1Peter 1:1 - 3:7

Sunday Evening Bible Study

March 11, 2001


Peter writes this letter from a place he calls “Babylon” (1Peter 5:13).  Though the ancient city of Babylon was still in existence, and though there was a large community of Jews living in Babylon, there is no evidence from church history or tradition that Peter ever went there.

There is however great evidence that Peter ended up in the city of Rome.  It is very possible that Peter is kind of writing in “code” to protect the believers in Rome, and so he might be referring to Rome as “Babylon”.  John will write in the Revelation of “Babylon the Great”, and describe it in a way that seems like he too is describing Rome (Rev. 17).  It would seem most likely that Peter is writing from Rome.  Peter arrived in Rome somewhere around AD 62, after Paul was released from his first imprisonment.  The church had already been established in Rome before either Paul or Peter got there.  When Paul wrote his letter to the Romans (somewhere around AD 57 or 58), the church was already in existence. This letter of Peter (1Peter) would have been written somewhere around AD 63.  The emperor on the throne in Rome was a man named Nero.  He had already begun his persecution of Christians.  Paul would be killed by Nero around AD 64, and Peter would be martyred shortly after that.

Two of the main themes that Peter teaches throughout the letter are submission and suffering.

1Peter 1

:1-2  Greetings

:1  Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,

electeklektos – picked out, chosen; chosen by God,; to obtain salvation through Christ; Christians are called "chosen or elect" of God.  This word doesn’t appear until verse 2 in the King James translation.

strangersparepidemos – one who comes from a foreign country into a city or land to reside there by the side of the natives; a stranger; sojourning in a strange place, a foreigner; in the NT metaph. in reference to heaven as the native country, one who sojourns on earth

scattereddiaspora – a scattering, dispersion; of Israelites dispersed among foreign nations; of the Christians scattered abroad among the Gentiles

Pontus, Galatia … – These are all areas located in what we know as Turkey today, or in the New Testament times as “Asia” or “Asia Minor”.

Pontus – (from Holman’s Bible Dictionary) A province just south of the Black Sea in Asia Minor. The terrain varies from fertile plains along the shore to rugged mountains farther inland. The Greeks colonized the plains shortly after 700 B.C., but the mountains remained free of their influence. Mithradates founded the kingdom of Pontus in about 302 B.C. and it remained in his dynasty until 63 B.C. when Rome took over. Christianity spread to Pontus early. Citizens of Pontus were in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:9).

Galatia – (from Holman’s Bible Dictionary) Geographical name derived from Gaul because its inhabitants were Celts or Galli (Gauls). The original settlement was in central Asia Minor. See Asia Minor. King Nicomedes of Bithynia invited the Celtic warriors across the Bosporus River to help him fight his brother in 278 B.C. The invaders fought on their own capturing cities until stopped by Antiochus I in 275 B.C. They then occupied the northern part of Asia Minor, bounded on the north by Pontus and Bithynia, on the east by Tavium and Pessinus in the west. For the most part, true Galatians lived in open areas, leaving city occupation to their predecessors, the Phrygians. The true Galatians constantly switched sides in ongoing battles in the area. Finally, in 25 B.C. Rome made Galatia a province of the empire and extended its borders, adding Lycaonia, Isauria, and Pisidia with Ancyra serving as the governmental center. Various Roman rulers added and subtracted territory from the province, so its precise boundaries are difficult to draw.

Cappadocia – (from Holman’s Bible Dictionary) A Roman province in Asia Minor mentioned twice in the New Testament: Acts 2:9; 1 Peter 1:1. Although the extent of Cappadocia varied through the centuries depending on the currently dominant empire, it lay south of Pontus and stretched about 300 miles from Galatia eastward toward Armenia, with Cilicia and the Taurus Mountains to the south. Although mountainous country, its mostly rural population raised good crops, cattle, and horses. While in New Testament times its mines were still producing some minerals, a large number of tablets written in cuneiform script discovered in 1907 at Tanish, now known as Kultepe, revealed that Assyrians were mining and exporting silver ore from Cappadocia about 1900 B.C. From Acts 2:9 we know that Jews from Cappadocia were in Jerusalem when Peter preached at Pentecost. Those converted to Christianity that day must have given a good witness when they returned home because in 1 Peter 1:1 believers there are mentioned along with others in Pontus. The Christian message was probably carried to Pontus by way of the highway that went northward across Cappadocia from Tarsus through the narrow mountain pass known as the Cilician Gates. In the second century A.D. the famous historian Eusebius reported that the church at Rome sent financial aid to churches in the Near East, including Cappadocia. Two centuries later two sons of a prominent and wealthy Cappadocian family, Basil and Gregory, along with a close friend also named Gregory, took their Christian commitment quite seriously and became influential defenders and interpreters of the faith. Today the region of Cappadocia is in central Turkey, which is ninety-eight percent Muslim.

Asia – (from Holman’s Bible Dictionary) A Roman province on the west of Asia Minor whose capital was Ephesus. The Roman province of Asia comprised generally the southwest portion of Anatolia. Its first capital was Pergamum, but the capital was later changed to Ephesus. Asia residents were in Jerusalem at Pentecost (Acts 2:9). Paul the apostle traveled and preached extensively in Asia (Acts 19:10, 22) especially in the neighborhood of Ephesus; but God forbade him to preach there prior to his Macedonian call (Acts 16:6). Men of Asia led to Paul’s arrest in Jerusalem (Acts 21:27). 1 Peter was addressed to Christians in Asia. Asia was the location of the seven churches to whom the Book of Revelation was addressed. Asia was known for its worship of Artemis (Acts 19:27). See Rome and the Roman Empire.

Bithynia – (from Holman’s Bible Dictionary) A district in northern Asia Minor that Paul’s missionary company desired to enter with the gospel (Acts 16:7). The Holy Spirit prevented them from doing so and directed them instead to Macedonia. Though no record exists of how the Christian faith took root in Bithynia, believers lived there during the first century. Those to whom 1 Peter was addressed included persons in Bithynia (1 Pet. 1:1).

:2 Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.

foreknowledgeprognosis – foreknowledge; forethought, pre-arrangement

sanctificationhagiasmos – consecration, purification; the effect of consecration; sanctification of heart and life

obediencehupakoe – obedience, compliance, submission; obedience rendered to anyone’s counsels, an obedience shown in observing the requirements of Christianity

sprinklingrhantismos – a sprinkling (purification); blood of sprinkling; i.e. appointed for sprinkling (serving to purify)

be multipliedplethuno – to increase, to multiply; to be increased, (be multiplied) multiply; to be increased, to multiply

:3-5  Our position

:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

blessedeulogetos – blessed, praised

abundantpolus – many, much, large

mercyeleos – mercy: kindness or good will towards the miserable and the afflicted, joined with a desire to help them

hath begotten anagennao – to produce again, be born again, born anew; metaph. to have one’s mind changed so that he lives a new life and one conformed to the will of God

hopeelpis – expectation of evil, fear; expectation of good, hope; joyful and confident expectation of eternal salvation

livelyzao – to live, breathe, be among the living (not lifeless, not dead); to enjoy real life; to live i.e. pass life, in the manner of the living and acting; metaph. to be in full vigour; to be fresh, strong, efficient,

We have a hope of life in the future, a hope of life that is based on Jesus’ own resurrection from the dead.

:4 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,

inheritancekleronomia – an inheritance, property received (or to be received) by inheritance; what is given to one as a possession

incorruptibleaphthartos – uncorrupted, not liable to corruption or decay, imperishable; immortal

undefiledamiantos – not defiled, unsoiled; free from that by which the nature of a thing is deformed and debased, or its force and vigour impaired

fadeth not awayamarantos (“not” + “extinguished”) – not fading away, unfading, perennial

reservedtereo – to attend to carefully, take care of; to guard.  The verb is a perfect tense – action done in the past with the results continuing on into the present.

