The author was the Apostle Peter, whose name before he became a disciple, was Simon. He was born in Bethsaida and lived in Capernaum where he followed the occupation of fishing.
He was brought to Jesus by Andrew, his brother, and became one of the leaders of the Apostles, both before and after Christ’s death.
His career should be studied as it is found in Acts. He was impetuous, brave and energetic, and after the ascension performed many miracles.
Those Addressed. The sojourn of the dispersion (1:1) points to Jewish Christians. They were strangers (sojourners) 1:1, 17; 2:11, who were persecuted, 3:17; 4:12-19, but whose persecution came, not from the Jews, but from pagans, 4:3-4. They had certain faults and wrong tendencies, 2:1, 11, 12, 16; 8:8-12; 4:9; 5:2-3.
Purpose. To console them in their suffering, and to exhort them to faithfulness and duty.
Date. Probably about 64-68 A. D. Certainly not after 70 A. D., as he was not doubt put to death before then.
For Study and Discussion.
- (1) Peter’s loyalty to Christ. (a) He makes everything depend on Christ, his cross (1:18-19; 2:24; 3:18), his suffering (2:21; 3:18; 4:13), his resurrection (1:3), his manifestation (1:7-13), his exaltation (3:22; 4:11; 5:10). (b) He calls Christ a living stone, 2:4-8. (c) He clings to Christ’s teaching, submission to rightful authority (2:13-16), forgiveness of others (4:8; Matt. 18:22), humility (5:5).
- (2) The mercy of God our hope 1:3-7. From this passage list what is said of spiritual inheritors and their inheritance.
- (3) How to obtain the Christian ideal, 1:13-21.
- (4) Spiritual development. 2:1-10.
- (5) Various deities of society, 2:13-17; of domestic life 2:18; 3:1, 7; of Christian brotherhood, 1:22, 2:1-5; 3:8-9; 4:8-11; 5:1-5.
- (6) The work of the different persons of the Trinity. (7) The words precious, joy and rejoicing, mercy, love and faith.