1 Peter 2:15 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Peter 2:15, NIV: For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people.

1 Peter 2:15, ESV: For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people.

1 Peter 2:15, KJV: For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men:

1 Peter 2:15, NASB: For such is the will of God, that by doing right you silence the ignorance of foolish people.

1 Peter 2:15, NLT: It is God's will that your honorable lives should silence those ignorant people who make foolish accusations against you.

1 Peter 2:15, CSB: For it is God's will that you silence the ignorance of foolish people by doing good.

What does 1 Peter 2:15 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In the previous verses, Peter commanded Christians to submit to every human authority. This does not necessarily mean obeying everything we are told to do by human government (Acts 5:28–29). Paul delivers these instructions knowing full well that Christians may often be falsely accused of wrongdoing. In teaching submission to human authority, Peter echoes Jesus' own teaching as well as those of Paul in Romans 13:1–7.

Why would God ask Christians to submit to human authorities, even those who wrongfully accuse us or treat us unfairly? This verse is part of the answer. First, Peter spells it out: This is God's will. Peter isn't stating a personal philosophy or a practical strategy for living as persecuted people. He is unequivocally telling Christians exactly what God wants them to do. Why does God want us to pursue goodness in this way? To silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. Notice that Peter doesn't say that the end result of our submission to authority will be fair treatment or even freedom from harm. Instead, God plans to use our good choices to shut prejudiced people up.

What does that mean? Those who know believers well enough to see our faith lived out, on a day-to-day basis, recognize that we do good because we are Christians. They will stop believing that Christians are a destructive force in society, or that Christians do evil, or that Christians are dangerous. They will stop being ignorant about what Christians are really like, because they will know better, by direct experience.

Of course, that result depends on Christians leading good lives out in the open, including being submissive to human authorities.