Conduct yourselves honorably (1 Pet 2:12)

“Conduct yourselves honorably

Among the gentiles.

Even though

They malign you

As evildoers,

They many see

Your honorable deeds

And glorify God

When he comes

To judge.”

τὴν ἀναστροφὴν ὑμῶν ἐν τοῖς ἔθνεσιν ἔχοντες καλήν, ἵνα ἐν ᾧ καταλαλοῦσιν ὑμῶν ὡς κακοποιῶν, ἐκ τῶν καλῶν ἔργων ἐποπτεύοντες δοξάσωσιν τὸν Θεὸν ἐν ἡμέρᾳ ἐπισκοπῆς

This author said, “Conduct yourselves (τὴν ἀναστροφὴν ὑμῶν) honorably (ἔχοντες καλήν) among the gentiles (ἐν τοῖς ἔθνεσιν).  Even though they malign you (ἵνα ἐν ᾧ καταλαλοῦσιν ὑμῶν) as evildoers (ὡς κακοποιῶν), they many see (ἐποπτεύοντες) your honorable deeds (ἐκ τῶν καλῶν ἔργων) and glorify (δοξάσωσιν) God (τὸν Θεὸν) when he comes to judge (ἐν ἡμέρᾳ ἐπισκοπῆς).”  Only this author, 1 Peter, among all the canonical NT works used this word κακοποιῶν, that means an evildoer or doing evil, and the word ἐποπτεύοντες that means to look upon, be an eyewitness of, or behold.  This author used some unique Greek words to stress the importance of good conduct of the Christians among the pagan gentiles.  They should not give the impression of being evil doers.  Instead, these Roman Greek pagans might see their honorable or good deeds.  Thus, they too might glorify God when he comes on judgment day.  They were to give a good example to all those pagans they lived with so that these pagans might want to join them.  Do you set a good example for non-Christians?

Abstain from the desires of the flesh (1 Pet 2:11)


I urge you

As aliens

And exiles,

To abstain

From the desires

Of the flesh

That wage war

Against the soul.”

Ἀγαπητοί, παρακαλῶ ὡς παροίκους καὶ παρεπιδήμους ἀπέχεσθαι τῶν σαρκικῶν ἐπιθυμιῶν, αἵτινες στρατεύονται κατὰ τῆς ψυχῆς·

This author said, “Beloved (Ἀγαπητοί)!  I urge you (παρακαλῶ) as aliens (καὶ παρεπιδήμους) and exiles (ἀπέχεσθαι), to abstain (ἀπέχεσθαι) from the desires (ἐπιθυμιῶν) of the flesh (τῶν σαρκικῶν) that wage war (αἵτινες στρατεύονται) against the soul (κατὰ τῆς ψυχῆς).”  This author then turned to his Christian audience directly.  He called them beloved or the loved ones.  He urged them to live as aliens, exiles, and resident aliens in the Roman empire.  Thus, they had to abstain from those internal human desires that wage war against their eternal soul.  Do you control your strong human desires?

God’s people (1 Pet 2:10)

“Once you were not

A people,

But now you are

God’s people.

Once you had not

Received mercy,

But now you have

Received mercy.”

οἵ ποτε οὐ λαὸς, νῦν δὲ λαὸς Θεοῦ, οἱ οὐκ ἠλεημένοι, νῦν δὲ ἐλεηθέντες.

This author said, “Once you were not a people (οἵ ποτε οὐ λαὸς), but now you are God’s people (νῦν δὲ λαὸς Θεοῦ).  Once you had not received mercy (οἱ οὐκ ἠλεημένοι), but now you have received mercy (νῦν δὲ ἐλεηθέντες).”  This author cited Hosea, chapter 2:23, “I will have pity on Lo-ruhamah.  I will say to Lo-ammi.  ‘You are my people.’  He shall say.  ‘You are my God.’”  God spoke to Hosea that he would have pity and love for Lo-ruhamah, the not pitied one.  He too would rename Lo-ammi, from not my people to you are my people.  He was going to be their God.  Thus, all would end well.  It was the same with these Jewish Christians.  At first, they were not a people, but now they are God’s people.  Once, they had no mercy, but now they do have God’s mercy.  Do you accept God’s mercy?

A chosen race (1 Pet 2:9)

“But you are

A chosen race,

A royal priesthood,

A holy nation,

God’s own people.


You may proclaim

The mighty acts

Of him

Who called you

Out of darkness

Into his marvelous light.”

