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1 Peter 1-5Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB)


Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ:

To the temporary residents dispersed[a] in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father and set apart by the Spirit for obedience and for sprinkling with the blood of Jesus Christ.

May grace and peace be multiplied to you.

A Living Hope

Praise the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. According to His great mercy, He has given us a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead and into an inheritance that is imperishable, uncorrupted, and unfading, kept in heaven for you. You are being protected by God’s power through faith for a salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. You rejoice in this,[b] though now for a short time you have had to struggle in various trials so that the genuineness of your faith—more valuable than gold, which perishes though refined by fire—may result in[c] praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. You love Him, though you have not seen Him. And though not seeing Him now, you believe in Him and rejoice with inexpressible and glorious joy, because you are receiving the goal of your[d] faith, the salvation of your souls.[e]

10 Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that would come to you searched and carefully investigated. 11 They inquired into what time or what circumstances[f] the Spirit of Christ within them was indicating when He testified in advance to the messianic sufferings[g] and the glories that would follow.[h] 12 It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you. These things have now been announced to you through those who preached the gospel to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven. Angels desire to look into these things.

A Call to Holy Living

13 Therefore, with your minds ready for action,[i] be serious and set your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the desires of your former ignorance. 15 But as the One who called you is holy, you also are to be holy in all your conduct; 16 for it is written, Be holy, because I am holy.[j]

17 And if you address as Father the One who judges impartially based on each one’s work, you are to conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your temporary residence. 18 For you know that you were redeemed from your empty way of life inherited from the fathers, not with perishable things like silver or gold, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without defect or blemish. 20 He was chosen[k] before the foundation of the world but was revealed at the end of the times for you 21 who through Him are believers in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.

22 By obedience to the truth,[l] having purified yourselves[m] for sincere love of the brothers, love one another earnestly[n] from a pure[o] heart, 23 since you have been born again—not of perishable seed but of imperishable—through the living and enduring word of God. 24 For

All flesh is like grass,
and all its glory like a flower of the grass.
The grass withers, and the flower falls,
25 but the word of the Lord endures forever.[p]

And this is the word that was preached as the gospel to you.

The Living Stone and a Holy People

So rid yourselves of all malice, all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and all slander. Like newborn infants, desire the pure spiritual milk, so that you may grow by it for your salvation,[q] since you have tasted that the Lord is good.[r] Coming to Him, a living stone—rejected by men but chosen and valuable to God— you yourselves, as living stones, are being built into a spiritual house for a holy priesthood to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it is contained in Scripture:

Look! I lay a stone in Zion,
a chosen and honored[s] cornerstone,[t]
and the one who believes in Him
will never be put to shame![u][v]

So honor will come to you who believe, but for the unbelieving,

The stone that the builders rejected—
this One has become the cornerstone,[w]


A stone to stumble over,[x]
and a rock to trip over.[y][z]

They stumble because they disobey the message; they were destined for this.

But you are a chosen race,[aa][ab] a royal priesthood,[ac]
a holy nation,[ad] a people for His possession,[ae]
so that you may proclaim the praises[af][ag]
of the One who called you out of darkness
into His marvelous light.
10 Once you were not a people,
but now you are God’s people;
you had not received mercy,
but now you have received mercy.

A Call to Good Works

11 Dear friends, I urge you as strangers and temporary residents to abstain from fleshly desires that war against you.[ah] 12 Conduct yourselves honorably among the Gentiles,[ai] so that in a case where they speak against you as those who do what is evil, they will, by observing your good works, glorify God on the day of visitation.[aj]

13 Submit to every human authority[ak] because of the Lord, whether to the Emperor[al] as the supreme authority 14 or to governors as those sent out by him to punish those who do what is evil and to praise those who do what is good. 15 For it is God’s will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good. 16 As God’s slaves, live as free people, but don’t use your freedom as a way to conceal evil. 17 Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the Emperor.[am]

Submission of Slaves to Masters

18 Household slaves, submit with all fear to your masters, not only to the good and gentle but also to the cruel.[an] 19 For it brings favor[ao] if, mindful of God’s will,[ap][aq] someone endures grief from suffering unjustly. 20 For what credit is there if you sin and are punished, and you endure it? But when you do what is good and suffer, if you endure it, this brings favor with God.

