Many of us are aware of Jesus’ charge to Nicodemus to “be born again.” This had a particular spiritual significance, but the gospel account leaves us with the idea of being born of both water and spirit.
Peter on the other hand picks up on the implications of the concept. I Peter 2 reads, “Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. 2 Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, 3 now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.”
Jesus had told His disciples that they needed to be like little children. Peter then expands on this. Like small children, we need to have an innocent and forgiving nature free of “malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander.” Okay, children do exhibit some of these traits, but I would argue they are learned through observation of us older than themselves. As a whole the measure of this innocence is greater in them. Jesus and Peter focus on this.
But Peter goes further. He calls on us to be as babies (not even as small children) to “crave pure spiritual milk.” This milk is the teachings, ideals, and examples of the scriptures. We are to grow by the food of God, not the dainties of the world. If we do, then our nature will be conformed to the spiritual and not the profane.
So to sum up – avoid ego and its accompanying vices. Seek that which is spiritually, emotionally, and socially positive. Grow!