1 Peter 2:25
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
For "you were like sheep going astray," but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

New Living Translation
Once you were like sheep who wandered away. But now you have turned to your Shepherd, the Guardian of your souls.

English Standard Version
For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

Berean Study Bible
For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

Berean Literal Bible
For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

New American Standard Bible
For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.

King James Bible
For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
For you were like sheep going astray, but you have now returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.

International Standard Version
You were "like sheep that kept going astray," but now you have returned to the shepherd and overseer of your souls.

NET Bible
For you were going astray like sheep but now you have turned back to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.

New Heart English Bible
For you were going astray like sheep; but now have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
For you had gone astray like sheep, and you have returned now to The Shepherd and The Caregiver of your souls.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
You were like lost sheep. Now you have come back to the shepherd and bishop of your lives.

New American Standard 1977
For you were continually straying like sheep, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Guardian of your souls.

Jubilee Bible 2000
For ye were as sheep that had gone astray, but are now converted unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

King James 2000 Bible
For you were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

American King James Version
For you were as sheep going astray; but are now returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

American Standard Version
For ye were going astray like sheep; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

Douay-Rheims Bible
For you were as sheep going astray; but you are now converted to the shepherd and bishop of your souls.

Darby Bible Translation
For ye were going astray as sheep, but have now returned to the shepherd and overseer of your souls.

English Revised Version
For ye were going astray like sheep; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

Webster's Bible Translation
For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

Weymouth New Testament
For you were straying like lost sheep, but now you have come back to the Shepherd and Protector of your souls.

World English Bible
For you were going astray like sheep; but now have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

Young's Literal Translation
for ye were as sheep going astray, but ye turned back now to the shepherd and overseer of your souls.
Study Bible
Christ's Example of Suffering
24He Himself bore our sins in His body on the tree, so that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. “By His stripes you are healed.” 25For you were like sheep going astray, but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.
Cross References
Psalm 23:1
A Psalm of David. The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want.

Isaiah 13:14
And it will be that like a hunted gazelle, Or like sheep with none to gather them, They will each turn to his own people, And each one flee to his own land.

Isaiah 53:5
But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed.

Isaiah 53:6
All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all To fall on Him.

Ezekiel 34:6
"My flock wandered through all the mountains and on every high hill; My flock was scattered over all the surface of the earth, and there was no one to search or seek for them."'"

John 10:11
I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.

John 10:16
I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them in as well, and they will listen to My voice. Then there will be one flock and one shepherd.

Hebrews 5:2
He is able to deal gently with those who are ignorant and misguided, since he himself is beset by weakness.

Hebrews 13:20
Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great Shepherd of the sheep,

1 Peter 3:20
who disobeyed long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah, while the ark was being built. In the ark a few people, only eight souls, were saved through water.
Treasury of Scripture

For you were as sheep going astray; but are now returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

ye.

Psalm 119:176 I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek your servant; for I do …

Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his …

Jeremiah 23:2 Therefore thus said the LORD God of Israel against the pastors that …

Ezekiel 34:6 My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and on every high hill: …

Matthew 9:36 But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, …

Matthew 18:12 How think you? if a man have an hundred sheep, and one of them be …

Luke 15:4-6 What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, …

the Shepherd.

1 Peter 5:4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, you shall receive a crown …

Psalm 23:1-3 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want…

Psalm 80:1 Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, you that lead Joseph like a flock; …

Songs 1:7,8 Tell me, O you whom my soul loves, where you feed, where you make …

Isaiah 40:11 He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs …

Ezekiel 34:11-16,23,24 For thus said the Lord GOD; Behold, I, even I, will both search my …

Ezekiel 37:24 And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall …

Zechariah 13:7 Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is …

John 10:11-16 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd gives his life for the sheep…

Hebrews 13:20 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, …

Bishop.

Hebrews 3:1 Why, holy brothers, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the …

Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore to yourselves, and to all the flock, over the …

(25) For ye were as sheep going astray.--The right reading does not attach "going astray" to "sheep," but as predicate of the sentence, "ye were going astray like sheep." The "for" introduces an explanation of how they came to be in need of "healing." "I may well say that ye were healed; for Israelites though you are, your consciences and memories tell you that you were as far gone in wilful error as any Gentiles, and needed as complete a conversion." (Comp. 1Peter 2:10.) Jew and Gentile take different ways, but both alike fulfil the prophecy, "every man to his own way." The two metaphors, of healing and going astray, do not match very well, but the fact that both are quotations from Isaiah 53 makes their disagreement less harsh. We must notice how deeply that prophecy (the interpretation of which was probably learned from the Baptist) had sunk into St. Peter's mind. (See 1Peter 1:19.)

