1 Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to those who live as foreigners and pilgrims, dispersed throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, 2 chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, and by the Spirit’s work of sanctification brought to obedience and the sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ:1 May grace and peace be multiplied to you.
Praise to the God of Hope
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ who, according to His abundant mercy, has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead; 4 to an inheritance that is incorruptible, undefiled, and that will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are kept by the power of God, through faith, for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6 In all of this you greatly rejoice, though now, for a little while if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, 7 so that the genuineness2 of your faith—which is far more precious than gold that ultimately perishes—having been tested by fire,3 may be found to result in praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 8 Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and though for now you still do not see Him, you believe, and so rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, 9thereby obtaining the goal and outcome of your faith: the salvation of your souls.
10 Concerning this salvation the prophets who prophesied of the grace that would come to you searched and investigated with great diligence, 11 trying to determine what person or time4 the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating when He testified beforehand about the sufferings appointed for Christ and the glories that would follow. 12 To them it was revealed that they were not ministering these things to themselves, but to you, things that now have been announced to you through those who proclaimed the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven—things that angels keenly desire to behold and inspect.
Be Holy as He is Holy
13 Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, stay sober, and fix your hope completely upon the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not yield to the evil desires that you formerly indulged when you lived in ignorance; 15 but, like the Holy One who called you, you as well must be holy in all your conduct, 16 for it is written, “Be holy, for I am holy.”5 17 And if you call Him Father6 who judges impartially according to each one’s work, then conduct yourselves in holy fear7 throughout the time of your sojourn, 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your empty way of life handed down to you by your forefathers, 19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot, the blood of Christ Himself. 20 Truly, He was chosen and foreordained8 before the foundation of the world, but was manifested in these last times for your sake, 21 who, because of Him, now believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.
Love One Another
22 Since, in obedience to the truth, you have purified your souls for9 a sincere love of the brotherhood, love one another fervently from the heart, 23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed, but incorruptible, through the living and enduring word of God. 24 For
“All flesh is like grass,
And all its glory like the flower of the grass.
The grass withers,
And its flower falls away,
25 But the word of the Lord endures forever.”10
And this word is the good news that was proclaimed to you.
- Lit. God the Father, in sanctification of Spirit (or spirit) unto obedience
- Or proven character
- Or than gold which perishes despite being tested by fire—
- Or what time or set of circumstances
- Lev. 11:44, 45; 19:2; 20:7
- Or If you call upon a Father who judges.
- Or reverence
- Lit. foreknown
- Or resulting in, leading to; lit. unto
- Is. 40:6–8
2 Therefore, laying aside all malice and all guile, as well as hypocrisies, jealousies and all slanders, 2 as newborn babes long for the pure, spiritual milk of the word, so that by it you may grow up to salvation,1 3 if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.2
Blessedness of the Israel of God
4 Coming to Him as to a living stone, utterly rejected by men, but chosen and precious in the sight of God, 5 you yourselves, as living stones, are also being built up as a spiritual house, in order to become a holy priesthood, and to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 Therefore, this is found in Scripture:3
“Behold, I lay a stone in Zion,
A chosen and precious cornerstone;
And he who believes on Him will never be put to shame.”4
7 Therefore, to you who believe, He is precious; but to those who disbelieve,
“The stone that the builders rejected,
Has become the chief cornerstone,”5
“A stone of stumbling
And a rock of offense”.6
They stumble because they are disobedient to the word, to which also they were appointed. 9 But you are a chosen family, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God’s own possession, so that you may proclaim the excellencies7 of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; 10 who once were not a people, but now are the people of God; who once had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
The Pilgrim Way
11 Beloved, I urge you, as sojourners and pilgrims, to abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, 12 keeping your conduct praiseworthy among the Gentiles, so that in whatever matters they try to slander you as evildoers, they may, by observing your good works, glorify God on the day He comes to judge them.8
Submission to Government
13 Submit yourselves to every human institution for the Lord’s sake, whether to a king as the supreme authority, 14 or to governors, as those who have been sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do what is right. 15 For such is the will of God, that by doing what is right you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men. 16 Live before them as free men, not using your freedom as a cloak for evil, but rather as bondservants of God. 17 Honor all men, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king.
Submission to Masters
18 Servants, be submissive to your masters with all respect,9 not only to those who are good and gentle, but also to those who are harsh and unfair.19 For this finds favor, if a person endures various hardships, suffering injustice for the sake of conscience towards God. 20 For if you patiently endure ill-treatment when you are beaten for your sins, what credit do you deserve? But if, while doing what is right and suffering for it, you patiently endure, this finds favor with God. 21 For you were called to this very thing, seeing that Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example so that you might follow in His footsteps, 22 “Who committed no sin, nor was any deceit found in His mouth”;10 23 who, while being reviled, did not revile in return; who, while suffering, uttered no threats, but entrusted Himself to Him who judges righteously; 24 and who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, so that, having died to sins, we might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed. 25 For you were like sheep that had gone astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
- Lit. unto salvation (i.e. towards final salvation)
- Or kind, loving, merciful, gracious; Ps. 34:8
- Lit. For this reason it is contained in Scripture
- Is. 28:16
- Ps. 118:22
- Is. 8:14
- Or virtues, moral excellencies
- Lit. in the day of visitation (with a view to divine judgment)
- Lit. fear
- Is. 53:9
Submission to Husbands
3 Wives, in the same way be submissive to your own husbands, so that even if some of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the conduct of their wives, 2 as they observe your virtuous1 manner of life, coupled with respect.2 3 Your beauty3 must not be outward only—elaborately arranging your hair, wearing gold jewelry, or dressing in fine apparel. 4 Rather, it must be the hidden person4 of the heart, adorned with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. 5 For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, submitting to their own husbands, 6 just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. And you have become her daughters when you do what is right and refuse to give way to any fear.5
7 Likewise, you husbands must live together with your wives according to knowledge, as with the weaker vessel, the woman; and you must grant her honor as a fellow-heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.
