1 He extolleth Gods mercie shewed in Christ, which we laye holde on by faith, and possesse through hope: 10 whereof the Prophets foretolde. 13 He exhorteth 15 to renounce the worlde, 23 and their former life, and so wholy yeelde themselues to God.
1 Peter an Apostle of Iesvs Christ, to the strangers that dwell here and there throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia,
2 [Note:  Peter purposing to speake of the dueties of a Christian life, reasoneth first of the principles & beginnings of all Christian actions, rising farre higher then nature, and carying vs also farre aboue the same. For he sheweth that we which are otherwise of nature sinners, were through the free mercie of God the Father first chosen from euerlasting: then according to that euerlasting decree, were by a certaine second creation made his sonnes in Christ his onely begotten, by whose Spirit we are inwardly changed, and by whose blood we are also reconciled, to the ende, that as Christ himselfe rose againe fro the dead, we also might be receiued into ye same heauenly & euerlasting glory. ] Elect according to the [Note: [a] Or, according to ye purpose of God, who neuer altereth nor changeth the same. ] foreknowledge of God ye Father vnto [Note: [b] That bring set apart fro the rest of the wicked world, through ye working of the holy Ghost, they should be cosecrat to God, Eph.1.5. ] sanctification of ye Spirit,
[The end of faith.]
through obedience and sprinkeling of the blood of Iesus Christ: Grace and peace bee multiplied vnto you.
3 Blessed bee God, euen the Father of our Lord Iesus Christ, which according to his aboundant mercie hath begotten vs againe vnto a [Note: [c] Euerlasting hope. ] liuely hope by the resurrection of Iesus Christ from the dead,
4 To an inheritance immortall and vndefiled, and that withereth not, reserued in heauen for vs,
5 [Note:  Nowe hee sheweth by what waie wee come vnto that glorie, to witte, through all kinde of afflictions, wherein notwithstanding faith maketh vs so secure, that wee are not onely not ouercome with sorowe, but also through the beholding of God himselfe (who otherwise is inuisible) with the eyes of faith, are vnspeakeablie ioyfull: because all such things, as they are but for a time, so are they not applied vnto vs to destroy vs, but as it were by fire to purge vs, and to make vs perfite, that at the length we may obteine saluation. ] Which are kept by the power of God through faith vnto saluation, which is prepared to be shewed in the [Note: [d] This is that time which Daniel calleth the time of the ende, when as that great restoring of all things shalbe, which all creatures looke for, Romanes 8.19. ] last time.
6 Wherein yee reioyce, though nowe for a season (if neede require) yee are in heauinesse, through manifolde tentations,
7 That the triall of your faith, being much more precious then golde that perisheth (though it be tried with fire) might bee founde vnto your praise, and honour and glorie at the [Note: [e] Hee speaketh of the second comming of Christ. ] appearing of Iesus Christ:
8 Whome yee haue not seene, and yet loue him, in whome nowe, though yee see him not, yet doe you beleeue, and reioyce with ioy vnspeakeable and glorious,
9 Receiuing the [Note: Or, rewarde. ] ende of your faith, euen the saluation of your soules.
10 [Note:  Hee putteth a difference betweene true faith, that is to say, that faith which onely hath an eye to the doctrine of the Prophets & Apostles, and false faith: Afterward he maketh two degrees of one & the selfe same faith, according to the maner of the diuers reuelations, when as in deede it is but one only faith: Thirdly, hee sayeth, that the preaching of the Apostles is the fulfilling of the preaching of the Prophets, although the latter ende of it bee as yet looked for of the verie Angels. ] Of the which saluation ye Prophets haue inquired and searched, which prophecied of the grace that should come vnto you,
11 Searching when or what time the Spirite which testified before of Christ which was in them, shoulde declare the sufferings that should come vnto Christ, and the glorie that shoulde followe.
12 Vnto whome it was reueiled, that not vnto themselues, but vnto vs they shoulde minister the things, which are nowe shewed vnto you by them which haue preached vnto you the Gospell by the holy Ghost [Note: [f] Hee alladeth to the prophecie of Ioel, which was exhibited, vpon the day of Pentecost, in the Apostles, as it were in the first fruites of the holy Ghost, which this same our Peter declareth, Actes 2.6. ] sent downe from heauen, the which things the Angels desire to beholde.
13 [Note:  Hee goeth from faith to hope, which is in deede a companion that cannot bee sundred from faith: and hee vseth an argument taken of comparison: Wee ought not to bee wearied in looking for so excellent a thing, which the very Angels waite for with great desire. ] Wherefore, [Note: [g] This is a borowed speach, taken of a common vsage amongest them: for by reason that they woare long garments, they coulde not trauaile vnlesse they girded vp themselues: and hence it is that Christ sayde, Let your loynes bee girded vp. ] girde vp the Ioynes of your minde: bee sober, [Note:  Hee setteth foorth very briefly, what maner of hope ours ought to bee, to witte, continuall, vntill wee enioy the thing wee hope for: then, what wee haue to hope for, to witte, grace (that is, free saluation) reueiled to vs in the Gospell, and not that, that men doe rashly and fondly promise to themselues. ] and trust [Note: [h] Soundlie and sincerelie. ] perfectly on that grace [Note:  An argument to stirre vp our mindes, seeing that God doeth not waite till wee seeke him, but causeth so great a benefite to bee brought euen vnto vs. ] that is brought vnto you, [Note:  Hee setteth out the ende of faith, least any man shoulde promise himselfe, either sooner or later that full saluation, to witte, the later comming of Christ: and therewithall warneth vs, not to measure the dignitie of the Gospell according to the present state, seeing that that which we are nowe, is not yet reueiled. ] in the reuelation of Iesus Christ,
[The price of our redemption.]
