“Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.”
– James 1:21 ESV
In this verse James describes what it looks like to truly trust God our Father. How does that show up in our daily lives? Here, he writes that those who trust God reject sin. Sin is what happens when we choose to serve ourselves first, and above all. Because God perfectly provides, what do we need sin for? So let’s put sin away, James says. The Greek word used here is apothemenoi, which means to remove something as one would remove clothing.
To take off something is a choice, a conscious action. To live in moral filth, to participate in the evil all around us, is normal for humans. It’s how most people continue to live throughout their lives. This is why we speak of “lesser evils,” or say certain decisions are “just business.” It’s why we always want to compare our morals to other people, instead of comparing them to God. Those who trust the Father, though, choose to opt out of sin, no matter how alien that may appear in the culture of the day.