But are now returned.--The tense of the original verb points to the actual historical time at which it took place, rather than the position now occupied, "but now ye returned." The word "now" is used in the same way in 1Peter 2:10, where literally it is, "but now did obtain mercy." "Returned" does not in the Greek imply that they had at first been under the Shepherd's care and had left Him. The word is that which is often rendered "were converted," and only indicates that they turned round and moved in a contrary direction.

The shepherd and bishop of your souls.--Undoubtedly this means Christ. The first of the two titles is of course suggested by the simile of the sheep. The image is so natural and so frequent, that we can not say for certain that it proves St. Peter's acquaintance with the parable of the Good Shepherd in John 10. More probably, perhaps, he is thinking of Psalm 23:3, "He converted my soul" (LXX.), where "the Lord," as usual, may be taken to mean the Son of God rather than the Father; or else of Ezekiel 34:11; Ezekiel 34:16, where the words rendered "seek them out" in our version is represented in the LXX. by that from which the name of a "bishop" is derived. (Comp. Ezekiel 34:23; Ezekiel 37:24; also Isaiah 40:11, which last citation comes from a passage which has been in St. Peter's mind just before, 1Peter 1:24.) It is hardly necessary to add that to the Hebrew mind the thought of superintendence and ruling, not that of giving food, was uppermost when they spoke of shepherds, and that the pastors spoken of in the Old Testament are not the priests or givers of spiritual nutriment, but the kings and princes. Thus it will here be nearly synonymous with the second title of bishop. This name suggests in the first instance not so much overseeing as visiting--i.e., going carefully into the different cases brought under the officer's notice. (Comp. 1Peter 5:2; 1Peter 5:4, and Acts 20:28.) Both words were already familiar as ecclesiastical words already, and as such were especially appropriate to Christ, the Head of the Church; but as they had not yet become stereotyped in that sense, the writer adds, "of your souls," to show that it was not an outward sovereignty and protectorate which the Messiah had assumed over them. "Soul" is a word of which St. Peter is fond (1Peter 1:9; 1Peter 1:22; 1Peter 2:11; 1Peter 4:19; 2Peter 2:8), but which is, perhaps, never used by St. Paul in this sense. It is to be remarked how St. Peter works almost every section of the Epistle round, so as to end with some encouragement to the readers to cling to Jesus as the Messiah, and to their Christian state, from which they were in danger of receding into Judaism. He makes even the special exhortations lead up to that which is the main exhortation of the Letter.

Verse 25. - For ye were as sheep going astray; rather, with the best manuscripts, for ye were going astray like sheep. The apostle is probably still thinking of the great prophecy of Isaiah, and here almost reproduces the words of the sixth verse, "All we like sheep have gone astray." He who had been thrice charged to feed the sheep and the lambs of Christ would think also of the parable of the lost sheep, and of the people of Israel who were "as sheep having no shepherd" (Matthew 9:36). But are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls; literally, but ye returned (the verb is aorist); that is, at the time of their conversion. The aorist passive, ἐπεστράφην, is so frequently used in a middle sense that the translation, "ye were converted," cannot be insisted on (comp. Mark 5:30; Matthew 9:22; Matthew 10:13). Christ is the Shepherd of our souls. The quotation from Isaiah doubtless brought before St. Peter's thoughts the sweet and holy allegory of the good Shepherd, which he had heard from the Savior's lips (comp. also Isaiah 40:11; Ezekiel 34:23; Ezekiel 37:24; also Psalm 22.). The word "bishop" (ἐπίσκοπος) is used in a similar connection in Acts 20:28, "Take heed... to all the flock over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers (ἐπισκόπους);" comp. also Ezekiel 34:11, "I will both search my sheep, and seek them out," where the Greek word for "seek them out" is ἐπισκέψομαι. The Lord Jesus Christ is the chief Shepherd (1 Peter 5:4). He is also the chief Bishop or Overseer of those souls which he has bought to be his own with his most precious blood.