14 [Note:  Hee passeth from faith and hope, to the fruites of them both, which are vnderstoode in the name of obediece: And it consisteth in two thinges, in renouncing our lustes, and liuing godly: which lustes haue their beginning of that blindenes wherein all men are borne: but holines proceedeth from the grace and fauour of GOD which adopteth vs, and therefore regenerateth vs, that the father and the children may be of one disposition. ] As obedient children, not fashioning your selues vnto the former lustes of your ignorance:
15 But as hee which hath called you, is holie, so be yee holie in [Note: Luke 1.75. ] all maner of conuersation;
16 [Note:  Hee sheweth that sanctification doeth necessarilie followe adoption. ] Because it is written, [Note: Leuit.11.44. and 19.2. and 20.7. ] Be yee holie, for I am holie.
17 [Note:  As before he distinguished true faith and hope from false, so doeth hee nowe obedience, setting the quicke and sharpe sight of God, against an outward maske, and earnest reuerence against vaine seueritie. ] And if ye [Note: [i] If you will bee called the sonnes of that Father. ] call him Father, which without [Note: Deuteronomie 10.17. romanes 2.11. galathians 2 6. ] respect of person iudgeth according to euery mans woorke, passe the time of your dwelling here in feare,
18 [Note:  An exhortation, wherein hee setteth foorth the excellencie and greatnesse of the benefite of God the Father in sanctifying vs by the death of his owne Sonne. And hee partly setteth the purifyinges of the Lawe against the thing it selfe, that is, against the blood of Christ, and partly also mens traditions. which hee condemneth as vtterly vaine and superstitious, bee they neuer so olde and auncient. ] Knowing that yee were not redeemed with corruptible things, as siluer and golde, from your vaine conuersation, receiued by the traditions of the fathers,
19 [Note: 1.Corinthians 6.20. and 7.23. hebrues 9.14. 1.iohn 1.7. reuelations 1.5. ] But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a Lambe vndefiled, and without spot.
20 [Note:  The taking away of an obiection: what was done to the worlde, before that Christ was sent into the worlde? was there no holinesse before, and was there no Church? The Apostle answereth, that Christ was ordeined and appoynted to redeeme and deliuer mankinde, before that mankinde was: much lesse was there any Church without him before his comming into the flesh: yet wo are happiest aboue the rest, to whome Christ was exhibited in deede, in this that hee hauing suffered and ouercome death for vs, doeth nowe most effectually woorke in vs by the vertue of his Spirite, to create in vs faith, hope, and charitie. ] Which was [Note: Romanes 16.25. ephesians 3.9. colosians 1.26. 2. Timothie 1 10. titus 1.2. ] ordeined before the [Note: [k] From euerlasting. ] foundation of the world, but was declared in the last times for your sakes,
21 Which by his meanes doe beleeue in God that raised him from the dead, and gaue him glorie, that your faith and hope might bee in God,
22 [Note:  Hee commendeth the practise of obedience, that is, charitie: earnestly beating into their heades againe, that hee speaketh not of any common charitie, and such as proceedeth from that our corrupt nature, but of that whose beginning is the Spirite of God, which purifieth our soules through the woorde laide holde on by faith, and ingendreth also in vs a spirituall and euerlasting life, as God him selfe is most pure and truely liuing. ] Hauing purified your soules in obeying the trueth through the spirite, to [Note: Chapter 2.17. romanes 2.10. ephesians 4.2. ] loue brotherly without faining, loue one another with a pure heart feruently,
23 Being borne anewe, not of mortall seede, but of immortall, by the woorde of God, who liueth and endureth for euer.
24 [Note:  A reason why wee haue neede of this heauenly generation, to witte, because that men, bee their glorie neuer so great, are of nature voyde of all true and sounde goodnesse. ] For all [Note: Esai 40.6. iames 1.10. ] [Note: [l] The woorde (Flesh) sheweth the weakenesse of our nature, which is chiefly to bee considered in the flesh it selfe. ] flesh is as grasse, and all the glorie of man is as the flower of grasse. The grasse withereth, and the flower falleth away.
25 [Note:  Againe lest any man shoulde seeke that spirituall force and vertue in fained imaginations, the Apostle calleth vs backe to the woorde of God: teaching vs furthermore, that there is no other woorde of the Lorde to bee looked for, then this which is preached, in which onely we must rest. ] But the woorde of the Lorde endureth for euer: and this is the woorde which is preached among you.
[A stone in Sion.]
1 Hee exhorteth the newe borne in faith, to leade their liues answerable to the same: 6 and lest their faith should stagger, hee bringeth in that which was foretolde touching Christ. 11 Then hee willeth them to be obedient to Magistrates, 21 and that they patiently beare aduersitie after Christes example.
1 Wherefore, [Note: Rom.6.4. ephes.4.23. col.3.8. heb.12.1. ] [Note:  Hauing laid for the foudation the Spirit of God effectually working by the worde, and hauing built thereupo three vertues which are the groundes of all Christian actions, to wit, faith, hope, and charitie: nowe he proceedeth to a generall exhortation, the first member whereof is, that we flee all shewe, both of secrete and also open malice. ] laying aside all maliciousnes, and all guile, and dissimulation, and enuie, and all euill speaking,
2 [Note:  The second is, that being newly begotten & borne of the newe seede of the vncorrupt word, drawing & sucking greedily the same worde as milke, we shoulde more and more as it were growe vp in that spirituall life. And hee calleth it, Syncere, not onely because it is a most pure thing, but also that we should take heede of them which corrupt it. ] As [Note: [a] As becommeth newe men. ] newe borne babes desire that sincere milke of the woorde, that yee may growe thereby,
3 [Note:  Hee commendeth that spirituall nourishment for the sweetenesse and profite of it. ] Because yee [Note: Or, doe taste. ] haue tasted that the Lorde is bountifull.
