Skip to main content

1 Peter 3:19: In Which He Went And Proclaimed To The Spirits In Prison

1 Peter 3:19
[19] In which he went and proclaimed to the spirits in prison, (ESV)

We do not know much about what happened between Jesus' death and resurrection. Peter gives us a little glimpse into the events that transpired. In verse 18 he speaks of how Jesus was, "put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit." Jesus' physical body was dead. His spiritual body declared his victory over sin and death to those demons who were destined to an eternal punishment in hell.

There are false teachers who claim that Jesus went to hell and was even punished. This could not be further from the truth. Jesus went to spirits in prison to declare victory. He had purchased our salvation. He had paid the penalty of our sin on the cross. In fact, his words on the cross are helpful here. He said, "It is finished" (John 19:30). All of the punishment was received and dealt with at the cross.

We can also gather from this verse that there are some demons whose actions were so evil that they were bound in prison. These are those whom Jesus proclaimed his victory over. There are other demons who are still actively involved in evil activities to this day. They continually harass the body of Christ, and promote rebellion against God in the world.

Jesus Christ is the King of all Kings. He is Creator. He is Lord. He conquered death and hell for those whom he would save. We must never fall for a false notion that somehow God and the Devil, and his demonic minions, are somehow equal in power and dueling until the end of things. (This is actually called dualism.) Jesus proclaimed victory. He was never punished. He is the perfect God.

Consider that all of the forces of evil will one day receive their eternal punishment. Give God praise today for Jesus Christ's victory over evil. We have eternal life because of the victory he proclaimed.