:5 Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.

powerdunamis – strength, power, ability

are keptphroureo – to guard, protect by a military guard, either to prevent hostile invasion, or to keep the inhabitants of a besieged city from flight; metaph. to protect by guarding, to keep; by  watching and guarding to preserve one for the attainment of something

:6-9  Joy in trials

:6 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:

greatly rejoiceagalliao – to exult, rejoice exceedingly, be exceeding glad

if need bedei – it is necessary, there is need of, it behooves, is right and proper

ye are in heaviness lupeo – to make sorrowful; to affect with sadness, cause grief, to throw into sorrow; to grieve, offend; to make one uneasy, cause him a scruple

manifold poikilos – a various colours, variegated; of various sorts

temptations peirasmos – an experiment, attempt, trial, proving; the trial of man’s fidelity, integrity, virtue, constancy; an enticement to sin, temptation, whether arising from the desires or from the outward circumstances

:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

the trial dokimion – the proving; that by which something is tried or proved, a test; from dokimos – accepted, particularly of coins and money; In the ancient world there was no banking system as we know it today, and no paper money. All money was made from metal, heated until liquid, poured into moulds and allowed to cool. When the coins were cooled, it was necessary to smooth off the uneven edges. The coins were comparatively soft and of course many people shaved them closely. In one century, more than eighty laws were passed in Athens, to stop the practice of shaving down the coins then in circulation. But some money changers were men of integrity, who would accept no counterfeit money. They were men of honour who put only genuine full weighted money into circulation. Such men were called "dokimos" or "approved". (Donald Barnhouse)

muchpolus – many, much, large

more precioustimios – as of great price, precious; held in honour, esteemed, especially dear.  This is the “comparative” form of the adjective, “more precious”, “more especially dear” …

that perishethapollumi – to destroy; to put out of the way entirely, abolish, put an end to ruin

it be tried dokimazo – to test, examine, prove, scrutinise (to see whether a thing is genuine or not), as metals; to recognise as genuine after examination, to approve, deem worthy.  This is the verb form of “trial” (dokimion).

praiseepainos – approbation, commendation, praise

honourtime – a valuing by which the price is fixed; of the price itself; honour which belongs or is shown to one

glorydoxa – opinion, judgment, view; in the NT always a good opinion concerning one, resulting in praise, honour, and glory; splendour, brightness

the appearingapokalupsis – laying bear, making naked; a disclosure of truth, instruction; used of events by which things or states or persons hitherto withdrawn from view are made visible to all; manifestation, appearance


Trials refine our faith.

God refines our faith like a goldsmith refines gold.  It’s my understanding that a goldsmith will heat the gold ore until it’s in a molten state.  As he keeps the heat on, the impurities all come to the surface.  The goldsmith will keep skimming off the impurities until the gold is pure.  He knows it’s pure when He can see His own reflection in the gold.
Charles Spurgeon said: I bear willing witness that I owe more to the fire, and the hammer, and the file, than to anything else in my Lord's workshop.  I sometimes question whether I have ever learned anything except through the rod.  When my schoolroom is darkened, I see most.

:8 Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:

seeneido – to see; to perceive with the eyes; to perceive by any of the senses; to know

loveagapao – of persons to welcome, to entertain, to be fond of, to love dearly

see him nothorao – to see with the eyes; to see with the mind, to perceive, know; to see, i.e. become acquainted with by experience, to experience; to see, to look to

ye rejoiceagalliao – to exult, rejoice exceedingly, be exceeding glad

joychara – joy, gladness

unspeakableaneklaletos (“not” + “speak out”) – unspeakable

full of glorydoxazo – to think, suppose, be of opinion; to praise, extol, magnify, celebrate; to honour, do honour to, hold in honour; to make glorious, adorn with lustre, clothe with splendour

We love Him even though we don’t see Him.

:9 Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.

receivingkomizo – to care for, take care of, provide for; to take up or carry away in order to care for and preserve; to carry, bear, bring to, to carry away for one’s self, to carry off what is one’s own, to bring back; to receive, obtain: the promised blessing

the endtelos – end; termination, the limit at which a thing ceases to be (always of the end of some act or state, but not of the end of a period of time); the end to which all things relate, the aim, purpose

In the end, we will see Him.  Because we had faith.

:10-12  Prophets foretold the gospel

:10 Of which salvation the prophets have inquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:

inquiredekzeteo – to seek out, search for; to seek out, i.e. investigate, scrutinise; to seek out for one’s self, beg, crave; to demand back, require

searched diligently exereunao – to search out, search anxiously and diligently; To search after, thoroughly investigate (first used to tell of a dog sniffing out something with his nose). The prophets searched to find out the time of Messiah’s appearance.

the gracecharis – grace; that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness: grace of speech

:11 Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.

searchingereunao – to search, examine into

did signifydeloo – to make manifest; to make known by relating, to declare; to give one to understand, to indicate, signify

testified beforehandpromarturomai – antetestor; to testify beforehand; to make known, predict

The Holy Spirit was in the prophets giving them hints that the Messiah would suffer and then be glorified.  The prophets were searching to figure this all out.

:12 Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.

it was revealedapokalupto – to uncover, lay open what has been veiled or covered up; disclose, make bare; to make known, make manifest, disclose what before was unknown

they did ministerdiakoneo – to be a servant, attendant, domestic, to serve, wait upon; to minister to one, render ministering offices to; to minister; to attend to anything, that may serve another’s interests; to minister a thing to one, to serve one or by supplying any thing

reportedanaggello – to announce, make known; to report, bring back tidings, rehearse

preached the gospeleuaggelizo – to bring good news, to announce glad tidings

desireepithumeo – to turn upon a thing; to have a desire for, long for, to desire; to lust after, covet; of those who seek things forbidden

look intoparakupto – to stoop to a thing in order to look at it; to look at with head bowed forward; to look into with the body bent; to stoop and look into; metaph. to look carefully into, inspect curiously

The prophets knew that the things they wrote about were not for them but for the future, for the people that Peter was writing to.  They were things about which we talk about in the gospel, that Jesus would die for our sins and save us.

For some reason, the angels are curious about the things of the gospel.

:13-23  Holiness

:13 Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

gird upanazonnumi (“again” + “gird up”) – to gird up; metaph. be prepared; a metaphor derived from the practice of the Orientals, who in order to be unimpeded in their movements were accustomed, when starting a journey or engaging in any work, to bind their long flowing garments closely around their bodies and fastened them with a leather belt.

loinsosphus – the hip (loin); to gird, gird about, the loins; a loin, the (two) loins; the place where the Hebrews thought the generative power (semen) resided

minddianoia – the mind as a faculty of understanding, feeling, desiring; understanding; mind, i.e. spirit, way of thinking and feeling; thoughts, either good or bad

be sobernepho – to be sober, to be calm and collected in spirit; to be temperate, dispassionate, circumspect

to the endteleios – perfectly, completely

:14 As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:

childrenteknon – offspring, children

obedienthupakoe – obedience, compliance, submission; obedience rendered to anyone’s counsels, an obedience shown in observing the requirements of Christianity

not fashioning suschematizo – to conform one’s self (i.e. one’s mind and character) to another’s pattern, (fashion one’s self according to); to shape one thing like another and describes what is transitory, changeable, and unstable

Ro 12:2  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

formerproteron – before, prior; of time, former

ignoranceagnoia – lack of knowledge, ignorance; esp. of divine things; of moral blindness

lustsepithumia – desire, craving, longing, desire for what is forbidden, lust

:15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;

holyhagios – most holy thing, a saint

manner of conversationanastrophe – manner of life, conduct, behaviour, deportment

:16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

Peter is actually quoting a phrase that is found several times in the book of Leviticus:

In a chapter where God is giving instructions about what to eat and what not to eat:

(Lev 11:43-45 KJV)  Ye shall not make yourselves abominable with any creeping thing that creepeth, neither shall ye make yourselves unclean with them, that ye should be defiled thereby. {44} For I am the LORD your God: ye shall therefore sanctify yourselves, and ye shall be holy; for I am holy: neither shall ye defile yourselves with any manner of creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth. {45} For I am the LORD that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.

