Peter addresses Christians who are are in land strange to them, either because they are there setting up churches, or because they were driven there to flee persecution. He assures them they are chosen by the Father and sealed by the Holy Spirit for salvation by Jesus. Jesus, having been raised from the dead is a living hope, and the eternal life Jesus promised is greater than any wordly treasure. It is not succeptible to the corruption and fading of the nature world. Even in persecution, you are protected by God, and can rejoice knowing you are saved. The geuinness, authenticity of your faith, is more precious than gold, more valuable because it grants you eternal life. The prophets desired the time of the Messiah, but it was revealed to them, that salvation would come to the Gentiles. Set your minds and hearts on this grace, even during your trials. Do not backslide, but focus on Christ, and his love for you. God has given you mercy, and your conduct such reflect this. Christ existed before the creation of the world, he is forever. You have been given new life, not by the world but by the eternal word of God.