Hi Dr Mike! Dr Joe said you might be able to help me! I've been reading and studying 1 & 2 Peter, and I am puzzled by what is being said in 1 Peter 3:18-20. What proclamation would Jesus be making to imprisoned spirits that were disobedient during the days of the Noah? And why to those who were disobedient? I could understand if he were preaching to the "righteous dead" such as Abraham or Daniel, but the disobedient? Any light you could shed on this passage would be great!
On a side note, I'm not really sure about 1 Peter 4:6 either...
That is a thread about the broader question of whether Jesus went to hell when He died. About those two passages you mentioned, the following is what I said:
"1 Peter 3:18-20 and 1 Peter 4:6. I'm taking these both together because I think they're basically talking about the same thing. Essentially, who are those in prison or those who are dead that Jesus preached to? Did He go and preach victory to the dead? Did He go and present the Gospel to the dead who are in hell? Neither of these interpretations lines up with the rest of Scripture. First, we have no other evidence that Jesus went to boast over those who were already in hell. Second, to suggest (as some have) that He went to hell to give them a second chance is clearly unbiblical, for after we die, we are out of chances (see Luke 16:19-31 and Hebrews 9:27).
"A better interpretation is that this refers to the Spirit of Jesus being the same Spirit that preached to those who are now in hell while they were living. The context of 1 Peter 3 seems to make this clear in that Peter is writing to those who are being persecuted. He encourages them to proclaim the Gospel and uses Noah as an example of one who preached in a day of difficulty. Yet it was the same Spirit of Christ preaching through Noah that is preaching through them in their day (and through us in our day). This interpretation also finds support in 1 Peter 1:11 (the Spirit of Christ speaking through the OT prophets) and 1 Peter 2:5 (Noah called a preacher of righteousness)."
If you have further questions, let me know. I've actually written quite a bit about this, so what I gave you is the brief conclusion.