4 [Note:  Hee goeth on forwarde in the same exhortation, but vseth another kinde of borowed speache, alluding to the Temple. Therefore he sayth, that the companie of the faithfull is as it were a certaine holy and spirituall building, built of liuely stones, the foundation whereof is Christ, as a liuely stone susteining all that are ioyned vnto him with his liuing vertue, and knitting them together with himselfe, although this so great a treasure bee neglected of men. ] To whome comming as vnto a liuing stone disalowed of men, but chosen of God and precious,
5 Yee also as liuely stones, bee made a spirituall house, [Note:  Going forwarde in the same similitude, hee compareth vs nowe to Priestes, placed to this ende in that spirituall temple, that we shoulde serue him with a spirituall worship, that is, with holinesse and righteousnesse: but as the temple, so is the Priesthoode built vpon Christ, in whome onely all our spirituall offerings are accepted. ] an holy [Note: Reuel.1.6. ] Priesthoode to offer vp spirituall sacrifices acceptable to God by Iesus Christ.
6 [Note:  Hee prooueth it by the testimonie of the Prophet Esai. ] Wherefore also it is conteyned in the Scripture, [Note: Esa.28.16. rom.9.33. ] Beholde, I put in Sion a chiefe corner stone, elect and precious: and hee that beleeueth therein, shall not be ashamed.
7 [Note:  By setting the most blessed condition of the beleeuers, and the most miserable of the rebellious one against the other, he pricketh forwarde the beleeuers, and triumpheth ouer the other: and also preuenteth an offence which ariseth hereof, that none doe more resist this doctrine of the Gospell, then they which are chiefest amongest the people of God, as were at that time that Peter wrote these things, the Priestes, and Elders, and Scribes. Therefore hee answereth first of all that there is no cause why any man should be astonished at this their stubbernesse as though it were a strange matter, seeing we haue beene forewarned so long before, that it should so come to passe: and moreouer, that it pleased God to create and make certaine to this selfe same purpose, that the Sonne of God might bee glorified in their iust condemnation. Thirdly, for that the glorie of Christ is hereby set foorth greatly, where as notwithstanding Christ remaineth the sure head of his Church, and they that stumble at him, cast downe and ouerthrowe themselues and not Christ. Fourthly, although they be created to this ende and purpose, yet their fall and decaie is not to be attributed to God, but to their owne obstinate stubbernesse which commeth betweene Gods decree, and the execution thereof or their condemnation, and is the true and proper cause of their destruction. ] Vnto you therefore which beleeue, it is precious: but vnto them which be disobedient, the [Note: Psal.118.22. matt.21.42. acts 4.11. ] stone which the builders disalowed, the same is made the head of the corner,
8 And a [Note: Esa.8.14. rom.9.33. ] stone to stumble at, and a rocke of offence, euen to them which stumble at the woorde, being disobedient, vnto the which thing they were euen ordeined.
9 [Note:  The contrarie member, to witte, hee describeth the singular excellencie of the elect, and also lest any man shoulde doubt whether hee bee chosen or not, the Apostle calleth vs backe to the effectuall calling, that is, to the voyce of the Gospell sounding both in our eares and mindes by the outwarde preaching and Sacraments, whereby we may certainely vnderstande that euerlasting decree of our saluation, (which otherwise is most secrete and hidden) and that through the onely mercie of God, who freely chuseth and calleth vs. Therefore this onely remaineth, sayeth he, that by all meanes possible we set foorth so great goodnesse of the most mightie God. ] But yee are a chosen generation, a royall [Note: Exodus 19.6. ] Priesthoode, an holy nation, a people set at libertie,
[To obey magistrates.]
that yee shoulde shewe foorth the vertues of him that hath called you out of darkenesse into his marueilous light,
10 [Note: Hos.2.23. rom.9.25. ] Which in time past were not a people, yet are nowe the people of God: which in time past were not vnder mercie, but nowe haue obteined mercie.
11 [Note:  He returneth to that generall exhortation. ] Dearely beloued, [Note:  A reason why wee ought to liue holilie, to witte, because we are citizens of heauen, and therefore wee ought to liue according to the Lawes not of this worlde which is most corrupt, but of the heauenly citie, although we bee strangers in the world. ] I beseeche you, as strangers and pilgrims, [Note: Rom.13.14. galat.5.16. ] [Note:  Another argument: The children of God liue not according to the flesh, that is, according to that corrupt nature, but according to the spirite. Therefore fleshly motions ought not to beare rule in vs. ] absteine from fleshly lusts, [Note:  The thirde argument: for although those lustes flatter vs, yet they cease not to fight against our saluation. ] which fight against the soule,
12 [Note:  The fourth argument, taken of the profite of so doing: for by this meanes also wee prouide for our good name and estimation, whilest wee compell them at length to chaunge their mindes, which spake euill of vs. ] [Note: Chapter 3.16. ] And haue your conuersation honest among the Gentiles, that they which speake euill of you as of euill doers, [Note:  The fifth argument, which also is of great force: Because the glorie of God is greatly set foorth by that meanes, whilest by example of our honest life, euen the most prophane men are brought vnto God, and submit themselues vnto him. ] may by your [Note: Matth.5.16. ] good woorkes which they shall see, glorifie God in the day of [Note: [b] When God shall also haue mercie on them. ] visitation.
