Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.
1 Corinthians 15:33
Our anchor scripture is very clear – evil communication corrupt good manners. In this light, we must not become so confident in our righteous state and think that we can associate with just anybody.
We may be tongue-speaking, demon-casting, miracle-working, prophecy-declaring believers but if we associate with wrong individuals, we are not doing well.
Psalms 1:1 says “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.”
This scripture rings true today as the day it was first conceived in the mind of the Psalmist.
Little drops of water make a mighty ocean. So is the case with our associations.
As our relationships progress, seeds of influence are unconsciously planted in our hearts. These seeds grow into trees bearing either good or bad fruit depending on its source.
Before we know it, we are fast becoming like our friends.
Do you recall these movies: Tarzan and Mowgli? Both of them have one thing in common- a young boy raised by animals who begins to think, act and live like them.
These movies might seem extremely fictitious and surreal to our logical minds but we must not dismiss the crucial point being emphasized – “Your association will shape your thoughts, your actions, your habits and eventually, your life.”
In 1 Corinthians 5:11, Paul strictly admonished the believers to desist from associating with other believers who had gone astray or were confidently indulging in sin.
This is not a discriminatory measure but a step to safeguard others from being negatively influenced and to openly disapprove of the acts of the wrongdoer in the hope that such a person will repent and return to the fold.
“And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.”
2 Thessalonians 3: 14-15
Brethren, endeavour to live in brotherly love and peace with all men but ensure your close association are people who keep you in the faith and stir you up unto good works.