After having spent a chapter giving instruction about staying away from all kinds of wicked, worldly sexual sins:

(Lev 19:2 KJV)  Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the LORD your God am holy.

In a chapter where the penalties for various sins are beginning to be laid out, including all the various sexual sins:

(Lev 20:7 KJV)  Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God.

(Lev 20:26 KJV)  And ye shall be holy unto me: for I the LORD am holy, and have severed you from other people, that ye should be mine.

Over the course of the Law of Moses (Genesis through Deuteronomy), the idea of “holiness” is a major theme.  God is trying to teach His people how to relate to Him.  In just the book of Leviticus, you find the word “holy” 94 times.



What does it mean to be “holy”?

The basic idea behind the word “holy” means “separate” or “set apart”.  It means to be “set apart” for a specific use.

We actually have quite a good idea of what this means because we have all sorts of things that have a “specific” use.  We use cooking pots to cook our food in.  We use a dishwasher to wash our dishes in.  We use a washing machine to clean our clothes in.  We use a shower to clean our bodies in.  We use a toilet to dispose of our waste.  Would you ever use a dishwasher to clean your clothes in?  Probably not.  Would you ever use a shower to clean your dishes in?  Probably not.  Would you ever cook your food in the toilet?  Definitely not.

In the Bible, there are two ways of looking at the word “holy”.

1)  God is holy. 
The idea is that God is separate. He is separate from sin.  He is different from us.
2)  We are to be holy. 
We too are to be separate from sin, but we are also to be set apart for God’s use.  We are not just to be a lifeless blob, not sinning, but we are to be useful to the Lord.

Moses and Aaron had just finished setting up the Tabernacle and had begun the first set of sacrifices as the Lord has prescribed.  As soon as they set the first set of sacrifices on the altar, fire came down from heaven and consumed the sacrifices.  It was a wild time!  God was there!  Aaron’s two eldest sons, Nadab and Abihu thought they needed to be doing something, and we read …

(Lev 10:1-3 KJV)  And Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, took either of them his censer, and put fire therein, and put incense thereon, and offered strange fire before the LORD, which he commanded them not. {2} And there went out fire from the LORD, and devoured them, and they died before the LORD. {3} Then Moses said unto Aaron, This is it that the LORD spake, saying, I will be sanctified in them that come nigh me, and before all the people I will be glorified. And Aaron held his peace.
What was the “strange fire”?  All that’s important is to realize that they were offering to God something that He hadn’t asked for.  They were disobeying God.  Here was the very first time that the people were beginning to worship God as HE had asked to be worshipped, and they were already goofing it up.
God wants to be treated as “holy” (sanctified) by His people.

We think that one of the problems happening behind the scenes was drunkenness on the part of Nadab and Abihu.  Why do we think this?  Because right after this happens, God gives Moses some clear instruction for Aaron and the other priests:

(Lev 10:9-11 KJV)  Do not drink wine nor strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, when ye go into the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations: {10} And that ye may put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean; {11} And that ye may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the LORD hath spoken unto them by the hand of Moses.
Apparently Nadab and Abihu had been tipping the bottle a little bit.  Hey, they were probably a little nervous and needed some help keeping calm, right?  But God doesn’t want us becoming “numb” to the point where we can’t tell right from wrong, and that’s one of the things that happen with alcohol or drugs.
Remember that the word “holy” is found 94 times in Leviticus?  It is found 77 of those times AFTER this point in the book.  It’s after this point, when Nadab and Abihu abuse God’s holiness, that God makes a point of teaching the people the difference between holy and unholy.

Why should we be “holy”?

Because God is holy.

God wants you to be like Him.  He wants you to be separate from sin.

Picture two separate circles, two separate worlds.  One circle is everything that is good and clean.  One circle is stinking, rotten, and yucky.  God lives in the first circle and we live in the second one.  God would really like to spend some time with us, but that means that we need to leave our circle and go into His.  God became a man in Jesus Christ and entered our little world.  He died on a cross to pave the way for us to be able to make it into the other circle.  He came into our world, but He doesn’t want us staying there.  He wants us to learn to live in His circle, holiness.


I’ve had two different brothers this week talk to me about how they have struggled with pornography on the Internet.  One of them wrote to me:
“I have become calloused of heart. I don't know nor can remember the last time I heard the Lord clearly speak to me. I am in trouble. My sin has found me out.”
I wouldn’t be surprised to find that there are a few others who have fallen into this trap on their computers.  It’s simply too easy.  It’s too available.
If you are trapped in this, you need to do something about it.  The problem is not going to go away just because you are sad about it.  Take steps to protect yourself.  Confess your sin to someone who will hold you accountable.  Get a filtered internet service if you have to.  Unplug your computer.  But be holy.

:17 And if ye call on the Father, who without respect of persons judgeth according to every man's work, pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:

without respect of personsaprosopoleptos – without respect of persons, impartial.  This is the opposite of the word used in James regarding partiality or favoritism:

(James 2:1 NIV)  My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don't show favoritism.

God treats everyone the same.

fearphobos – fear, dread, terror

sojourningparoikia – a dwelling near or with one; a sojourning, dwelling in a strange land; metaph. the life of a man here on earth is likened to a sojourning

:18 Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;

corruptiblephthartos – corruptible, perishing

redeemedlutroo – to release on receipt of ransom; to redeem, liberate by payment of ransom

vainmataios – devoid of force, truth, success, result; useless, of no purpose

conversationanastrophe – manner of life, conduct, behaviour, deportment

received by tradition from your fathers patroparadotos (“father” + “given over”) – handed down from one’s father’s or ancestors

The traditions given us by our fathers are empty.  They do not redeem us.

:19 But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

precious timios – as of great price, precious; held in honour, esteemed, especially dear

The most valuable thing on this planet is not made of silver, gold, or platinum.  The most valuable thing that ever existed was the blood of Jesus.

lambamnos – a lamb

without blemishamomos – without blemish; as a sacrifice without spot or blemish; morally: without blemish, faultless, unblameable

without spotaspilos – spotless; metaph. free from censure, irreproachable; free from vice, unsullied

:20 Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you,

was foreordainedproginosko – to have knowledge before hand; to foreknow; of those whom God elected to salvation; to predestinate

foundationkatabole – a throwing or laying down; a founding (laying down a foundation)

was manifestphaneroo – to make manifest or visible or known what has been hidden or unknown, to manifest, whether by words, or deeds, or in any other way

:21 Who by him do believe in God

We believe correctly in God because we believe in Jesus.

Jesus said,

(Luke 10:22 KJV)  All things are delivered to me of my Father: and no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him.

(John 14:6 KJV)  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

As Christians, we have come to know that we have believed in God, and correctly, because we have believed in Jesus.

:21  that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God.

God did two things for us to help us put our faith and hope in Him.

He raised Jesus from the dead and He gave Jesus glory (by taking Him to heaven).