13 [Note:  That which hee spake generallie, hee nowe expoundeth by partes, describing seuerallie euerie mans duetie. And first of all hee speaketh of obedience which is due both to the Lawes, and also to the Magistrates, both higher and lower. ] [Note: Roman.13.1. ] Therefore submit your selues vnto [Note: [c] By ordinance, is meant the framing and ordering of ciuill gouernement: which hee calleth ordinance of man, not because man inuented it, but because it is proper to men. ] all maner ordinance of man [Note:  The first argument: because the Lorde is the Authour and reuenger of this pollicie of men, that is, which is set amongest men: and therefore the true seruauntes of the Lorde must aboue all others bee diligent obseruers of this order. ] for the Lordes sake, [Note:  He preuenteth a cauill which is made by some, that say they will obey Kinges and the higher Magistrates, and yet contemne their ministers: as though their ministers were not armed with their authoritie which sent them. ] whether it be vnto the King, as vnto the superiour,
14 Or vnto gouernours, as vnto them that are sent of him, [Note:  The seconde argument taken of the ende of this order, which is not onely most profitable, but also verie necessarie: seeing that by this meanes vertue is rewarded, and vice punished: wherein the quietnesse and happinesse of this life consisteth. ] for the punishment of euill doers, and for the praise of them that doe well.
15 [Note:  Hee declareth the first argument more amplie, shewing that Christian libertie doeth amongest all thinges least or not at all consist herein, to witte, to cast off the bridle of Lawes, (as at that time some altogether vnskilfull in the kingdome of God reported) but rather in this, that liuing holilie according to the wil of God, wee shoulde make manifest to all men, that the Gospell is not a cloke for sinne and wickednesse, seeing we are in such sort free, that yet wee are still the seruaunts of God and not of sinne. ] For so is the will of God, that by well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of the foolish men,
16 As free, and not as hauing the libertie for a cloke of maliciousnesse, but as the seruauntes of God.
17 [Note:  Hee diuideth the ciuill life of man, by occasion of those thinges which hee spake, into two generall partes: to witte, into those dueties which priuate men owe to priuate men, and especially the faithfull to the faithfull, and into that subiection whereby inferiours are bound to their superiours: but so, that kings be not made equall to God, seeing that feare is due to God, and honour to kinges. ] [Note: [d] Bee charitable and duetifull towardes all men. ] Honour all men: [Note: Chapter 1.22. roman.12.10. ] loue [Note: [e] The assemblie and fellowship of the brethren, as Zacharie 11.14. ] brotherly fellowship: feare God: honour the King.
18 [Note: Ephes.5.6. coloss.3.22. ] [Note:  Hee goeth to the duetie of seruaunts towardes their masters, which he describeth with these boundes, that seruaunts submit themselues willingly and not by constraint, not onely to the good and courteous, but also to the frowarde and sharpe masters. ] Seruaunts, be subiect to your masters with all feare, not onely to the good and courteous, but also to the froward.
19 [Note: 2.Cor.7.10. ] [Note:  The taking away of an obiection: In deede the condition of seruaunts is hard, especially if they haue froward masters: but this their subiection shall be so much the more acceptable to God, if his wil preuaile more with seruants, then the masters iniuries. ] For this is thanke worthie, if a man
for [Note: [f] Because he maketh a conscience of it to offend God, by whose good will and appointment he knoweth this burden is layed vpon him. ] conscience toward God endure griefe, suffering wrongfully.
20 For what praise is it, if when ye be buffeted for your faultes, yee take it paciently? but and if when ye doe well, ye suffer wrong and take it paciently, this is acceptable to God.
21 [Note:  He mitigateth the grieuousnes of seruitude, while he sheweth plainely, that Christ died also for seruants, that they should beare so much the more paciently this inequalitie betwixt men which are of one selfe same nature: moreouer setting before them Christ that Lord of Lords for an ensample, he signifieth that they cannot but seeme too delicate, which shewe themselues more grieued in bearing of iniuries, then Christ himselfe who was most iust, and most sharpely of all afflicted, and yet was most pacient. ] For hereunto ye are called: for Christ also suffred for you, leauing you an [Note: [g] A borowed kinde of speach taken of painters and scholemasters. ] ensample that ye should folow his steppes.
22 [Note: Esa.53.9. 1.ioh.3.5. ] Who did no sinne, neither was there guile found in his mouth.
23 Who when hee was reuiled, reuiled not againe: when hee suffered, hee threatned not, but [Note:  He sheweth them a remedie against iniuries, to wit, that they commend their cause to God, by the ensample of Christ. ] comitted it to him [Note:  He seemeth now to turne his speach to masters, which haue also themselues a master and iudge in heauen, who will iustly reuenge the iniuries that are done to seruants, without any respect of persons. ] that iudgeth righteously.
24 [Note: Esai.53.5. matth 8.17. ] [Note:  He calleth the seruants backe from the cosideration of the iniuries which they are constrained to beare, to thinke vpon the greatnes and the end of the benefite receiued of Christ. ] Who his owne selfe bare our sinnes in his body on the tree, that we being dead to sinne, should liue in righteousnesse: by whose stripes ye were healed.
25 For ye were as sheepe going astray: but are nowe returned vnto the shepheard and Bishop of your soules.
1 That Christian women shoulde not contemne their husbandes though they bee infidels, 5 hee bringeth in examples of godly women. 8 Generall exhortations, 14 paciently to beare persecutions, 15 and boldly to yeelde a reason of their faith. 18 Christes example.
1 Likewise [Note: Coloß.3.18. ephes.5.22. ] [Note:  In the thirde place hee setteth foorth the wiues dueties to their husbandes, commanding them to be obedient. ] let the wiues bee subiect to their husbandes, [Note:  Hee speaketh namely of them which had husbads that were not Christians, which ought so much the more be subiect to their husbandes, that by their honest and chast conuersation they may gaine them to the Lord. ] that euen they which obey not the worde, may without the worde be wonne by the conuersation of the wiues,
2 While they beholde your pure conuersation, which is with feare.
3 [Note: 1.Timoth.2.9. ] [Note:  He condemneth the riot and excesse of women, and setteth forth their true apparelling, such as is precious before God, to wit, the inward and incorruptible, which consisteth in a meeke & quiet spirit. ] Whose apparelling, let it not be that outwarde, with broyded heare, and golde put about, or in putting on of apparell:
4 But let it bee the [Note: [a] Who hath his seate fastened in the heart: so that the hidde man is set against the outwarde decking of the body. ] hidde man of the heart, which consisteth in the incorruption of a meeke and quiet spirite, which is [Note: [b] Precious in deede, and so taken of God. ] before God a thing much set by.
