1 Peter 1:1-2
1 “Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who reside as strangers, scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia, who are chosen2 according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be multiplied to you.”
An apostle of Jesus Christ: Peter had quality time with Jesus. He was able to watch Jesus live and teach. This is the prerequisite for being an apostle. Even Paul, who never knew Jesus during His earthly ministry, is considered an apostle because he met Christ on the Damascus Road.
Who are chosen: The letter of 1 Peter was circulated throughout various Christian churches, or various groups who are chosen by God. Here, Peter is not speaking of election in a Calvinistic sense where God chooses some individuals to believe and others for eternal punishment. He is speaking in general about the church being God’s elect group. The New Testament makes it clear that this group includes Gentiles (see also Romans 9:30).
To obey: In the context, obeying Jesus Christ is believing in the Gospel. All who believe are sanctified, or set apart, by the Holy Spirit for God. Believers are reserved for the purpose of displaying God’s grace. This would be encouraging truth for these believers to think about during the persecution they were experiencing under Nero.
According to the foreknowledge of God the Father: God had a plan for salvation before time began. This is what Peter has in mind with his use of the term “foreknowledge.” He is not speaking of an individualistic view of election or foreknowledge. God had a plan of redemption, a foreknowledge of what He would do and what would happen. This foreknowledge was a call for all to obey Jesus Christ by receiving the Gospel.