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2. Be Holy

1Putting away therefore all wickedness, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speakings, 2as newborn babes, long for the spiritual milk which is without guile, that ye may grow thereby unto salvation; 3if ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious: 4unto whom coming, a living stone, rejected indeed of men, but with God elect, precious, 5ye also, as living stones, are built up a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6Because it is contained in scripture,

Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner stone, elect, precious:

And he that believeth on him shall not be put to shame.

7For you therefore that believe is the preciousness: but for such as disbelieve,

The stone which the builders rejected,

The same was made the head of the corner;

8and,

A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence;

for they stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed. 9But ye are a elect race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that ye may show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: 10who in time past were no people, but now are the people of God: who had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. 11Beloved, I beseech you as sojourners and pilgrims, to abstain from fleshly lust, which war against the soul; 12having your behavior seemly among the Gentiles; that, wherein they speak against you as evil-doers, they may by your good works, which they behold, glorify God in the day of visitation. 13Be subject to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether to the king, as supreme; 14or unto governors, as sent by him for vengeance on evil-doers and for praise to them that do well. 15For so is the will of God, that by well-doing ye should put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: 16as free, and not using your freedom for a cloak of wickedness, but as bondservants of God. 17Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king. 18Servants, be in subjection to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward. 19For this is acceptable, if for conscience toward God a man endureth griefs, suffering wrongfully. 20For what glory is it, if, when ye sin, and are buffeted for it, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye shall take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. 21For hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, that ye should follow his steps: 22who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: 23who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: 24who his own self bare our sins in his body upon the tree, that we, having died unto sins, might live unto righteousness; by whose stripes ye were healed. 25For ye were going astray like sheep; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

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23. Servants are apt to "answer again" (Tit 2:9). Threats of divine judgment against oppressors are often used by those who have no other arms, as for instance, slaves. Christ, who as Lord could have threatened with truth, never did so.

committed himself—or His cause, as man in His suffering. Compare the type, Jer 11:20. In this Peter seems to have before his mind Isa 53:8. Compare Ro 12:19, on our corresponding duty. Leave your case in His hands, not desiring to make Him executioner of your revenge, but rather praying for enemies. God's righteous judgment gives tranquillity and consolation to the oppressed.

24. his own self—there being none other but Himself who could have done it. His voluntary undertaking of the work of redemption is implied. The Greek puts in antithetical juxtaposition, OUR, and His OWN SELF, to mark the idea of His substitution for us. His "well-doing" in His sufferings is set forth here as an example to servants and to us all (1Pe 2:20).

bare—to sacrifice: carried and offered up: a sacrificial term. Isa 53:11, 12, "He bare the sin of many": where the idea of bearing on Himself is the prominent one; here the offering in sacrifice is combined with that idea. So the same Greek means in 1Pe 2:5.

our sins—In offering or presenting in sacrifice (as the Greek for "bare" implies) His body, Christ offered in it the guilt of our sins upon the cross, as upon the altar of God, that it might be expiated in Him, and so taken away from us. Compare Isa 53:10, "Thou shalt make His soul an offering for sin." Peter thus means by "bare" what the Syriac takes two words to express, to bear and to offer: (1) He hath borne our sins laid upon Him [namely, their guilt, curse, and punishment]; (2) He hath so borne them that He offered them along with Himself on the altar. He refers to the animals upon which sins were first laid, and which were then offered thus laden [Vitringa]. Sin or guilt among the Semitic nations is considered as a burden lying heavily upon the sinner [Gesenius].

on the tree—the cross, the proper place for One on whom the curse was laid: this curse stuck to Him until it was legally (through His death as the guilt-bearer) destroyed in His body: thus the handwriting of the bond against us is cancelled by His death.

that we being dead to sins—the effect of His death to "sin" in the aggregate, and to all particular "sins," namely, that we should be as entirely delivered from them, as a slave that is dead is delivered from service to his master. This is our spiritful standing through faith by virtue of Christ's death: our actual mortification of particular sins is in proportion to the degree of our effectually being made conformable to His death. "That we should die to the sins whose collected guilt Christ carried away in His death, and so LIVE TO THE RIGHTEOUSNESS (compare Isa 53:11. 'My righteous servant shall justify many'), the gracious relation to God which He has brought in" [Steiger].

by whose stripesGreek, "stripe."

ye were healed—a paradox, yet true. "Ye servants (compare 'buffeted,' 'the tree,' 1Pe 2:20, 24) often bear the strife; but it is not more than your Lord Himself bore; learn from Him patience in wrongful sufferings.

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," &c.

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."




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