1 Peter 2:3
if you have tasted the kindness of the Lord.
The kindness of the Lord. The kindness or goodness of God was demonstrated on the cross (Tit. 3:4) and it is a revelation of his kindness that leads us to repentance (Rom. 2:4). God plans to continue revealing his kindness to us today, tomorrow and forever more (1 Cor. 2:9, Eph. 2:7).
1 Peter 2:5
you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
A holy priesthood. Christians are a holy people.
You were sanctified by God the Father (Jude 1:1, KJV), God the Son (Heb. 2:11, 10:10, 14, 13:12), and God the Holy Spirit (Rom. 15:16, 2 Th. 2:13, 1 Pet. 1:2). You are well and truly sanctified. You are the holy temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 3:16).
Collectively Christians are known as a holy priesthood and a holy nation (1 Pet. 2:9). The church is both God’s holy temple (1 Cor. 3:16-17, Eph. 2:21), and the Lord’s radiant and holy bride (Eph. 5:27).
See entry for Holiness.
1 Peter 2:9
But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God’s OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;
(a) A chosen race. You have been chosen by God. See entry for 1 Pet. 1:1.
(b) A royal priesthood. Like Melchizedek, who was a king and a priest (Heb. 7:1), Christians are king-priests or priest-kings. As kingly-priests we minister with power and authority. As priestly-kings we rule as servant-hearted ministers.
We need both parts. Get the priest aspect but not the king-part, and you’ll be servant-minded instead of servant-hearted. You’ll be a pushover. Get the king aspect but not the priest-part and you’ll be a tyrant.
Further reading: “You are a king (so act like one)”
(c) A holy nation; see entry for 1 Peter 2:5.
(d) God’s own possession. You have been bought with a price (1 Cor. 6:20, 7:23). You belong to God (2 Cor. 10:7).
This means your welfare and future are God’s concern. He who sustains you will keep you safe to the end (1 Cor. 1:8-9).
In the old covenant, the Israelites were told they would be a treasured possession if they kept the law (Ex. 19:5-6). But the new covenant reveals that you are a treasured possession because God loves and treasures you. You are the pearl of great price. Jesus happily gave everything he had to purchase you.
(e) So that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you. To proclaim (exaggellō) is to publish or show forth. The original word is related to the word for messenger (aggellos). Peter is calling us to live lives that reveal the goodness and glory of God.
(f) The excellencies or praises (arête) refer to God’s manly attributes in rescuing us from the kingdom of darkness. Although God’s nature has feminine characteristics, his mighty deliverance is portrayed here in manly terms.
(g) Who has called you. God did not negotiate with the powers of darkness to secure your release. Nor did he engage in some kind of prisoner exchange. When God called you, you came because the word of the king has power (Ecc. 8:4).
1 Peter 2:10
for you once were NOT A PEOPLE, but now you are THE PEOPLE OF GOD; you had NOT RECEIVED MERCY, but now you have RECEIVED MERCY.
Received mercy. A defining characteristic of a believer is they have received grace and mercy.
Mercy is one facet of God’s grace (Heb. 4:16). Mercy is God’s compassion for those in need. Just as we are saved by grace (Eph. 2:5), we are saved by mercy (Tit. 3:5). And just as we are forgiven by grace (Eph. 1:7), we are forgiven by mercy (Heb. 8:12). Just as we receive grace (Rom. 5:17), we receive mercy (2 Cor. 4:1).
See entry for Mercy.
1 Peter 2:11
Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers to abstain from fleshly lusts which wage war against the soul.
Beloved. The original word (agapetos) means dearly loved, esteemed, favorite and worthy of love. It is closely related to a verb (agapao) that means to be well pleased or fond of or contented. This word captures God’s heart for you. Your heavenly Father is fond of you. You are his esteemed favorite and he is well pleased with you. He looks at you with a feeling of deep contentment knowing that you are his dearly loved child.
All the epistle writers referred to believers as the beloved or dearly-loved children of God (see entry for Rom. 1:7).
1 Peter 2:24
and He Himself bore our sins in His body on the cross, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you were healed.
(a) Die to sin or reckon yourself dead to sin (Rom. 6:11).
(b) Live to righteousness. Jesus broke open the prison of sin and secured your freedom. So be free. Have nothing to do with dead works and sin. Stop acting like the prisoner you once were and enjoy the righteous life that Christ has given you.
The Grace Commentary is a work in progress with new content added regularly. Sign up for occasional updates below. Got something to say? Please use the Feedback page. To report typos or broken links on this page, please use the comment form below.