A Sample Passage from the Comments on First Peter:
1. Peter, one sent with a mission pertaining to Jesus Christ (or: an emissary and representative of [the] Anointed Jesus), to selected and picked out (elect and chosen) exiles (or: alien residents; sojourners; expatriates; strangers residing in a country not your own) of [the] dispersion (or: of a scattering; of [the] Diaspora), temporarily living beside residents of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, the province of Asia, and Bithynia,
This selected and chosen group of exiles to which Peter is writing is most likely the same group which Jacob (or: James) addresses in his letter, both men using the same term "dispersion" or "scattering." They were most likely those referred to in Acts 8:1 or 11:19, that were scattered from Jerusalem in that period. They were not just Jews who were dispersed, but fellow believers, since he calls them "elect." It is the same group to which Paul wrote in Galatia and the other called-out communities in the province of Asia, and to which John sent Revelation.
2. in accord with and down from Father God's foreknowledge (or: corresponding to a previous experiential and intimate knowledge possessed by God, who is a Father), within a setting-apart of spirit (or: in union with the process of being set apart from common condition and use by [the] Spirit; or: in the midst of a consecration which is a Breath-effect) into an obedient hearing (a listening and paying attention with compliance) and a sprinkling with Jesus Christ's blood (or: a sprinkling of blood, which is Jesus Christ):
May grace (or: favor) and peace [= shalom] be multiplied into fullness (or: be brought to fullness) in you folks (or: to you folks; for you folks)!
Their selection and election, as well as their dispersion, was all in accord with God's plan and foreknowledge. This language suggests: 1) His own prior experience guides His choice, or 2) His prior intimate knowledge of these folks resulted in their being chosen. Their being chosen and their being scattered were both in union with His set-apart Breath-effect (or: Holy Spirit), and the dispersion was within a process of being consecrated. The word commonly translated as "holy" literally means set-apart, with the sense of consecration for God's use. The very choosing by God is what made them set-apart and sacred.
He set them apart into a realm of being: an obedient hearing and listening which required paying attention and then compliance. When He chooses us, there are requirements placed upon us, but as we see above, the sprinkling with the blood of Jesus Christ is what enables us to hear and comply. In the parenthetical expansion I have given a rendering of the genitive phrase in the function of apposition (or: definition). The blood of Christ is also Jesus and His life – for the life is in the blood.
In Peter's greeting we see that both grace and peace can be multiplied to us, and that neither of these is a one-time experience – we can receive more of each, to the point of the fullness of each coming to us, in us and for us (these are three of the functions of the dative case of the pronoun "you," each of which makes sense in this context). And since these things may be increased "for" the communities to which he is writing, grace and peace are not limited to nor dependent upon individual relationships with God.
3. Well-spoken of (or: Eulogized; Blessed; or: Well-gathered, laid-out with ease, and worthy of praise) [is] the God and Father of our Lord, Jesus Christ (or: Who is our Owner, Jesus Christ), the One [Who], corresponding to and down from His abundant mercy (or: much-existing mercy which is Him), [was/is] – through Jesus Christ's resurrection forth from out of the midst of dead folks – bringing us to birth again (regenerating us; begetting us back up again; causing us to be born again):
into a progressively living expectation (or: into the midst of continuously living hope);
4. into the midst of an incorruptible (unspoilable; imperishable; unruinable; undecayable), unstained (undefiled), and unfading (or: unwithering) inheritance (or: enjoyment of and participation in an allotted portion as a possession), one having been kept in view, watched-over, guarded, and which continues being maintained and kept intact within the midst of [the, or our] atmospheres (or: in union with heavens; = in realms of spirit);
– [which things were/are being birthed and entering] into you folks,
The word "Eulogized" directly corresponds to its Greek counterpart, but the literal meaning of the Greek elements are: well-spoken of, or, well-gathered, laid-out with ease and worthy of praise.
Notice that the first two clauses do not have verbs in the text, and I have supplied "[is]" to conform to English idiom in the first phrase. The adjective "Well-spoken of" is therefore a description of how "the God and Father" is regarded by people. Vs. 3 is similar in thought and expression to Eph. 1:3.
