1 Peter 2
1 Peter 1:13-5:11-The Practice of Salvation, cont’d.
Live in an Obedient Manner (2:1-10)
- Based on the Word of God (2:1-2,8b)
There must have been some very serious relational problems among the group of believers that Peter is addressing when we consider the severity of the words that Peter uses here. First of all, the words “putting aside” speak of taking off a garment and putting it down. This is a participle, suggesting that it something that we must continuously do.
"to put off from oneself" (apo, "from," and No. 1), always in the Middle Voice in the NT, is used metaphorically in Hbr 12:1 "laying aside (every weight);" in Jam 1:21, AV, "lay apart," RV, "putting away;" in Act 7:58 of "laying" down garments, after taking them off, for the purpose of stoning Stephen.
Vine’s Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words,
Second, when we see what it is that we are to put aside we understand the seriousness. These attitudes have no place in the believer’s life. We are to put aside…
- ..ill will, desire to injure, wickedness, depravity
- ..deceitfulness, primarily, "a bait," hence, "fraud, guile, deceit"
- ..dishonesty, disguising yourself, not being truthful
- ..the feeling of displeasure produced by witnessing or hearing of the advantage or prosperity of others
- ..defamation, evil speaking; katalalos, a "backbiter," and katalalia, "backbiting," are formed from kata, "against," and laleo, "to speak."
As babies long for milk, we should long for the Word of God (1:23; 2:2,8a)...("long" means to pursue with love, lust, love after, to be possessed with a desire for)...because it is eternal (1:23,25), and it is what will provide us with the necessary elements for spiritual growth (2:1).
- Built on the Rock of God (2:4-8)
Jesus is the “living stone”, “choice, and precious in the sight of God” that has been rejected by man. We too are “living stones” that God is using as the building material for a “spiritual house for a holy priesthood”…and through us there will be “spiritual sacrifices” offered up to Him. The “corner stone” of this house is Jesus. He is precious, valuable to those who believe in Him, but a stumbling stone for those who do not.
Jesus is the: “living stone” (:4), “corner stone” (:6), “rejected stone” (:7), and the “stumbling-stone” (:8).
- Belonging to the People of God (2:9-10)
We are a…
- chosen race
- royal priesthood
- holy nation
- people for God’s on possession
Each of these expresses the same thought that we belong to God. As such, our purpose is to "proclaim the excellencies of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light". The word "excellencies" means “virtue, moral goodness; an eminent endowment, property, or quality”. “Marvelous” means “passing human comprehension, causing amazement joined with terror.”
Live in an Exemplary Manner (2:11-17)
Here is a list of how Christians should live in the world in a variety of circumstances. A key word is "submit, submission" ("hupotasso"-to obey, to be subject...2:13,18; 3:1). And, a primary objective is to be a witness for God (2:12,15;3:1,16). Verse 17 is a summary of the three arenas of living that are found in verses 11-16.
- In relationship to the people of the world (2:11-12)...abstain from "fleshly lusts" so that it will be a witness for God and He will receive glory.
- In relationship to the government of the country (2:13-15)...that it will silence those who would accuse you. Do not use your freedom in Christ as an excuse to not do what the government requires...but, as a slave of God, be willing to relinquish your rights for the good of others.
- In relationship to the members of the church (2:16-17)…don’t allow your freedom in Christ (you are not under the Law) to be an excuse to do wrong; but instead, it should be a motivation to do right.
Live in a Submissive Manner (2:18-3:7)
- Servants be Submissive to Your Masters (2:18-25)…submit to your master for the sake of the Gospel (even if you are ill treated). Follow the example of Christ, Who was willing to be reviled and suffer, and not seek retribution. God blesses this ("finds favor"-"karis"-grace).
Prayer: Lord, sometimes it is discouraging to see Your people involved in behavior that is hurtful towards others...pride, selfishness, and other attitudes are seen far too often. Please help me to put aside those things and to live for You. I desperately need for Your Holy Spirit to help me to grow in my salvation. Let me be a blessing, grace, favor to other people.