2 So, laying off all malice and all trickery, and insincerities and grudges and all detraction, 2 long like newborn babies for unadulterated intellectual milk, that on it you may grow to salvation, 3 if you have tasted that the Lord is kind; 4 coming to whom, a living stone condemned by men but in God’s estimation select and noble, 5 * you too as living stones are being built to a spiritual house, for a holy priesthood to offer spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 * Because there is a text where it reads “Here I am laying in Sion a noble select crowning-stone, and he who believes on him shall not be put to shame.” 7 So the nobility is for you believers; but for disbelievers “The stone that the builders condemned, that stone has come to be the top of the corner” 8 and “a stone to strike against, a rock to stumble over”—who stumble by disobeying the word; which is what they were set for. 9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for preservation, that you may publish the merits of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light— 10 you who had once been No Nation but are God’s nation now, who had been Unpitied but have now had pity taken on you. 11 Dear friends, I exhort you, as men living abroad among an alien race, to abstain from fleshly desires, which wage a war against the soul, 12 and to keep up a good life among the foreigners, that where they decry you as evil-doers they may in consequence of your good deeds, as they watch them, glorify God on the day of visitation. 13 Be submissive to every human institution for the Lord’s sake, whether to the emperor as sovereign 14 or to governors as sent through him for punishment of evil-doers and praise of right-doers,— 15 because such is God’s will, that by doing right you should silence senseless men’s ignorance;— 16 as freemen, and not as having freedom for a cover to viciousness, but as servants of God. 17 Honor everybody; love the brotherhood; fear God; honor the emperor. 18 Domestics, be submissive to your masters in all fear, not only to the kind and reasonable but also to the cranky; 19 for it is a credit if one bears troubles for the consciousness of God, when one suffers unjustly. 20 For what is there grand about it if you endure when you do wrong and are cuffed? but if you endure when you do right and suffer, that is a credit with God. 21 For this is what you were called for, because Christ too suffered on your account, leaving behind a pattern for you that you might follow in his track— 22 he who did no sin, nor was trickery found in his mouth; 23 who did not answer with abuse when he was abused, did not make threats when he suffered, but committed his case to him who judges justly; 24 who himself carried our sins up to the tree in his body, that we might perish to sins and live to righteousness; by whose stripes you have been healed, 25 for you were like sheep astray, but you have now turned back to the Shepherd and Visitor of your souls.
The Bible in Living English