21 For you were called to this,
because Christ also suffered for you,
leaving you an example,
so that you should follow in His steps.
22 He did not commit sin,
and no deceit was found in His mouth;[ar]
23 when He was reviled,
He did not revile in return;
when He was suffering,
He did not threaten
but entrusted Himself to the One who judges justly.
24 He Himself bore our sins
in His body on the tree,
so that, having died to sins,
we might live for righteousness;
you have been healed by His wounds.[as]
25 For you were like sheep going astray,[at]
but you have now returned
to the Shepherd and Guardian[au] of your souls.

Wives and Husbands

In the same way, wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands so that, even if some disobey the Christian message, they may be won over[av] without a message by the way their wives live when they observe your pure, reverent lives. Your beauty should not consist of outward things like elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold ornaments[aw] or fine clothes. Instead, it should consist of what is inside[ax] the heart with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very valuable in God’s eyes. For in the past, the holy women who put their hope in God also beautified themselves in this way, submitting to their own husbands, just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord. You have become her children when you do what is good and are not frightened by anything alarming.

Husbands, in the same way, live with your wives with an understanding of their weaker nature[ay] yet showing them honor as coheirs of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered.

Do No Evil

Now finally, all of you should be like-minded and sympathetic, should love believers,[az] and be compassionate and humble,[ba] not paying back evil for evil or insult for insult but, on the contrary, giving a blessing, since you were called for this, so that you can inherit a blessing.

10 For the one who wants to love life
and to see good days
must keep his tongue from evil
and his lips from speaking deceit,
11 and he must turn away from evil
and do what is good.
He must seek peace and pursue it,
12 because the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous
and His ears are open to their request.
But the face of the Lord is against
those who do what is evil.[bb]

Undeserved Suffering

13 And who will harm[bc] you if you are deeply committed to what is good?[bd] 14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness, you are blessed. Do not fear what they fear or be disturbed,[be] 15 but honor[bf] the Messiah[bg] as Lord in your hearts. Always be ready to give a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason[bh] for the hope that is in you. 16 However, do this with gentleness and respect, keeping your conscience clear,[bi][bj] so that when you are accused,[bk] those who denounce your Christian life[bl] will be put to shame. 17 For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will,[bm] than for doing evil.

18 For Christ also suffered for sins once for all,[bn]
the righteous for the unrighteous,[bo]
that He might bring you[bp] to God,
after being put to death in the fleshly realm[bq]
but made alive in the spiritual realm.[br]

19 In that state[bs] He also went and made a proclamation to the spirits in prison[bt] 20 who in the past were disobedient, when God patiently waited in the days of Noah while an ark was being prepared. In it a few—that is, eight people[bu]—were saved through water. 21 Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you (not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the pledge[bv] of a good conscience toward God) through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. 22 Now that He has gone into heaven, He is at God’s right hand with angels, authorities, and powers subject to Him.

Following Christ

Therefore, since Christ suffered[bw] in the flesh,[bx] equip[by] yourselves also with the same resolve[bz]—because the one who suffered in the flesh has finished with sin[ca] in order to live the remaining time in the flesh, no longer for human desires,[cb] but for God’s will. For there has already been enough time spent in doing what the pagans choose to do:[cc] carrying on in unrestrained behavior, evil desires, drunkenness, orgies, carousing, and lawless idolatry. So they are surprised that you don’t plunge with them into the same flood[cd] of wild living—and they slander you. They will give an account to the One who stands ready to judge the living and the dead. For this reason the gospel was also preached to those who are now dead, so that, although they might be judged by men in the fleshly realm,[ce] they might live by God in the spiritual realm.[cf]

End-Time Ethics

Now the end of all things is near; therefore, be serious and disciplined for prayer. Above all, maintain an intense love for each other, since love covers a multitude of sins.[cg] Be hospitable to one another without complaining. 10 Based on the gift each one has received, use it to serve others, as good managers of the varied grace of God. 11 If anyone speaks, it should be as one who speaks God’s words; if anyone serves, it should be from the strength God provides, so that God may be glorified through Jesus Christ in everything. To Him belong the glory and the power forever and ever. Amen.

