It is written in the Bible: ‘Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king” (1 Peter 2:17). To honor someone means to bring honor to that person and even show preference to him. What kind of honor can I give to a yogi, for example, or to a homosexual? How can I understand it?
To understand the words of the Apostle Peter here …
Let’s look at the context
The passage in which this verse is placed is the following:
Keep your behavior excellent among the Gentiles, so that in the thing in which they slander you as evildoers, they may because of your good deeds, as they observe them, glorify God in the day of visitation. Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human institution, whether to a king as the one in authority, or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of those who do right. For such is the will of God that by doing right you may silence the ignorance of foolish men. Act as free men, and do not use your freedom as a covering for evil, but use it as bondslaves of God. Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king. Servants, be submissive to your masters with all respect, not only to those who are good and gentle, but also to those who are unreasonable. (1 Peter 2:12-18)(NASB)
According to this text, to honor all people means:
- To behave well with everyone.
- When he says the Gentiles, Peter relates to unbelievers, it is a biblical term that it is used in the Bible to non-Christians.
- When they slander us as evildoers we shall not respond in the same way, but whenever we have the opportunity we shall do good deeds to them.
- To submit ourselves to authorities and give them the due honor, both to the king and to governors.
- When ignorant and foolish people are talking bad and invent nonsense about Christians, do not respond in the same way, but doing right you silence them by the good you do for them personally and for society in general.
- As citizens, we behave as free men, taking advantage of civil rights, but do not use it as a covering for evil as to throw contempt upon others.
- Another extremely important thing is to proclaim the wonderful powers of Him who called us from darkness to light, that is to proclaim the Gospel message to people so that they can be saved.
How to honor yogis and homosexuals?
I think the best answer to this question in the Epistle of Paul to Titus when he told him how to teach the Christians of Crete:
Remind them to be subject to rulers, to authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good deed, to malign no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing every consideration for all men. For we also once were foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another. But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a trustworthy statement; and concerning these things I want you to speak confidently, so that those who have believed God will be careful to engage in good deeds. These things are good and profitable for men. (Titus 3:1-8)(NASB)
So, we shall look with kindness to all people who live in sin, because we are those who have experienced their condition, but now we have received forgiveness and mercy from God. We shall do good to these people and to continually proclaim the Gospel message so that they can be saved. May God help us so.
Translated by Felicia Rotaru