|1 Peter 2 |
1 Therefore laying aside all malice, all deceit, hypocrisies, envy, and all evil speaking,
2 Yearn like newborn babies for pure, spiritual milk so that you may grow up to salvation,1 [From the Word of the Lord within: "Salvation occurs when you are one with Christ and God. Listen to and obey my voice; listen to my sweet words of wisdom. If you pay attention and obey, it results in union with God. He joins with our cleansed nature. We must become like Him to merge with Him."]
3 If indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
4 Coming to him the Living Stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God, and precious,
5 You also, as living stones, are built up as a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
6 Therefore this is contained in the scripture: "Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect and precious, and he who believes in him will not be disappointed or put to shame."
7 Therefore to you who believe, he is precious; but to those who are disobedient, he is "the stone that the builders rejected, the same has become the chief cornerstone,"
9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; so that you may show forth the praises of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvelous light;3 [From the Word of the Lord within, "all sin is darkness." To come into his marvelous light, you must first have your sinful, selfish spirit destroyed by the grace of God.]
10 Who in times past were not a people but now are the people of God; who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.
11 Dearly beloved, I beg you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts that war against the soul;4 ["Flee youthful lusts, but aim at and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace..." 2 Tim 2:22. "Flee sexual immorality. Every other sin that a man commits is outside his body, but he who commits sexual immorality, sins against his own body." 1 Cor 6:18. From the Word of the Lord within: "The greatest desires are fleshly. Mankind's failure — sexual immorality. A man must learn control of his body. Restraint of sin is not enough; salvation is being freed from even the desire of your sins. We must be shown the extent of our sexual desires. Only a heart that is purged of sin is acceptable to God. Do not be confused; do not be misled; you must break a suspected action. There is a war you must win: sin must be overcome; the fleshly lusts war against your soul." George Fox wrote: "The spirit of God is grieved, vexed, and quenched with what brings into the fleshly bondage; and what wars against the spirit of God must be mortified by it for the flesh lusts against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to each other. The flesh would have its liberty, and the spirit would have its liberty; but the spirit is to have its liberty, and not the flesh."]
12 Keeping your conduct honest among the Gentiles, so that although they may speak against you as evildoers, they may by seeing your good works, glorify God in the day of visitation.
13 Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake, whether it is to the king, as supreme,
14 Or to governors, as though they were sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and for the praise of those who do well.
15 For it is the will of God, that by doing well you may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men.
16 As free, but not using your liberty for a cloak for maliciousness; but living as the servants of God.
17 Honor all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the king.
18 Servants, be subject to your masters with all respect, not only to the good and gentle ones, but also to the unjust.
19 For it is commendable, if for conscience sake toward God, a man endures grief and suffers wrongfully.5
20 For what credit is it to you, if, when you suffer for your faults, you take it patiently? But if, when you do well and suffer for it, you take it patiently, this is acceptable to God.
21 For you were called to this, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, so that you should follow in his steps. [From the Word of the Lord within: "I would just as soon have avoided that horrible death. I did it to show you the extent of obedience required for your own salvation. You shall suffer persecution when you lead a godly life. Any of you whose sting to bear has been hard, use these facts: all have suffered before you; sin is excoriated; God will remove the burden in time; and the same is experienced by every cleanliness-desired heart in the nations." Paul said, "it is through many trials and tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God."]
25 For you were like sheep going astray;" but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.
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1 Yearn like newborn babies for pure, spiritual milk so that you may grow up to salvation, The words "to salvation" was omitted in the Byzantine text, while the words are found in the earlier manuscripts that are considered the best witnesses. Unfortunately the King James and New King James are based on the Byzantine text, but almost all of the other Bibles include " to salvation," click to see. Also see the NetBible footnote 5 of this verse for corroboration, which says: "since the notion of growing up [in]to salvation would have seemed theologically objectionable, it is easy to see why some scribes would omit it." This appears to be a deliberate distortion of Peter's letter to support the erroneous doctrine of saving grace and salvation by "believing in Jesus," and the license for immorality by grace that Jude spoke of already occurring in the time of the Apostles.
Plus, milk alone will not produce salvation or maturity, as Paul emphatically states:
For everyone who lives only on milk is unskillful in the word of righteousness; for he is a babe. Heb 5:13.
However brothers, I could not speak to you as spiritual men, but as to men of the carnal nature, even as to infants in Christ.
I have fed you with milk, and not with meat; for previously you were not able to receive it, neither are you now able.
For you are still carnal [captives of the sinful nature]. Because there is envy, and strife, and divisions among you; are you not carnal, and do you not walk as men? 1 Cor 3:1-3
Meat would be the mysteries of God and wisdom: We speak wisdom in those who are perfect. 1 Cor 2:6
Don't read this one scripture and think that carnal, sinful men can be born in Christ, for John clearly tells us: Whoever is born of God does not commit sin, for his seed remains in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God; and We know that whoever is born of God does not sin; but God protects the one he has fathered, and the wicked one does not touch him. 1 John 3:9, 1 John 5:18.
