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  • Chad Werkhoven

1 Peter 2:21-25 - The 'So-That' Savior

Jesus suffered so that you would be healed and follow in His steps.


1 Peter 2:21-25 (NIV)

21 To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.

22 “He committed no sin,

and no deceit was found in his mouth.” 

23 When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. 24 “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” 25 For “you were like sheep going astray,” a but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.


Listen to passage & devotional:


Belgic Confession of Faith, Article 20: The Justice and Mercy of God in Christ

We believe that God—

who is perfectly merciful

and also very just—

sent his Son to assume the nature

in which the disobedience had been committed,

in order to bear in it the punishment of sin

by his most bitter passion and death.

So God made known his justice toward his Son,

who was charged with our sin,

and he poured out his goodness and mercy on us,

who are guilty and worthy of damnation,

giving to us his Son to die,

by a most perfect love,

and raising him to life

for our justification,

in order that by him

we might have immortality

and eternal life.



You were called to follow Jesus because He first suffered for you. Peter quotes the famous Messianic passage Isaiah 53 to once again reiterate that Jesus committed no sin nor spoke deceitfully.

So often, our interpersonal relationships are based on the principle of lex talionis, that famous doctrine which we summarize by saying 'an eye for an eye, and tooth for tooth.' We treat people according to the way they've treated us. But Jesus was so different. There was no retaliation to the insults hurled at Him, no threats in response to the suffering inflicted on Him. Imagine how different our daily lives, political discourse and international diplomacy would be if we all acted like Jesus!

But the external insults, threats and physical suffering Jesus endured was nothing compared to agony He endured bearing our sins. If it's true He didn't deserve the insults hurled at Him, the flogging He endured, or the nails driven into His hands and feet, how much more did He who "committed no sin" not deserve to have every single one of our sins cast upon Him!

Peter quotes Isaiah one more time in declaring the purpose for Jesus bearing your sin: "By His wounds you have been healed." In other words, Peter writes, because Christ paid for your sins, you've been returned to the Shepherd who left the flock to come looking for you.

Dig Deeper

Yesterday we learned about ἵνα (hina) clauses, which are most often translated with the English words "so that," and how you should circle them each time you see one in your Bible. They give practical application to the doctrines the Bible calls us to believe.

There are two hina clauses in today's passage, with the first one in the opening verse. "Christ suffered for you, leaving you and example, so that you should follow in His steps." What Peter is saying here is that knowing that Christ went through so much to gain your salvation must elicit more than just an emotional response. You must follow Him, and live as He lived.

The second hina clause takes things a step further: not just must you live as Jesus lived, you must die as well! Peter writes, “He himself bore our sins in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness.” Certainly this doesn't mean that you must be flogged and nailed to a cross, but rather that each day you must 'put to death' (to use Paul's language) the sin you're so attracted to.

  • ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: Our Father, who is the Shepherd and Overseer of our souls;

  • ALIGN YOUR LIFE WITH GOD'S WILL: Pray that you'll follow in Jesus' steps, and die to sin and live for righteousness;



Read the New Testament in a year! Today: Philippians 2


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