From Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ. To God's chosen people who are away from their homes and are scattered all around the countries of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia.
God planned long ago to choose you by making you his holy people, which is the Spirit's work. God wanted you to obey him and to be made clean by the blood of the death of Jesus Christ. Grace and peace be yours more and more.
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. In God's great mercy he has caused us to be born again into a living hope, because Jesus Christ rose from the dead.
Now we hope for the blessings God has for his children. These blessings, which cannot be destroyed or be spoiled or lose their beauty, are kept in heaven for you.
God's power protects you through your faith until salvation is shown to you at the end of time.
This makes you very happy, even though now for a short time different kinds of troubles may make you sad.
These troubles come to prove that your faith is pure. This purity of faith is worth more than gold, which can be proved to be pure by fire but will ruin. But the purity of your faith will bring you praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ is shown to you.
You have not seen Christ, but still you love him. You cannot see him now, but you believe in him. So you are filled with a joy that cannot be explained, a joy full of glory.
And you are receiving the goal of your faith -- the salvation of your souls.
The prophets searched carefully and tried to learn about this salvation. They prophesied about the grace that was coming to you.
The Spirit of Christ was in the prophets, telling in advance about the sufferings of Christ and about the glory that would follow those sufferings. The prophets tried to learn about what the Spirit was showing them, when those things would happen, and what the world would be like at that time.
It was shown them that their service was not for themselves but for you, when they told about the truths you have now heard. Those who preached the Good News to you told you those things with the help of the Holy Spirit who was sent from heaven -- things into which angels desire to look.
So prepare your minds for service and have self-control. All your hope should be for the gift of grace that will be yours when Jesus Christ is shown to you.
Now that you are obedient children of God do not live as you did in the past. You did not understand, so you did the evil things you wanted.
But be holy in all you do, just as God, the One who called you, is holy.
It is written in the Scriptures: "You must be holy, because I am holy."
You pray to God and call him Father, and he judges each person's work equally. So while you are here on earth, you should live with respect for God.
You know that in the past you were living in a worthless way, a way passed down from the people who lived before you. But you were saved from that useless life. You were bought, not with something that ruins like gold or silver,
but with the precious blood of Christ, who was like a pure and perfect lamb.
Christ was chosen before the world was made, but he was shown to the world in these last times for your sake.
Through Christ you believe in God, who raised Christ from the dead and gave him glory. So your faith and your hope are in God.
Now that you have made your souls pure by obeying the truth, you can have true love for your Christian brothers and sisters. So love each other deeply with all your heart.
You have been born again, and this new life did not come from something that dies, but from something that cannot die. You were born again through God's living message that continues forever.
The Scripture says, "All people are like the grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field. The grass dies and the flowers fall,
but the word of the Lord will live forever." And this is the word that was preached to you.