Don't read this one scripture and assume that carnal men can be "in Christ," rather read this as carnal men that are infants in the things of Christ. John explains who is in Christ: whoever keeps his word [obeys the Lord's commands spoken to him], truly the love of God is perfected in him; by this we know that we are in him. 1 John 2:5. If we love one another, God dwells in us, and his love is perfected in us. 1 John 4:12. Notice, this is to be "in Christ" — to have the love of God perfected in you.
To be those who are in Christ is also explained by Paul: Therefore if any man is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 2 Cor 5:17; and those those who who are in Christ Jesus, walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. Rom 8:1. This is not to imagine yourself a new creature; this is to experience the death of the old and the birth of the new; old things having passed away definitely includes your sinful nature having been mortified by the Spirit. The voice of the Lord, explained the new life: "The new life is as radically different as a man who has lived underground his whole life, suddenly coming above ground to see the sun, the sky, the plants, the animals, the wind, the stars."
From the Word of the Lord within: "The errors in understanding the Bible come from men saying: 'look at this Bible verse.'" You must consider the whole of scripture's verses and not just focus on a few.
And there are at least twelve other scriptures which show that salvation occurs after a process of growth:
- now our salvation is nearer than when we first believed. Rom 13:11
- continue to work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Phil 2:12
- For we are saved by hope; but hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he has already seen? But if we hope for that we do not yet see, then we wait for it [salvation] with patient endurance. Rom 8:24-25
- But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for a helmet, the hope of salvation. 1 Thes 5:8
- For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God. 1 Cor 1:18. (While in the inward cross of self-denial, you will see the sin slowly disappear from your life until you are free of sin.)
- godly sorrow produces repentance that leads to salvation, 2 Cor 7:10
- do not grieve the holy Spirit of God, by whom you are sealed unto the day of redemption [future happening]. Eph 4:30
(Paul is speaking to believers in the church who have not yet been redeemed.)
- For we are the sweet aroma of Christ unto God, to those who are being saved. 2 Cor 2:15
- For you need patience, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise. Heb 10:36
(The will of God is to totally obey Christ, who will deliver you from sin to righteousness, purity, holiness, and the kingdom.)
- We are made partakers of Christ, if we hold firm the beginning of our confidence to the end. Heb 3:14
- We desire that every one of you show the same diligence in realizing the full assurance of hope to the end.
So that you are not slothful, but followers of those who through faith and patience inherit the promises. Heb 6:11-12
- Who are kept by the power of God through faith to salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a time, if necessary, you may have to suffer griefs through many trials,
So that the trial of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tried with fire, might result in praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ.
Though you have not seen him, you love him; though you do not see him now, but believe in him, you rejoice with joy that is unspeakable and full of glory,
Receiving the end of your faith, the salvation of your souls. 1 Pet 1:5-9
2 a rock of offence to those who stumble at the word and are disobedient. Peter is saying, if you don't obey the word of the Lord spoken to you, the Lord will be a rock of offence. A rock of offence that will crush you after you die. From George Fox's To All That Would Know the Way to the Kingdom.
God is coming to judge the great whore, all manner of opinions, and all manner of sects and fellowships, (as you call them), all manner of her forms. For every one that lives in God is coming to overturn and overthrow, for all the sects lodge in the great whore; all the sects' foundations are in the earth, and earthly wisdom, gathered in the earthly nature. He will overturn them, that he may establish his own truth, his own truth in righteousness, his own kingdom. Now the stone cut out of the mountain without hands, begins to strike at the feet of the image, (that the head of gold begins to fall, and the breast of silver, and thighs of brass, and feet part iron, and part clay), and his dominion is a dominion forever over all. And all who dwell not in this light, which Christ has enlightened you withal, you will be found too lightweight, for he is coming to weigh all things in this balance, and before him the hills shall move, and the mountains shall melt, and the rocks shall cleave, who measures the waters in the hollow of his hand, and his thunders begin to utter their voices, that the mysteries of God may be opened, and the carnal hearts rent. Great earthquakes shall be, the terrible day of the Lord draws near, the beast shall be taken, and the false prophet; into the fire must they go, for the beast and the false prophet have gone together, the one has held up the other. Now is the Lord coming to sit as judge, and reign as king, who is the law giver which shall go forth of Zion. Now shall Zion arise and thresh to beat the hills, and thresh the mountains; now is the sword drawn, which glitters and is furbished, the sword of the Almighty, to hew down Baal's priests, corrupt judges, corrupt justices, corrupt lawyers, fruitless trees which cumber the ground. Drunkard, you cannot hide yourself; cursed speaker, you cannot hide yourself; whoremonger, you cannot hide yourself. Awake, awake all people everywhere who live in forms, see what you possess, not having that eternal spirit that gave forth the scriptures; all your formal prayers, formal preaching, formal singing, will be found as the chaff, which is for the unquenchable fire. For Christ is risen, the true light shines, the glory of the Lord appears, and you are discovered to him, to be empty of that eternal spirit in your understandings, which gave forth the scriptures. I am the light, said Christ, which enlightens everyone; that light you hate, and all who hate this light, set up teachers without them; but all who love this light, are of God, and lead to God, which is a cross to all the world, and this light is in everyone; wait in it to receive Christ. And as many as receive Christ, to them he gives power to become the sons of God, which are not born of the will of man, nor by the will of man, but by the will of God; and these are they who are out of imitations, and have no images, nor likeness of truth, but are in it, and possess it. Glory, glory to the Lord God forever, who governs his people, and is the head of the church; Christ is the head of the man, God is the head of Christ. He that can receive this, even if he does not have the letter, let him. He has come, who was before the letter was written. In the beginning was the word.
