1 Peter 4

A Living Stone and a Holy People

jSo put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. kLike newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual lmilk, that by it you may grow up into salvation if indeed you have mtasted that the Lord is good.

As you come to him, a living stone nrejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, oyou yourselves like living stones are being built up as pa spiritual house, to be qa holy priesthood, rto offer spiritual sacrifices sacceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in Scripture:

tBehold, I am laying in Zion a stone,

a cornerstone chosen and precious,

uand whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.

So the honor is for you who vbelieve, but for those who vdo not believe,

wThe stone that the builders rejected

has become the cornerstone,1

and

xA stone of stumbling,

and a rock of offense.

They stumble because they disobey the word, yas they were destined to do.

But you are za chosen race, aa royal bpriesthood, ca holy nation, da people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you eout of darkness into fhis marvelous light. 10 gOnce you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

11 Beloved, I urge you has sojourners and exiles ito abstain from the passions of the flesh, jwhich wage war against your soul. 12 kKeep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, lthey may see your good deeds and glorify God on mthe day of visitation.

Submission to Authority

13 nBe subject for the Lord's sake to every human institution,2 whether it be to the emperor3 as supreme, 14 or to governors as sent by him oto punish those who do evil and pto praise those who do good. 15 For this is the will of God, qthat by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. 16 rLive as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but sliving as servants4 of God. 17 tHonor everyone. uLove the brotherhood. vFear God. Honor the emperor.

18 wServants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle but also to the unjust. 19 For this is a gracious thing, when, xmindful of God, one endures sorrows while suffering unjustly. 20 For what credit is it if, when you sin and are beaten for it, you endure? But yif when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. 21 For zto this you have been called, ybecause Christ also suffered for you, aleaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. 22 bHe committed no sin, neither was deceit found in his mouth. 23 cWhen he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, dbut continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. 24 eHe himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we fmight die to sin and glive to righteousness. hBy his wounds you have been healed. 25 For iyou were straying like sheep, but have now returned to jthe Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

Wives and Husbands

Likewise, wives, kbe subject to your own husbands, so that leven if some do not obey the word, mthey may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, when they see your nrespectful and pure conduct. oDo not let your adorning be externalthe braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear but let your adorning be pthe hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious. For this is how the holy women who hoped in God used to adorn themselves, by submitting to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, qcalling him lord. And you are her children, if you do good and rdo not fear anything that is frightening.

Likewise, shusbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker tvessel, since they are heirs with you1 of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.

Suffering for Righteousness' Sake

Finally, all of you, uhave unity of mind, sympathy, vbrotherly love, wa tender heart, and xa humble mind. yDo not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, zbless, for ato this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing. 10 For

bWhoever desires to love life

and see good days,

let him keep his tongue from evil

and his lips from speaking deceit;

11  let him turn away from evil and do good;

let him seek peace and pursue it.

12  For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous,

and his ears are open to their prayer.

But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.

13 Now cwho is there to harm you if you are zealous for what is good? 14 dBut even if you should suffer for righteousness' sake, you will be blessed. eHave no fear of them, fnor be troubled, 15 but gin your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, halways being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and irespect, 16 jhaving a good conscience, so that, kwhen you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. 17 For lit is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God's will, than for doing evil.

18 For Christ also msuffered2 nonce for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, othat he might bring us to God, being put to death pin the flesh but made alive qin the spirit, 19 in which3 he went and qproclaimed4 to the spirits in prison, 20 because5 they formerly did not obey, rwhen God's patience waited in the days of Noah, swhile the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, teight persons, were brought safely through water. 21 Baptism, which corresponds to this, unow saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but vas an appeal to God for a good conscience, wthrough the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who has gone into heaven and xis at the right hand of God, ywith angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.