Rendering this word "well-gathered... etc." says that these are qualities of God. Peter goes on to tell us that He "[was/is]" bringing us to birth again (or: begetting us back up again) through the resurrection of Jesus, which was out from the midst of dead people. Note: His resurrection regenerated us; it caused us to be born again! The Greek is an active aorist participle, so is timeless, but it is tied to the resurrection of Jesus. It happened through His resurrection, and it is existentially happening for each person in his own order or group (1 Cor. 15:23).
Note again that His resurrection is causing people to be born again! God is doing the action, and this is tied to His raising Jesus from the dead.
The phrase "of our Lord..." is in the genitive case, and this first rendering means that Jesus has a God and Father. Translating it as a genitive of apposition gives the parenthetical reading "Who
is our Owner, Jesus Christ." The "begetting us back up again" is according to and down from "His much-existing mercy." His act of salvation and His causing us to be born again are based upon, and have their origin in, His ABUNDANT mercy. Selah!
Now consider the three prepositional phrases in vs. 3-4 that each begin with "into."
1) into a continuously and progressively living expectation
2) into and inheritance that is incorruptible, unstained and unfading – which has been watched-over, guarded and maintained within the midst of our atmospheres (or: in union with the heavens – the realms of spirit)
3) and these were through His resurrection being birthed "into [us]."
This expectation, this great mercy, is our inheritance which was then, and is now, entering into folks such as described in vs. 5, below.
Recall that Paul tells us that we are saved by and in the realm of expectation (Rom. 8:24). We were caused to be born into a realm of expectation. We are being birthed into an inheritance which from its very character shows that it is God, Himself. Yet, these are birthed into us. What glorious good news!
5. the ones being continuously garrisoned within (or: kept under watch and guarded in the center of) God's power, and in union with an ability which is God, through faith and trust – [and], into a deliverance (a rescue which brings health, wholeness and a return to your original state and condition; salvation; a [period of] rescue) [which is now] ready to be unveiled (revealed; disclosed) within the midst of and in union with [this] last season (or: resident within a final fitting situation; in a final fertile moment; on [this] last occasion)
Take note that both we and our inheritance are garrisoned, and this within God's power and in union with an ability which is, in fact, God. In this verse we have another "into" phrase, showing that Peter is continuing in speaking of the realm and sphere into which we were being caused to be born, and here we see that it is into a deliverance – a rescue which brings health, wholeness and a return to our original state and condition. This salvation, this inheritance, this expectation was in Peter's day ready to be unveiled within that last season, the closing of the age of the Jewish Law. The deliverance happened in the resurrection of Jesus, but it was not fully disclosed and revealed until the old creation, which was the system of the Law and the old covenant, was destroyed in AD 70. The destruction of the temple was clear evidence that the old had passed away and all had become new (2 Cor. 5:17).
That situation of the transition, from one age to the next, was the fertile moment of the new birth, the new creation. The burial of Jesus was the implanting of the Seed. The revelation of this was coming via Peter, Paul and the other writers of the NT. The time had come to unveil who Jesus was: the Christ, the New Being, the Second Humanity, the Last Adam, who is the life-giving Spirit (1 Cor. 15:45-49). This deliverance and its concurrent unveiling repeatedly comes, individually, to us in a final season of the first Adam within us, at a fertile moment and an appropriate season in our lives.
6. within which you folks are presently feeling constant joy and happiness and are continuing to rejoice exceedingly – though for a little while, at present, since (or: if) it continues being binding and necessary, being pained (distressed; grieved; sorrowed) within various tests (or: different trials and ordeals) to put you to the proof.
Those dispersed folks were then presently feeling constant joy and happiness within that "last season." It was in union with their deliverance, even though for a little while – since it continued being binding and necessary – they were pained, distressed and given sorrow within the midst of various trials and tests: the goal of which is the proof to themselves and for others.
