He who would love life and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking deceit. Let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it.
—1 Peter 3: 10-11
According to Peter, if you want the good life, here are the rules:
Rule number one: keep your tongue from evil. Gossip is pure evil. There is nothing loving or productive about gossip. It brings only harm.
Rule number two: keep your lips from speaking guile. In other words, don't be deceitful in your speech. Deceitful speech twists or omits the truth. It is speech which exploits terminology. Those who are deceitful in their speech soon lose credibility and trust.
Obey God and He will shower you with joy, happiness, peace, and prosperity.
Rule number three: flee that which is evil. Not only must we avoid evil, we need to seek that which is good. As Paul wrote to the Ephesians, "Put off… the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts… put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness" (Ephesians 4: 22, 24). Paul then gave specific examples. They weren't just to stop lying, they were to start telling the truth. They weren't just to stop stealing, they were to get jobs so they could help those in need. They weren't just to stop slandering, they were to edify one another with their words. Avoiding evil means choosing what is good.
And what is the result of following these rules? Only blessing.
Father, we thank You for loving us so much that You desire to bless us.
Help us to obey the rules You have established for good living.
In Jesus' name, amen.