Christian Suffering

12 Dear friends, don’t be surprised when the fiery ordeal[ch] comes among you to test you as if something unusual were happening to you. 13 Instead, rejoice as you share in the sufferings of the Messiah, so that you may also rejoice with great joy at the revelation of His glory. 14 If you are ridiculed for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you.[ci] 15 None of you, however, should suffer as a murderer, a thief, an evildoer, or a meddler.[cj] 16 But if anyone suffers as a “Christian,” he should not be ashamed but should glorify God in having that name. 17 For the time has come for judgment to begin with God’s household, and if it begins with us, what will the outcome be for those who disobey the gospel of God?

18 And if a righteous person is saved with difficulty,
what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?[ck]

19 So those who suffer according to God’s will should, while doing what is good, entrust themselves to a faithful Creator.

About the Elders

Therefore, as a fellow elder and witness to the sufferings of the Messiah and also a participant in the glory about to be revealed, I exhort the elders among you: Shepherd God’s flock among you, not overseeing[cl] out of compulsion but freely, according to God’s will;[cm] not for the money but eagerly; not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.

In the same way, you younger men, be subject to the elders. And all of you clothe yourselves with[cn] humility toward one another, because

God resists the proud
but gives grace to the humble.[co]

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that He may exalt you at the proper time,[cp] casting all your care on Him, because He cares about you.


Be serious! Be alert! Your adversary the Devil is prowling around like a roaring lion, looking for anyone he can devour. Resist him and be firm in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are being experienced by your fellow believers throughout the world.

10 Now the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ Jesus, will personally[cq] restore, establish, strengthen, and support you after you have suffered a little.[cr] 11 The dominion[cs] belongs to Him forever.[ct] Amen.

12 I have written you this brief letter through Silvanus[cu] (I know him to be a faithful brother) to encourage you and to testify that this is the true grace of God. Take your stand in it! 13 The church in Babylon,[cv] also chosen, sends you greetings, as does Mark, my son. 14 Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ.[cw]