1:22 – 2:3 Born again Life

:22 Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently:

have purified hagnizo – ceremonially, to make pure, purify, cleanse; morally.  This is a word related to hagios, the word for “holy”.

obeyinghupakoe – obedience, compliance, submission; obedience rendered to anyone’s counsels, an obedience shown in observing the requirements of Christianity

love of the brethren philadelphia – love of brothers or sisters, brotherly love; in the NT the love which Christians cherish for each other as brethren

unfeigned anupokritos (“without” + “hypocrisy”) – unfeigned, undisguised, sincere

pure katharos – clean, pure; in a levitical sense clean, the use of which is not forbidden, imparts no uncleanness; ethically free from corrupt desire, from sin and guilt

love agapao – of persons; to welcome, to entertain, to be fond of, to love dearly

fervently ektenos – earnestly, fervently, intensely; From a verb which means to "stretch out the hand.", thus it means to be stretched out—earnest, resolute, tense.

Here’s the thought flow:

When we become “born again”, we have taken the step of making our souls more holy by obeying the truth of God through the power of the Holy Spirit.

God’s Word has come into our lives and we have chosen to believe and follow Jesus.

As we’ve become “born again”, we start learning to love people in the church sincerely, without being hypocritical.

We need to then take it a step further to love with unconditional agape love, from a clean heart, fervently.

:23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

being born againanagennao – to produce again, be born again, born anew; metaph. to have one’s mind changed so that he lives a new life and one conformed to the will of God

seedspora – seed

corruptiblephthartos – corruptible, perishing

incorruptibleaphthartos – uncorrupted, not liable to corruption or decay, imperishable; immortal

abidethmeno – to remain, abide

The Word of God is like a seed.  When it comes into our heart, it gives us new life.  The seed is eternal, one that won’t perish.

:24 For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:

witherethxeraino – to make dry, dry up, wither

falleth awayekpipto – to fall out of, to fall down from, to fall off

:25 But the word of the Lord endureth for ever. And this is the word which by the gospel is preached unto you.

wordrhema – that which is or has been uttered by the living voice, thing spoken, word; subject matter of speech, thing spoken of

endurethmeno – to remain, abide

by the gospel is preachedeuaggelizo – to bring good news, to announce glad tidings

Peter is quoting from:

(Isa 40:6-8 KJV)  The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field: {7} The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the spirit of the LORD bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass. {8} The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.

Peter is quoting Isaiah because of how it has said that God’s Word is “for ever”, it is imperishable, it is incorruptible.

1Peter 2

:1  Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings,

laying asideapotithemi – to put off or aside or away

wherefore oun – then, therefore, accordingly, consequently, these things being so

malice kakia – malignity, malice, ill-will, desire to injure; wickedness, depravity; evil, trouble

guile dolos – craft, deceit, guile

hypocrisies hupokrisis – the acting of a stage player; hypocrisy

evil speakings katalalia – defamation, evil speaking

Here’s the thought:

Because we’ve been given a new birth through the seed of the eternal Word of God (1:23-25), we ought to be putting these kinds of things away from our lives.

:2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:

newbornartigennetos – just born, newborn

babesbrephos – an unborn child, embryo, a fetus; a new-born child, an infant, a babe

of the wordlogikos – pertaining to speech or speaking; pertaining to the reason or logic; spiritual, pertaining to the soul; agreeable to reason, following reason, reasonable, logical

sincere adolos – guileless; without dishonest intent

This is the opposite of the word translated “guile” in 2:1, something which we are to “lay aside”.

milk gala – milk

The writer to the Hebrews uses “milk” in a different way.  His point is that milk is something for babies, something that you out-grow.

(Heb 5:12-14 KJV)  For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. {13} For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. {14} But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

Paul also uses milk in this way, as he chastises the Corinthians for their carnality.  They are just “babes” in the faith and can’t be fed solid food:

(1 Cor 3:1-2 KJV)  And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ. {2} I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.

But here, Peter is talking about milk in a different way.  He is simply using the idea of milk as food, something that a baby craves, something that we need to grow on.

desireepipotheo – to long for, desire; to pursue with love, to long after; to lust, harbour forbidden desire

growauxano – to cause to grow, augment; to increase, become greater; to grow, increase

:3 If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.

tastedgeuomai – to taste, to try the flavour of; to taste; i.e. perceive the flavour of, partake of, enjoy; to feel, make trial of, experience; to take food, eat, to take nourishment, eat

gracious chrestos – fit, fit for use, useful; virtuous, good; manageable; mild, pleasant (as opp. to harsh, hard sharp, bitter); of things: more pleasant, of people, kind, benevolent

I believe that Peter is quoting here from:

(Psa 34:8 KJV)  O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.

The word “good” in Psalm 34:8 is translated into the Greek Septuagint using the same word that Peter uses here (chrestos).


The Word nourishes your Christian Life

If you follow the flow of thought from 1Peter 1:22 – 2:3, you see that we are born again through the work of the Word of God.  That’s where we get the seed of our new nature.  But we are to grow in our new nature by loving one another (1:22) even more, and by putting away the junk in our lives like malice, guile, etc (2:1).
Just as the Word is the seed that gives us new life, it is also the milk that nourishes us and helps us to grow.
So how do I do all this growing up?
Through the Word.  Not just the “babyish” things of the Word, but all of the Word. 
Learn to long for God’s Word like a newborn baby longs for it’s mother’s milk.  The more of God’s Word you get into your life, the more you will grow as a Christian.

:4-12  Living Stones

:4 To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,

disallowed apodokimazo (“from” + “approve”) – to disapprove, reject, repudiate

chosen eklektos – picked out, chosen

precious entimos – held in honour, prized, precious

The words Peter uses for “chosen” and “precious” are words he’s taken directly from Isaiah 28:16, which he’s going to quote in a second down in verse 2:6.

(Isa 28:16 KJV)  Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.

:5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.

built upoikodomeo – to build a house, erect a building

spiritualpneumatikos – relating to the human spirit, or rational soul, as part of the man which is akin to God and serves as his instrument or organ; belonging to the Divine Spirit

priesthoodhierateuma – the office of a priest; the order or body of priests

holyhagios – most holy thing, a saint

to offer upanaphero – to carry or bring up, to lead up; to put upon the altar, to bring to the altar, to offer

sacrificesthusia – a sacrifice, victim

acceptableeuprosdektos – well received, accepted, acceptable

Peter is using language that is describing us as if we are being built into a kind of spiritual temple, Jesus as the cornerstone in the foundation and we as the stones in the walls of the temple.

Then he switches metaphors and describes us as a kind of priesthood, priests who are offering up sacrifices to God.

:6 Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.

containedperiecho – to surround, encompass; to contain: of the subject-matter, contents, of a writing

SionSion – Zion, the hill on which the temple stood, also used as a reference to Jerusalem.

chief cornerakrogoniaios (“farthest” + “corner”) – placed at an extreme corner, the corner foundation stone

electeklektos – picked out, chosen

preciousentimos – held in honour, prized, precious

be confoundedkataischuno (“according to” + “shame”) – to dishonour, disgrace; to put to shame, make ashamed; to be ashamed, blush with shame

Peter is roughly quoting from the Greek Septuagint of Isaiah 28:16:

(Isa 28:16 KJV)  Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste.

He is not quoting exactly, he misses a phrase and switches a word or two, but he has most of it in place.

