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1 Peter  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament: 1 Peter a. The Slave as the Paradigm for Believers (2:18–25)

Peter points to the slave, who was most vulnerable in Greco-Roman society, as a paradigm for the Christian believer who follows Jesus Christ. Because of their Christian commitment, Peter’s readers may have been facing a loss of status and empowerment in their society. The slave had the lowest social status and least power and so is a fitting role model for this situation. Moreover, regardless of their social standing, as Christians they are to live as slaves to God, obeying him in every aspect of life (2:16). Peter recognizes that Jesus Christ, God’s very Son, was the Suffering Servant (i.e., slave) of Isa. 53, who submitted to unjust suffering in order to serve God’s plan of redemption. His suffering provides the example that all Christians are to follow. Therefore, Peter begins to address the issue of commendable behavior in society’s most basic unit, the household, by first addressing the Christian household slave before turning to the Christian wife and finally to the Christian husband as head of the household.

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