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The difference

Dear friends, I urge you as strangers and temporary residents to abstain from fleshly desires that war against you.

1 Peter 2:11 (HCSB)

In this verse, the apostle Peter describes us as residents and strangers on earth. By residents, he means that we live in a society that is not ours. Which means we adapt to this society. By strangers he means that we are visiting a territory in which we do not intend to live indefinitely. In other words, we're just passing through.

After defining our status on this earth, Peter exhorts us to avoid living like those of the world. He reminds us to abstain from carnal lusts that can destroy us. Because of his exhortation, some would refer directly to sexual desires. However, its meaning goes much deeper than that. It involves any kind of intense desire that goes against the will of God. In Galatians 5:19-21, Paul gives us a list of his lusts which he calls "Works of the flesh."

If we are not from here below and we must not live according to the works of the flesh, what should differentiate us from those who do not share our hope? Firstly by our attitude and second, by our behavior which must reflect the image of Christ. This requires that we repel every evil desire and reject every passion contrary to the teaching of God's word. Although we are all exposed to the lusts of this world, we have the Holy Spirit who is there to help us make the difference in the world.

May the grace and the peace of God be with you all.

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