1 Peter 1:

v1: “…reside as aliens….” refers to Jewish Christians whose forefathers were scattered to Gentile nations years earlier by the Babylon invasion and takeover, but believing Gentiles are included also.

v2-4: “…by the sanctifying work of the Spirit….” Sanctification is a life-long process that weeds out the worldliness in us and reflects more holiness which does not conform to the evil of this world, hence we are “aliens” with a solid hope of a better future in Heaven forever.

v6-7: They can rejoice in spite of trials indicating their faith is more precious than gold in god’s eyes, and as gold is purified by fire, our testings by “fire” purifies our faith. Our faith will give lots of glory to Jesus.

v8: “…and though you have not seen Him, you love Him….” Hope you all can relate to this đŸ™‚

v10-12: It seems like even the prophets who foretold of the Messiah did not quite understand all they were saying at that time. Even angels long to catch a clearer glimpse of God’s unfolding salvation plan for mankind. Some people may think that the angels know everything like God does, but this is not so.

v13-16: “Keep sober in spirit.” This refers to staying close in heart, mind, and actions to God’s reality, His Kingdom. It means avoiding “drinking in” what the pleasures of this world offer. Having our heart “married to the Word of God” will anchor our souls and allow us to go through anything God allows.

v18-19: States how precious the Blood of Christ is.

v23-25: We have been “born-again” and this had nothing to do with perishable seed (natural, sperm, genealogy). But there was an imperishable seed sown by the Holy Spirit when we were saved. Therefore, though our fleshly bodies will wither and fade quickly, we will remain in existence forever because of the Word of God is remaining forever, and His Word promises us eternal life. Therefore, be of good cheer my friends!

1 Peter 2:

v1-3: As soon as we get saved and experience the kindness of the Lord, we must lay aside malice, guile (evil craftiness), hypocrisy, envy, and slander (telling truth but with evil intent).

v4-5: Jesus (the Stone) will be rejected by this world but is most  precious in God’s sight. Because Jesus is the “Living Stone” we become live stones fitted together to make up His Church.

v6-8: Very important quotes from Old Testament prophets (Isaiah 28:16; Psalms 110:22; Isaiah 8:14). “Behold I lay in Zion a choice stone, a precious cornerstone, and he who believes in Him, shall not be disappointed….the stone which the builders rejected, this became the very cornerstone….a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.” Interpretation = Jesus is the choice stone, anyone who believes in Him is guaranteed salvation. The builders, or the ones who were supposed to obey God and show other nations the true God, are the Jews. As the Jewish nation (not individual Jews) rejected their own God when He came as a man, this Man became the most important person ever to walk the earth and became the basis of the universal (worldwide) Church. Remember Jesus said that He would build His church on the faith to which Peter had confessed, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus is the cornerstone (main support) of His “building” (Kingdom). Of course, not all Jews rejected Him. The ones that had religious power did, save Nicodemus and probably some others that the Scriptures do not include. So there is no justification for Christians to hate Jewish people or to blame them all for killing Christ. Finally, many people will stumble over Jesus. They may think they are on their way to heaven without going through Jesus, but their rejection of Him will cause them to stumble (fall short). Others will simply be offended at the thought that they need to be forgiven to go to heaven. Proud people will always be offended at the Gospel of Jesus Christ and will never enter Heaven.

v9-10: Since we have received great mercy and are saved, God wants us to proclaim His goodness and greatness to other people that do not know Him. We are a chosen race of people for this very purpose. Do not keep Jesus Christ to yourself. Give Him to others not only by your actions, but with words as well.

v11: Abstain from lusts because they war against our soul. Lust takes many forms: money, gambling, power, fame, sex, drugs. Whatever we lust for, that thing will never satisfy, we’ll always want more. We will also do immoral things to feed it. No matter which lust enslaves us, it has the same goal — to steal our affection away from Jesus. It’s a modern form of idolatry because we will turn to it in time of need and we will love it more than God. To me, there is little difference between bowing to a golden calf idol and lying to get more money, for example.