7. It [is] to the end that the examined and tested approval of your faith (of the trust and faithfulness of you folks) – [being] of much greater value and worth, and more precious, than of gold that constantly loses itself away (perishes of itself) despite being progressively tested and examined through fire – might be found [progressing] into praise (approval; commendation) and glory (or: a good reputation) and honor (value; worth) within an unveiling of Jesus Christ (or: in union with a revelation whose source is, which has the character of, and which is, Jesus, [the] Anointed One; in the midst of a disclosure from [Messiah] Jesus),
This tested approval showed the authenticity, depth and strength of their trust and faith: both personal and corporate. The quality of this faith and trust is, via these tests, shown to be much more precious than gold (which is self-disintegrating) despite its being refined through fire. In 1 Cor. 3:12-15 Paul refers to this same testing of the building being done upon the called-out community. There the fire tests the quality of the construction materials, pointing out that only things of value and worth will survive the fires of this life's testings. Here Peter says that (by comparison) the effects of their faith and trust are worth much more than gold that has passed through the refining process.
Furthermore, it will be found to lead into praise and a glorious reputation (or: a manifestation which calls forth admiration) – as well as honor and value – in union with, or within the midst of, an unveiling of Jesus Christ. This disclosure will reveal the Anointed Jesus, but it also comes from Jesus via the anointing which manifests itself as faith and trust, while showing the character and qualities of Christ, revealed within the called-out community. This unveiling can be of Him to us, or of Him in us. This equates to the manifestation of God's sons (Rom. 8:19). It is what Paul referred to in Gal. 1:16, "to unveil His Son within the midst of me – and in union with me."
8. Whom not seeing (or: perceiving), you folks are continuously loving (experiencing the urge for reunion and acceptance); into Whom at the present moment you folks are not constantly looking, yet are habitually believing (or: continuously placing [your] trust and loyalty). You folks are repeatedly rejoicing and being very happy in indescribable (or: incapable of being spoken out) joy which also exists having been made glorious (or: by unspeakable and glorified joy; in joy [that is] inexpressible and has made a notable reputation; with joy that is glorious beyond words, and which is filled with imagination and good opinion),
Here Peter notes that although these communities never saw Jesus, they continue progressively loving Him, and even though up to the then present time they were still not seeing Him, yet, while continuing in trusting and believing, they are continuing to exult and rejoice in and with a joy which is beyond words and which has been glorified (filled with imagination and good opinion).
I want to first point out one definition that Paul Tillich gave for agape, that I parenthetically inserted: the urge for reunion and acceptance. This beautifully describes Christian love, and its intended goal. The expanded renderings of the final clause are also worthy of consideration. Glory (doxa) has a broad semantic range, including, notable reputation, good opinion and even "imagination" – something that is often overlooked in theology and Christian teachings. God's or a person's "light" and appearance shine into our hearts and minds, and create an effect.
9. being ones constantly bringing to, or conveying in, yourselves for provision, attentive care and kindly keeping, the promised goal (the finished product; the aim and result; the purpose and destiny) of the [other MSS: your] faith and trust: deliverance ([the] restoration to wholeness and health; a salvation) of souls (or: inner beings and selves; or: = people)!
Peter describes these folks as having the result of the above love and joy within them, being folks that are in themselves carrying the goal of faith and trust: the wholeness and health of their souls, as well as the deliverance and salvation of other people. The term "soul" can refer to either an aspect of our being, our inner beings or self, or can simply be used to refer to people. Each of these applications makes sense here.
10. Concerning (or: Round about) which deliverance (health and wholeness; rescue; salvation) [the] prophets, carefully scrutinizing, sought out and then diligently searched out the [Scriptures] prophesying concerning (or: about) the grace and favor [directed and coming] into you folks,
From this statement it would seem that this very deliverance and salvation was the ultimate goal of the OT prophesies – in contrast to the commonly held hopes (such as those held by the Zealots) of a literal Messiah who would deliver the Jews from their oppressors. They apparently searched out other prophesies as well as speaking themselves, of this deliverance which Peter here refers to as "the grace and favor" that had also come "into" these dispersed Christians. Here let me emphasize that the "deliverance" and "salvation" of vs. 9 is the "grace and favor" of vs. 10 – showing that Peter is proclaiming the same message of good news as Paul does.