Obedience and Blessing
8 Finally, let all of you be likeminded, sympathetic, brotherly, compassionate, and humble, 9 not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but on the contrary, blessing one and all; for you were called to this very thing, so that you yourselves might inherit a blessing. 10 For,
“He who would love life
And see good days,
Let him refrain his tongue from evil,
And his lips from speaking guile.
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 upon the righteous,
And His ears are open to their prayers;
But the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”6
Coping With Suffering
13 And who is there to harm you if you become zealous for what is good? 14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you are blessed. “And by no means fear their threats7 or let yourselves be troubled,”8 15 but instead sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to give an explanation9 to anyone who asks you for an account of the hope within10 you. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that in whatever matter those who slander your good conduct in Christ speak against you, they may be put to shame. 17 For it is better to suffer for doing what is right, if God so wills, than for doing what is wrong.
18 For Christ also suffered11 once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that He might bring us12 to God; who was indeed put to death in the flesh, but brought to life in the Spirit, 19 by whom also He went and made proclamation to the spirits now in prison, 20 who formerly were disobedient, when, in the days of Noah, the longsuffering of God waited patiently while the ark was being prepared, in which a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water. 21 An antitype of this now saves you as well—that is, baptism; not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but the response13 of a good conscience to God14 through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who is at the right hand of God, having gone into heaven after angels, authorities, and powers had been subjected to Him.
- Lit. pure, chaste, morally faultless
- Lit. with fear
- Or adornment
- Lit. man
- Lit. and are not frightened by any terror
- Ps. 34:12-16
- Lit. fear
- Is. 8:12
- Or defense
- Or that exists among you
- Some mss died
- Many mss you
- Or pledge, promise
- Or possibly an appeal to God for a good conscience
4 Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, you too must arm yourselves with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, 2 so that he should no longer spend the rest of his time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. 3 For the time already past is sufficient for you to have carried out the will of the Gentiles, who walk through life in debaucheries, unbridled lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and illicit idolatries. 4 They are astonished that you do not run with them into the same flood of dissipation, and therefore speak evil of you; 5 but they will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. 6 For to this end the good news was also preached to those who are now dead, so that though they may have been judged according to men in the flesh, they might live according to God in the spirit.
The Saints Life and Service
7 But the consummation of all things is at hand. Therefore be clear-headed and sober-minded for the purpose of prayers. 8 Above all, maintain fervent love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. 9 Be hospitable to one another without a murmur. 10 Since each of you has received a spiritual gift, use your gifts1 to serve one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 11 If anyone speaks, let his words be as oracles2 from God; if anyone serves, let him do so out of the strength that God supplies, so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.
Trust in the Midst of Hardship
12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal occurring among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; 13 but to the extent that you share in the sufferings of Christ, you must keep on rejoicing, so that you may also rejoice at the revelation of his glory with exceedingly great joy. 14 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, you are blessed, for the Spirit of glory and of God will give you rest.3 15 And let none of you suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or a meddler; 16 but if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but in that name let him glorify God. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin, starting with the household of God; and if it starts with us first, what will be the end of those4 who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 “And if the righteous are hardly saved, where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?”5 19 So then, let those who suffer according to the will of God entrust their souls to a faithful Creator as they continue to do what is right.6
- Lit. it
- Or utterances
- Or possibly rest on you
- Or outcome (result) for those
- Prov. 11:31
- Lit. in doing good
5 Therefore I exhort the elders among you, I who am your fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory yet to be revealed: 2 Shepherd the flock of God among you, serving as overseers, not under compulsion, but willingly, according to God; not out of greed for material gain, but eagerly; 3 not as lording it over those allotted to your care,1 but becoming2 examples to the flock; 4 and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that never fades away. 5 Likewise you who are young, be submissive to the elders. And all of you, clothe yourselves with humility towards one another, for “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”3
6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that He may exalt you at the proper time, 7 casting all your cares upon Him, for He cares for you. 8 Be sober, be watchful: your adversary the devil prowls about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. 9 Resist him, firm in your4 faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brothers and sisters5 in the world. 10 But after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. 11 To Him be the dominion forever.6 Amen.
Greetings and Benediction
12 Through Silvanus, our faithful brother (for so I consider him), I have written to you briefly, exhorting and testifying that this is the true grace of God. Stand firm in it! 13 She who is in Babylon, chosen together with you, sends you her greetings; and so does Mark my son. 14 Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ.7
- Lit. over the allotments
- Or showing yourselves
- Prov. 3:34
- Lit. the
- Lit. brotherhood
- Or To Him belongs the power forever
- Many mss who are in Christ Jesus. Amen