ὑμεῖς δὲ γένος ἐκλεκτόν, βασίλειον ἱεράτευμα, ἔθνος ἅγιον, λαὸς εἰς περιποίησιν, ὅπως τὰς ἀρετὰς ἐξαγγείλητε τοῦ ἐκ σκότους ὑμᾶς καλέσαντος εἰς τὸ θαυμαστὸν αὐτοῦ φῶς·

This author said, “But you are a chosen race (ὑμεῖς δὲ γένος ἐκλεκτόν), a royal priesthood (βασίλειον ἱεράτευμα), a holy nation (ἔθνος ἅγιον), God’s own people (λαὸς εἰς περιποίησιν).  Thus (ὅπως), you may proclaim (ἐξαγγείλητε) the mighty acts (τὰς ἀρετὰς) of him (τοῦ) who called you (ὑμᾶς καλέσαντος) out of darkness (ἐκ σκότους) into his marvelous light (εἰς τὸ θαυμαστὸν αὐτοῦ φῶς).”  Only this author, 1 Peter, among all the canonical NT works used this word ἱεράτευμα, that means priesthood or the act or office of priesthood.  Next this author cited Exodus, chapter 19:5-6, “I bore you on eagle’s wings and brought you to myself.  Now therefore, if you obey my voice and keep my covenant, you shall be my treasured possession out of all the peoples.  Indeed, the whole earth is mine, but you shall be for me a priestly kingdom and a holy nation.”  God told Moses to tell the people of Israel that they would be a special priestly kingdom.  This is similar to Isaiah, chapter 43:20-21, “I give rivers in the desert to give drink to my chosen people.  They are the people whom I formed for myself that they might declare my praise.”  Thus, God’s especially chosen people would also give praise.  This author said that now the Jewish Christians were a chosen race, a royal priesthood, and a holy nation like the Israelites of old.  They were now God’s own chosen people.  They should now proclaim his mighty acts, since God had called them out of darkness into the marvelous light of Jesus Christ.  Do you live in the light of Jesus Christ?

The stumbling stone (1 Pet 2:8)

“A stone

Makes them stumble.

A rock

Makes them fall.

They stumble

Because they disobey

The word

As they were destined

To do.”

καὶ λίθος προσκόμματος καὶ πέτρα σκανδάλου· οἳ προσκόπτουσιν τῷ λόγῳ ἀπειθοῦντες, εἰς ὃ καὶ ἐτέθησαν·

This author said, “A stone (καὶ λίθος) makes them stumble (προσκόμματος).  A rock (καὶ πέτρα) makes them fall (σκανδάλου).  They stumble (οἳ προσκόπτουσιν) because they disobey (ἀπειθοῦντες) the word (τῷ λόγῳ), as they were destined to do (εἰς ὃ καὶ ἐτέθησαν).”  This author now cited Isaiah, chapter 8:14, “He will become a rock that one stumbles over.  He will become a trap.  He will become a snare for the inhabitants of Jerusalem.”  Both houses of Israel, north and south, found that God was a stumbling block, a trap and a snare.  Many of the inhabitants of Jerusalem would stumble and fall.  Paul said pretty much the same thing in his letter to the Romans about stumbling blocks.  Jesus Christ was both a cornerstone for believers, and yet a stumbling block for non-believers who disobeyed the word of God.  Do you disobey the word of God?

Believe or not believe (1 Pet 2:7)

“To you then

Who believe,

Christ is precious.

But for those

Who do not believe,

‘The stone

That the builders rejected

Has become

The cornerstone.’”

ὑμῖν οὖν ἡ τιμὴ τοῖς πιστεύουσιν· ἀπιστοῦσιν δὲ λίθος ὃν ἀπεδοκίμασαν οἱ οἰκοδομοῦντες, οὗτος ἐγενήθη εἰς κεφαλὴν γωνίας

This author said, “To you then (ὑμῖν οὖν) who believe (τοῖς πιστεύουσιν), Christ is precious (ἡ τιμὴ).  But for those who do not believe (ἀπιστοῦσιν), ‘The stone (δὲ λίθος) that the builders (οἱ οἰκοδομοῦντες) rejected (ὃν ἀπεδοκίμασαν) has become (οὗτος ἐγενήθη) the cornerstone (εἰς κεφαλὴν γωνίας).’”  This author then posed two options.  For the believers in Jesus Christ, Jesus was the precious living stone.  However, for the disbelievers, this author cited Psalm 118:22, “The stone that the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.”  The psalmist had thanked God for saving him.  Then we have the famous phrase that became popular for many New Testament Christian writers, “The stone that the builders had rejected has now become the cornerstone.”  Jesus Christ is now the precious cornerstone of our belief.  Are you a believer in Jesus Christ?

The cornerstone (1 Pet 2:6)

“It states in scripture.


I am laying

In Zion

A stone,

A cornerstone


And precious.

Whoever believes

In him

Will not be put

To shame.”

διότι περιέχει ἐν γραφῇ Ἰδοὺ τίθημι ἐν Σιὼν λίθον ἐκλεκτὸν ἀκρογωνιαῖον ἔντιμον, καὶ ὁ πιστεύων ἐπ’ αὐτῷ οὐ μὴ καταισχυνθῇ.