11. constantly searching into which season or what kind of situation the Spirit of Christ (or: Christ's spirit; or: the Breath-effect which is the Anointed One), resident within them, was continuing to point to, making [it] evident and clearly visible, repeatedly testifying (witnessing; giving evidence) beforehand about the effects of the experiences and results of the sufferings [projected] into Christ, and the glories (the manifestations which call forth praise; the good opinions and reputations; the appearances of things) after these things,
These same prophets kept on searching into what season, or what sort of situation, or what appointed fertile moment (of the ages) – which the Spirit of Christ (which was within them) kept on witnessing beforehand (previously showing evidence) – it would be, which pointed into the effects of the experiences, and into the results of the sufferings that were to come, with reference to the Messiah – as well as to the manifestations which induce praises that followed these things, and the imaginations which they would inspire in the minds of the new creation.
The Greek word pathemata means the results and effects of things (both good and bad) which a person experiences through his senses and feelings. The sufferings which Jesus experienced had effects and brought results: all described as "glories" (etc.).
12. to which folks (or: in which ones) it was unveiled (revealed; disclosed) that not to or for themselves, but to and for you people, they had been progressively dispensing and serving them – which things are now announced (or: which tidings were brought back) to you through those announcing (proclaiming; bringing and communicating) the message of well-being and goodness (or: good news) to you within [or, with other MSS: by] a set-apart Breath-effect (or: [the] Holy Spirit; or: sacred spirit) being sent forth from [the] atmosphere (or: heaven) – into which things agents (or: messengers) are habitually and earnestly desiring (are constantly in full passion and craving) to stoop down beside and look in.
This same Spirit disclosed and unveiled to these prophets that their own and others' prophesies were not talking about themselves, but instead they were dispensing and serving them to the folks (and now, to us) to whom Peter was writing. This means that the prophecies pointed to Christ, and that this included the body of Christ. It was these same prophecies about the Christ that were in Peter's day being announced to them through the people bringing and declaring the message of goodness, ease and well-being to them – by and with the Set-apart Spirit being sent away from heaven (or, the atmosphere). Jurgen Moltmann has stated that with the sending of the Holy Spirit, God now has a history (he also said the same thing about the Father sending the Son). So it follows that God is also a part of the history of humanity, and humanity has thus been unalterably changed. Paul called this "a new creation" (2 Cor. 5:17).
These agents (or: messengers) are strongly desiring to stoop beside and peer into these things because they are (I suggest) the prophets of the OT age, as well as the folks then currently bringing the good news, and these things applied to them as well as to us. We have now become God's messengers and agents, and thus do we revisit the OT prophecies to find the Christ in them (cf Lu. 24:27).
13. On which account (or: Wherefore), in preparation for work or action, girding up in yourselves the clothes about the loins (or: waist; i.e., get ready for action) of your divided thoughts and the things passing through your mind (or: mental perceptions; intellect and comprehension), continuously being perfectly (or: maturely) clear-headed and sober (unintoxicated), direct and set (or: being constantly sober-minded, completely direct and set) your hope and expectation upon the grace and favor being continuously brought (or: periodically and progressively carried) to you within an unveiling (or: in the midst of a disclosure) of Jesus Christ (or: a revelation which is Jesus [the] Anointed One; or: an uncovering which comes from and pertains to Jesus Christ).
Because of all this, all these communities were advised to brace up (tighten the belts and prepare for work or conflict) their mental perceptions and "batten down" whatever is passing through the midst of their minds – so as to be maturely balanced with clear thinking. We find a similar admonition in Eph. 6:4.
Peter then admonishes them to set their expectations upon the grace and favor that is being brought to them, and borne in them, within the unveiling (or, in union with the disclosure) from the Anointed Jesus (or: which pertains to Jesus Christ) – that revelation which had the character of Jesus, and which brought the qualities of the anointing (and which was, in fact, Jesus Christ: the Risen One). This was a then present (and is a now present) reality – not some future event. The unveiling was the removal of the covering over their hearts and minds, as Paul spoke of in 2 Cor. 3:14-16. It is also the unveiling of their perceptions to see Christ within His brothers (Matt. 25:40).
14. As children of (= having the qualities of and characteristics from) submissive, attentive hearing (or: Like listening and obedient born-ones), not being folks repeatedly molding, forming, fashioning or configuring yourselves to and by the former cravings (the prior over-desires or full passions), within your ignorance,
This verse is an echo of Rom. 12:2, "And stop constantly conforming yourself to (or, as passive: And quit being repeatedly fashioned or patterned together by) this age..." Peter calls them "born ones" who are by nature obediently hearing and paying attention so as to obey. They are not to act or to be as they formerly were, in their ignorance, "fashioning themselves to and by their over-desires." This idolatry continues today, as the masses follow the fashion industry and the media of advertising – both of which focus on the external, which is in opposition to God's reign and the life of Christ. But we should also use caution that our current modes of "praise and worship," which can also slip into external ritual, not become a kind of idolatry which takes the place of intimate communion with Him Who lives within us.
