Summary: Exposition of 1 Peter 1:22-2:3
I’m Saved…Now What?
Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For, “All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord stands forever.” And this is the word that was preached to you. Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.
1 Peter 1:22–25; 2:1–3
What should happen in the life of a believer who has truly believed and responded to the gospel?
In this passage, Peter talks about the proper results of salvation. Look what he says: “Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth” (1 Pet 1:22).
When he says we have been “purified” by “obeying the truth,” he is talking about our salvation through faith in Christ. Peter seems to be calling our “faith” obedience. God has called us to believe in the Son as our Lord and Savior (Rom 10:9, 10), and therefore, our “faith” is obedience. It is God’s will that none should perish but that all should come to repentance (2 Pet 3:9). God calls all men to “repent” so they may be saved and those who respond are obedient.
This obedience to the gospel leads to purification. When we are saved, God washes us from our sins and cleanses us with the blood of Christ. Christ told the disciples each one of them were clean because of the word spoken to them (John 15:3). It was not only because they heard the word but because they had obeyed it. They obeyed and were purified by Christ’s blood (Heb 9:14).
Well, in this passage, Peter says, “Now what?” What should be the result of our salvation? Some people get saved and tend to continue to live their lives the same way they used to before accepting Christ. For them, salvation is just fire insurance to keep them out of hell. However, Scripture would say true salvation is not just mental assent without the corresponding works. True faith always leads to works which essentially prove the validity of our faith (Jas 2:17). In this passage, Peter shows us three works that should happen as a result of our salvation.
As a Result of Salvation, Believers Must Love the Brethren
Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God (emphasis mine).
1 Peter 1:22–23
Peter says a result of our salvation is love for the brethren. He demonstrates this by the preposition so in verse 22. It gives the purpose or result of something. We should realize that loving believers is a fruit of true salvation. If a person who claims to be a Christian does not love believers he is not truly saved. Look at what John says about this:
We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love our brothers. Anyone who does not love remains in death. Anyone who hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life in him.
1 John 3:14–15
John says anyone who does not love the brethren has not passed from death to life. They are not truly born again, and there is no life in them. Christ said the same thing, but not in reference to us knowing we are saved, but the world knowing we are. Look at what he says in John 13:35: “By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
What should be the believer’s response to salvation? The answer is to love the church. God has called you to love the church and honor him by that. In fact, he more clearly says this is a result of our salvation in the following verse. First Peter 1:23 says: “For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God” (emphasis mine).
The addition of the preposition for or it can be translated since, in 1 Peter 1:23, is meant to show us the reason we love. We love because we have been born again. He saved us for this purpose, and it should identify us to the world and give assurance to our spirit that we are saved.