1So give up all the evil things that you do: all your dishonesty, hypocrisy, and jealousy, all the ways you speak badly about others. 2You should become like newborn babies who only want pure spiritual milk, so you can grow in salvation 3now you’ve tasted how good the Lord really is. 4As you come to him—the living stone that people rejected as useless, but is chosen by God and precious to him— 5you also become like living stones, being built into a spiritual house. You are a holy priesthood that offers spiritual sacrifices that God welcomes through Jesus Christ. 6As Scripture#2:6. Isaiah 28:16. says, “See! I’m setting in Zion its main cornerstone, specially-chosen and valuable. Whoever trusts in him will not be disappointed#2:6. Or “ashamed.”.” 7He is very valuable to you who do trust. But for those who don’t, “The stone the builders rejected that became the main cornerstone”#2:7. Ps. 118:22. 8is “The stone that trips you up and the rock that makes you fall.”#2:8. Isaiah 8:14. People stumble over this message because they refuse to accept it—which for them is entirely predictable.
9In complete contrast, you are a specially-chosen family, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God. Consequently you can reveal the wonderful things he’s done, calling you out of darkness into his marvelous light. 10In the past you were nobodies, but now you are God’s people. In the past you hadn’t received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
11My friends, I’m pleading with you as foreigners and strangers#2:11. “Foreigners and strangers”—not seeing this world as home. in this world not to give in to physical desires that are in conflict with what is spiritual. 12Be sure to act appropriately when you’re with non-Christians, so even if they accuse you of doing wrong, they will see the good things you do and glorify God when he comes#2:12. Literally, “day of visitation.”.
13Obey human authority for the Lord’s sake, whether it is the king as the highest authority, 14or governors that God appoints to punish those who do evil and to commend those who do good. 15God wants you by doing what is right to silence the ignorant accusations of foolish people. 16Yes, you are free people! So don’t use your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but live as God’s servants. 17Respect everyone. Show your love to the community of believers. Have reverence for God. Respect the king. 18If you are a servant then submit to your master—not just those who are good and kind, but those who are harsh masters as well. 19For this is what grace is: to endure life’s pain and unfair suffering, keeping your focus on God. 20However there’s no credit when you’re punished for doing something wrong. But if you suffer for doing what is right, and you put up with it, then God’s grace is with you.
21In fact this is what you were called to do, because Christ suffered for you and gave you an example, so you should follow in his footsteps. 22He never sinned, he never lied; 23and when he was badly treated, he didn’t retaliate. When he suffered, he didn’t threaten to take revenge. He simply placed himself in the hands of the one who always judges rightly. 24He took our sins on himself in his body on the cross, so that we could die to sin and live rightly. “By his wounds you are healed.”#2:24. Isaiah 53:5. 25At one time you were like sheep who had lost their way, but now you’ve returned to the Shepherd—the one who watches over you.