Stewards of God's Grace

Since therefore zChrist suffered in the flesh,1 aarm yourselves with the same way of thinking, for bwhoever has suffered in the flesh chas ceased from sin, dso as to live for ethe rest of the time in the flesh fno longer for human passions but gfor the will of God. For the time that is past hsuffices ifor doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. With respect to this they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of jdebauchery, and kthey malign you; but they will give account to him who is ready lto judge the living and the dead. For this is why mthe gospel was preached even to those who are dead, that though judged in the flesh the way people are, they might live in the spirit the way God does.

nThe end of all things is at hand; therefore obe self-controlled and sober-minded pfor the sake of your prayers. Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since qlove covers a multitude of sins. rShow hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10 sAs each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, tas good stewards of God's varied grace: 11 whoever speaks, as one who speaks uoracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves vby the strength that God suppliesin order that in everything wGod may be glorified through Jesus Christ. xTo him belong glory and ydominion forever and ever. Amen.

Suffering as a Christian

12 Beloved, do not be surprised at zthe fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice ainsofar as you share Christ's sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad bwhen his glory is revealed. 14 cIf you are insulted dfor the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory2 and of God rests upon you. 15 But elet none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or fas a meddler. 16 Yet eif anyone suffers as a gChristian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God din that name. 17 For it is time for judgment hto begin at the household of God; and iif it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who jdo not obey the gospel of God? 18 And

kIf the righteous is scarcely saved,

what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?3

19 Therefore let those who suffer according to God's will lentrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good.

Shepherd the Flock of God

So I exhort the elders among you, mas a fellow elder and na witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: oshepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight,1 pnot under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you;2 qnot for shameful gain, but eagerly; not rdomineering over those in your charge, but sbeing examples to the flock. And when tthe chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the uunfading vcrown of glory. Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. wClothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for xGod opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.

xHumble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, ycasting all your anxieties on him, because zhe cares for you. aBe sober-minded; bbe watchful. Your cadversary the devil dprowls around elike a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. fResist him, gfirm in your faith, knowing that hthe same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. 10 And iafter you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, jwho has called you to his keternal glory in Christ, will himself lrestore, mconfirm, strengthen, and establish you. 11 nTo him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen.

Final Greetings

12 By oSilvanus, a faithful brother as I regard him, pI have written briefly to you, exhorting and declaring that this is qthe true grace of God. rStand firm in it. 13 She who is at Babylon, who is likewise chosen, sends you greetings, and so does sMark, my son. 14 tGreet one another with the kiss of love.

uPeace to all of you who are in Christ.

2 Peter Illustration

2 Peter

Greeting

Simeon1 Peter, a servant2 and apostle of Jesus Christ,

To those who have obtained aa faith of equal standing with ours bby the righteousness of our cGod and Savior Jesus Christ:

dMay grace and peace be multiplied to you ein the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.

Confirm Your Calling and Election

His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him fwho called us to3 his own glory and excellence,4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become gpartakers of the divine nature, hhaving escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire. For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith iwith virtue,5 and virtue jwith knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control kwith steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness lwith brotherly affection, and brotherly affection mwith love. For if these qualities6 are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or nunfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he ois blind, having forgotten that he was pcleansed from his former sins. 10 Therefore, brothers,7 be all the more diligent to confirm your calling and qelection, for if you practice these qualities ryou will never fall. 11 For in this way there will be richly provided for you san entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

12 Therefore I intend talways to remind you of these qualities, though you know them and are established in uthe truth that you have. 13 I think it right, as long as I am in this vbody,8 wto stir you up by way of reminder, 14 xsince I know that the putting off of my body will be soon, yas our Lord Jesus Christ made clear to me. 15 And I will make every effort so that after my departure you may be able at any time to recall these things.

Christ's Glory and the Prophetic Word

16 For we did not follow zcleverly devised amyths when we made known to you bthe power and ccoming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but dwe were eyewitnesses of his majesty. 17 For when he received honor and glory from God the Father, and the voice was borne to him by the Majestic Glory, eThis is my beloved Son,9 with whom I am well pleased, 18 we ourselves heard this very voice borne from heaven, for we were with him on fthe holy mountain. 19 And gwe have the prophetic word more fully confirmed, to which you will do well to pay attention has to a lamp shining in a dark place, until ithe day jdawns and the morning star rises in your hearts, 20 knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone's own interpretation. 21 For kno prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God las they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.