“So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. 2 Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation— 3 if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good” (I Peter 2:1-3).
Chapter Two of I Peter begins a conclusion which directs the reader throughout the rest of the epistle. Peter identifies “five” sins involving our speech and attitudes which we must eliminate.
The word “so” is another way of saying “therefore.” As a consequence of who we are in Christ and our desire to be holy as He is holy (I Peter 1:16) God directs believers to put away or cease what we are accustomed to doing. What follows is not a pretty list, but Peter is less concerned with hurting people’s feelings as he is with the truth. Please notice the adjective “all” which precedes all five nouns. This repentance is to be a total renunciation of ungodliness.
The first sin mentioned is malice. The second is deceit. Deceit (δόλος; dolos) is trickery, treachery and deception. In other words, it is lying.
Deceit can take on many forms. It may be exaggeration of one’s accomplishments. It could be a failure to tell someone some of the details of their legal agreement in buying an item like a car, house or even a time-share. Whatever the circumstances, deceit is willfully seeking to trick or deceive another individual.
Abraham was guilty of this sin. He not only commited this sin once (Genesis 12:10-16), but twice (Genesis 20:1-13). On both occasions Abraham deceived people into thinking that his wife Sarah was his sister.
Often we face the temptation to deceive in our jobs. We may experience pressure from a higher-up to trick a client or a board of directors in making the quarterly earnings appear better than they are. It may be deceiving one’s spouse. The Christian striving to be holy can never succumb to deceit.
When a Christian determines to be a person of integrity, it may cost them their job. Not all the time, but in some circumstances this could be the result of not being a deceitful person. Are you ready and prepared to be a Christian totally committed to God and truth, whatever the cost?
Have a blessed day, beloved.
Soli deo Gloria!