5 [Note:  An argument taken of the example of women, & especially of Sara, which was the mother of al beleeuers. ] For euen after this maner in time past did the holy women, which trusted in God, tire them selues, and were subiect to their husbands.
6 As Sara obeyed Abraham, and [Note: Gen.18.12. ] called him Sir: whose daughters ye are, whiles yee doe well, [Note:  Because women are of nature fearefull, he giueth them to vnderstand that he requireth of them that subiection, which is not wrung out of them either by force or feare. ] not being afraide of any terrour.
7 [Note: 1.Cor.7.3. ] [Note:  He teacheth husbands also their dueties, to wit, that the more vnderstanding and wisdome they haue, the more wisely & circumspectly they behaue themselues. ] Likewise ye husbands, [Note: [c] Do all the dueties of wedlocke. ] dwel with them as men of [Note: [d] The more wisdome the husbad hath, the more circumspectly he must behaue himselfe in bearing those discommodities, which through the womans weakenes oft times cause trouble both to the husband and the wife. ] knowledge, [Note:  The second argument: because the wife, notwithstanding that she is weaker by nature then the man, is an excellent instrument of the man, made to farre most excellent vses: whereupon it followeth, that she is not therefore to be neglected because she is weake, but on the contrary part she ought to be so much the more cared for. ] giuing [Note: [e] Hauing an honest care of her. ] honour vnto
[Suffer for righteousnesse.]
the woman, as vnto the weaker [Note: [f] The woma is called a veßel after the maner of the Hebrues, because the husband vseth her as his felowe & helper to liue faithfully before God. ] vessell, [Note:  The third argument: for that they are equal in that which is ye chiefest (that is to say, in the benefit of eternal life) which otherwise are vnequall as touching the gouernace and conuersation at home, & therefore they are not to be despised although they be weake. ] euen as they which are heires together of the [Note: [g] Of that gracious and free benefite, whereby we haue euerlasting life giuen vs. ] grace of life, [Note:  The fourth argument: All brawlings and chidings must be eschewed, because they hinder prayers & the whole seruice of God, whereunto both the husband and the wife are equally called. ] that your prayers be not interrupted.
8 [Note:  He returneth to common exhortations, and commendeth concorde and whatsoeuer thinges perteine to the maintenance of peace and mutuall loue. ] Finally, be ye all of one minde: one suffer with another: loue as brethren: bee pitifull: bee courteous,
9 [Note: Prouer.17.13. and 20.22. matth.5.39. rom.12.17. 1.theß.5.15. ] [Note:  Wee must not onely not recompense iniurie for iniurie, but we must also recompense them with benefites. ] Not rendring euil for euill, neither rebuke for rebuke: but contrarywise blesse, [Note:  An argument taken of comparison: Seeing that we our selues are called of God whom we offend so often, to so great a benefite, (so farre is he from reuenging the iniuries which we doe vnto him,) shall wee rather make our selues vnworthy of so great bountifulnesse, then forgiue one anothers faults? And from this verse to the end of the Chapter, there is a digression or going from the matter hee is in hande with, to exhort vs valiantly to beare afflictions. ] knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should be heires of blessing.
10 [Note: Psal.34.13. ] [Note:  A secret obiection: But this our patience shalbe nothing els but a fleshing and hardening of the wicked in their wickednes, to make them set vpon vs more boldly and destroye vs. Nay (saith the Apostle by the wordes of Dauid) to liue without doing hurt, and to followe after peace when it fleeth away, is the way to that happy and quiet peace. And if so be any man be afflicted for doing iustly, the Lorde marketh all thinges, and will in his time deliuer the godly, which cry vnto him, and will destroye the wicked. ] For if any man long after life, and to [Note: [h] Leade a bleßed and happie life. ] see good dayes, let him refraine his tongue from euill, and his lippes that they speake no guile.
11 [Note: Esay.1.16. ] Let him eschew euil, and do good: let him seeke peace, and folow after it.
12 For the eyes of the Lord are ouer the righteous, & his eares are open vnto their prayers: and the [Note: [i] This worde (Face) after the maner of the Hebrewes, is taken for (anger.) ] face of the Lord is against them that do euil.
13 [Note:  The seconde argument: when the wicked are prouoked, they are more wayward: therefore they must rather be ouercome with good turnes. And if they cannot be gotten by that meanes also, yet notwithstanding we shall bee blessed, if wee suffer for righteousnesse sake. ] And who is it that will harme you, if ye folow that which is good?
14 [Note: Matth.5.10. ] Notwithstanding blessed are ye, if ye suffer for righteousnes sake. [Note:  A most certaine counsell in afflictions, be they neuer so terrible, to bee of a constant minde, and to stande fast. But howe shall wee attaine vnto it? If wee sanctifie God in our mindes and heartes, that is to say, if we rest vpon him as one that is Almightie, that loueth mankinde, that is good and true in deede. ] Yea, [Note: Esa. 8.12,13. ] feare not their [Note: [k] Be not dismaide as they are. ] feare, neither be troubled.