3 so that you may show forth the praises of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. The light is not a figure of speech. It is brighter than the sun, seven times brighter. You only see in the spiritual dimension. The natural light is trumped out by a brighter light. You see through God's eyes because you are a part of Christ's body, bone of bone, flesh of flesh. From our sight, the world passes away and disappears, along with its desires and lusts; but he who does the will of God in his life, remains forever. 1 John 2:17. When you walk in the light, you are guided by Christ, who is the light; you are guided in what words to speak and what is to be done, which is to your supreme joy and the glorying of God. See Footnote 1 to 2 Cor 4:6 for George Fox's detailed explanation of coming out of darkness to light.
4 Peter is begging believers to abstain from fleshly lusts. Lust is to want something; something to pleasure the flesh, something to please the eye. Lust is taking, love is giving. Lust is selfish, love considers others. Lust is covetous. Sexual immorality stems from lust. The fulfillment of your desires has to be abstained from, but to get rid of the desires, they have to be crucified by the power of God. You cannot just believe and continue to live in you lusts without being banned from heaven when you die. You can be sure: No sexually immoral, or impure, or covetous person, (covetousness is idolatry), has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. Let no one deceive you with vain words. For because of such things God's wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Eph 5:5-6.
5 it is commendable, if for conscience sake toward God, a man endures grief and suffers wrongfully. Peter is speaking of being unjustly treated by one's master or manager, and to endure that treatment. To suffer from people unjustly treating you, persecuting you, or even physically harming you is essential to your spiritual progress.
For you were called to this, because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, so that you should follow in his steps. 1 Pet 2:21
Therefore, since Christ has suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same mind because he who has suffered in the flesh is finished with sin, 1 Pet 4:1
When you are committed to following the Lord, hearing Him as you wait on Him, everything that happens to you is permitted by the Lord to bring you to perfection. He will let those around you abuse you in order to teach you to give up anger, resentment, and wanting revenge; and instead to forgive them, just as He forgave those who beat and crucified Him. We must suffer with Him in order to reign with Him. 2 Tim 2:11-12. We have to trust that everything is from Him, which trust is faith; the just shall live by faith, Hab 2:4.
From the Word of the Lord within: "live in the fortress of faith where it doesn't matter if someone gives you a kiss or hits you with a baseball bat," knowing everything that happens* to a true seeker is used to help him grow spiritually. So if I get hit with a baseball bat, He expects me to learn the necessity of forgiving: to ignore it, despite the pain suffered and wrongness of the person wielding the bat. Your life is an obstacle course, designed by God, for you to crawl over and through, learning to forgive and love despite the pain and injustice. This life is a boot camp to produce a soldier of love, whose weapon is the sword of the Spirit, the living word of God. When you realize it is God who has allowed, (permitted, not caused or motivated), that person to be rude, ugly, and painful to you, you can easily forgive them because they are just an obstacle of potential resentment, whose offense is to be overlooked, (or if not overlooked, to produce the pain of resentment), thus being used by God to help you spiritually progress.
*From the Word of the Lord within: "If people want to make a bad-choice decision, that's their prerogative."
So, do not believe that God has caused someone around you to do something evil that affects you.
He protects your life so that you can be completed, but He does not stop those around you from doing wrong.
When the early Quakers suffered at the hand of individuals or mobs, they always declined any opportunity presented to prosecute the offenders, saying that was not their way; and their way was to forgive and leave any vengeance to God. Mat 5:44, Heb 10:30. As William Penn wrote in his Introduction to the Journal of George Fox: "They not only did not show any disposition to revenge, even when in their power to exact, but forgave their cruel enemies, showing mercy to those that had no mercy for them." The people of the Lord suffer persecution rather than turn to the authorities of the world for revenge; from the Word of the Lord within: "they depend on God alone." In the Lord's time He will deal recompense to those who harm the apple of His eye.
This endurance of suffering and persecution without turning to the authorities of the world for assistance is a significant hallmark of the true Christian faith.
6 Who his own self bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we, being dead to sins, should live to righteousness. By his stripes you were healed. This verse is typically quoted by the blind guides of Christianity in their healing ministries, yet the healing that this verse refers to is a healing from being a sinful person to become a righteous person. The Lord's blood, his stripes, his suffering, and his death made it possible for men who are dead, (to the life of God), in their sins to become free from even the desire to sin and to become righteous, (whose all words and actions are ordered by God), by persistent, obedient faith.
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