May 13th, 2007
Mr Rockstein wasn’t a normal primary school teacher. He was big for his age. He was tall, and he was wide. He had a booming voice, and he seemed to have a short temper. We used to have the old-fashioned sorts of desks where the seat parts were connected to the table parts, and each desk would have seating space and table space for two students. The desks were quite heavy as I recall, but not for Mr Rockstein. When he was mad with someone in his class, he would walk up to the desk, lift it up with the two students helplessly trapped inside, and shake it while shouting in his booming voice. For us students, Mr Rockstein was a vision of pure awe and terror…
Peter’s First Letter — Chapter 3
3:1 Wives, submit to your husbands so that, even if they disbelieve the word, they will be won over by the behaviour of their wives without a word, 3:2 seeing the reverence and purity of your conduct. 3:3 Your beauty should not consist of external things like braided hair and gold jewellery and fine clothing. 3:4 It should be located in your heart, the unchanging beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which God esteems highly. 3:5 This is how in times past holy women who put their hope in God made themselves beautiful, submitting to their husbands. 3:6 Sarah submitted to Abraham, calling him lord. You are her daughters, if you do what is right, without fearing intimidation.
3:7 Husbands, you must also live considerately with your wives, respecting them as the weaker partner, but as joint heirs of the gift of eternal life. Then nothing will stop your prayers.
3:8 Finally, all of you should be united in spirit, understanding, loving, compassionate, humble, 3:9 not repaying evil for evil, or insult for insult, but instead blessing, because you were called to this so that you could inherit a blessing. 3:10 “People who want to love life, and see good days, must keep their tongues from speaking evil, and their lips from speaking lies. 3:11 They must turn away from evil and do what is right. They must look for peace, and pursue it. 3:12 The eyes of the Lord are on righteous people, and his ears are open to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is set against people who do evil.”
3:13 Who can harm you, if you become enthusiasts for doing good? 3:14 Even if you suffer for doing what is right, you are blessed. “Do not fear what they fear, and stop worrying.” 3:15 Worship the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give an answer to anyone who asks you the reason for the hope inside you, with humility and reverence, 3:16 in good conscience, so that, when you are criticised, the people who abuse you for your good behaviour in Christ will be embarrassed. 3:17 If it is God’s will for you to suffer, it is better to suffer for doing what is right than for doing wrong. 3:18 Christ died for sins once, a righteous man on behalf of unrighteous people, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body, but made alive by the Spirit. 3:19 In the Spirit he went and preached to the spirits in prison, 3:20 who were unbelieving in times past, when God waited patiently in the days of Noah, while the ship was being built. In it, only eight people were saved through water. 3:21 This is analogous with baptism, which now saves you. It is not just about washing dirt from your body; it is an appeal to God from a clear conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 3:22 who has gone to heaven and is at the right hand side of God, with angels and authorities and powers submitting to him.