v12: Keep our behavior good in front of nonbelievers because God will get more glory.

v13-20: We are commanded to submit to all authorities, even if the authority is unreasonable. If we suffer unjustly, God gives us more grace and favor which can open other people’s eyes to Him. If we suffer for doing wrong, what good is that? But when we suffer for doing right, people start noticing and ask right questions. All this is not to say that if our boss, for example, orders us to do something sinful that we obey him/her. We can disobey respectfully and submit to their “punishment.” God will see us through this trial. He has a reason for allowing it to happen. My high school principals never told me to do something wrong. I disagreed with most of them regarding philosophy of life, but they were decent people who never told me to do wrong. But one year a principal told me that my class would have to utilize 3 different rooms each day and that I would have to be a “traveling teacher” for several consecutive years. I knew this was discriminatory, unfair, and wrong. I went to him and explained why I thought is was wrong, but at the same time I acknowledged that he was my boss and I would do whatever he said. So submitting to authority does not mean we become “doormats” to let people walk all over us. There can be a fine line on this issue, so we need to prayerfully present each situation before God to get wisdom for action. By the way, my principal gave me one room for years. I did have an “ace up my sleeve,” however. I taught CPR with manikins and mats and there was no way I could cart all that equipment from room to room and be on time. So I said I could not teach CPR if I traveled. I knew my district took much pride in my CPR program :-). One fascinating last comment – I accidentally discovered years later through a guidance counselor that my principal actually gained respect for me as a teacher because I “stood up” to him (he was the intimidating type of boss). So be careful when we are right on any issue because the WAY we present ourselves needs to be right as well.

v21-23: This is a tough challenge for us. We need to follow Christ’s examples of not reviling back when reviled and not  threaten back when threatened. Only the power of the Holy Spirit can do this in us, not ourselves.

v24: Jesus bore our sin so we could die to sin so righteousness and healing could be ours.

v25: The Word of God describes us as continually straying sheep. Sheep are appropriate animals for God to select to characterize us. Sheep are so dumb that if a shepherd is not constantly keeping them in the herd, they go off and isolate themselves, and become easy prey for the wolves. Sound like us?

1 Peter 3:

v1-2: Being submissive is viewed by this world today as a negative, weak thing. To the contrary, if Jesus did not submit to His Father we would all be in big trouble on Judgment Day. Why is it that a submissive Jesus is good, but not good for us? Men are called to love their wives as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for it. Men, are we willing to SUBMIT to this? It’s a huge responsibility! Women are called to respect their husbands by submitting to their authority. This is a huge responsibility! No one is better because of gender, just different. Feminism has ruined the beauty and power of this. Submissiveness does not mean inferiority. In fact, in verse 2, it says that submissiveness has the power to change the husband toward the Lord. That is the power of influence, and a correctly submitted man or women will have a godly influence in their sphere of life. Back to marriage that God has made – when men love their wives and when wives respect their husbands, the marriage always succeeds. Feminism hates the word “roles.” Its philosophy, which is based in humanism and not God’s Word, preaches that roles are confining and deny a person’s rights. I don’t find submitting to God’s plan confining at all, rather I find it liberating. I’m free to allow God to do wondrous things through me that ordinarily would never happen. It’s all about what perspective one chooses to embrace.

v3-6: For the women – though the Word says not to adorn externally, I do not think it means that women should never wear jewelry or never make their hair look nice. It does mean, however, that women need to watch out because they are vulnerable to do what the Word says not to do. Do not overly adorn. Do not spend a lot of time and money adorning. Do not worry about your outer beauty so much. Spend time making your inside (attitude) beautiful. Older women in the church should set this godly example for the younger women to follow. We all need role models.

