Good Stewards of God's Grace
1Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh,a arm yourselves with the same thought, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, 2so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer by human passions but by the will of God. 3Let the time that is past suffice for doing what the Gentiles like to do, living in licentiousness, passions, drunkenness, revels, carousing, and lawless idolatry. 4They are surprised that you do not now join them in the same wild profligacy, and they abuse you; 5but they will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. 6For this is why the gospel was preached even to the dead, that though judged in the flesh like men, they might live in the spirit like God.
7The end of all things is at hand; therefore keep sane and sober for your prayers. 8Above all hold unfailing your love for one another, since love covers a multitude of sins. 9Practice hospitality ungrudgingly to one another. 10As each has received a gift, employ it for one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace: 11whoever speaks, as one who utters oracles of God; whoever renders service, as one who renders it by the strength which God supplies; in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Suffering as a Christian
12Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal which comes upon you to prove you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13But rejoice in so far as you share Christ's sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. 14If you are reproached for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the spirit of gloryb and of God rests upon you. 15But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or a thief, or a wrongdoer, or a mischief-maker; 16yet if one suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but under that name let him glorify God. 17For the time has come for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18And
"If the righteous man is scarcely saved,
where will the impious and sinner appear?"
19Therefore let those who suffer according to God's will do right and entrust their souls to a faithful Creator.