15. but rather, corresponding to (down from; in accord with) the One calling (or: inviting) you [being] set-apart (or: holy), you folks also let yourselves be made to be (or: be birthed) ones set-apart in the same way, in all behavior (within every conduct; in all turning about or twisting up of [your] way of life),
In contrast, we should be conformed to the One calling us, being birthed to be set-apart folks – in correspondence to the set-apart qualities of the One inviting us. This applies to every area of our conduct, and in any turning or twisting of our way of life or the path that we follow.
16. because it has been written that,
"You people will be (will exist being) set-apart (or: holy), because I [am] set-apart (or: holy)." [Lev. 11:44, 45; 19:2; 20:7]
Peter is saying that what he had said in vs. 15 is because of the promises from the OT, such as this which he quotes, that we WILL be set-apart and sacred – and that this is because He Himself is set-apart and sacred. He is the cause of all; we are HIS workmanship.
17. And since (or: if) you folks are habitually calling upon a (or: [the]) Father – the One consistently separating and deciding (or: judging) impartially (without reception of faces, persons, appearances or external circumstances) according to (down from; corresponding to) each one's work or action – let the time of your sojourn (your temporary stay, dwelling alongside as an alien resident or an exile) be turned upward, in the fear of reverent living,
Now since they were repeatedly calling upon this kind of Father, they should continue turned upward to Him in the fear of reverent living – with respect for their alien country and neighbors during this period of living as foreigners within these dispersion regions of what was before considered to be Gentile lands.
We should also note that His decisions about people – His judgments – as well as being fair are also judgments of people's work or action. Peter does not say that the Father judges upon the basis of a person's belief, although it is clear that belief does bring deliverance from our estrangement and the human predicament. Judgment is primarily based upon what a person does, upon his or her works (cf 1 Cor. 3:13-15; Rev. 20:12-13). In the OT, Israel was normally judged because of unfaithfulness to Yahweh, and because of injustice to their fellows. God's Fire (which is Himself – Heb. 12:29) does refine (cf Mal. 3:2-3), and I suggest that this is the same purpose of the lake of Fire and Deity (which is in the presence of the Lamb, the Sacrifice, in Rev. 14:10). Opinions vary on the significance of the symbol of "the lake of Fire" in Revelation, but considering the references that I have just cited, it is my conclusion that this "lake (or: pond; or: shallow, constructed pool)" is a place of baptism into God Himself (Fire and Deity), and is for refining, purging and transforming. It is all returning into God (Rom. 11:36 "... and INTO Him are all things"). It is a, or the, baptism of Fire and the Holy Spirit, of which John the baptist spoke. It is the second death where death and those who have not yet had their names written in the book of life (each person in his own class and order, 1 Cor. 15:23) have death and other negative characteristics burned out of them (Rev. 20:13-14; 21:8). May He unveil our eyes about this.
18. having seen, and thus knowing, that you folks were not unbound and released by a ransom of corruptible things (things that are perishable and subject to spoiling) – by little coins of silver or gold – from out of your fruitless behavior (vain conduct; idle and foolish way of life) handed down by tradition from the fathers (= your ancestors),
He points out that they are aware that they were not set free by someone paying money. Furthermore, we see that what they were set free from was the fruitless behavior that came to them from the traditions of their ancestors. For those of Jewish ancestry this would be the "works of the Law" to which Paul referred in Gal. 2:16. For the non-Jews it would refer to pagan rites and worship.