v7: For the men – be understanding with your wives knowing that she is a “weaker vessel.” I think this means physically weaker therefore in need of being protected. I know there are rare exceptions to physical strength comparisons among the genders, but God has put in man the desire to protect and provide for a woman. Feminism has sought to destroy men and God’s institution of marriage. Today, men feel guilty if they want to be the bread-winner. or the protector. Culture has made men feel like chauvinists because of these feelings. I know there are exceptions to “bread-winning” in today’s society, but deep down inside a man has the longing to provide and protect a woman and his kids. Feminists have made men feel foolish concerning these desires. Men do not know how to be men in today’s warped world. Ever notice commercials with a man and a woman in them? Who usually is the bright or right one, and who is the dumb or clumsy one? Are there any good male role models on sitcoms or are they stereotyped as lazy, immoral, selfish, fat, beer-loving creatures with a wife that is the moral compass? Men do not lead nor do they see men lead. Sad. I am aware of unfairness to women down through the decades and how many men dishonored women, but that does not change God’s Word for us today.

v9: Do not return insult for insult or evil for evil but give a blessing instead. This will get their attention!

v10-12: Psalms and Proverbs are quoted revealing that God is aware of everything and that He strongly advocates good deeds and is against people who do evil.

v14-15: Do not fear the intimidation of worldly people, but put Jesus first in your heart daily and always be ready to defend the hope that lies within you. But do it with gentleness and reverence. All believers are called to do this, not just preachers.

v19-20: This is one of the most puzzling passages in the Bible. In my opinion no one can know the correct interpretation for sure. There are three views:

  1. In His pre-incarnate state Christ preached through the ‘mouthpiece’ of Noah to the world which perished at the time of the Great Flood.
  2. Between His physical death and resurrection Christ went to the fallen angels who are believed by some to have left their proper state and married human women during Noah’s time (Genesis 6:1-4; 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6).
  3. Between His death and resurrection, Christ went to the abode of the dead and preached to the spirits of the rebellious dead of Noah’s age.

If we assume theory #3 is correct, then it still would not account for all the people that lived after that time period through to our present day. If those people in Noah’s day had some kind of “second chance,” then why not other souls throughout all of history? Why should only those people have this grand opportunity?

Scripture emphasizes that NOW is the day of salvation (2 Cor.6:2 and Heb.3:7-8). If souls could be saved after they die, why then does Scripture say these things? Therefore, at least for now, I lean toward theory #1 above. However, the problem with #1 is that it would only include those people who lived in Noah’s vicinity and would not include people worldwide. We do not know the extent of population dispersion in Noah’s day. I assume it was not that extensive, i.e., people living in China or North America mainly due to lack of time and especially because God has not yet dispersed the people. That occurred at the Tower of Babel. But could all humans alive at Noah’s time hear what he was saying? That’s hard to believe. I don’t think Scripture is plain enough to answer all questions, especially concerning salvation of a 2-year-old who dies and was born to a family with no Christian knowledge or ties. There are thousands of examples that fit into that category. Perhaps the best response is: we know God is good and all judgment will be right.

v21: The context is Noah’s Flood being a sort of baptism – one had to believe in God’s Word to construct and board the ark (it took 100 years to make that ship). So now Christ is our ark and it is sort of a similar baptism to Noah’s Flood, and it is this baptism (faith in Jesus’ death and resurrection) that saves us. In other words, whether living in Noah’s time or today, it is faith that saves. The Ark of Noah represented Jesus. Interesting note: No human shut the door of the Ark. God did. Sinful humans do not have the right to condemn people to eternal destruction, only God. If you want more info on the feasibility of Noah’s Ark and scientific evidence for a whole-wide flood, click on “Creation/Evolution Seminar” on my home page to this site.

