A Good Life
by Matt Smith
As we looked last week, we certainly know that life goes by fast and is essentially “a vapor, that appeareth for a little time and then vanisheth away.” (James 4:14) Knowing this truth, the next logical thought is to see that we make the most of the time we have here on earth. I’m sure we all have heard phrases like, “he/she lived a good long life”, or “he/she really loved life” in reference to an older person passing away. Besides knowing that the person was saved, these kinds of phrases are indeed a very high tribute to a person’s life.
With that idea in mind, our reading today offers us pointed instruction on how to make the most of our time here on earth. 1 Peter 3:10-11 says, “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 see peace and ensue it.” Here we see some very basic instruction on how to enjoy and make the most of our time here on earth. It has nothing to do with our hobbies, careers or bank accounts. Instead it refers to the inner person being free from turmoil, heartache and bitterness. It speaks to the ability to lay one’s head on their pillow at night with a free and clean conscience.
Peter starts by saying that one will see “good days” if they can control their tongue and “speak no guile”. This refers to a tongue that is free from backbiting, gossiping and lying. Certainly the book of James has much to say about this kind of tongue. Peter then says this godly person will “eschew” evil, which has the idea of running from or avoiding evil. Then this person will seek and pursue peace. He or she will do whatever is necessary to have peaceful relationships with everyone and anyone. Certainly we can’t control what others do or say to or about us but we can make sure our dealings with others are as peaceful as we can be. Living this kind of life will allow one to “love life, and see good days.” It brings to mind similar instruction in Proverbs 13:15, “Good understanding produces favor, but the way of transgressors is hard.”