2 Peter 2:4 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

2 Peter 2:4, NIV: For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but sent them to hell, putting them in chains of darkness to be held for judgment;

2 Peter 2:4, ESV: For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to chains of gloomy darkness to be kept until the judgment;

2 Peter 2:4, KJV: For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment;

2 Peter 2:4, NASB: For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, held for judgment;

2 Peter 2:4, NLT: For God did not spare even the angels who sinned. He threw them into hell, in gloomy pits of darkness, where they are being held until the day of judgment.

2 Peter 2:4, CSB: For if God didn't spare the angels who sinned but cast them into hell and delivered them in chains of utter darkness to be kept for judgment;

What does 2 Peter 2:4 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Peter has just affirmed that the false teachers in the church will, ultimately, be condemned and destroyed by God. Here, he begins a series of "if" statements to make the case that God does indeed bring judgment upon those who rebel against Him.

In this verse, he begins with the angels who sinned. Peter may be referring to the events described in Genesis 6:1–4, during which the "sons of God" took human wives. Some understand this to mean that it was angels who inter-married with human women in rebellion against God and were punished. Others suggest Peter means to describe angels who were cast from heaven along with Lucifer, the devil, when he rebelled.

In either case, God did not let this rebellion stand. He judged and punished these fallen angels. Specifically, Peter uses the Greek word "Tartarus," which was a part of the Greek underworld. This is somewhat different from the other biblical references to "hell," though it shares a close relation. Peter says that these angels remain there, being held in chains, or pits, of darkness until God is ready to fully judge them for their sin.