:7 Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,

which believepisteuo – to think to be true, to be persuaded of, to credit, place confidence in

disobedientapeitheo – not to allow one’s self to be persuaded; to refuse or withhold belief; to refuse belief and obedience; not to comply with

precioustime – a valuing by which the price is fixed; of the price itself; honour which belongs or is shown to one.  This is the root of the word that is translated “precious” in 2:4,6.

disallowedapodokimazo – to disapprove, reject, repudiate.  The same word as translated “disallowed” in 2:4.

headkephale – the head, both of men and often of animals. Since the loss of the head destroys life, this word is used in the phrases relating to capital and extreme punishment.; metaph. anything  supreme, chief, prominent

cornergonia – corner

(Psa 118:22 KJV)  The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner.

:8 And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.

stumblingproskomma – a stumbling block; an obstacle in the way which if one strikes his foot against he stumbles or falls; that over which a soul stumbles i.e. by which is caused to sin

offenceskandalon – the movable stick or trigger of a trap, a trap stick; a trap, snare; any impediment placed in the way and causing one to stumble or fall, (a stumbling block, occasion of stumbling) i.e. a rock which is a cause of stumbling

they stumbleproskopto – to strike against; of those who strike against a stone or other obstacle in the path, to stumble; to strike one’s foot against a stone

being disobedientapeitheo – not to allow one’s self to be persuaded; to refuse or withhold belief; to refuse belief and obedience; not to comply with

appointedtithemi – to set, put, place; to make; to set, fix establish; ordain

Here Peter is quoting from:

(Isa 8:14-15 KJV)  And he shall be for a sanctuary; but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence to both the houses of Israel, for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. {15} And many among them shall stumble, and fall, and be broken, and be snared, and be taken.

:9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:

generationgenos – kindred; offspring; family; stock, tribe, nation; i.e. nationality or descent from a particular people; the aggregate of many individuals of the same nature, kind, sort

choseneklektos – picked out, chosen

peculiarperipoiesis – a preserving, a preservation; possession, one’s own property; an obtaining.  NAS – “a people of God’s own possession”.

praises arete – a virtuous course of thought, feeling and action; virtue, moral goodness; any particular moral excellence, as modesty, purity.  NAS – “the excellencies

show forthexaggello – to tell out or forth; to declare abroad, divulge, publish; to make known by praising or proclaiming, to celebrate

marvellousthaumastos – wonderful, marvellous; worthy of pious admiration, admirable, excellent


God has chosen us to tell others

He has a purpose for us, to tell others about who He is and what He’s done.
We are to tell people how “excellent” God is.

:10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

Peter is again quoting from the Old Testament.  This time He’s taking something from the book of Hosea.

Hosea was a prophet who had been commanded by God to marry a prostitute.  It would be a marriage that would be a picture of God’s relationship with His people.

One of the girls born in this family was named “Loruhamah”, or, “No Mercy”.  For a time this child was to be a reminder to God’s people that He was going to show them no mercy.
Then there was a son born, named “Loammi”, or, “Not My People”.  God was saying to His people, “You are not My people anymore”.
Later on, God had Hosea change the name of his children to be “Ruhammah” and “Ammi”, meaning “Mercy” and “My People”.
(Hosea 1:6-9 KJV)  And she conceived again, and bare a daughter. And God said unto him, Call her name Loruhamah: for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; but I will utterly take them away. {7} But I will have mercy upon the house of Judah, and will save them by the LORD their God, and will not save them by bow, nor by sword, nor by battle, by horses, nor by horsemen. {8} Now when she had weaned Loruhamah, she conceived, and bare a son. {9} Then said God, Call his name Loammi: for ye are not my people, and I will not be your God.
(Hosea 2:1 KJV)  Say ye unto your brethren, Ammi; and to your sisters, Ruhamah.
(Hosea 2:23 KJV)  And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to them which were not my people, Thou art my people; and they shall say, Thou art my God.

Both Paul and Peter have used this story to be a picture of how God would one day take the Gentiles, who were “not His people”, and show them mercy and make them God’s people.

:11 Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;

dearly belovedagapetos – beloved, esteemed, dear, favourite, worthy of love

I beseechparakaleo – to call to one’s side, call for, summon; to address, speak to, (call to, call upon), which may be done in the way of exhortation, entreaty, comfort, instruction, etc.; to admonish, exhort; to beg, entreat, beseech

strangersparoikos (“besides” + “house”) – dwelling near, neighboring; in the NT, a stranger, a foreigner, one who lives in a place without the right of citizenship

pilgrimsparepidemos – one who comes from a foreign country into a city or land to reside there by the side of the natives; a stranger; sojourning in a strange place, a foreigner; in the NT metaph. in reference to heaven as the native country, one who sojourns on earth

abstainapechomai – to hold one’s self off, refrain, abstain

fleshlysarkikos – fleshly, carnal

lustsepithumia – desire, craving, longing, desire for what is forbidden, lust

wage warstrateuomai – to make a military expedition, to lead soldiers to war or to battle, (spoken of a commander); to do military duty, be on active service, be a soldier; to fight


We don’t belong here

We are aliens on this earth.  Our citizenship is in heaven.

:12 Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.

conversationanastrophe – manner of life, conduct, behaviour, deportment

honest kalos – beautiful, handsome, excellent, eminent, choice, surpassing, precious, useful, suitable, commendable, admirable

they speak againstkatalaleo – to speak against one, to criminate, traduce

evildoerskakopoios – an evil doer, malefactor

good kalos – beautiful, handsome, excellent, eminent, choice, surpassing, precious, useful, suitable, commendable, admirable.  Same word translated “honest” in this verse.

they shall behold epopteuo – to be an overseer; to look upon, view attentively; to watch

visitationepiskope – investigation, inspection, visitation; that act by which God looks into and searches out the ways, deeds character, of men, in order to adjudge them their lot accordingly, whether joyous or sad

(1 Pet 2:12 NLT)  Be careful how you live among your unbelieving neighbors. Even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will believe and give honor to God when he comes to judge the world.


Your life is a witness

We are a witness by the things we say, but we are also a witness by the way we live our lives.
Sometimes the greatest witness a person will have is with lots of life, but with few words.

:13-17  Submission to authority

:13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;

submithupotasso – to arrange under, to subordinate; to subject, put in subjection; to subject one’s self, obey; to submit to one’s control; to yield to one’s admonition or advice; to obey, be subject; A Greek military term meaning "to arrange [troop divisions] in a military fashion under the command of a leader". In non-military use, it was "a voluntary attitude of giving in, cooperating, assuming responsibility, and carrying a burden".

ordinancektisis – the act of founding, establishing, building etc; the act of creating, creation; institution, ordinance

supremehuperecho – to have or hold over one; to stand out, rise above, overtop; to be above, be superior in rank, authority, power; the prominent men, rulers; to excel, to be superior, better than, to surpass

:14 Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.

governorshegemon – a leader of any kind, a guide, ruler, prefect, president, chief, general, commander, sovereign

punishmentekdikesis – a revenging, vengeance, punishment

evildoerskakopoios – an evil doer, malefactor

praiseepainos – approbation, commendation, praise

them that do wellagathopoios – acting rightly, doing well, virtuous


Punishment or praise

This is what God has set up human government to do.
Paul wrote,
(Rom 13:1-5 NLT)  Obey the government, for God is the one who put it there. All governments have been placed in power by God. {2} So those who refuse to obey the laws of the land are refusing to obey God, and punishment will follow. {3} For the authorities do not frighten people who are doing right, but they frighten those who do wrong. So do what they say, and you will get along well. {4} The authorities are sent by God to help you. But if you are doing something wrong, of course you should be afraid, for you will be punished. The authorities are established by God for that very purpose, to punish those who do wrong. {5} So you must obey the government for two reasons: to keep from being punished and to keep a clear conscience.