For ye were as sheep going astray,.... This is a proof of their being healed, namely, their conversion; in which an application of the blood of Christ, and pardon, and so healing by it, was made to their souls. The apostle has still in view the prophecy of Isaiah 53:6. God's elect are sheep before conversion; not that they have the agreeable properties of sheep, as to be meek, harmless, innocent, clean, and profitable, for they are the reverse of all this; nor can some things be said of them before conversion, as may be after, as that they hear Christ's voice, and follow him; nor are they so called, because unprejudiced against, and predisposed unto the Gospel, for the contrary is true of them; but they are so in electing grace, and were so considered in the Father's gift of them to Christ, and when made his care and charge, and hence they are called the sheep of his hand; and when Christ laid down his life, and rose again, which he did for the sheep, and as the great Shepherd of them; and when called by grace, for their being sheep, and Christ's own sheep by the Father's gift, and his own purpose, is the reason why he looks them up, calls them by name, and returns them: but then they are not yet of his fold; they are lost sheep, lost in Adam, and by his fall, and by their own actual transgressions; they are as sheep going astray from the shepherd, and from the flock, going out of the right way, and in their own ways; and are, like sheep, stupid and insensible of their danger; and as they never return of themselves, until they are sought for, and brought back: hence it follows,

but are now returned; not returned themselves, but were returned by powerful and efficacious grace: saints are passive, and not active in first conversion; they are turned, not by the power of their own free will, but by the power of God's free grace; they are returned under the illuminations and quickenings of the blessed Spirit, and through the efficacious drawings of the Father's love, unto Christ:

unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls; by whom Christ is meant, who bears the office of a Shepherd, and fully performs it by feeding his sheep, providing a good fold and pasture for them; by gathering the lambs in his arms, and gently leading those that are with young; by healing their diseases, and preserving them from beasts of prey; hence he is called the good, the great, and chief Shepherd: and he is the "Bishop" or "Overseer" of the souls of his people, though not to the exclusion of their bodies: he has took the oversight of them willingly, and looks well to his flock, inspects into their cases, and often visits them, and never forsakes them; nor will he leave them till they receive the end of their faith, the salvation of their souls; which he has undertook and effected by his obedience, sufferings and death. Philo the Jew (l) observes, that "to be a shepherd is so good a work, that it is not only a title given to kings and wise men, and souls perfectly purified, but to God the governor of all---who, as a Shepherd and King, leads according to justice and law, setting over them his right Logos, "the first begotten Son", who has taken the care of this holy flock, as does the deputy of a great king.

(l) De Agricultura, p. 194, 195. 25. (Isa 53:6.)

For—Assigning their natural need of healing (1Pe 2:24).

now—Now that the atonement for all has been made, the foundation is laid for individual conversion: so "ye are returned," or "have become converted to," etc.

Shepherd and Bishop—The designation of the pastors and elders of the Church belongs in its fullest sense to the great Head of the Church, "the good Shepherd." As the "bishop" oversees (as the Greek term means), so "the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous" (1Pe 3:12). He gives us His spirit and feeds and guides us by His word. "Shepherd," Hebrew, "Parnas," is often applied to kings, and enters into the composition of names, as "Pharnabazus." 2:18-25 Servants in those days generally were slaves, and had heathen masters, who often used them cruelly; yet the apostle directs them to be subject to the masters placed over them by Providence, with a fear to dishonour or offend God. And not only to those pleased with reasonable service, but to the severe, and those angry without cause. The sinful misconduct of one relation, does not justify sinful behaviour in the other; the servant is bound to do his duty, though the master may be sinfully froward and perverse. But masters should be meek and gentle to their servants and inferiors. What glory or distinction could it be, for professed Christians to be patient when corrected for their faults? But if when they behaved well they were ill treated by proud and passionate heathen masters, yet bore it without peevish complaints, or purposes of revenge, and persevered in their duty, this would be acceptable to God as a distinguishing effect of his grace, and would be rewarded by him. Christ's death was designed not only for an example of patience under sufferings, but he bore our sins; he bore the punishment of them, and thereby satisfied Divine justice. Hereby he takes them away from us. The fruits of Christ's sufferings are the death of sin, and a new holy life of righteousness; for both which we have an example, and powerful motives, and ability to perform also, from the death and resurrection of Christ. And our justification; Christ was bruised and crucified as a sacrifice for our sins, and by his stripes the diseases of our souls are cured. Here is man's sin; he goes astray; it is his own act. His misery; he goes astray from the pasture, from the Shepherd, and from the flock, and so exposes himself to dangers without number. Here is the recovery by conversion; they are now returned as the effect of Divine grace. This return is, from all their errors and wanderings, to Christ. Sinners, before their conversion, are always going astray; their life is a continued error.
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Alphabetical: and astray but continually For going Guardian have like now of Overseer returned sheep Shepherd souls straying the to were you your

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