1 Peter 4:

v1-5: When a person dies, they no longer give in to fleshy desires (sin). We, as born-again believers, need to view our old selves as dead and live the rest of our time on earth for Jesus. If we do this, we will not partake in what we used to do such as sensualities (doing what feels good at the moment), lusts (selfish desires), drunkenness, fornication, carousals (drink freely and noisily), attend alcohol parties, and lawless idolatries. Old friends will be surprised when we do not partake in these things any longer and some will malign us. Any time we stop a sinful activity, there will be someone who will not like us and will tempt us or mock us. Deep inside they know we are right but because they are unwilling to repent, they try to bring us down back to their level so the conviction emanating toward them from us is gone. So when this happens, do not be caught off guard, but rejoice that the Word of God is coming true in your life.

v6: This is yet another difficult verse to interpret. Some believe that the Gospel was preached to people who had died never hearing truth and had a chance of obtaining eternal life. Sounds good and would ease our minds knowing that all had a fair chance. But if true, why does Jesus emphasize evangelism? Why go into all the world preaching the Gospel if all who did not hear it will hear it when they die? Does “the dead” refer only to OT people and therefore NT people must hear the Gospel? Not sure, but if Jesus says to tell others about Him…I’ll do it! This verse may mean that people in Noah’s day were presented the Gospel after they died to give their souls a chance at eternal life. It also could mean that people who are alive and not saved yet are dead spiritually though they are alive in the flesh, and if they repent and believe, they will still die because of sin, but will live forever in Christ.

v7: “The end of all things is at hand.” How close to the End are we now if these words were written 2000 years ago?! The Bible clearly teaches that the End Days started with the arrival of Christ (Acts 2:17 & Hebrews 1:2). If I knew that this world would be gone in 14 days, I wonder what I would spend time on? Whatever we decide to do, that is where our hearts is.

v8: “Above all fervently love one another, this will cover a multitude of sins.” If I fervently love someone, I will not nitpick on things that bother me about them, and though I would not agree with all they say and do, I will still accept them and love them. I will not allow the imperfections of another human to get in my way of loving them.

v10-11: Each one of us has received a special gift from God and we are to use it in service to Him as well as to others. Many folks think they are worthless and without talent. This is because they compare themselves to some of the best people out there. It causes them to overlook or to be blind to what God has given them. Something is in there. This is what the Word says. Whether it be speaking God’s truth in an understandable manner to folks or just serving others, God’s talents can be used by us. We all have something.

v12-16: Fiery ordeals will come our way so do not be surprised (or fearful) when they come. If we suffer because of Jesus in us, it proves that God’s glory is upon us and this alone should make us rejoice. Consider how some of the great people in the Bible were treated by this world: Joseph by his own brothers, Paul who was stoned and left for dead, Stephan the first martyr, and, of course, Jesus Himself.

v17: God’s judgment starts with His church. This is why so many churches have failed or have been horrible examples to the world about representing Christ. If a church is not built on the proper foundation (Christ Himself, not some other human) or if members or leaders continue to sin without repentance, that group will not last. If it does, there will be no life to give to others.

1 Peter 5:

v1-4: Guidelines for pastors – do not serve others under compulsion but willingly, do not serve for personal gain, serve with eagerness, do not lord it over the people (control to get your way), be a good example for the flock.

v5-6: “God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.” Peter is quoting Proverbs 3:34. We need to remain humble and let God exalt us at the proper time. People on earth want credit for what good they do, but we are not supposed to be living for that. Praise now is nothing compared to God praising us later. If we do good and never receive recognition, don’t worry because God sees all and will not forget all the good we’ve done.

v7: We are to cast all our anxiety on to Jesus because He can hack it and He cares for us. Is something bothering you? Then give it up to the Lord in prayer. Cast your troubles onto Him. He tells us to do so in Matthew 6:25.

v8: Satan is our adversary and he prowls around like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour, so we need to be on constant alert. Yes, we have authority over demons and the devil, but that is not a license to “fall asleep at the helm.” Always respect the enemy’s strength and cunning.

v9-10: Resist Satan and stay firm in faith. Also keep in mind that whatever troubles or suffering we experience on earth, the same has been experienced by other believers around the world. We can take comfort knowing that we are not the only ones suffering when it comes our way. Any suffering we have on earth only lasts a brief time (from God’s perspective of eternity), and will lead to great comfort and glory in the afterlife forever.