to the world? Unfortunately, the answer to that question is “no.” But we have the promise that avoiding evil and doing good allows us to seek peace. The Greek word translated as seek has as a part of its definition “specifically (by Hebraism) to worship (God).” Jesus promised us that He has given us His peace and left it with us (Joh 14:27). But He didn’t just leave it lying around. We find His peace in our worship of God. We pursue (ensue) it when we keep ourselves from the worthless speech of the world and do good by seeking God’s face.
May we walk in the full peace of God rather than being overrun by the despair that is in the world!