15 But [Note: [l] Giue him all praise and glorie, and hang onely on him. ] sanctifie the Lord God in your hearts: [Note:  Hee will haue vs, when wee are afflicted for righteousnesse sake, to be carefull not for redeeming of our life, either with denying or renouncing the trueth, or with like violence, or any such meanes: but rather to giue an accompt of our faith boldly, and yet with a meeke spirit, and full of godly reuerence, that the enemies may not haue any thing iustly to obiect, but may rather be ashamed of themselues. ] and be ready alwayes to giue an answere to euery man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you, with meekenesse and reuerence,
16 Hauing a good coscience, yt whe they speake euill of you as of euill doers, they may be ashamed, which slander your good conuersation in Christ.
17 [Note:  A reason which standeth vpon two generall rules of Christianitie, which notwithstanding all men allowe not of. The one is, if we must needes suffer afflictions, it is better to suffer wrongfully then rightfully: the other is this, because wee are so afflicted not by happe, but by the will of our God. ] For it is better (if the will of God be so) that ye suffer for well doing, then for euil doing.
18 [Note: Rom.5.6. hebr.9.15. ] [Note:  A proofe of either of the rules, by the example of Christ himselfe our chiefe paterne, who was afflicted not for his owne sinnes (which were none) but for ours, and that according to his Fathers decree. ] For Christ also hath once suffered for sinnes, [Note:  An argument taken of comparison: Christ the iust, suffered for vs that are vniust, and shal it grieue vs which are vniust to suffer for the Iustes cause? ] the iust for the vniust, [Note:  An other argument being partly taken of things coupled together, to wit, because Christ bringeth vs to his Father that same way that hee went himselfe, and partly from the cause efficient: to wit, because Christ is not onely set before vs for an example to followe, but also hee holdeth vs vp by his vertue in all the difficulties of this life, vntill he bring vs to his Father. ] that he might [Page]
[To cease from sinne.]
bring vs to God, [Note:  An other argument taken of the happie ende of these afflictions, wherein also Christ goeth before vs both in example and vertue, as one who suffered most grieuous torments euen vnto death, although but in one part onely of him, to wit, in the flesh or mans nature: but yet became conquerour by the vertue of his diuinitie. ] and was put to death concerning the [Note: [m] As touching his manhoode, for his body was dead, and his soule felt the sorowes of death. ] flesh, but was quickened by the spirit.
19 [Note:  A secret obiection: Christ in deede might do this, but what is that to vs? Yes (saith the Apostle) for Christ hath shewed forth this vertue in all ages both to the preseruation of the godly, were they neuer so few and miserable, and to reuenge the rebellion of his enemies, as it appeareth by the historie of the flood: for Christ is he which in those dayes (when God through his patience appointed a time of repentance to the worlde) was present, not in corporall presence, but by his diuine vertue, preaching repentance, euen by the mouth of Noe himselfe who then prepared the Arke, to those disobedient spirits which are now in prison, waiting for the full recompence of their rebellion, and saued those few (that is, eight only persons) in the water. ] By [Note: By the vertue of which Spirit, that is to say, of the diuinitie: therefore this word, Spirit, cannot in this place be taken for the soule, vnlesse we will say, that Christ was raised vp againe & quickened by the vertue of his soule. ] the which hee also went, and preached vnto the [Note: He calleth them spirits, in respect of his time, not in respect of the time that they were in the flesh. ] spirits that are in prison.
20 Which were in time passed disobedient, when [Note: [n] This word (once) sheweth that there was a furthermost day appointed, and if that were once past, there should be no more. ] once the long suffering of God abode in the dayes of [Note: Gen.6 14. matth.24.38. luke 17.26. ] Noe, while the Arke was preparing, wherein fewe, that is, eight [Note: [o] Men. ] soules were saued in the water.
21 [Note:  A proportionall applying of the former example to the times which folowed the coming of Christ: for that preseruatio of Noe in the waters, was a figure of our Baptisme, not as though that material water of Baptisme saueth vs, as those waters which bare vp the Arke saued Noe, but because Christ with his inward vertue, which the outward baptisme shadoweth, preserueth vs being washed, so that we may call vpo God with a good conscience. ] Whereof the baptisme that nowe is, answering that figure, (which is not a putting away of the filth of the flesh, but a confident demaunding which a good conscience maketh to [Note: [p] The conscience being sanctified may freely call vpon God. ] God) saueth vs also [Note:  That selfe same vertue, whereby Christ rose againe, and now being caried vp into heauen hath receiued all power, doeth at this day defend and preserue vs. ] by the resurrection of Iesus Christ,
22 Which is at the right hande of God, gone into heauen, to whome the Angels, and Powers, and might are subiect.
1 Hee bringeth in Christes example, and applieth it 6 to the mortifying of the flesh, especially commending Charitie: 12 And so intreateth of patience. 17 That it is necessarie that correction beginne at the Church.
1 Forasmuch [Note:  Hauing ended his digression and sliding from his matter, now he returneth to the exhortation which he brake off, taking occasion by that which he said touching the death and resurrection of Christ, so defining our sanctification, that to be sanctified, is all one as to suffer in the flesh, that is to say, to leaue off from our wickednes and viciousnes: and to rise againe to God, that is to say, to be renued by the vertue of the holy Ghost, that we may lead the rest of our life which remaineth, after the wil of God. ] then as Christ hath suffered for vs in the flesh, arme your selues likewise with the same minde, which is, that he which hath suffered in the flesh, hath ceased from sinne,
2 That he hence forward should liue (as much time as [Note: [a] So much of this present life as remaineth yet to bee passed ouer. ] remaineth in the flesh) not after the lusts of men, but after the will of God.