:15 For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:

the willthelema – what one wishes or has determined shall be done; of the purpose of God to bless mankind through Christ; of what God wishes to be done by us; commands, precepts; will, choice, inclination, desire, pleasure

well doingagathopoieo – to do good, do something which profits others; to be a good help to someone; to do someone a favour; to benefit; to do well, do right

put to silencephimoo – to close the mouth with a muzzle, to muzzle; metaph. to stop the mouth, make speechless, reduce to silence

foolishaphron – without reason; senseless, foolish, stupid; without reflection or intelligence, acting rashly

ignoranceagnosia – not knowing, ignorance


God’s Will – Do Good

People will have their mouths shut by your actions.
We tend to want to argue back, or at least put a fist in their mouth.
God says, “Do Good”.

:16 As free, and not using your liberty for a cloak of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.

freeeleutheros – freeborn; in a civil sense, one who is not a slave; of one who ceases to be a slave, freed, manumitted; free, exempt, unrestrained, not bound by an obligation

cloakepikaluma – a covering, veil; metaph. a pretext, cloak

maliciousnesskakia – malignity, malice, ill-will, desire to injure; wickedness, depravity; wickedness that is not ashamed to break laws; evil, trouble

servantsdoulos – a slave, bondman, man of servile condition; a servant, attendant


Don’t abuse your freedom

There are some people who are abusing what it means to be a Christian and bringing great trouble to the church.
I’m concerned about what I’ve heard about this church where the IRS has seized the church’s property.  The pastor was wheeled out on a hospital gurney because he wouldn’t leave the church willfully.  Why was the property seized?  Because the church was abusing their privileges with taxes and had bent the law by ordaining all its employees (including secretaries and janitors) and had not paid any taxes at all.  When they were investigated, they owed $6million in back taxes.  That’s a bad witness.  And what’s worse, some people are misunderstanding this and thinking that the government is not “anti-Christian”.  The problem is in this church abusing its freedom.

:17 Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.

honourtimao – to estimate, fix the value; for the value of something belonging to one’s self; honour, to have in honour, to revere, venerate

brotherhoodadelphotes – brotherhood, brotherly kindness; a family of brothers, the brotherhood

loveagapao – of persons; to welcome, to entertain, to be fond of, to love dearly

fearphobeo – to put to flight by terrifying (to scare away); to fear, be afraid; to be struck with fear, to be seized with alarm; to reverence, venerate, to treat with deference or reverential obedience

honourtimao – to estimate, fix the value; for the value of something belonging to one’s self; honour, to have in honour, to revere, venerate

:18-25  Submission at work

:18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward.

servants oiketes – one who lives in the same house as another, spoken of all who are under the authority of one and the same householder; a servant, a domestic

be subject hupotasso – to arrange under, to subordinate; to subject, put in subjection; to subject one’s self, obey; to submit to one’s control; to yield to one’s admonition or advice; to obey, be subject; A Greek military term meaning "to arrange [troop divisions] in a military fashion under the command of a leader". In non-military use, it was "a voluntary attitude of giving in, cooperating, assuming responsibility, and carrying a burden".

fear phobos – fear, dread, terror

masters despotes – a master, Lord

good agathos – of good constitution or nature; good, pleasant, agreeable, joyful, happy; excellent, distinguished; upright, honourable

gentle epieikes – seeming, suitable; equitable, fair, mild, gentle

froward skolios – crooked, curved; metaph. perverse, wicked; unfair


Submission doesn’t depend on your boss deserving it.

That’s one of the fallacies we have cultivated in the Christian church.  I’ve heard people tell others that they only submit when the other person deserves it.
Peter says to submit even if your boss is “perverse” or “wicked”.
Yes, there is a point where you do not submit.  It was even Peter himself who clarified it:
(Acts 5:29 KJV)  Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.

If your boss is asking you to do something that clearly contradicts God’s Word, then you must obey God.

But be careful even here.  I’ve heard people say, “Well God has given me permission to not do what you ask …” when the issue was not a black and white law in God’s Word.

Learning submission to people is a step towards learning submission to God.
There are going to be times in your life when God may want to ask you to do something that is uncomfortable or unpleasant to you.  Are you going to pick and choose which things you’re going to obey when God commands you?  Then I think we need to learn to do uncomfortable things when those in authority over us ask us.

:19 For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.

thankworthycharis – grace; that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness: grace of speech; good will, loving-kindness, favour

(NAS) For this finds favor

(NIV) For it is commendable

consciencesuneidesis – the consciousness of anything; the soul as distinguishing between what is morally good and bad, prompting to do the former and shun the latter, commending one, condemning the other; the conscience

endurehupophero – to bear by being under, bear up (a thing placed on one’s shoulders); to bear patiently, to endure

grieflupe – sorrow, pain, grief, annoyance, affliction

sufferingpascho – to be affected or have been affected, to feel, have a sensible experience, to undergo; in a bad sense, to suffer sadly, be in a bad plight

wrongfullyadikos – unjustly, undeserved, without fault

(1 Pet 2:19 NLT)  For God is pleased with you when, for the sake of your conscience, you patiently endure unfair treatment.

I’m not saying that when you work for a bad boss or a bad company that there isn’t a time when you need to move on.

But I think too often we wimp out when we’re faced with unpleasant circumstances.

God wants us to be the “obedient servant” at work.  He wants you to be the one that your boss comes to count on.

:20 For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God.

glory kleos – rumour, report; glory, praise

faults hamartano – to be without a share in; to miss the mark; to err, be mistaken; to miss or wander from the path of uprightness and honour, to do or go wrong; to wander from the law of God, violate God’s law, sin

ye be buffeted kolaphizo – to strike with the fist, give one a blow with the fist; to maltreat, treat with violence and contumely

take it patientlyhupomeno – to remain; to tarry behind; to remain i.e. abide, not recede or flee; to preserve: under misfortunes and trials to hold fast to one’s faith in Christ; to endure, bear bravely and calmly: ill treatments

ye do wellagathopoieo – to do good, do something which profits others; to be a good help to someone; to do someone a favour; to benefit; to do well, do right

sufferpascho – to be affected or have been affected, to feel, have a sensible experience, to undergo; in a bad sense, to suffer sadly, be in a bad plight

acceptable charis – grace; that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness: grace of speech; good will, loving-kindness, favour.  This is the same word translated “thankworthy” in verse 19.

God isn’t giving out brownie points for people who suffer because they deserve it.  If people at work call you names behind your back because you’re an obnoxious jerk, you deserve it.

But God does pay attention if you’re doing the right thing and you get some flack for it.

:21 For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:

ye calledkaleo – to call; to call aloud, utter in a loud voice; to invite

leavinghupolimpano – to leave, leave behind

an example hupogrammos (“under” + “writing”) – a writing copy, including all the letters of the alphabet, given to beginners as an aid in learning to draw them; an example set before one

When your child is learning to write, they will come home with homework in which they are supposed to copy the letters on the page.  They are to follow the example on the page that the teacher has already written down.  The teacher has written the example correctly and the student is simply to make their copy look as close to the teacher’s as possible.

follow epakoloutheo – to follow (close) upon, follow after; to tread in one’s footsteps i.e. to imitate his example

steps ichnos – a footprint, track, footstep; in the NT, metaph. of imitating the example of any one

Sometimes at the beach the boys and I will try to walk in a set of footprints in the sand.  It is kind of fun to watch a young child step in an adult’s footsteps.


Learn to suffer

That’s the lesson on the top of the page.  Jesus has suffered.  He has left huge footprints for us.  We are to follow after Him.
Just how did Jesus suffer?  Read on …

:22 Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:

sinhamartia – to be without a share in; to miss the mark; to err, be mistaken; to miss or wander from the path of uprightness and honour, to do or go wrong

guile dolos – craft, deceit, guile.  This is the third time Peter has used this word (or a close form of it).

