Love Your Enemies for Your Own Sake

1 Peter 3:9–12

Should Christians be motivated by blessing when we love our enemies? And if we should be, how is that not works-based righteousness? In this lab, John Piper answers difficult questions by reading how Peter uses Psalm 34.

Principle for Bible Reading

A ground is an argument or reason for another statement. The supporting (or grounding) statement comes after the statement it supports. When you come to a grounding statement in the Bible, ask how what comes after the “for” or “because” explains (or grounds) what comes before the “for” or “because.” The key words for grounding statements are “for,” “because,” or since.

Study Questions

  1. Explain the “for” (“because”) in the middle of 1 Peter 3:9. How does what comes after the “for” help explain what comes before?
  2. Explain the “that” in 1 Peter 3:9. How is Peter motivating Christians to love and bless their enemies with that final phrase?
  3. 1 Peter 3:10 begins with the word “For” (“because”). How is Peter using Psalm 34:12–14 to defend his statement in 1 Peter 3:9?