1 Peter 3

Wives and husbands

1 I need to speak to you wives. You should each respect the authority of your own husband. Even if your husband does not believe God's message about Jesus Christ, you should still respect him. If you do that, he may then turn to God and believe his message. You will not need to tell him what is true. He will see the good way that you live. 2 He will see that you obey God and that you do things that are completely good.

3 Think about what makes you beautiful. The way that you prepare your hair does not really make you beautiful. Gold things or beautiful clothes do not make you beautiful. 4 Do not just think about your body, but think about what you are really like inside yourself. Be patient and do not become angry easily. Then you will always continue to be beautiful. If you are beautiful in your spirit, God likes that very much. 5 That was how holy women made themselves beautiful many years ago. They trusted God that he would help them. They respected the authority of their husbands. 6 Sarah was a woman like that. She obeyed her husband, Abraham. She called him, ‘My master’. So you wives also should do what is right. Do not let anything make you afraid. Then you will be like true daughters of Sarah.

3:6Abraham was the ancestor of Israel's people. Sarah was his wife. See Genesis 11:27-23:20.

7 You husbands must also respect your wives. Be kind to your wife and help her. Remember that she is not as strong as you are. Because God is very kind, she has received his gift of true life, as you have. So you should respect her. Then God will answer you when you pray to him.

Christians must be ready to have trouble

8 Now I want to say this to you before I finish my letter. All of you should agree with each other in what you think. You should try to understand how other people are feeling. Love each other as brothers and sisters. Be kind to each other. Do not think that you are more important than other people. 9 If people do bad things to you, do not do anything bad to them in return. If people insult you, do not insult them in return. Instead, pray that God will bless those people. That is what God wants you to do. Then you will receive the gift of God's blessing. 10 The Bible says this:

‘Do you want to enjoy your life?

Do you want to be happy?

Then you must be careful not to say evil things.

Do not tell any lies.

11 Stop doing evil things.

Instead, do things that are good.

Try to be friends with people.

Help people to live in peace with each other.

12 Remember that the Lord God sees what everyone does.

He takes care of people who do what is right.

When they pray, he listens to them.

But the Lord God turns against people who do evil things.’

13 If you always try to do good things, then nobody should hurt you. 14 But somebody might give you trouble, even when you do what is right. If that happens, God will bless you. So do not be afraid of what people may do to you. Do not worry about it. 15 Instead, always remember that Christ is your Lord. Let him rule how you live. People may ask you, ‘Why do you trust God to help you?’ You must always be ready to answer them about that. 16 But when you tell them, be kind and polite. Do only what you know is right. Then those people will see that you live in a good way because you believe in Christ. When they say bad things against you they will become ashamed. 17 Sometimes God may let you have trouble and pain even when you have done good things. But that is better than if you have trouble and pain because you have done bad things.

18 Christ himself always did what was right. But he received pain on behalf of people who do what is wrong. He died once to take away all those wrong things. He did that to bring you near to God. People killed Christ's body, but God's Spirit made him alive again. 19 Like this, he went to the spirits who were in prison. He told them God's true message. 20 Those were the spirits of people who had refused to obey God long ago. At that time God waited patiently for them to turn to him while Noah was building a large ship. But only a few people agreed to go into that ship. God saved only eight people when the ship sailed on the deep water. 21 That shows how God now saves you. It is like a picture of baptism. The water of baptism does not wash dirt from a person's body. Instead, it shows that a person has decided to obey God. He is choosing to do what is right. That saves you, because Jesus Christ became alive again after his death. 22 After that, Jesus went into heaven. Now he is sitting at God's right side. He rules over angels and over everything that has authority and power.

3:20The story about Noah and the large ship starts in Genesis 6. The ‘spirits who were in prison’ may mean all the people who drowned in the water. Or it may mean the angels who did not obey God.
3:22The right side means the most important place. It shows that Jesus has the same authority as his Father.