3 [Note: Eph.4.22. ] [Note:  By putting vs in minde of the dishonestie of our former life led in the filth of sinne, he calleth vs to earnest repetance. ] For it is sufficient for vs that we haue spet the time past of ye life, after the [Note: [b] Wickedly & licenciously after the maner of the Gentiles. ] lust of the Gentiles, walking in wantonnes, lustes, drunkenes, in gluttonie, drinkings, & in abominable idolatries.
4 [Note:  That we be not moued with the enemies peruerse & slanderous iudgemets of vs, we haue to set against them that last iudgmet of God which remaineth for them: for none, whether they be then foud liuing, or were dead before, shal escape it. ] Wherein it seemeth to them [Note: [c] They thinke it a new & strange matter. ] strange, that yee runne not with them vnto the same excesse of riot: therefore speake they euill of you,
5 Which shall giue accounts to him, that is readie to iudge quicke and dead.
6 [Note:  A digression: because he made mention of the last generall iudgement. And he preueteth an obiection, that, seeing Christ came very lately, they may seeme to be excusable which died before. But this the Apostle denieth: for (saith he) this selfe same Gospel was preached vnto them also (for he speaketh vnto the Iewes,) and that to the same ende that I now preach it vnto you, to wit, that the flesh being abolished and put away (that is to say, that wicked & naughty corruption which reigneth in me) they should suffer theselues to be gouerned by the vertue of the Spirit of God. ] For vnto this purpose was the Gospell
[God beginneth at his.]
preached also vnto the dead, that they might bee condemned, according to men in the flesh, but might liue according to God in the spirit.
7 [Note:  He returneth to his purpose, vsing an argument taken from the circumstance of the time, Because the last ende is at hande, and therefore we must so much the more diligently watch and pray, with true sobrietie of minde. ] Now the ende of all things is at hand. Be ye therefore sober, and watching in prayer.
8 [Note:  He commendeth charitie of one towards another, because it doth as it were burie a multitude of sinnes, and therefore preserueth and mainteineth peace and concord: for they that loue one another, doe easily forgiue one another their offences. ] But aboue all thinges haue feruent loue among you: [Note: Prouer.10.12. ] for loue shall couer the multitude of sinnes.
9 [Note:  Of all the dueties of charitie, he commendeth one namely, which was at that time most necessarie, to wit, hospitalitie, which he will haue to be voluntarily and most courteous and bountifull. ] Be ye [Note: Rom.12.13. hebr.13.2. ] harberous one to another, without grudging.
10 [Note:  Hee sheweth the vse of charitie, to wit, that euery man bestow that gift which he hath receiued, to the profit of his neighbour. ] [Note: Rom.12.6. philip.2.14. ] Let euery man as hee hath receiued the gift, minister the same one to another, [Note:  A reason, because that what gift so euer we haue, wee haue receiued it of God vpon this condition, to bee his disposers and stewards. ] as good disposers of the manifolde grace of God.
11 [Note:  He reckoneth vp two kindes of these gifts as chiefe, to wit, the office of teaching in the Church, and the other ecclesiasticall functions, wherein two thinges especially are to bee obserued: to wit, that the pure worde of God be taught, and whatsoeuer is done, bee referred to the glory of God the Father in Christ, as to the proper marke. ] If any man speake, let him speake as the wordes of God. If any man minister, let him do it as of the abilitie which God ministreth, that God in al things may be glorified through Iesus Christ, to whome is prayse and dominion for euer, and euer, Amen.
12 [Note:  Because the crosse is ioyned with the sincere profession of religion, the Apostle fitly repeateth that which he touched before, warning vs not to bee troubled at persecutions and afflictions, as at a newe and strange thing. ] Dearely beloued, thinke it not [Note: [d] As though some newe thing had befallen you, which you neuer thought of before. ] strange [Note:  The first reason: Because the Lorde meaneth not to consume vs with this fire (as it were) but to purge vs of our drosse and make vs perfite. ] concerning the firie triall, which is among you to proue you, as though some strange thing were come vnto you:
13 [Note:  An other reason: Because the afflictions of the godly and the wicked differ very much, and chiefly in three pointes. First, because the godly communicate with Christ in their afflictions, and therefore shall in their time bee partakers also of his glory. ] But reioyce, in asmuch as ye are partakers of Christs suffrings, that when his glory shall appeare, ye may be glad and reioyce.
14 [Note: Matth. 5.10. ] [Note:  Secondly, because that although the infidels thinke farre otherwise, who in afflicting the godly blaspheme God, yet the godly in that they are so rayled vpon, are honoured of God with the true spirituall glorie, and their adoption is sealed in them by the Spirit of God. ] If yee be railed vpon for the Name of Christ, blessed are ye: for the [Note: [e] By spirit, he meaneth the giftes of the spirit. ] spirit of glory, and of God resteth vpon you: which on their part is euill spoken of: but on your part is glorified.
15 [Note:  The thirde difference: for the godly are not afflicted for their euill doings, but for righteousnesse sake as Christians: whereby it commeth to passe that the crosse, seeing it is a testimonie vnto them of faith and righteousnes, ministreth to them not an occasion of sorow, but of vnspeakeable ioye: nowe the Apostle propoundeth this third difference vnder the forme of an exhortation. ] But let none of you suffer as a murtherer, or as a thiefe, or an euil doer, or as a busibodie in other mens matters.
16 But if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not bee ashamed: but let him glorifie God in this behalfe.
17 [Note:  The thirde reason: Because the Lord of all the worlde being especially carefull for them of his housholde, doeth therefore chastise them first of all, yet so that he keepeth a measure in his greatest seueritie. And as he hath alwayes vsed to doe heretofore, so doeth he now especially when as he exhibited himselfe in person to his Church. ] For the time is come, that iudgement must beginne at the house of God. [Note:  Least the godly should be offended & stumble at that vaine shadow of felicitie of the wicked, as though God were not the gouernour of the world, for that the wicked are in good case & the godly in euill, the Apostle teacheth by an argument of a comparison of them together, that God who spareth not his owne, but nourtereth them vnder the crosse, wil at length in his time handle the rebellious and wicked farre otherwise, whom he hath appointed to vtter destruction. ] If it first beginne at vs, what shall the ende be of them which obey not the Gospel of God?
