Exegetical Studies in 1 Peter Part 9 -- By: John H. Bennetch
BSac 99:395 (Jul 42) p. 344
Exegetical Studies in 1 Peter
(Continued from the April-June Number, 1942)
The Example of Christ
This time, that is to say, in 1 Peter 2:18–25, Peter is urging believers of the slave class to submit. Verses 18 to 20 have bidden them endure punishment even when they did not merit any. Such an exhortation is strengthened in verses 21 to 25 through mention of Christ, the Lord’s Servant. The unmerited, unfathomed suffering which He bore without sin makes Him a peerless examplar. More than once the life of this unique One has been brought forward as a model by Scripture. But it serves thus only for believers, since they alone can attain to great heights of character. To all others His career must bring condemnation, as to those who fall short of perfection and purity.
1:15–17 identified God the Father as the holy One who invites men to be saved. Then 2:9–10 pointed out how He calls men from darkness and sin to His marvellous light and holiness. Thereby the Christian is said to possess holiness acceptable to God. That exalted position he occupies because of grace. But there is more to the efficacious call than a favorable position, 2:21 is prepared to add. It also introduces the Christian to suffering, bitter suffering, along with Christ who wrought his salvation upon a cross. ἐκλήθητε is written in the aorist tense just like the related words for calling in 1:15 and 2:9; hence becomes an allusion, jointly with them, to the conversion appeal come from God which the readers had experienced. For parallel Scriptures on the intimate connection between salvation and
BSac 99:395 (Jul 42) p. 345
trial see Philippians 1:29, “Unto you it is given in the behalf of Christ, not only to believe on him, but also to suffer for his sake”; Romans 8:17; 2 Timothy 2:12; etc.
One reason to explain why persecution must be endured is given by the apostle at once: “because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps.” The teaching on Christ as ...
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