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1 Peter 4:15: But Let None Of You Suffer As A Murderer Or A Thief Or An Evildoer Or As A Meddler.

1 Peter 4:15
[15] But let none of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evildoer or as a meddler. (ESV)

The previous verses have established emphatically that we will suffer as believers in Jesus Christ. That is not up for debate. More specifically, Peter has reminded us that our persecution will come as a direct result of our identify with the Lord Jesus Christ. He was a man of suffering, as well as being the greatest example of unjust persecution and execution this world has ever known. 

Where we need to be careful is when our suffering is not the result of living a godly life, but rather when we are claiming the name of Christ, while acting in contrary, ungodly, ways in our culture. Being a murderer, or a thief, or an evildoer, or a meddler would be contrary to the principles that the Bible gives us for conduct in this godless world that we live in.

Most of us understand that suffering for as a murderer or a thief would be against God's principles. These are two of the Ten Commandments. Not only would Christians understand this concept, the Old Testament Jews would have grasped these violations of God's Law. For that matter, most godless cultures have some kind of punishment for those who are murderers and thieves.

Being an evildoer or a meddler might need further clarification.  Are you a gossip? A busybody? Are you prideful? Are you greedy? These are all actions that are evil in God's sight. How about being a meddler. This actually means getting involved in revolutions and rebellion against the government. Christians are to be quiet, humble servants in their community, being salt and light in our culture.

You will suffer. What is the source of your suffering? Is it because of your godliness? Or your ungodliness? Only one kind is acceptable in God's sight.