  1. 1 Peter 1:1 Jewish people scattered throughout Gentile lands who spoke Gk and were influenced by Gk culture.
  2. 1 Peter 1:6 Or In this [fact] rejoice
  3. 1 Peter 1:7 Lit may be found for
  4. 1 Peter 1:9 Other mss read our, or they omit the possessive pronoun
  5. 1 Peter 1:9 Or your lives
  6. 1 Peter 1:11 Or inquired about the person or time
  7. 1 Peter 1:11 Or the sufferings of Christ
  8. 1 Peter 1:11 Lit the glories after that
  9. 1 Peter 1:13 Lit Therefore, when you have the loins of your mind girded
  10. 1 Peter 1:16 Lv 11:44-45; 19:2; 20:7
  11. 1 Peter 1:20 Or foreknown
  12. 1 Peter 1:22 Other mss add through the Spirit
  13. 1 Peter 1:22 Or purified your souls
  14. 1 Peter 1:22 Or intensely
  15. 1 Peter 1:22 Other mss omit pure
  16. 1 Peter 1:25 Is 40:6-8
  17. 1 Peter 2:2 Other mss omit in your salvation
  18. 1 Peter 2:3 Ps 34:8
  19. 1 Peter 2:6 Or valuable
  20. 1 Peter 2:6 Lit head of the corner
  21. 1 Peter 2:6 Or be disappointed
  22. 1 Peter 2:6 Is 28:16 LXX
  23. 1 Peter 2:7 Ps 118:22
  24. 1 Peter 2:8 Or a stone causing stumbling
  25. 1 Peter 2:8 Or a rock to trip over
  26. 1 Peter 2:8 Is 8:14
  27. 1 Peter 2:9 Or generation, or nation
  28. 1 Peter 2:9 Dt 7:6; 10:15; Is 43:20 LXX
  29. 1 Peter 2:9 Ex 19:6; 23:22 LXX; Is 61:6
  30. 1 Peter 2:9 Ex 19:6; 23:22 LXX
  31. 1 Peter 2:9 Ex 19:5; 23:22 LXX; Dt 4:20; 7:6; Is 43:21 LXX
  32. 1 Peter 2:9 Or the mighty deeds
  33. 1 Peter 2:9 Is 42:12; 43:21
  34. 1 Peter 2:11 Or against the soul
  35. 1 Peter 2:12 Or among the nations, or among the pagans
  36. 1 Peter 2:12 The day when God intervenes in human history, either in grace or in judgment
  37. 1 Peter 2:13 Or creature
  38. 1 Peter 2:13 Lit king
  39. 1 Peter 2:17 Lit king
  40. 1 Peter 2:18 Or unscrupulous; lit crooked
  41. 1 Peter 2:19 Other mss add with God
  42. 1 Peter 2:19 Other mss read if, because of a good conscience
  43. 1 Peter 2:19 Lit if, because of conscience toward God
  44. 1 Peter 2:22 Is 53:9
  45. 1 Peter 2:24 Is 53:5
  46. 1 Peter 2:25 Is 53:6
  47. 1 Peter 2:25 Or Overseer
  48. 1 Peter 3:1 Lit may be gained
  49. 1 Peter 3:3 Lit and of putting around of gold items
  50. 1 Peter 3:4 Lit Instead, the hidden man of
  51. 1 Peter 3:7 Lit understanding as the weaker vessel
  52. 1 Peter 3:8 Lit sympathetic, loving the brothers
  53. 1 Peter 3:8 Other mss read courteous
  54. 1 Peter 3:12 Ps 34:12-16
  55. 1 Peter 3:13 Or mistreat, or do evil to
  56. 1 Peter 3:13 Or you are partisans for the good; lit you are zealots
  57. 1 Peter 3:14 Is 8:12
  58. 1 Peter 3:15 Or sanctify; lit set apart
  59. 1 Peter 3:15 Other mss read set God
  60. 1 Peter 3:15 Or who demands of you an accounting
  61. 1 Peter 3:16 Lit good
  62. 1 Peter 3:16 Or keeping a clear conscience
  63. 1 Peter 3:16 Other mss read when they speak against you as evildoers
  64. 1 Peter 3:16 Lit your good behavior in Christ
  65. 1 Peter 3:17 Lit if the will of God should will
  66. 1 Peter 3:18 Other mss read died for sins on our behalf; other mss read died for our sins; other mss read died for sins on your behalf
  67. 1 Peter 3:18 Or the Righteous One in the place of the unrighteous many
  68. 1 Peter 3:18 Other mss read us
  69. 1 Peter 3:18 Or in the flesh
  70. 1 Peter 3:18 Or in the spirit, or in the Spirit
  71. 1 Peter 3:19 Or In whom, or At that time, or In which
  72. 1 Peter 3:19 Perhaps fallen supernatural beings or angels; 2Pt 2:4; Jd 6
  73. 1 Peter 3:20 Lit souls
  74. 1 Peter 3:21 Or the appeal
  75. 1 Peter 4:1 Other mss read suffered for us
  76. 1 Peter 4:1 The phrase “in the flesh” probably means in human experience.
  77. 1 Peter 4:1 Or arm
  78. 1 Peter 4:1 Or perspective, or attitude
  79. 1 Peter 4:1 Or the one who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin
  80. 1 Peter 4:2 Lit for desires of human beings
  81. 1 Peter 4:3 Or Gentiles
  82. 1 Peter 4:4 Lit you don’t run with them into the same pouring out
  83. 1 Peter 4:6 Or in the flesh
  84. 1 Peter 4:6 Or in the spirit
  85. 1 Peter 4:8 Pr 10:12
  86. 1 Peter 4:12 Lit the burning
  87. 1 Peter 4:14 Other mss add He is blasphemed because of them, but He is glorified because of you.
  88. 1 Peter 4:15 Or as one who defrauds others
  89. 1 Peter 4:18 Pr 11:31 LXX
  90. 1 Peter 5:2 Other mss omit overseeing
  91. 1 Peter 5:2 Other mss omit according to God’s will
  92. 1 Peter 5:5 Lit you tie around yourselves
  93. 1 Peter 5:5 Pr 3:34 LXX
  94. 1 Peter 5:6 Lit in time
  95. 1 Peter 5:10 Lit Himself
  96. 1 Peter 5:10 Or a little while, or to a small extent
  97. 1 Peter 5:11 Other mss read dominion and glory; other mss read glory and dominion
  98. 1 Peter 5:11 Other mss read forever and ever
  99. 1 Peter 5:12 Or Silas; Ac 15:22-32; 16:19-40; 17:1-16
  100. 1 Peter 5:13 Probably refers to Rome
  101. 1 Peter 5:14 Other mss read Christ Jesus. Amen.

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