1 Peter 4:12 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

1 Peter 4:12, NIV: Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.

1 Peter 4:12, ESV: Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.

1 Peter 4:12, KJV: Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:

1 Peter 4:12, NASB: Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though something strange were happening to you;

1 Peter 4:12, NLT: Dear friends, don't be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through, as if something strange were happening to you.

1 Peter 4:12, CSB: Dear friends, don't be surprised when the fiery ordeal comes among you to test you, as if something unusual were happening to you.

What does 1 Peter 4:12 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Peter begins a new section of his letter, summing up and adding to what he has previously written about the believer's attitude towards suffering. He begins by calling his readers "beloved" or "dear friends." Peter certainly cares deeply for the scattered Christians of Asia Minor and, by extension, for all the believers who would read his words.

However, he again urges them (and us) to expect fierce trials, instead of being surprised by them. We should not see persecution as strange and unusual for God's people (John 16:1–4). Hardships of all kinds will come. For these first century Christians, that would include intense political and social persecution for their faith in Christ.

False teachers mislead Christians, even today, telling us to expect only good days if we make God-pleasing choices. Peter shreds that idea, telling believers to expect just the opposite. In essence, Peter says to not judge God's character or trustworthiness by the quality of our circumstances. Those fiery trials test our faith or, as Peter will write in a few verses, serve as a kind of crucible for the church to purify its faith.

God's set-apart people should not be shocked when suffering comes our way.