18 [Note: Prou.2.31. ] And if the righteous scarcely bee saued,
[Feede Gods flocke.]
where shall the vngodly and the sinner appeare?
19 [Note:  The conclusion: Seeing the godly are not afflicted by chance, but by the will of God, they ought not to despaire, but goe forwarde notwithstanding in the way of holinesse and well doing, commending themselues to God their faithfull Creator, that is to say, their Father. ] Wherefore let them that suffer according to the will of God, commit their soules to him in well doing, as vnto a faithfull Creator.
1 Hee warneth the Elders not to vsurpe authoritie ouer the Church, 5 willing the yonger sort to be willing to be taught, and to be modest, 8 to be sober and watchfull to resist the cruell aduersarie.
1 The [Note:  Hee describeth peculiarly the office of the Elders, that is to say, of them that haue the care of the Church. ] elders which are among you, [Note:  He vseth a preface touching the circumstance of his owne person: to wit, that hee as their companion communeth with them not of matters which he knoweth not, but wherin he is as well experienced as any, and propoundeth vnto them no other condition but that which hee him selfe hath susteined before them, & doeth stil take the same paines, and also hath one selfe same hope together with them. ] I beseech which am also an elder, and a witnesse of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shalbe reueiled,
2 [Note:  The first rule: He that is a shepheard, let him feede the flocke. ] [Note: [a] He saith not, offer for the quicke and the dead, and sing patched shreds in a strange tongue, but, (feed.) ] Feede the [Note:  The second: Let the shepheard consider, that the flock is not his, but Gods. ] flocke of God, which [Note:  The third: Let not shepheards inuade other mens flocks, but let them feede that which God hath committed vnto them. ] dependeth vpo you, [Note:  Let the shepheards gouerne the Church wt the word, and example of godly & vnblameable life, not by constraint, but willingly, not for filthie lucre, but of a ready mind, not as lords ouer Gods portion & heritage, but as his ministers. ] caring for it not by constraint, but willingly: not for filthy lucre, but of a ready minde:
3 Not as though ye were lords ouer Gods [Note: [b] Which is the Christian people. ] heritage, but that yee may bee ensamples to the flocke.
4 [Note:  That the shepheards mindes be not ouercome either with the wickednes of men, or their crueltie, he warneth them to cast their eyes continually vpon that chiefe shepheard, and the crowne which is layde vp for them in heauen. ] And when that chiefe shepheard shal appeare, ye shall receiue an incorruptible crowne of glory.
5 [Note:  He commendeth many peculiar Christian vertues, and especially modestie: which admonition all of vs stand in neede of, but especially the yonger sort, by reason of the vntowardnes and pride of that age. ] Likewise ye yonger, submit your selues vnto the elders, & submit your selues euery man, one to another: [Note: Rom.12.10. ] decke your selues inwardly in
[The roaring lyon.]
lowlinesse of minde: [Note:  Because pride seemeth to many, to be the way vnto the glory of this life, the Apostle witnesseth on the contrary side, that ignominie and shame is the reward of pride, and glory the reward of modestie. ] for [Note: Iames 4.6. ] God resisteth the proude, and giueth grace to the humble.
6 Humble [Note: Iames 4.10. ] your selues therefore [Note:  Because those proude and loftie spirits threaten the modest and humble, the Apostle warneth vs to set the power of God against the vanitie of proude men, and to hang wholy vpon his prouidence. ] vnder the mightie hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time.
7 [Note: Psal.55.23. matt.6.25. luke 12.22. ] Cast all your care on him: for he careth for you.
8 [Note:  The crueltie of Satan who seeketh by all meanes to deuoure vs, is ouercome by watchfulnes and fayth. ] Be sober, and watch: for [Note: Luke 22.31. ] your aduersarie the deuil as a roaring lyon walketh about, seeking whom he may deuoure:
9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, [Note:  The persecutions which Satan stirreth vp, are neither newe nor proper to any one man, but from olde and ancient time common to the whole Church, and therefore we must suffer that patiently, wherein we haue such and so many fellowes of our conflicts and combates. ] knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your [Note: [c] Amongst your brethren which are dispersed throughout the world. ] brethren which are in the world.
10 [Note:  He sealeth vp as it were with a seale the former exhortation with a solemne prayer, againe willing them to aske encrease of strength at his hands, of whom they had the beginning, and hope to haue the accomplishment: to wit, of God the Father in Christ Iesus, in whome we are sure of the glory of eternall life. ] And the God of all grace, which hath called vs vnto his eternall glory by Christ Iesus, after that ye haue suffered a litle, make you perfite, confirme, strengthen and stablish you.
11 To him be glory and dominion for euer and euer, Amen.
12 [Note:  Continuance and perseuerance in the doctrine of the Apostles, is the onely grounde and foundation of Christian strength: Nowe the summe of the Apostles doctrine, is saluation freely giuen of God. ] By Syluanus a faithfull brother vnto you, as I suppose, haue I written briefly, exhorting and testifying how that this is the true grace of God, wherein ye stand.
13 [Note:  Familiar salutations. ] The Church that is at [Note: [d] In that famous citie of Aßyria, where Peter the Apostle of the circumcision then was. ] Babylon elected together with you, saluteth you, and Marcus my sonne.
14 Greete ye one another with the [Note: Rom.16.16. 1.cor. 16.20. 2.cor.13.12. ] kisse of loue. Peace be with you all which are in Christ Iesus, Amen.