This author said, “It states (διότι περιέχει) in scripture (ἐν γραφῇ).  ‘See (Ἰδοὺ)!  I am laying (τίθημι) in Zion (ἐν Σιὼν) a stone (λίθον), a cornerstone (ἀκρογωνιαῖον) chosen (ἐκλεκτὸν) and precious (ἔντιμον).  Whoever believes (καὶ ὁ πιστεύων) in him (ἐπ’ αὐτῷ) will not be put to shame (οὐ μὴ καταισχυνθῇ).”  Then this author explicitly made a direct reference to the biblical prophet Isaiah.  He cited Isaiah, chapter 28:16, “Therefore thus says God, ‘See!  I am laying in Zion a foundation stone, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation.  One who trusts will not panic.’”  God, via Isaiah, said that he was going to lay a new tested foundation as the precious cornerstone in Zion.  People who trusted in God would not panic.  They would not be put to shame.  Are you ashamed of your precious cornerstone, Jesus Christ?

Living stones (1 Pet 2:5)

“Like living stones,

Let yourselves

Be built

Into a spiritual house,

To be a holy priesthood,

To offer

Spiritual sacrifices

Acceptable to God

Through Jesus Christ.”

καὶ αὐτοὶ ὡς λίθοι ζῶντες οἰκοδομεῖσθε οἶκος πνευματικὸς εἰς ἱεράτευμα ἅγιον, ἀνενέγκαι πνευματικὰς θυσίας εὐπροσδέκτους Θεῷ διὰ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ.

This author said, “Like living stones (ὡς λίθοι ζῶντες), let yourselves (καὶ αὐτοὶ) be built (οἰκοδομεῖσθε) into a spiritual house (οἶκος πνευματικὸς), to be a holy priesthood (εἰς ἱεράτευμα ἅγιον), to offer (ἀνενέγκαι) spiritual sacrifices (πνευματικὰς θυσίας) acceptable (εὐπροσδέκτους) to God (Θεῷ) through Jesus Christ (διὰ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ).”  Only this author, 1 Peter, among all the canonical NT works used this word ἱεράτευμα, that means priesthood or the act or office of priesthood.  This author used Exodus, chapter 19:6, “Indeed the whole earth is mine, but you shall be for me a priestly kingdom and a holy nation.”  God told Moses to tell the people of Israel that they would be a special priestly kingdom.  This author then explained all about the new priesthood of Jesus Christ that they would be part of it, as the followers of Jesus Christ.  They too were the living stones that would be built up into a spiritual house.  Thus, they could offer spiritual sacrifices and not real sacrifices that would be acceptable to God.  However, they would all be offered through Jesus Christ.  This was to become the standard prayer formula for all Christians.  All their prayers would be addressed and offered to God the Father, but they all concluded with through Jesus Christ, Amen.  Thus, the classic Christian prayer always ends with Jesus Christ, but addressed to God the Father. They were the living stones in this spiritual house of worship to God through Jesus Christ.  They were building a spiritual house.  Do you build a spiritual house for Jesus Christ?

The precious stone in God’s sight (1 Pet 2:4)

“Come to him,

A living stone,

Though rejected

By humans,

Yet chosen

And precious

In God’s sight.”

πρὸς ὃν προσερχόμενοι, λίθον ζῶντα, ὑπὸ ἀνθρώπων μὲν ἀποδεδοκιμασμένον παρὰ δὲ Θεῷ ἐκλεκτὸν ἔντιμον,

This author said, “Come to him (πρὸς ὃν προσερχόμενοι), a living stone (λίθον ζῶντα), though rejected (μὲν ἀποδεδοκιμασμένον) by humans (ὑπὸ ἀνθρώπων), yet chosen (ἐκλεκτὸν) and precious (ἔντιμον) in God’s sight (παρὰ δὲ Θεῷ).”  This author put together a series of Hebrew passages from the law, the prophets and the psalms.  The Jewish Christians were now the real Jewish inheritors of the old covenant.  Jesus Christ is the new high priest, the living cornerstone that had been rejected by humans.  However, Jesus Christ was the chosen precious one.  His readers were becoming the New Israel.  Have you accepted Jesus Christ as the new living cornerstone of your life?

The Lord is good (1 Pet 2:3)


You have tasted

That the Lord

Is good.”

εἰ ἐγεύσασθε ὅτι χρηστὸς ὁ Κύριος.

This author said, “Indeed (εἰ), you have tasted (ἐγεύσασθε) that (ὅτι) the Lord (ὁ Κύριος) is good (χρηστὸς).”  This author cited Psalm 34:9, “O taste and see!  God is good!  Happy are those who take refuge in him!” This showed that the Lord was tasty and good.  Perhaps this was an allusion to the Communion Eucharistic bread received at Baptism.  When you had the Lord, all was good.  Once you had a taste of goodness, you would want more.  Have you tasted the Eucharist as good?