Bible: The New Testament

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The First General Letter of Peter

Full Text The First General Letter of Peter

I.  

Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the strangers scattered through Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia; 2chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace and peace be multiplied to you.

3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his abundant mercy begot us again unto a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead; 4unto an inheritance imperishable, and undefiled, and unfading, reserved in heaven for you, 5who by the power of God are kept through faith, unto a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. 6Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a little time, if need be, made sorrowful by manifold trials; 7that the proof of your faith, much more precious than gold that perishes, but is proved by fire, may be found unto praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 8whom having not seen ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory; 9receiving the end of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

10Concerning which salvation the prophets diligently sought and searched, who prophesied of the grace toward you; 11searching as to what or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them signified, when it testified beforehand the sufferings destined for Christ, and the glories that should follow; 12to whom it was revealed, that not to themselves, but to you they were ministering them, which now have been announced to you, through those who brought you the good news by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven; which things angels desire to look into.

13Wherefore, girding up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope perfectly for the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 14as children of obedience, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts in your ignorance; 15but as he who called you is holy, be ye yourselves holy in all your deportment; 16because it is written: Ye shall be holy, for I am holy.

17And if ye call him Father, who without respect of persons judges according to each one's work, pass the time of your sojourning in fear; 18knowing that not with perishable things, silver and gold, ye were redeemed from your vain course of life received by tradition from your fathers, 19but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot; 20who was foreknown indeed before the foundation of the world, but manifested in these last times for you, 21who through him believe on God, who raised him from the dead, and gave him glory; so that your faith and hope are on God.

22Having purified your souls in obeying the truth unto unfeigned brotherly love, love one another from the heart fervently; 23being born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the word of God, which lives and abides forever. 24Because,

All flesh is as grass,

And all its glory as the flower of grass.

The grass withered, and its flower fell off;

25But the word of the Lord abides forever.

And this is the word which was preached to you.

II.  Laying aside therefore all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envyings, and all backbitings, 2as newborn babes, long for the spiritual, unadulterated milk, that ye thereby may grow unto salvation; 3if indeed ye tasted that the Lord is gracious; 4to whom coming, a living stone, disallowed indeed by men, but with God chosen, honored, 5ye yourselves also, as living stones, are built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6Because it is contained in the Scripture: Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner-stone, chosen, honored; and he that believes on him shall not be put to shame.

7To you therefore who believe is the honor; but to the disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is become the head of the corner, 8and a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense, who stumble, being disobedient to the word; to which they were also appointed.

9But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for a possession; that ye should show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light; 10who once were not a people, but are now the people of God; who had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.

11Beloved, I exhort you as sojourners and strangers, to abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; 12having your deportment honorable among the Gentiles; that, wherein they speak against you as evil-doers, they may from your good works, beholding them, glorify God in the day of visitation.

13Submit yourselves to every human institution, for the Lord's sake; whether to the king, as pre-eminent, 14or to governors as being sent by him for the punishment of evil-doers, and the praise of those who do well. 15For so is the will of God, that with well-doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of the foolish men; 16as free, and as not having your freedom for a vail of wickedness, but as God's servants.

17Honor all men; love the brotherhood; fear God; honor the king; 18ye servants, being in subjection to your masters with all fear, not only to the good and reasonable, but also to the perverse. 19For this is acceptable, if a man for conscience toward God endures griefs, suffering wrongfully. 20For what glory is it, if when ye are beaten 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. 21For to this ye were called; because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, that ye should follow his steps; 22who committed no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth; 23who when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, threatened not; but committed it to him who judges righteously; 24who himself bore our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, having died to our sins, should live to righteousness; by whose stripes ye were healed. 25For ye were going astray like sheep; but have returned now unto the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

III.  

In like manner, ye wives, being in subjection to your own husbands; that even if any obey not the word, they may without the word be won by the deportment of their wives, 2when they behold your chaste deportment coupled with fear. 3Whose adorning, let it not be the outward one of braiding the hair, and of wearing golden ornaments, or of putting on apparel; 4but the hidden man of the heart, in that which is imperishable of the meek and quiet spirit, which in the sight of God is of great price. 5For so in the old time the holy women also, who hoped in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection to their own husbands, 6(as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord; of whom ye became children,) doing good, and fearing no alarm.