19. but rather by Christ's precious blood (or: in valuable blood, which is [the] Anointed One; with honorable blood of anointing; by costly blood from [the Messiah]) – as of a flawless (unblemished) and spotless Lamb:
Peter calls upon their knowledge of the Christ event, in reference to His sacrifice which fulfilled and ended the sacrificial system of the Law. He incorporates into this figure the element of the Kinsman Redeemer (Lev. 25:25) who could (and had the responsibility to) buy a family member out of slavery. However, Christ used His life – symbolized by His blood – to make the purchase. Peter does not say to whom this ransom was paid, but elsewhere (Rom. 6:17, 20) it says that we were slaves to sin and failure, and it was humanity that sinned in the disobedience pictured in Adam (Rom. 5:19). But the central point is the freedom that was purchased – our release from the slavery of the human predicament – and that it was the giving of His life to us that did it.
In the parenthetical expansions we have the range of functions of the dative case of the word "blood," as seen in the prepositions "in," "with," and "by," as well as the word "Christ/Anointed" as the genitive of apposition in "which is [the] Anointed One." This word can also be rendered as "anointing," as seen in the second expansion. This last rendering would then refer to the anointing of the priests (Lev. 8:24), and of the mercy seat on the Day of Atonement (Lev. 16:15).
20. being One having been foreknown (previously known by intimate experience), indeed, before [the] casting down
(as of material for a foundation: founding; as of seed in a field: sowing; as of seed of a man: conception [cf Heb. 11:11]; as in throwing something down: overthrowing; as in battle = slaying; in politics: abandoning [a measure]; of debts: paying down by installments;) of [the; or: an] ordered System (world; universe; a particular order or arrangement of things), yet One being set in clear light and manifested upon [the] last part (or: final; [p72 and others read plural: last things, circumstances or aspects]) of the times (or: of the [or: these] successive chronological time periods) because of you folks –
Peter tells us that Christ (or, the Lamb) was known prior to the casting down, or the founding, of the ordered system. The word "foreknown" implies a previous intimate experience. The question then arises, Who foreknew Him and had intimate experiences with Him? This immediate context goes back to "the Father" in vs. 17, but this is not decisive. This word is connected to the context of "[the] casting down of [the/an] ordered System." Now if this system that was cast down is the arranged order before Humanity disobeyed in the Garden of Eden, then this foreknowledge may refer to Adam and Eve. Or, it may refer to the prophecy about Christ in the figure of Eve's Seed, in Gen. 3:15.
If we consider the rendering of "casting down" to refer to a "founding," then this could refer to the concept of a lamb for a sacrifice (itself a prophecy of the Messiah) that was in the mind of God when He founded the system of the Law which created Israel as a people to whom He related as their God. Or, it could refer back to the establishing/creating of the universe – which would imply a pre-existence of the Christ. See Eph. 1:4 for Paul's reference to "a casting down of the ordered System."
This verse continues by referring back to vs. 19 and the Christ, indicating that in contrast to the "casting down" this One was set in clear light and manifested at the last part of those Law-controlled times, and this happened for the sake of the called-out assemblies (which also includes us). Those "times" were the end of the age in which Peter was living. They were the times of the transition from old creation to the new; from the old covenant to the new. The ages overlapped in that particular generation, as shown by the sacrifices in the temple continuing on after the cross of Christ – until AD 70 (cf Heb. 10:11).
21. the ones [who] through Him [are] folks trustingly adhering unto God
(or: [are] believing ones, ones full of faith, and confiding ones [proceeding] [p 72 & other MSS read the present participle: ones habitually putting trust] into God):
the One awakening and raising Him up, forth from out of the midst of dead folks (or: from out of union with dead people), and giving glory to Him (a good reputation for Him; a manifestation which calls forth praise in Him). Consequently, your faith (trust; confidence; loyalty) and expectation (or: hope) are to continuously exist being [plugged; put; focused] into God (or: are to be [returned] into the midst of God)!
This verse defines the "you folks" of vs. 20: the people who are filled with faith and are trustingly adhering unto God, through means of Him, and through His blood (vs. 19). This manifestation (vs. 20), and the work of His blood (vs. 19), brought humanity back "into God" as one by one each is made to believe, made to be filled with faith and then is caused to put this faith into God – He being the realm of being which is the goal and destination of our trust.
God is specified as "the One awakening and raising Him up" from out of the midst of dead folks – or, from being in union with dead people – having given glory to Him, or, upon granting Him a good reputation through a manifestation which induced praise.
