The 1st letter that Peter wrote
(The book in the Holy Bible called 1 Peter)
About this letter
Peter was one of Jesus’s 12 special workers. He went everywhere with Jesus and knew him well.
Peter wrote 2 letters that are now in the Holy Bible. This is the 1st letter. He wrote it about 2,000 years ago, about 30 years after Jesus went back to heaven. He sent it to Christians that lived in lots of different places.
At that time there were people that kept on making trouble for Christians. Some people were hurting the Christians, and some were even killing them. Lots of Christians were very frightened and sad.
Peter wanted those Christians to be brave, not frightened. So he wrote this letter to help them be strong and happy. He didn’t want them to stop following Jesus. He got them to remember that God is great and always takes good care of his people.
Peter didn’t want those Christians to listen to anyone that was teaching things that were wrong. Peter knew that Jesus will come back again, and he wanted those Christians to be ready for him.
These words that Peter wrote to them have very important messages for all of us Christians.
1
I am Peter, and this letter is from me. I am one of Jesus Christ’s special workers.
I’m sending this letter to you people that God picked to be in his family. I’m sending it to you Christians in a lot of different places, called Pontus, and Galatia, and Capadoshia, and Asia, and Bithinia. You had to leave your homes, and now you live in those places.
A long time ago, God, our father, knew you, and he picked you to be in his family. His spirit picked you out from other people to make you his special people. You listened to Jesus’s words, and you did whatever he said. Jesus died and his blood came out, and it is like God put that blood of Jesus on you to make you clean.
I’m asking God to be properly good to you, and to make you feel really happy and quiet inside yourselves.
God keeps good things for us
God is very good to us. We went wrong, but he feels sorry for us, and he is good to us. Now he puts new life in us, like we get born all over again. Jesus died, but God brought him back to life. From that we know that God will save us too. So let us thank God, the father of our leader, Jesus, and say that he is really good. We are his family, so he will give us a lot of good things. He has them all ready in heaven for us, so now we just wait for those things. God looks after them all there for us in heaven. They will never rot or get dirty there, and nobody can ever mess them up. God has a lot of power, and he looks after us, all of us that trust him. He will look after us until the last day. Then he will show everyone that he saved us.
So think about all that, and you will get really happy. You might get different sorts of trouble now, and you might be sad for a little while, but think about the things that will happen later, and you will be really happy. In the end God will save you from those troubles.
You know about gold. It is very special. People put that gold into a fire to make it really clean. The fire makes it better, it burns away all the rubbish that isn’t real gold. But even gold will not last for ever. It belongs to this world. Now think about the troubles that come to us. They make us better because they show that we really trust God. If we keep on trusting him, God will say, “You are very special to me. You are much more special to me than gold.” So keep on trusting God, and after Jesus comes again, God will talk to you like that, and he will make you important.
8-9 You never saw Jesus, but you love him. You can’t see him now, but you trust him. You are trusting God, and he is saving you, so you are really happy. You are so happy you can’t properly say how happy you are.
10-11 A long time ago, the men that brought God’s messages told people about God. They said that he is good, and that he saves us. At that time, they wanted to find out more about God saving people, so they carefully tried to find out more about the man that God promised to send to save people, called the Christ. The spirit of Jesus Christ was in them and showed them that at first the Christ was going get big trouble, and he was going die. But after that, God would make him really important. So they wanted to know who the Christ was and when he was going to come. 12 His spirit told them that the message wasn’t for themselves, but it was for you. That all happened a long time ago, and now God’s people have told you that good message about Jesus. The Holy Spirit from heaven gave them power to talk to you.
This is all very wonderful. Even God’s angels in heaven don’t know all about the things that God does to save people, and they want to find out more.
Stay away from things that are bad
13 So you have to think about it more clearly and be careful about everything you do. Keep waiting for Jesus to come, and get ready for him. God will show him to everybody, and he will be very good to you at that time.
14 In the past, you didn’t know that God was good. So at that time you did all the bad things you wanted to do. But now you are God’s kids. So you have to stop doing those bad things, 15 and you have to be properly good and right, just like God. He picked you for himself. So you have to be good, just like him.
16 You see, God’s book says this,
God is properly good, and he keeps away from everything that is bad, so you have to be like that too, you have to be properly good, and you have to keep away from everything that is bad.”*
17 You know that God is our father, and you pray to him. He looks at everything we do, and he treats us in a fair way. So you have to properly respect God now. You don’t belong to this world, you are only living here for a little while, but later you will live with God.
18 Your grand-parents and elders tried to teach you the way to live, but they didn’t teach you God’s way. That old way was useless, and you weren’t free. But God has saved you from that wrong way. He paid a lot to set you free from that old way. Sometimes people pay money to get somebody out of prison and let them go free. But money doesn’t last for ever. 19 So God didn’t pay money to set you free. He did more than that. I’ll tell you the price he paid for you. You know the old Jewish ceremonies. You know that they pick a young sheep that has nothing wrong with it, and they kill it to give it to God. Well, that is a picture of Jesus. There was nothing wrong with him, and he never did anything wrong. But people killed him. He bled and died for you. That is the price God paid to set you free, and it is better than money, it lasts for ever. You see, you belong to God now.
20-21 A long time ago, before God made the world, he picked Jesus to set you free. Then, later, Jesus came into the world. And now you know about him. You know that he died for you, and so you believe in God too. After Jesus died, God made him alive again, and God made him very great and gave him a lot of power. Now you can trust God and wait for everything he promised you.
22 You listened to the true message from God, and you did everything he said in that message. Then God cleaned up your lives and you stopped doing bad things. So now you love each other. Well, keep on loving each other very much. 23 God gave you new life. It’s not like the life you got from your mother and father. That life will end. But when you listened properly to God’s message, he gave you new life, like you got born again. Your new life will not end, because God’s word will never finish up. It lives for ever. 24 God says this in his book,
All people are like grass with pretty flowers,
they are beautiful for some time, but then they die.
25 But God’s word will never die, it will last for ever.”*
And that is the message about Jesus that God’s people told you.
* 1:16 Leviticus 11:44-45; 19:2 * 1:25 Isaiah 40:6-8