Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, to the elect
who are sojourners of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia,
and Bithynia, according to the foreknowledge of
God the Father, in sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and
sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace to you and peace be
multiplied. Blessed be the God and Father
of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to his great mercy begat us again
unto a living hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
unto an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled,
and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you,
who by the power of God are guarded through faith
unto a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a
little while, if need be, ye have been put to grief in manifold trials,
that the proof of your faith, being more
precious than gold that perisheth though it is proved by fire, may be
found unto praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ:
whom not having seen ye love; on whom, though now
ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice greatly with joy unspeakable and
full of glory: receiving the end of your faith,
even the salvation of your souls.
Concerning which salvation the prophets sought
and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should
come unto you: searching what time or
what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did point unto,
when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glories
that should follow them. To whom it was
revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto you, did they minister these
things, which now have been announced unto you through them that preached
the gospel unto you by the Holy Spirit sent forth from heaven; which
things angel desire to look into. Wherefore
girding up the loins of your mind, be sober and set your hope perfectly on
the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus
Christ; as children of obedience, not fashioning
yourselves according to your former lusts in the time of your
ignorance: but like as he who called you is
holy, be ye yourselves also holy in all manner of living;
because it is written, Ye shall be holy; for I
am holy. And if ye call on him as Father, who
without respect of persons judgeth according to each man's work, pass the
time of your sojourning in fear: knowing that ye
were redeemed, not with corruptible things, with silver or gold, from your
vain manner of life handed down from your fathers;
but with precious blood, as of a lamb without
spot, even the blood of Christ: who was
foreknown indeed before the foundation of the world, but was manifested at
the end of times for your sake, who through him
are believers in God, that raised him from the dead, and gave him glory;
so that your faith and hope might be in God.
Seeing ye have purified your souls in your
obedience to the truth unto unfeigned love of the brethren, love one
another from the heart fervently: having been
begotten again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, through the
word of God, which liveth and abideth. For, All
flesh is as grass, And all the glory thereof as the flower of grass. The
grass withereth, and the flower falleth: But the
word of the Lord abideth for ever. And this is the word of good tidings
which was preached unto you.
Putting away therefore all wickedness, and all
guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings,
as newborn babes, long for the spiritual milk
which is without guile, that ye may grow thereby unto salvation;
if ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious:
unto whom coming, a living stone, rejected indeed
of men, but with God elect, precious, ye also, as
living stones, are built up a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to
offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
Because it is contained in scripture,
Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner stone, elect, precious:
And he that believeth on him shall not be put to shame.
For you therefore that believe is the
preciousness: but for such as disbelieve,
The stone which the builders rejected,
The same was made the head of the corner;
A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence;
for they stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were
appointed. But ye are a elect race, a royal
priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that
ye may show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness
into his marvellous light: who in time past were
no people, but now are the people of God: who had not obtained mercy, but
now have obtained mercy. Beloved, I beseech you
as sojourners and pilgrims, to abstain from fleshly lust, which war
against the soul; having your behavior seemly
among the Gentiles; that, wherein they speak against you as evil-doers,
they may by your good works, which they behold, glorify God in the day of
visitation. Be subject to every ordinance of man
for the Lord's sake: whether to the king, as supreme;
or unto governors, as sent by him for vengeance
on evil-doers and for praise to them that do well.
For so is the will of God, that by well-doing ye
should put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:
as free, and not using your freedom for a cloak
of wickedness, but as bondservants of God. Honor
all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.
Servants, be in subjection to your
masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the
froward. For this is acceptable, if for
conscience toward God a man endureth griefs, suffering wrongfully.
For what glory is it, if, when ye sin, and are
buffeted for it, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do
well, and suffer for it, ye shall take it patiently, this is
acceptable with God. For hereunto were ye
called: because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, that
ye should follow his steps: who did no sin,
neither was guile found in his mouth: who, when
he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered threatened not; but
committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:
who his own self bare our sins in his body upon
the tree, that we, having died unto sins, might live unto righteousness;
by whose stripes ye were healed. For ye were
going astray like sheep; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop
of your souls.
In like manner, ye wives, be in subjection
to your won husbands; that, even if any obey not the word, they may
without the word be gained by the behavior of their wives;
beholding your chaste behavior coupled
with fear. Whose adorning let it not be
the outward adorning of braiding the hair, and of wearing jewels of gold,
or of putting on apparel; but let it be
the hidden man of the heart, in the incorruptible apparel of a meek
and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.
For after this manner aforetime the holy women
also, who hoped in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection to their
own husbands: as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling
him lord: whose children ye now are, if ye do well, and are not put in
fear by any terror. Ye husbands, in like manner,
dwell with your wives according to knowledge, giving honor unto the
woman, as unto the weaker vessel, as being also joint-heirs of the grace
of life; to the end that your prayers be not hindered.