22. Having purified your souls (= inner selves) within the hearing obedience (the humble, attentive listening and submissive hearing) of the Truth and from Reality [which directs and leads] into unhypocritical (non-hypercritical; non-hyper-separating so as to over evaluate; not determined from below; non-nit-picky; or: unpretended; unfeigned; thus: genuine) brotherly affection (= fondness for the fellow believers), love one another with acceptance in a stretched-out and extended way, from out of a clean [other MSS: true; genuine] heart,
Here we are told to love folks "in a stretched-out and extended way" – which pictures a reaching out of our love, from our heart, to others – upon having purified our inner selves within the midst of obedient hearing that comes from the Truth, and submissive attention which pertains to reality. This is the path to purity: being focused attentively on the words from the anointing within us – from His instructions as He sits on the mercy seat of our innermost being.
This in turn leads us into affection for our brothers (= fellow members of the community) which is unhypocritical and not overly-critical. This last word literally means a quality that does not overly separate things so as to evaluate them, and which does not judge from a low position. True friends do not do this. Paul Tillich defines "love" (agape) in the following ways: the whole being's drive and movement toward reunion with another, to overcome existential separation; an ecstatic manifestation of the Spiritual Presence; acceptance of the object of love without restriction, in spite of the estranged, profanized and demonized state of the object; – Systematic Theology III, pp 134-138.
23. being folks having been born again (been regenerated; been given birth back up again), not from out of a corruptible (or: perishable) seed that was sown, but rather of an incorruptible (imperishable; undecayable) one: through God's continually living and permanently remaining Word (or: through a message or expressed thought of [the] continuously living and constantly abiding God; or: through means of a living and dwelling Thought, Idea and Logically laid out Expression and Communication, which is God),
This verse affirms that we have been birthed back up again (note: the Greek ana gives this force by conflating its retro and up meanings). This happened via the implanting of an incorruptible and imperishable Seed into humanity via the Word becoming flesh (John 1, prologue), and thence individually through the message that has been heralded throughout the world. This living and remaining Word, and God, has birthed us into the new creation. By using the word "incorruptible/imperishable" Peter signifies that the seed will sprout and grow (as in a field), or will conceive and create life (as in a human). Note the final expansion, above, of the last phrase, which gives other definitions of the word Logos, and presents the word God as a genitive of apposition. The adjectives "living and permanently remaining/dwelling" can be construed to modify either "Word" or "God."
"All flesh [is] like grass (or: vegetation), and all its glory [is] like a flower of grass (of vegetation): the grass is caused to dry out and wither, and the flower falls off...
25. "yet the gush-effect of the Lord (result of what flowed from [Yahweh]; saying, declaration or thing spoken concerning the Lord) is constantly abiding (continuously remaining), on into The Age (or: the eon)." [Isa. 40:6-8]
He uses this quote from Isaiah to contrast the transitory conditions of our souls – even when purified (vs. 22) – to the gush-effect (Greek rhema) that is a declaration from, or concerning, Yahweh. When something flows from Him the result remains and dwells with us, on into the Age of Messiah. Nonetheless, when this gushed-forth impartation (which is His Seed being incarnated within us) becomes one spirit as we are joined unto the Lord (1 Cor. 6:17), we, too, abide and dwell in His new creation Land (figure of His people), on into the new realm/creation of
Now this continues being "the saying" (the declaration; the gush-effect) being announced as well-being and goodness to you folks (or: And this is the thing, and the result of the flow, being spoken into you in the good news).
It should be pointed out that, again, the word "Lord" (in the first phrase of vs. 25) can be a genitive of apposition, and can read, "the gush-effect which is the Lord." Thus, we see that in this way, He Himself is constantly abiding and dwelling with us. Remember that He said "I, Myself, continuously am and exist being with you folks all the days, on until the joint-goal (or: the conjunction; the end [of all] brought together; the conclusion, consummation and fruition; the combined finished product and actualization) of the age (or: which is that Age)" – Matt. 28:20.
This "saying" is the announcement of God's goodness, His ease, and His well-being which is brought "into" (Greek: eis) us through His heralds.
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GOD'S MESSAGE OF
WHICH BRINGS GOD'S
GIFTS OF HIS SPIRIT,
HIS LIFE, HIS GRACE,
HIS POWER, HIS
FAIRNESS, HIS PEACE
AND HIS LOVE