7Ye husbands, in like manner, dwelling with them according to knowledge, giving honor to the female, as the weaker vessel, as also heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.

8Finally, all being of one mind, sympathizing, loving the brethren, tender-hearted, humble-minded; 9not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing; but on the contrary blessing, because to this end ye were called, that ye might inherit blessing.

10For he who desires to love life, and to see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips from speaking guile; 11let him turn away from evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and pursue it. 12Because the eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are toward their supplications; but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil. 13And who is he that shall harm you, if ye are followers of that which is good? 14But if ye even suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye; but fear not with their fear, nor be troubled; 15but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts; ready always to give an answer to every one that asks you a reason of the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; 16having a good conscience, that wherein they speak against you as evil-doers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good deportment in Christ. 17For it is better, if it be the will of God, that ye suffer for well-doing, than for evil-doing. 18Because Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but made alive by the Spirit; 19in which also he went and preached to the spirits in prison, 20who were disobedient in times past, when the long-suffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was preparing, wherein a few, that is, eight souls, were saved through water; 21which in an antitype, immersion, now saves us also (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the requirement of a good conscience toward God), by the resurrection of Jesus Christ; 22who is on the right hand of God, having gone into heaven, angels and authorities and powers being made subject to him.

IV.  

Christ then having suffered for us in the flesh, do ye also arm yourselves with the same mind; because he who suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin; 2that ye no longer may live the remaining time in the flesh by the lusts of men, but by the will of God. 3For the time past suffices us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in wantonness, lusts, excess of wine, revelings, carousings, and unhallowed idolatries; 4at which thing they are astonished, as ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you; 5who shall give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. 6For to this end was the good news preached also to those who are dead, that they might indeed be judged according to men in the flesh, but may live according to God in the spirit.

7But the end of all things is at hand. Be therefore sober, and watch unto prayer; 8but above all things having your love toward one another fervent, because love covers a multitude of sins; 9hospitable to one another, without grudging; 10according as each received a gift, ministering the same to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God; 11if any one speaks, as [uttering] God's oracles; if any one ministers, as of the ability which God bestows; that God in all things may be glorified, through Jesus Christ, to whom is the glory and the dominion, forever and ever. Amen.

12Beloved, be not astonished at the fiery test taking place among you to prove you, as though a strange thing were befalling you; 13but, in so far as ye share in Christ's sufferings, rejoice; that also, at the revelation of his glory, ye may rejoice with exceeding joy. 14If ye are reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; because the spirit of glory and of God rests upon you; [on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.]

15For let none of you suffer as a murderer, or a thief, or an evil-doer, or as a busy-body in other men's matters; 16but if as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this name. 17Because the time is come that judgment should begin from the house of God; but if it begin first from us, what shall be the end of those who obey not the gospel of God? 18And if the righteous is with difficulty saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?

19Wherefore let those also, who suffer according to the will of God, commit the keeping of their souls to him in well-doing, as to a faithful Creator.

V.  

The elders among you I exhort, who am a fellow-elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, who am also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed; 2tend the flock of God which is among you, overseeing it not by constraint but willingly, not for base gain but with good will; 3neither as being lords over the heritage, but being examples to the flock. 4And when the chief Shepherd is manifested, ye shall receive the unfading crown of glory.

5In like manner, ye younger, submit yourselves to the elder. Yea, all of you submitting to one another, gird yourselves with humility; because, God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. 6Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time; 7casting all your care upon him, because he cares for you.

8Be sober, be watchful. Your adversary the Devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour; 9whom resist, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are being accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.

10But the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ Jesus, after ye have suffered a little while, make you perfect, establish, strengthen, settle you. 11To him be the glory, and the dominion, forever and ever. Amen.

12By Silvanus, the faithful brother, as I consider, I wrote to you in few words, exhorting, and testifying that this is the true grace of God, wherein ye stand.

13The [church that is] in Babylon, chosen with you, salutes you; and Mark, my son.

14Salute one another with a kiss of love. Peace to you all, that are in Christ.