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So get rid of all evil behavior. Be done with all deceit, hypocrisy, jealousy, and all unkind speech. Like newborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment, now that you have had a taste of the Lord’s kindness.

Living Stones for God’s House

You are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God’s temple. He was rejected by people, but he was chosen by God for great honor.

And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests.[a] Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God. As the Scriptures say,

“I am placing a cornerstone in Jerusalem,[b]
    chosen for great honor,
and anyone who trusts in him
    will never be disgraced.”[c]

Yes, you who trust him recognize the honor God has given him.[d] But for those who reject him,

“The stone that the builders rejected
    has now become the cornerstone.”[e]

And,

“He is the stone that makes people stumble,
    the rock that makes them fall.”[f]

They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them.

But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests,[g] a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.

10 “Once you had no identity as a people;
    now you are God’s people.
Once you received no mercy;
    now you have received God’s mercy.”[h]

11 Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls. 12 Be careful to live properly among your unbelieving neighbors. Then even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see your honorable behavior, and they will give honor to God when he judges the world.[i]

Respecting People in Authority

13 For the Lord’s sake, submit to all human authority—whether the king as head of state, 14 or the officials he has appointed. For the king has sent them to punish those who do wrong and to honor those who do right.

15 It is God’s will that your honorable lives should silence those ignorant people who make foolish accusations against you. 16 For you are free, yet you are God’s slaves, so don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil. 17 Respect everyone, and love the family of believers.[j] Fear God, and respect the king.

Slaves

18 You who are slaves must submit to your masters with all respect.[k] Do what they tell you—not only if they are kind and reasonable, but even if they are cruel. 19 For God is pleased when, conscious of his will, you patiently endure unjust treatment. 20 Of course, you get no credit for being patient if you are beaten for doing wrong. But if you suffer for doing good and endure it patiently, God is pleased with you.

21 For God called you to do good, even if it means suffering, just as Christ suffered[l] for you. He is your example, and you must follow in his steps.

22 He never sinned,
    nor ever deceived anyone.[m]
23 He did not retaliate when he was insulted,
    nor threaten revenge when he suffered.
He left his case in the hands of God,
    who always judges fairly.
24 He personally carried our sins
    in his body on the cross
so that we can be dead to sin
    and live for what is right.
By his wounds
    you are healed.
25 Once you were like sheep
    who wandered away.
But now you have turned to your Shepherd,
    the Guardian of your souls.

Footnotes

  1. 2:5 Greek holy priesthood.
  2. 2:6a Greek in Zion.
  3. 2:6b Isa 28:16 (Greek version).
  4. 2:7a Or Yes, for you who believe, there is honor.
  5. 2:7b Ps 118:22.
  6. 2:8 Isa 8:14.
  7. 2:9 Greek a royal priesthood.
  8. 2:10 Hos 1:6, 9; 2:23.
  9. 2:12 Or on the day of visitation.
  10. 2:17 Greek love the brotherhood.
  11. 2:18 Or because you fear God; Greek reads in all fear.
  12. 2:21 Some manuscripts read died.
  13. 2:22 Isa 53:9.

Therefore, rid yourselves(A) of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander(B) of every kind. Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk,(C) so that by it you may grow up(D) in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.(E)

The Living Stone and a Chosen People

As you come to him, the living Stone(F)—rejected by humans but chosen by God(G) and precious to him— you also, like living stones, are being built(H) into a spiritual house[a](I) to be a holy priesthood,(J) offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.(K) For in Scripture it says:

“See, I lay a stone in Zion,
    a chosen and precious cornerstone,(L)
and the one who trusts in him
    will never be put to shame.”[b](M)

Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe,(N)

“The stone the builders rejected(O)
    has become the cornerstone,”[c](P)

and,

“A stone that causes people to stumble
    and a rock that makes them fall.”[d](Q)

They stumble because they disobey the message—which is also what they were destined for.(R)

But you are a chosen people,(S) a royal priesthood,(T) a holy nation,(U) God’s special possession,(V) that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.(W) 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God;(X) once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

Living Godly Lives in a Pagan Society

11 Dear friends,(Y) I urge you, as foreigners and exiles,(Z) to abstain from sinful desires,(AA) which wage war against your soul.(AB) 12 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds(AC) and glorify God(AD) on the day he visits us.

13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority:(AE) whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, 14 or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong(AF) and to commend those who do right.(AG) 15 For it is God’s will(AH) that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people.(AI) 16 Live as free people,(AJ) but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil;(AK) live as God’s slaves.(AL) 17 Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers,(AM) fear God, honor the emperor.(AN)

18 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters,(AO) not only to those who are good and considerate,(AP) but also to those who are harsh. 19 For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God.(AQ) 20 But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God.(AR) 21 To this(AS) you were called,(AT) because Christ suffered for you,(AU) leaving you an example,(AV) that you should follow in his steps.

22 “He committed no sin,(AW)
    and no deceit was found in his mouth.”[e](AX)

23 When they hurled their insults at him,(AY) he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats.(AZ) Instead, he entrusted himself(BA) to him who judges justly.(BB) 24 “He himself bore our sins”(BC) in his body on the cross,(BD) so that we might die to sins(BE) and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.”(BF) 25 For “you were like sheep going astray,”[f](BG) but now you have returned to the Shepherd(BH) and Overseer of your souls.(BI)

Footnotes

  1. 1 Peter 2:5 Or into a temple of the Spirit
  2. 1 Peter 2:6 Isaiah 28:16
  3. 1 Peter 2:7 Psalm 118:22
  4. 1 Peter 2:8 Isaiah 8:14
  5. 1 Peter 2:22 Isaiah 53:9
  6. 1 Peter 2:25 Isaiah 53:4,5,6 (see Septuagint)

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