(1 Pet 2:1 KJV)  Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings,

(1 Pet 2:2 KJV)  As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:


Be a straight shooter.

Don’t be a trickster.  Don’t be a person who is trying to trip somebody up, who is trying to manipulate, who uses deceit to get his own way.

:23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:

he was reviled loidoreo – to reproach, rail at, revile, heap abuse upon

reviled …again antiloidoreo – to revile in turn, to retort railing

Jesus did not get into a shouting match with His enemies.  He didn’t get into a name calling contest.

threatened apeileo – to threaten, menace

Jesus could have given some pretty heavy threats!  Just imagine what kind of things Jesus could have threatened the Sanhedrin with!  He could have threatened them with boiling oil, snakes, spiders, just about anything and it could have actually happened!

committed paradidomi – to give into the hands (of another); to give over into (one’s) power or use; to deliver to one something to keep, use, take care of, manage; to deliver up one to custody, to be judged, condemned, punished, scourged, tormented, put to death


Jesus put Himself in God’s hands

He knew that God was able to take care of Him.
We saw this in the attitude of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-nego:
(Dan 3:17-18 KJV)  If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. {18} But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up.

They knew God could deliver them from Nebuchadnezzar’s threats.  But they left it all in God’s hands.  They weren’t going to bow to Nebuchadnezzar even if God decided it was time for them to die and go to heaven.

:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.

being deadapogenomenos (“apart” + “to become”) – to be removed from, depart; to die, to die to anything

Peter is alluding to:

(Isa 53:5 KJV)  But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.


Suffering can bring benefit.

Jesus endured suffering for our sake, to bring about a great result.
It was because He endured His suffering that we could be free from our sins.  It was because of His suffering that we could be spiritually healed.

:25 For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

going astrayplanao – to cause to stray, to lead astray, lead aside from the right way; to go astray, wander, roam about

returnedepistrepho – transitively; to turn to; to the worship of the true God; to cause to return, to bring back

Bishopepiskopos – an overseer; a man charged with the duty of seeing that things to be done by others are done rightly, any curator, guardian or superintendent; the superintendent, elder, or overseer of a Christian church

Peter is alluding again to Isaiah 53 –

(Isa 53:6 KJV)  All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

1Peter 3

:1-7  Submission at home

:1  Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;

likewisehomoios – likewise, equally, in the same way

If you’ve been following the reasoning that Peter has been giving for submission up to this point, then you will know where Peter is going to go.  Just as we need to be in submission to those in authority over us, just as we need to be in submission to our boss at work …

wivesgune – a woman of any age, whether a virgin, or married, or a widow; a wife

be in subjectionhupotasso – to arrange under, to subordinate; to subject, put in subjection; to subject one’s self, obey; to submit to one’s control; to yield to one’s admonition or advice; to obey, be subject; A Greek military term meaning "to arrange [troop divisions] in a military fashion under the command of a leader". In non-military use, it was "a voluntary attitude of giving in, cooperating, assuming responsibility, and carrying a burden".

your ownidios (looks like the word “idiot” doesn’t it?) – pertaining to one’s self, one’s own, belonging to one’s self

obey not apeitheo – not to allow one’s self to be persuaded; to refuse or withhold belief; to refuse belief and obedience; not to comply with

conversation anastrophe – manner of life, conduct, behaviour, deportment.  Don’t confuse this King James word with our modern “conversation”.  This has nothing to do with talking.  It’s all about a manner of life, a person’s conduct.

withoutaneu – without one’s will or intervention

may … be won kerdaino – to gain, acquire, to get gain; metaph. to gain any one i.e. to win him over to the kingdom of God, to gain one to faith in Christ


Subjection doesn’t depend on the husband’s deserving it

Back in 2:18, Peter said to the slaves that they were to be obedient to their masters, even if the guy was a jerk.
Here we see the same principle.


Subjection wins men

I think one of the lessons here is about how to make your husband learn to be a great husband.
It sounds backwards, doesn’t it?  If a wife wants a husband to shape up, shouldn’t she be telling him all the things he’s supposed to be doing?  But that doesn’t reach men.
Look how the man sees it:

(Prov 19:13 NASB)  A foolish son is destruction to his father, And the contentions of a wife are a constant dripping.

(Prov 21:9 KJV)  It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.

(Prov 21:19 KJV)  It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.


Submission teaches good leadership

I think this is one of the things lacking today, men who know how to be good leaders.
I think one of the places it is supposed to start is at home.
If a man doesn’t get his wife’s support for the decisions he makes, he will never be a strong leader.  He will always wonder if he’s doing the right thing.
The problem is that most women are better at making decisions than men.
And so if a man doesn’t make good decisions, it’s a temptation for the gal to step in and rescue the family.  And the husband will eventually let her make all the decisions.
Sometimes a guy has to make some mistakes in learning to make decisions.  Let him make the mistakes.  Just support him.  Stand behind him.

:2 While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear.

they beholdepopteuo – to be an overseer; to look upon, view attentively; to watch

The men are watching the women.

fearphobos – fear, dread, terror; reverence for one’s husband

chastehagnos – exciting reverence, venerable, sacred; pure; pure from carnality, chaste, modest; pure from every fault, immaculate; clean

conversationanastrophe – manner of life, conduct, behaviour, deportment

:3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;

that outwardexothen – from without, outward

plaiting emploke – an interweaving, braiding, a knot; an elaborate gathering of one’s hair into knots

wearingperithesis – the act of putting around; the adornment consisting of the golden ornaments wont to be placed around the head or the body

adorning kosmos (“cosmetics”) – an apt and harmonious arrangement or constitution, order, government; ornament, decoration, adornment, i.e. the arrangement of the stars, ‘the heavenly hosts’, as the ornament of the heavens. #1Pe 3:3

(1 Pet 3:3 NASB)  And let not your adornment be merely external-- braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses;

:4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.

hiddenkruptos – hidden, concealed, secret

not corruptibleaphthartos – uncorrupted, not liable to corruption or decay, imperishable

meekpraus – mildness of disposition, gentleness of spirit, meekness

Meekness toward God is that disposition of spirit in which we accept His dealings with us as good, and therefore without disputing or resisting. In the OT, the meek are those wholly relying on God rather than their own strength to defend them against injustice. Thus, meekness toward evil people means knowing God is permitting the injuries they inflict, that He is using them to purify His elect, and that He will deliver His elect in His time. (#Isa 41:17, Lu 18:1-8) Gentleness or meekness is the opposite to self-assertiveness and self-interest. It stems from trust in God’s goodness and control over the situation. The gentle person is not occupied with self at all. This is a work of the Holy Spirit, not of the human will. (#Ga 5:23)

quiethesuchios – quiet, tranquil

great pricepoluteles (“much” + “end”) – precious; requiring very great outlay, very costly; excellent, of surpassing value


Makeup for the heart.

God is more concerned about how beautiful your heart is than what the outside looks like.
It’s okay to wear makeup.  It’s okay to have your hair done.  It’s okay to wear nice clothes.
But make your heart be the thing you spend more time working on.


Not just for women

These qualities of meekness and a tranquil spirit are not feminine qualities.
They are for men just as much as for women.

:5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands:

holyhagios – most holy thing, a saint

trustedelpizo – to hope; in a religious sense, to wait for salvation with joy and full confidence; hopefully to trust in

adornedkosmeo – to put in order, arrange, make ready, prepare; to ornament, adore; metaph. to embellish with honour, gain honour


Submission is a lesson of faith

It’s God’s way.  It’s how God wants us to act.
It is a step of faith because we don’t see how submission could ever work.

