It's better to suffer for doing good, if that's what God wants, than to be punished for doing bad.
That's what Christ did definitively: suffered because of others' sins, the Righteous One for the unrighteous ones. He went through it all - was put to death and then made alive - to bring us to God.
He went and proclaimed God's salvation to earlier generations who ended up in the prison of judgment
because they wouldn't listen. You know, even though God waited patiently all the days that Noah built his ship, only a few were saved then, eight to be exact - saved from the water by the water.
The waters of baptism do that for you, not by washing away dirt from your skin but by presenting you through Jesus' resurrection before God with a clear conscience.
Jesus has the last word on everything and everyone, from angels to armies. He's standing right alongside God, and what he says goes.
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)