People's New Testament
Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings,
2:1 The Temple of Living Stones
SUMMARY OF I PETER 2:
Desiring the Sincere Milk. The Living Stone. The Spiritual Temple. The Stone the Builders Rejected. The Peculiar People. Letting Our Light Shine. Obedience to Authorities. The Glory of Suffering for Righteousness.
Wherefore. In view of the salvation and duty of brotherly love pointed out in 1Pe 1:22.
Laying aside. The things to be laid aside are inconsistent with brotherly love.
Malice. The mental state opposed to love.
Guile. The mental state opposed to sincerity.
Hypocrisies. Guile exhibited in word and deed.
Envies. Love envieth not (1Co 13:4).
Evil speakings. Speaking evil of others.
As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:
2:2 As newborn babes. The new birth has been spoken of in 1Pe 1:23. They are babes in Christ. Babes hunger for milk. Let babes in Christ earnestly
desire the sincere milk of the word. The spiritual milk which is without guile (Revised Version). This word, unadulterated, is the food upon which Christians must feed in order to grow.
If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
2:3 If so be ye. This is the proper food for those who
have tasted that the Lord is gracious, or been converted. See Ps 34:9.
To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,
2:4 To whom coming. To Christ the Lord.
As unto a living stone. Christ is often called a Stone, or Rock, as the foundation whom which we build our spiritual life, and of the church; a living stone because he imparts life to all who build upon him, and himself lives eternally. See 1Jo 1:1 Re 1:18 Ac 4:11.
Disallowed indeed of men. Rejected by the Jewish nation.
But chosen of God. Not of men but of God who raised him from the dead. See also 1Pe 2:6.
Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
2:5 Ye also, as lively stones. Living stones (Revised Version). Christians, born again to eternal life, become living stones also built into the spiritual temple of which Christ is the corner stone.
Are built up a spiritual house. The church. God's spiritual temple of which the temple was a type.
An holy priesthood. Christ, the High Priest, hath anointed them all as priests in his spiritual house. They need no human priest to stand between them and God. Every Christian can offer up
spiritual sacrifices. See Heb 13:15 Ps 50:23 Ho 14:3 Ro 12:1. The sacrifices of the Christian priest are prayer, praise, good deeds, the consecration of our bodies and substance to God's service.
Acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. When offered in the name of Christ.
Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.
2:6 Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture. See Isa 28:16 Ro 9:33.
Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone. Hence God had foretold that Christ should be a Living Stone (1Pe 2:4). Peter has not quoted the passage in full which declares that the stone is a tried stone, a sure foundation.
Elect. Hence, chosen by God (1Pe 2:4).
Precious. Since it is the chief corner stone without which the structure could not be built.
And he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. Hence this stone is a person, and faith in him is the basis of salvation.
Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,
2:7 Unto you therefore which believe. The prophecy is now applied.
He is precious to believers because they enjoy the promise embraced in he that believeth on him shall not be confounded. (1Pe 2:6).
But unto them which be disobedient. Those who do not believe and hence, disobey; to these he is
the stone which the builders rejected, which is spoken of in Ps 118:22. See also Mt 21:42 Ac 4:11.
The same is made the head of the corner. Peter quotes this passage from the Old Testament and applies it with great force (Ac 4:11). The rejected Savior had become the Head of God's spiritual temple.
And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.
2:8 A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence. He is this to the disobedient. To believers, precious; to the disobedient, a stone over which they stumble and fall.
Even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient. Unto stumbling over the stone and falling.
Whereunto also they were appointed. This is God's appointment to the disobedient. It is the result of their unbelief. The idea is that stumbling is their condition. When they reject Christ they stumble more and more.
But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
2:9 But ye are a chosen generation. An elect race (Revised Version). God's chosen race, like ancient Israel. Christians are now the chosen people (Isa 43:21).
A royal priesthood. See Ex 19:6. The Hebrew passage which Peter refers to means a kingdom of priests. Either this is its meaning, or that all in it, anointed ones like Christ, are in some sense like him, priest-kings.
An holy nation. Set apart to God.
A peculiar people. A people for God's own possession (Revised Version). Differing from the world in life.
That ye should shew forth. They differ from the world that their holy lives may shine as a light and honor God.
Out of darkness. In this verse and 1Pe 2:10 Peter surely has in mind Gentile Christians.
Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
2:10 Which in time past were not a people. Not a people of God. See Ho 2:23, which Peter quotes. The prophets in many places foretold the call of the Gentiles. See Ro 9:25,26.
Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;
2:11 I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims. As sojourners (Revised Version). They were all, like the fathers (Heb 11:13), only pilgrims and sojourners on the earth, seeking for a better home. Hence they should
abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul, which would destroy their prospects of that home.
Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.
2:12 Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles. Your daily life. Let it be such as to refute slanders of their enemies.
They speak against you as evildoers. See Ac 17:6. The Jews often accused Christians to heathen rulers of being seditious. Because they rejected the heathen gods, they were accused of being atheists. The best way to answer these charges was to live them down.
By your good works. Compare Mt 5:16.
The day of visitation. The day when God will make all clear and the heathen shall be converted.
Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme;
2:13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man. Obey human laws.
For the Lord's sake. Because it is the Lord's will.
Whether it be to the king. The Roman emperor whom the Greeks styled king.
Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well.
2:14 Or unto the governors. The magistrates placed over the provinces of the Roman empire. Rulers are necessary,
for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. Both to punish the evil and to reward the good. Compare Ro 13:1-6.
For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:
2:15 That with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men. It is God's will that thus you may silence the charge that you are seditious persons.
As free, and not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, but as the servants of God.
2:16 As free. Christians, freed from the bondage of sin and of the law, and having the free spirit of children,
not using your liberty for a cloke of maliciousness, an excuse, for wickedness.
As the servants of God. They are God's servants.
Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.
2:17 Honour all men. Respect men of every station.
Love the brotherhood. As Christ loved us.
Fear God. With reverential fear.
Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward.
2:18 Servants. Compare Eph 6:5 Col 3:22. The Greek word here, odune, is not that of the former passages, doulos, which means slaves. This may mean hired servants.
Be subject to your masters with all fear. That is the duty of the relation.
Not only to the good and gentle. Nor is a faithful obedience due to good masters only,
but also to the froward. To the perverse.
For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully.
2:19 For this is thankworthy. Acceptable (Revised Version).
If a man for conscience toward God endure grief,. If a man suffers wrong for conscience sake, God notes his suffering and approves of his conduct.
For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God.
2:20 For what glory is it? To bear with patience punishment for faults is no glory, but to bear patiently suffering inflicted for right doing is approved before God.
For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps:
2:21 For even unto this were ye called. It was the experience of the Christian calling in that age to suffer for right doing.
Because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example. Even so Christ our Lord suffered. He is our example.
Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
2:22 Who did no sin. He had no fault.
Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously:
2:23 Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again. He resented neither insults nor the sufferings inflicted upon him.
But committed himself to him that judgeth righteously. He gave our judgment between him and his enemies to God.
Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.
2:24 Who his own self bare our sins in his own body. Died for our sins, not his own. He took our burdens.
On the tree. The wood of the cross.
That we, being dead to sins. Crucified with him (Ro 6:6), penitent, the repentant sinner is baptized into his death, and rising to a new life, lives to righteousness.
By whose stripes ye were healed. See Isa 53:5-6.
For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.
2:25 Ye were as sheep going astray. Led astray by sin.
Are now returned. By coming to Christ.
Unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls. The good Shepherd who died for the sheep; the Bishop who watcheth over and careth for them.