:6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement.

obeyedhupakouo – to listen, to harken; to harken to a command; to obey, be obedient to, submit to

lordkurios – he to whom a person or thing belongs, about which he has power of deciding; master, lord

amazementptoesis – to be afraid of with terror

(1 Pet 3:6 NASB)  Thus Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear.

(1 Pet 3:6 NLT)  For instance, Sarah obeyed her husband, Abraham, when she called him her master. You are her daughters when you do what is right without fear of what your husbands might do.


Follow Sarah’s example – give your opinion

Sarah is the example of obedience, even calling her husband “lord”.
But keep in mind, Sarah wasn’t the “silent doormat”.
When you think of Sarah, you realize that she is one of the wives mentioned in the Bible who often told her husband what she thought he ought to do.
Sometimes she got Abraham into trouble, sometimes God told Abraham to do what his wife asked.
The point is this:
Submission doesn’t mean “shut up and obey”.
It means that you give your opinion.  Your opinion ought to be considered a valuable one.
But in the end, let your husband make his decision.  If he doesn’t make the right decision, he’ll soon know about it.  But don’t beat him up about it.  Hopefully he will soon learn to pay attention to his wife’s advice.

:7 Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

dwell withsunoikeo – to dwell together; of the domestic association; of intercourse of a husband and wife

knowledgegnosis – knowledge signifies in general intelligence, understanding

It is possible for a man to understand his wife???


Let's say a guy named Roger is attracted to a woman named Elaine. He asks her out to a movie; she accepts; they have a pretty good time. A few nights later he asks her out to dinner, and again they enjoy themselves. They continue to see each other regularly, and after a while neither one of them is seeing anybody else.
And then, one evening when they're driving home, a thought occurs to Elaine, and, without really thinking, she says it aloud:  "Do you realize that, as of tonight, we've been seeing each other for exactly six months?"
And then there is silence in the car. To Elaine, it seems like a very loud silence. She thinks to herself: Geez, I wonder if it bothers him that I said that. Maybe he's been feeling confined by our relationship; maybe he thinks I'm trying to push him into some kind of obligation that he doesn't want, or isn't sure of.
And Roger is thinking: Gosh. Six months. 
And Elaine is thinking: But, hey, I'm not so sure I want this kind of relationship, either. Sometimes I wish I had a little more space, so I'd have time to think about whether I really want us to keep going the way we are, moving steadily toward . . . I mean, where are we going? Are we just going to keep seeing each other at this level of intimacy? Are we heading toward marriage? Toward children? Toward a lifetime together? Am I ready for that level of commitment? Do I really even know this person?
And Roger is thinking: . . . so that means it was . . . let's see . . .February when we started going out, which was right after I had the car at the dealer's, which means . . . let me check the odometer . . . Whoa! I am way overdue for an oil change here.
And Elaine is thinking:  He's upset.  I can see it on his face.  Maybe I'm reading this completely wrong.  Maybe he wants more from our relationship, more intimacy, more commitment; maybe he has sensed-even before I sensed it-that I was feeling some reservations.  Yes, I bet that's it.  That's why he's so reluctant to say anything about his own feelings.  He's afraid of being rejected.
And Roger is thinking:  And I'm gonna have them look at the transmission again.  I don't care what those morons say, it's still not shifting right. And they better not try to blame it on the cold weather this time.  What cold weather?  It's 87 degrees out, and this thing is shifting like a garbage truck, and I paid those incompetent thieves $600.
And Elaine is thinking:  He's angry.  And I don't blame him.  I'd  be angry, too. I feel so guilty, putting him through this, but I can't help the way I feel.  I'm just not sure.
And Roger is thinking:  They'll probably say it's only a 90-day warranty. That's exactly what they're gonna say, the scumballs. 
And Elaine is thinking:  Maybe I'm just too idealistic, waiting for a knight to come riding up on his white horse, when I'm sitting right next to a perfectly good person, a person I enjoy being with, a person I truly do care about, a person who seems to truly care about me.  A person who is in pain because of my self-centered, schoolgirl romantic fantasy.
And Roger is thinking:  Warranty?  They want a warranty?  I'll give them a .............! warranty.  I'll take their warranty and .... 
"Roger," Elaine says aloud.
"What?" says Roger, startled.
"Please don't torture yourself like this," she says, her eyes beginning to brim with tears.  "Maybe I should never have . . Oh goodness, I feel so ..." (She breaks down, sobbing.)
"What?" says Roger.
"I'm such a fool," Elaine sobs.  "I mean, I know there's no knight.  I really know that. It's silly.  There's no knight, and there's no horse."
"There's no horse?" says Roger.
"You think I'm a fool, don't you?"  Elaine says.
"No!" says Roger, glad to finally know the correct answer.
"It's just that . . . It's that I . . . I need some time," Elaine says.
There is a 15-second pause while Roger, thinking as fast as he can, tries to come up with a safe response.  Finally he comes up with one that he thinks might work.) "Yes," he says.
(Elaine, deeply moved, touches his hand.)
"Oh, Roger, do you really feel that way?" she says.
"What way?" says Roger.
"That way about time," says Elaine.
"Oh," says Roger.  "Yes."
(Elaine turns to face him and gazes deeply into his eyes, causing him to become very nervous about what she might say next, especially if it involves a horse. At last she speaks.)
"Thank you, Roger," she says.
"Thank you," says Roger.
Then he takes her home, and she lies on her bed, a conflicted, tortured soul, and weeps until dawn, whereas when Roger gets back to his place, he opens a bag of Doritos, turns on the TV, and immediately becomes deeply involved in a rerun of a tennis match between two Czechoslovakians he never heard of.  A tiny voice in the far recesses of his mind tells him that something major was going on back there in the car, but he is pretty sure there is no way he would ever understand what, and so he figures it's better if he doesn't think about it.  (This is also Roger’s policy regarding world hunger.)
The next day Elaine will call her closest friend, or perhaps two of them, and they will talk about this situation for six straight hours.  In painstaking detail, they will analyze everything she said and everything he said, going over it time and time again, exploring every word, expression, and gesture for nuances of meaning, considering every possible ramification.  They will continue to discuss this subject, off and on, for weeks, maybe months, never reaching any definite conclusions, but never getting bored with it, either.
Meanwhile, Roger, while playing racquetball one day with a mutual friend of his and Elaine's, will pause just before serving, frown, and say:  "Norm, did Elaine ever own a horse?"


Get your doctorate on the subject of your wife.

A good husband ought to know as much as there is to know about his wife.
She ought to be your best friend.  You ought to be hers.

ashos – as, like, even as, etc.

weakerasthenes – weak, infirm, feeble

Peter doesn’t say the wife IS the weaker vessel.  He says the husband is to treat her as if she were.

Treat her like fine china.

givingaponemo – to assign, portion out

honourtime – a valuing by which the price is fixed; of the price itself; of the price paid or received for a person or thing bought or sold; honour which belongs or is shown to one

being heirs togethersugkleronomos – a fellow heir, a joint heir; one who obtains something assigned to himself with others, a joint participant

hinderedekkopto – to cut out, cut off; of a tree; metaph. to cut off occasion


Treat her right.

She is not “beneath” you.  She is a fellow heir with you.
If you don’t treat her right, your prayers will be cut off.  The connection will be cut.
It could be that this might refer to the husband and wife not being able to pray with each other.  You won’t be able to pray with her because she isn’t going to like you very much.
It could be that God might not prefer to listen to your prayers if you are a jerk of a husband.
David wrote,

(Psa 66:18 KJV)  If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me:

So treat her right.