Finally, be ye all likeminded,
compassionate, loving as brethren, tenderhearted, humbleminded:
not rendering evil for evil, or reviling for
reviling; but contrariwise blessing; for hereunto were ye called, that ye
should inherit a blessing. For,
He that would love life,
And see good days,
Let him refrain his tongue from evil,
And his lips that they speak no guile:
And let him turn away from evil, and do good;
Let him seek peace, and pursue it.
For the eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous,
And his ears unto their supplication:
But the face of the Lord is upon them that do evil.
And who is he that will harm you, if ye be
zealous of that which is good? But even if ye
should suffer for righteousness' sake, blessed are ye: and fear not
their fear, neither be troubled; but sanctify in
your hearts Christ as Lord: being ready always to give answer to
every man that asketh you a reason concerning the hope that is in you, yet
with meekness and fear: having a good
conscience; that, wherein ye are spoken against, they may be put to shame
who revile your good manner of life in Christ.
For it is better, if the will of God should so
will, that ye suffer for well-doing than for evil-doing.
Because Christ also suffered for sins once, the
righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God; being put to
death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit;
in which also he went and preached unto the
spirits in prison, that aforetime were
disobedient, when the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah,
while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls, were
saved through water: which also after a true
likeness doth now save you, even baptism, not the putting away of
the filth of the flesh, but the interrogation of a good conscience toward
God, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ;
who is one the right hand of God, having gone
into heaven; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him.
Forasmuch then as Christ suffered in the flesh,
arm ye yourselves also with the same mind; for he that hath suffered in
the flesh hath ceased from sin; that ye no longer
should live the rest of your time in flesh to the lusts of men, but to the
will of God. For the time past may suffice to
have wrought the desire of the Gentiles, and to have walked in
lasciviousness, lusts, winebibbings, revellings, carousings, and
abominable idolatries: wherein they think strange
that ye run not with them into the same excess of riot, speaking
evil of you: who shall give account to him
that is ready to judge the living and the dead.
For unto this end was the gospel preached even to
the dead, that they might be judged indeed according to men in the flesh,
but live according to God in the spirit. But the
end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore of sound mind, and be sober
unto prayer: above all things being fervent in
your love among yourselves; for love covereth a multitude of sins:
using hospitality one to another without
murmuring: according as each hath received a
gift, ministering it among yourselves, as good stewards of the manifold
grace of God; if any man speaketh,
speaking as it were oracles of God; is any man ministereth,
ministering as of the strength which God supplieth: that in all
things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, whose is the glory and
the dominion for ever and ever. Amen. Beloved,
think it not strange concerning the fiery trial among you, which cometh
upon you to prove you, as though a strange thing happened unto you:
but insomuch as ye are partakers of Christ's
sufferings, rejoice; that at the revelation of his glory also ye may
rejoice with exceeding joy. If ye are reproached
for the name of Christ, blessed are ye; because the Spirit
of glory and the Spirit of God resteth upon you.
For let none of you suffer as a murderer, or a
thief, or an evil-doer, or as a meddler in other men's matters:
but if a man suffer as a Christian, let
him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God in this name.
For the time is come for judgment to
begin at the house of God: and if it begin first at us, what
shall be the end of them that obey not the gospel of God?
And if the righteous is scarcely saved, where
shall the ungodly and sinner appear? Wherefore
let them also that suffer according to the will of God commit their souls
in well-doing unto a faithful Creator.
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:
Tend the flock of God which is among you,
exercising the oversight, not of constraint, but willingly, according to
the will of God; nor yet for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;
neither as lording it over the charge allotted to
you, but making yourselves ensamples to the flock.
And when the chief Shepherd shall be manifested,
ye shall receive the crown of glory that fadeth not away.
Likewise, ye younger, be subject unto the elder.
Yea, all of you gird yourselves with humility, to serve one another: for
God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble.
Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand
of God, that he may exalt you in due time;
casting all your anxiety upon him, because he
careth for you. Be sober, be watchful: your
adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may
devour, whom withstand stedfast in your faith,
knowing that the same sufferings are accomplished in your brethren who are
in the world. And the God of all grace, who
called you unto his eternal glory in Christ, after that ye have suffered a
little while, shall himself perfect, establish, strengthen you.
To him be the dominion for ever and ever.
Amen. By Silvanus, our faithful brother, as I
account him, I have written unto you briefly, exhorting, and
testifying that this is the true grace of God. Stand ye fast therein.
She that is in Babylon, elect together with
you, saluteth you; and so doth Mark my son.
Salute one another with a kiss of love. Peace be
unto you all that are in Christ.