Thoughts on Peter's 1st letter 2:20-25

Two times in the last three weeks this reading has come to me and I am starting to think that there is a message in it for me.

I felt like I heard a strong message the first time I read it but once again I feel something.

What are your feelings about this reading?
How do you interpret it?

1 Peter Christian Slaves.
2:18 * Slaves, be subject to your masters with all reverence, not only to those who are good and equitable but also to those who are perverse.
2:19 For whenever anyone bears the pain of unjust suffering because of consciousness of God, that is a grace.
2:20 But what credit is there if you are patient when beaten for doing wrong? But if you are patient when you suffer for doing what is good, this is a grace before God.
2:21 For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered * for you, leaving you an example that you should follow in his footsteps.
2:22 "He committed no sin,
and no deceit was found in his mouth."

2:23 When he was insulted, he returned no insult; when he suffered, he did not threaten; instead, he handed himself over to the one who judges justly.
2:24 He himself bore our sins in his body upon the cross, so that, free from sin, we might live for righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.
2:25 For you had gone astray like sheep, but you have now returned to the shepherd and guardian of your souls.
New American Bible

The 1993 document from the Pontifical Biblical Commission asserts that no one should look for or otherwise expect a single interpretation of scripture. Now, that may be somewhat controversial, but let’s assume that there are a couple levels of meaning.

So, expect different interpretations of these verses. The thought begins a bit earlier at verse 18, I believe.

One would take a straightforward view that a Christian should always be focused on doing what is right. If some suffering should come as a result ( the old adage, no good deed shall go unpunished), at least you know that you were doing something that was according to the commands of Christ.

OK. If this is a poker hand, you can show your cards now.
I think that Peter is saying that we should act as slaves to the truth, to Christ, as if we had no other master.

"expect different interpretations of these verses. The thought begins a bit earlier at verse 18, I believe."

I understand what you believe but I am starting this thread where I have heard/read this through two Masses conducted by the Catholic Mass/Church. At both of these readings the topic was begun at 1Peter 2:20, not 18 as you want to begin your discussion.

I don’t play poker, in fact I can’t stand the game. I do not take words from the Bible or Jesus as something I should gamble on. The post was meant for a good discussion of our personal meanings of 1Peter 2:20-25, nothing more.

I don’t feel it necessary to reply to your post cuz I feel that you went outside what I originally posted. I’m not in the bait and chase game for my religion. I certainly would never even mention a card game in the same breath as my religion.


i wouldn’t be so sensitive about cards and religion - there are MUCH bigger things to get upset about. by the way, did you know some of our first popes were chosen by drawing straws? not much different than cards, if you ask me. all that is to say this: don’t worry so much. water off a duck’s back, right? there’s no biblical ban on gambling, so please don’t try and impose one. :wink:

as for the scripture, it could be that God is setting you up mentally/emotionally for some suffering. if/when it comes, please keep in mind our blessed mother’s fiat - “be it done unto me according to your will.” you may pray for whatever you would like, but please do so with respect and love, always placing God’s will above your own. if/when suffering does come to you, you have a choice as to how to grow: will you grow bitter or will you grow to be like Christ? as odd as it seems to us, Christ often gives a greater portion of his suffering to those he loves most - again, look at the blessed mother.

that said, don’t worry about it before it’s time. if you dwell on the possibility of suffering too much, you’ll lose the wonderful gift of today - you are sacrificing a day of your life for today, so make it worth it!**

[font=Arial]matt 6:[/font]**

[/font]**34"So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.


Dear C-Disc,

When I said to show your cards, I was asking you to tell us what YOU thought about the passage that you asked about. You’re a bit too touchy about that.

I sense that you’re also touchy about your thoughts on this passage. You are afraid that somewhat will criticize what you say.

That’s why I pointed out that there are probably MANY views on scripture and that the Pontifical commission said so. As time goes by, we may gain more and more insight into scripture.

Vatican II said in its document on Divine Revelation, that scripture must be understood in the context of the entire Bible. So, the fact that at Mass the liturgical reading did not start at v.18 may be less important than you think. Or, to put it another way, the Holy Spirit has inspired all of scripture.

I quoted the passage starting at v.18 for the convenience of readers of your thread, so that they could view the verses here. And, they could ignore v.18 and v19 if they so wished.

Your feelings are important. Truthfully, you’re not sharing very much and not being very open. OK, you will ignore what I say. That’s your right, too. God bless.

I am searching for an understanding on it. I am going through a rough work situation, my boss and I have been suspended for three weeks. I was suffering over not hearing from the job, no calls to go back to work, no call for termination. They are not telling me anything at all. I was struggling with it and then this was read during Mass. Yesterday also this was read again.

When I first read it the words comforted me, I am only feeling a miniscule anmount of some of the suffereing Jesus endured. This week I’m still trying to find some meaning. I tmay have not changed at all and Jesus may be still working to get me to understand his suffering.

Thanks for the replies

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit