First Peter: The Gospel of Hope

Chapter 5





Chapter 5

1-4 Pastors are exhorted to faithfulness under Christ.

5 Submission to pastors; subjection and humility to others.

6-7 Humility and resignation to God.

8-9 Sober vigilance against the devil.

10 Submission to suffering with its rewards.

11-14 Benedictions and conclusion.


1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed:

The elders.

  1. As Peter neared the close of the epistle, he exhorted and encouraged pastors to faithfulness.
    1. Paul wrote three pastoral epistles with 13 chapters, but Peter used a general epistle here.
    2. The safety, prosperity, and happiness of churches depend on faithful pastors (I Tim 4:16).
    3. Where there is no vision, people perish: they cannot obey without preaching (Pr 29:18).
    4. What is a primary source for the blessings of America? Bible preaching shore to shore!
    5. What is a primary source for the ruin of America? The decline of preaching God’s word!
  2. The elders Peter exhorted here are the pastors/teachers/bishops of the churches he wrote.
    1. We know they are pastors by duties and names in the context, especially the connected feeding and overseeing, which is the two-fold job of a pastor, and then Shepherd (5:2-4).
    2. Peter addressed converted Jews in at least five specific provinces or areas of Asia (1:1).
    3. Galatia and Asia had plural churches as both Paul and John indicated (Gal 1:1; Rev 1:4).
    4. There could easily have been a sizable number of ordained Jewish bishops intended.
  3. The term elders is a general name for leadership in some civil or ecclesiastical office or role.
    1. It may emphasize age more or less based on distinction from officers, heads, judges, etc.
    2. However, Timothy was a bishop, or elder, and he was not aged at all (I Timothy 4:12).
    3. However, the Preacher wrote a wise child is better than a foolish old king (Eccl 4:13).
    4. The use of elder in 5:5 has nothing to do with pastors, but is age by contrast to younger.
    5. Pharaoh and Egypt had servants or elders that attended Jacob’s funeral (Genesis 50:7).
    6. When Moses returned to Egypt, he called the elders of Israel (Ex 3:16; 4:29; 12:21).
    7. Many nations also had elders, leaders or rulers, such as Moab and Midian (Num 22:7).
    8. The cities of Israel had elders, such as Succoth (Deut 21:20; Joshua 20:4; Judges 8:14).
    9. The nation of Israel had elders right into the N.T. (Ezra 10:14; Pr 31:23; Isaiah 37:2; Jer 29:1; Lam 4:16; Ezek 14:1; 20:1; Joel 1:14; Mat 15:2; Luke 7:3; Act 6:12; 24:15; etc.).
    10. The heroes of Israel are called elders in the introduction to the Hall of Faith (Heb 11:2).
    11. There are 24 elders, patriarchs and apostles, seen in heaven (Rev 4:4; 5:14; 14:3; 19:4).
    12. We use rulers, magistrates, judges, and civil servants, but do we mean only one office?
  4. There are only two offices left in the N.T. church, and the two offices are bishop and deacon.
    1. It is confusing and bad doctrine to emphasize the word elder over titles of actual offices.
    2. Offices and gifts are listed in I Cor 12:28 and Eph 4:11, and only these two are now left.
    3. The pastors and teachers of Eph 4:11 are only one office by attachment of only one some.
    4. Qualifications are given for only two offices, and only two listed (I Tim 3:1-13; Phil 1:1).
    5. The office of evangelist, like Philip, had gifts men no longer have, and it is not defined.
    6. Timothy, as a bishop left at Ephesus, was to do the work of an evangelist (I Tim 4:5).
    7. Baptists and others have shied away from using bishop as an office to avoid Catholicism.
    8. There word elder has little functional meaning like pastor, bishop, teacher, and shepherd.
    9. If there are ruling elders that do not teach or teaching is not their primary duty, then they must be deacons, for there are not three offices, and their ruling is only in natural things.
  5. The N.T. does not name any office of the church as elder, which would have little meaning.
    1. The N.T. identifies and lists many gifts and offices, but never the gift or office of elder.
    2. Only two N.T. church offices remain – bishop and deacon (I Timothy 3:1-13; Phil 1:1).
    3. Bishops are also pastor-teachers, and they are responsible to teach and oversee churches.
    4. Deacons are not pastors, but they are assigned the jobs that distract pastors (Acts 6:1-7).
  6. Presbyterians and others have invented multiple elders to rule churches that are not bishops.
    1. Reformed Baptists leave Baptist history and take this aspect of Presbyterian government.
    2. This is unscriptural heresy without any Biblical support and creates foolish confusion.
    3. Those that rule N.T. churches are preachers, not a special class of elders as mere trustees.
    4. Bishops, or elders, both preach and rule (I Ti 3:2-5; 5:17; Heb 13:7; I Pet 5:2; Ac 20:28).
    5. Elders that rule well are to be paid (I Ti 5:17), but Presbyterian ruling elders are not paid.
    6. Bishops must avoid secular employment, but so-called ruling elders usually or always have secular jobs contrary to Paul’s rule (II Tim 2:2-4; I Tim 4:12-16; I Cor 9:6-14).
  7. We deny multiple elders as necessary for a local church’s oversight, since the Bible does not.
    1. Even if elders are limited to bishops, which is right, there is no necessity for a plurality.
    2. A plurality of bishops is no more needed than seven deacons, for one bishop can fulfill any need, including ordination (Titus 1:5; Acts 6:1-6; Phil 1:1; I Tim 3:1-7; Rev 2-3).
    3. The Bible makes ministers perfect, not a committee or voting by sheep (II Tim 3:16-17).
    4. Did N.T. churches have multiple elders? Sometimes, for apostles to bishops were elders.
    5. Did N.T. churches have multiple elders? Sometimes, for some churches were very large.
    6. Did N.T. churches have multiple elders? Sometimes, just like one church had 7 deacons.
    7. Pastors of seven churches of Asia were addressed, not multiple elders or a church board.
    8. A large church with means could have multiple bishops with a senior pastor (Acts 15:13).
    9. We are not Reformed Baptists, who confuse church government by copying the Presbyterians more or less.
    10. We are not Primitive Baptists, who call their church leaders elders, not bishops or pastors, and create association networks of traveling preachers, who cannot do anything without a presbytery, may be subject to deacons, must grant rights so visiting pastors, and/or may be bound by rules of decorum .
    11. The Association of Historic Baptists strongly rejects multiple elders, but holds to the good doctrines of the King James Version, limited atonement, and closed communion.

Which are among you.

  1. Bless God and thank Him for calling men who give their lives to serve among His people.
    1. It is God’s gift through Jesus Christ of spoils of victory (Ps 68:18; Eph 4:8-11; Is 53:12).
    2. They are said to have beautiful feet (Is 52:7; Rom 10:15). Think about kiss (Pr 24:26)!
    3. Consider the celebration they had under Ezra and Nehemiah for preachers (Neh 8:1-12)!
    4. The presence of faithful, God-called ministers is a blessing to appreciate and thank God for (I Sam 3:1; Job 33:23-24; Psalm 74:9; Prov 29:18; Amos 8:11-12; I Thess 5:12-13).
  2. The lack of faithful, God-called ministers is a need to beg God for (Mal 2:7; Matt 9:36-38).
  3. God has set the ministry of His servants in the churches of Jesus Christ (I Corinthians 12:28).
    1. Even Paul returned and reported to the church at Antioch of his activities (Act 14:26-28).
    2. Ministers should live among their people, where the example of their lives can be seen.
    3. There is no place for ascetics like monks that live in monasteries with beads and beans.
    4. There is no place for archbishops, cardinals, popes, or any other office over the churches.
    5. Therefore, moderators of associational meetings be careful to corrupt local pastoral rule.
    6. They do not operate above the churches and their members, but among church members.
    7. While apostles were above the churches in some respects, elders have no such authority.
  4. There is a sense in which God dwells among His people by ministers (Psalm 68:18; Mal 2:7).

I exhort.

  1. Who exhorts here? Simon Peter the apostle handpicked and trained by the Lord Jesus Christ.
    1. Peter condescended as an elder here, but it was obvious to all he was an apostle of Christ.
    2. He was a favored one and a pillar (Mat 16:18; 17:1; 26:37; Ac 1:15; 15:6-7; Ga 2:9; etc.).
    3. Peter exhorted rather than speak ex cathedra as God on earth with papal infallibility!
  2. Bishops must trace their origin back to the apostles, who transferred authority from Christ.
    1. The Pastoral Epistles of Paul include Peter’s teaching here and much more from Christ.
    2. True Christianity has traditions, but they are traditions of the apostles (II Thes 2:15; 3:6).
    3. The chain of command goes from highest offices to lowest (Mark 13:34; I Cor 12:28).
  3. We cannot allow, require, or condemn anything that cannot be clearly found in scripture.

Who am also an elder.

  1. Though an apostle, prophet, evangelist, and holding other gifts and offices, he was an elder.
    1. This is a reason multiple elders are seen in several places, for many offices were elders.
    2. Every apostle was an elder, but not every elder is an apostle; in fact, only a few were.
    3. This is more than age, as seen above, for Timothy was young and old men may be fools.
  2. Peter appealed to them as an equal or colleague in describing himself as an elder like them.
    1. The adverb also here did not add another item to a list but compared Peter to them.
    2. An also will be used for the third descriptive clause about Peter, but not for the second.
  3. He did not lord it over them as pope, Holy Father, Pontifex Maximus, vicegerent of Christ, prince of the apostles, vicar of Jesus Christ, God on earth, holder of the keys of the kingdom, ex cathedra, cardinal, or even archbishop. Let God be true, but every sincere Catholic a liar!

And a witness of the sufferings of Christ.

  1. All apostles and bishops witness of the sufferings of Jesus Christ by testifying about them.
    1. But Peter was an eyewitness observer present at the trial and torture before crucifixion.
    2. Jesus and the Spirit used both senses of witness for apostles (Luke 24:48; Ac 1:8; 26:22).
  2. We put the emphasis here on Peter as an eyewitness and observer of the sufferings of Jesus.
    1. We do this because also, modifying the other two clauses to include all elders, is lacking.
    2. We do this because Peter was there very close at hand, even after denial (Luke 23:49).
    3. What did Peter see? Garden, heaviness, mob, arrest, trial, torture, false witnesses, cross.
    4. Note how repentance and forgiveness leads to boldness by Peter about a shameful event.
    5. We see this as Peter’s humble and modest appeal to his privileged role with Jesus Christ.
  3. An eyewitness of Christ would have provoked second-generation ministers to faithfulness.
  4. The gospel is Jesus Christ crucified, so His sufferings must be declared (I Cor 2:2; Gal 6:14).
    1. What better exhortation to this duty and privilege than by Peter who had seen it in detail.
    2. This is the foundation of gospel preaching that cannot be compromised (I Cor 3:10-17).
  5. There is little or no need to embellish this clause by Peter’s own suffering on behalf of Christ, no matter how noble or scriptural or participatory they were (II Cor 4:10; Phil 3:10).

And also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed.

  1. The theme of the epistle – glory at Christ’s return – is restated here (1:7,11,21; 4:13; 5:10).
  2. He will emphasize this final phase of salvation shortly to comfort all the believers (5:10).
  3. Those that are elevated out of this world as the sons of God may rightly exhort one another.
    1. The also did not add an item to a list but compared Peter to them (see first description).
    2. An also was used for the first descriptive clause about Peter, where there was no list.
  4. Our mutual position in Christ Jesus with eternal glory pending should lead to exhortation.
  5. Peter had more evidence of partaking of eternal glory than most (Luke 10:20; Matt 19:28; John 17:6-19; 21:18-19; Phil 4:3; Acts 15:11; I Pet 1:3-5).
  6. Peter had beheld some of the divine glory of Jesus Christ on the mount of transfiguration, and he will refer to this event and its glory in the second epistle (II Pet 1:16-18).

2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof, not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind;


  1. Metaphors of feed, flock, and Shepherd identify providing food and water for sheep growth.
    1. The office and role intended here is of a shepherd, serving under the chief shepherd (5:4).
    2. The feeding by elders is teaching and preaching the word of God to sheep of Jesus Christ.
    3. When Jesus confronted Peter about his ministry, He called him to feed (John 21:15-17).
  2. This is the first of two duties with overseeing (Acts 20:28; I Tim 3:1-2,5; 5:17; Heb 13:7).
    1. What qualifies a man for pastor? The apt to teach that separates him from the deacons.
    2. Like Ezra, they must ready scribes in the word of God, to rightly divide it (II Tim 2:15).
  3. Elders are pastor-teachers (Eph 4:11), which have the ability, duty, and privilege of feeding.
    1. Pastor. A herdsman or shepherd. A shepherd of souls with reference to spiritual care.
    2. Teacher is obvious enough, so pastor is metaphorical of sheep, and teacher is very literal.
  4. What should faithful pastors feed sheep or people? Knowledge and understanding (Jer 3:15)!
  5. What should faithful men of God teach and preach? Inspired scripture (II Tim 3:16-17; 4:2)!
    1. Doctrine is teaching, instruction, precepts, and lessons regarding what which is true.
    2. Reproof is censure, condemnation, or rebuke of wrong actions, a strong word (Pr 29:15).
    3. Correction is identifying a false course of action and giving its appropriate replacement.
    4. Instruction in righteousness is those lessons for pleasing God and Christ with godly lives.
    5. That the man of God may be perfect: inspired scripture + true man of God = perfection.
    6. Throughly = thoroughly. Scripture makes the minister fully, perfectly, and completely prepared for all good works. To argue for modern inventions or methods is heresy.
  6. What should elders feed the flock of God? They must only feed what the sheep owner says!
    1. It is God’s flock: He absolutely and finally gets the last and only word on the proper diet.
    2. They should only preach the word, the right Bible, and that very carefully with all rules and authority (Neh 8:8; Jer 23:28-29; I Cor 2:6-13; II Tim 2:15; Tit 2:15; II Pet 1:16-21).
    3. They must avoid anything other than the word of God, the scriptures, the Bible (Is 8:20).
    4. They must exalt every word of God as carefully inspired and preserved (Pr 30:5; Lu 4:4).
    5. They must esteem every precept of God as right and hate all contrary ideas (Ps 119:128).
    6. They must tear down every contrary idea and thought of all their hearers (II Cor 10:4-6).
    7. They must despise another Jesus and any other doctrine (II Cor 11:3-4; Rom 16:17-18).
    8. They must love the details and smallest commandments of the Bible (Matthew 5:19-20).
    9. They must have a Bible they trust at the word level and will argue doctrine from just one.
    10. Jesus Christ must be exalted, for He is the ultimate sheep food (I Cor 2:1-5; Gal 6:14).
  7. What does feed the flock of God not mean? It means avoiding anything but Bible preaching.
    1. Peter did not say to coddle or pamper the flock like effeminate, grinning Robert Schuler.
    2. Peter did not say to grow the flock like number-worshipping, gimmick-using Jack Hyles.
    3. Peter did not say to empower the flock to ministries large or small for the Commission.
    4. Peter did not say to cheer the flock because much of Bible preaching will be hot and hard.
    5. Peter did not say to impress the flock by charm, eloquence, or claims for personality cult.
    6. Peter did not say to flatter the flock by telling them how precious they are and have been.
    7. Peter did not say to befriend the flock by being Mr. Personality and socializing with them.
    8. Peter did not say to inform the flock by being a Christian news station of current events.
  8. We must hate and reject every distraction or dilution of carnal Christianity so popular today.
    1. Numbers Driven: Statistical and psychological success is generated by sheer numbers.
    2. Entertainment Driven: Most church assemblies and activities are designed to entertain.
    3. Smooth Talkers: These are effeminate, elegant, refined, politically-correct preachers.
    4. Everyman Ministries: This is the idea every person has a ministry of great importance.
    5. Salvation Business: Fulfilling the Great Commission and filling heaven is the mantra.
    6. Dual Citizenship: The ultimate goal of contemporary Christians is to be a rich Christian.
    7. Personality Cult: Here we have the careful promotion and public adoration of a person.
    8. Cathedral Complex: The construction of beautiful and impressive buildings to move men.
    9. Political Agenda: Political agendas are pursued in Christ’s churches distorting the gospel.
    10. Activity Calendar: Create and push many activities for all ages to be too busy to think.
    11. Market Segment: Hire consultants to find a market niche and design worship accordingly.
    12. Organization vs Organism: Here the value of the organization is put over spiritual unity.
    13. Social Do-Gooders: These churches pride themselves as wonderful world benefactors.
    14. Child Worship: Exalt and pamper the children and the mothers will worship your Jesus.
    15. Body of Christ: Promote the idea everyone is going to heaven so nothing really matters.
    16. Decisional Regeneration: Make a fatal mistake you can cause regeneration to save souls.
    17. Charismatic Pride: Exalt an exciting spirit of tongues, healing, and power for false hope.
    18. Women’s Liberation: Reject Paul as a woman-hater and give women equality in worship.
    19. Babel Restored: Exalt unity above all else so as to find peace by eliminating differences.
    20. Will Worship: Talk about God’s will and leading of the Spirit until the Bible is forgotten.
    21. Feeling Fantastic: If we do enough to make them feel good, they will follow the agenda.
    22. Japanese Management: If we eliminate ministerial authority, we can call shots ourselves.
    23. Fire Walkers: Pick the right beat, play it loud, and play it long enough, spirits will come.
    24. Convenience Catering: Since modern Christians are busy, let us make it easy as possible.
    25. Silent Suggestion: Since God is silent on many aspects of worship, He must not care.
    26. Popular Party: When all else fails, build a church that is loved by the world for the world.
    27. Bedside Bishops: These sweet and gentle men keep members comfortable through death.
    28. Fundamentalists: Let us divide the Bible into matters we fight for and those we do not.
    29. For details on these and other points.
  9. We must hate and reject every distraction or dilution of carnal Christianity so popular today.
    1. Contemporary Christianity is the constant modification of N.T. religion to attract carnal Christians and the unregenerate, please the flesh, and be more acceptable to the world.
    2. It is identifiable by a Legion of inventions and alterations made to the simplicity of the gospel as musical instruments, Sunday Schools, mission boards, seminaries, special music, crosses, flags, attendance contests, holy matrimony, flowers, offertories, altars, athletic teams, egg hunts, drama teams, women preachers, mission teams, casual churches, haunted houses, rock bands, lock-ins, Super Bowl parties, Christmas programs, sleepovers, beach parties, same-sex marriages, summer camps, athletic trips, laughing revivals, telethons, sharing meetings, Holy Land tours, sunrise services, singing Happy Birthday, singing patriotic songs, soup kitchens, Boy Scout troops, political rallies, steeples, political demonstrations, early services, celebrity testimonies, stained glass windows, scheduled revivals, baby dedications, hired musicians, coffee houses, Jesus Rocks, healing services, youth ministers, ladies Bible studies, lesbian pastors, self-esteem teaching, storytelling, poem reading, rock concerts, Woodstock youth festivals, music ministers, interpretive dance, speaking in tongues, mimes, moral compromise without limits, doctrinal changes without number, strobe lights and smoke, etc., etc., etc.
  10. Everything from pulpit or office must be for edification or oversight of the church spiritually.
    1. Sermons will not be stories or testimonies but expositional or topical Bible preaching.
    2. Daily Proverb commentaries are for the reinforcement of godly wisdom for daily living.
    3. Updates are to remind of preaching, answer questions, provoke learning, unite the church.

The flock of God.

  1. A church of Christ is the flock of God with every member handpicked by Him (I Cor 12:18).
    1. Some members will be strange children that he must eventually weed out or cut down.
    2. Most members will be the children of God and sheep of Christ deserving the best feed.
  2. If a church or hearers do not have an appetite for the word of God, it is their fault and sin.
  3. If a church or hearers do not have an appetite for God’s word, he must be instant anyway.

Which is among you.

  1. They did not meddle in the business of other churches or ministries, even if it were accepted.
  2. Peter did not exhort these elders to feed the churches of Judea or the churches anywhere else.
  3. There were no itinerant “evangelists” that preach one week at a time like traveling salesmen.
  4. Just like fathers have duties toward their children and not to others, so the pastors of Christ.

Taking the oversight thereof.

  1. This is the second of two duties with teaching (Acts 20:28; I Tim 3:1-2,5; 5:17; Heb 13:7).
  2. Bishop. In general, overlooker or overseer. Spiritual superintendent or overseer in a church.
  3. This is the work of ruling a church by making decisions and leading in the way of truth, and it is confirmed in numerous places (Acts 20:28; I Tim 3:5; 5:17; Tit 1:5; 2:15; Heb 13:7,17).
    1. This is the same choice God made for ruling marriages, families, businesses, and nations.
    2. We see a husband ruling his wife (Gen 3:16) and then pastors ruling churches as above.
    3. Whether the world, either secular or Christian, finds this acceptable or not is irrelevant.
    4. All five spheres of authority and leadership are ordained by God and should be upheld.
    5. Here the charge is made by the apostle Peter for ministers to fulfill their leadership role.
    6. In other places the members of churches are told to submit to pastoral rule (Heb 13:7,17).
    7. As in all spheres, rulers are under God and bound by His word, and so it is with pastors.
    8. As in all spheres, if a ruler has tsunami-obvious sin, he is to be confronted or disobeyed.
    9. For rule in Heb 13:7 and 13:17 .
    10. For responsibilities of those in authority .
  4. For simplicity, we may summarize a pastor’s rule in doctrine, administration, and gray areas.
    1. Doctrine is studying the Bible and declaring the truth the church will hold and enforce, which is to be preached and enforced with all authority (Tit 2:15; II Cor 10:4-6; etc.); the church does not vote about truth, for God’s ministers do not recognize human opinion.
    2. Administration is baptizing, ordaining, presenting persons for membership or exclusion, setting the content and format of assemblies, ultimate financial responsibility, etc.
    3. Gray areas are sins on a continuum that may be allowed or punished e.g. number of absences, length of hair, immodesty, covetousness, foolish talking, etc. (Ezek 44:23-24).
    4. Of course, members or a church may respectfully ask about one or all of these areas.
  5. Deacons are overseers in a sense, but they only oversee a church’s earthly things (Acts 6:3),
  6. As with other spheres of authority – marriage, parents, civil, employment – men hate rulers.
    1. As authority breaks down in all spheres by example and law, good pastors are criticized.
    2. Pastors that rule without voting or using committees are called dictators or control freaks.
    3. For details about magnifying the office .
    4. For details about Miriam and Korah.

Not by constraint.

  1. The first contrasting traits for faithful ministers is to do the work willingly, not by constraint.
    1. No man should be pressed into pastoral office, which is a warning to not pressure a man.
    2. No man should take the pastoral office due to pressure, for he must voluntarily assume it.
    3. The only men that should be in ministry are those that want to be there for good reason.
    4. Those men already in the ministry should not think of have to do it but rather of want to.
    5. They should fulfill their office with desire, excitement, and pleasure, not perfunctorily.
  2. If a man desires the office of bishop, he desires a good work – emphasize desire (I Tim 3:2).
  3. Coveting the best gifts is scriptural and should provide the pool for ministers (I Cor 12:31).

But willingly.

  1. The first contrasting traits for faithful ministers is to do the work willing, not by constraint.
  2. God’s call to the ministry is obvious and visible to ministers and to a lesser degree members.
  3. Moses picked Joshua but not Caleb; Paul chose Timothy and shunned John Mark and others.
  4. A man called of God may not excuse himself from ministry by a lack of desire or will for it.
    1. Moses was not willing at first, but God helped him get willing, and the help hurt a lot.
    2. Jonah was not willing at first, but God helped him get willing, and the help hurt a lot.
    3. Cheerfulness is not a condition for giving, but rather a necessity of proper giving (II Cor 9:7) … see the contrast with necessity in that place about giving as in the contrast here.
    4. This is not waiting until you are willing, but rather get willing by submission to Christ.

Not for filthy lucre.

  1. The second contrasting traits for faithful ministers is to do the work willingly, not for money.
  2. No man should enter the ministry as other men choose various professions for financial gain.
    1. The error of Balaam was his inability to ignore the reward that Balak offered (Jude 1:9).
    2. God’s ministers must have little interest or vulnerability to money (I Tim 3:3,8; Tit 1:7).
    3. Taking young men straight from college is foolish, for they have not held a job; they do not have confidence in their earning ability and could be influenced by rich members.
    4. If a man has not earned a living for financial confidence, he can be tempted by money.
  3. Ministers should be content with necessities and have little interest in money (I Tim 6:6-10).
    1. If this passage is not primarily for them, then they should still be the best examples of it.
    2. They must hate covetousness in order to avoid partiality (Ex 18:21; Lev 19:15; De 1:17).
    3. If the poor are to be honored in churches, then ministers should show the way (Jas 2:1-5).

But of a ready mind.

  1. The second contrasting traits for faithful ministers is to do the work willingly, not for money.
  2. This ready mind is set in opposition to filthy lucre, so it means willingness regardless of pay.
  3. Compare Paul and his efforts to avoid any propensity toward financial gain (II Thess 3:7-9).
  4. As with giving, which requires cheerfulness, the Lord expects His pastors to be eager for it.
  5. What a privilege to serve the Lord Christ with an office He has given! Who needs money!

3 Neither as being lords over God’s heritage, but being ensamples to the flock.

Neither as being lords over God’s heritage.

  1. The third contrasting traits for faithful ministers is to exalt being an example rather than lord.
  2. As was stated already, the flock of God in 5:2 is God’s heritage here; each church is Christ’s.
  3. The Pharisees were lords, demanding things of the people that they did not lift with a finger.
  4. Compare Charles Chiniquy and his experience among Catholics of Quebec and other places.
  5. Diotrophes had to have the preeminence, which John condemned him for (III John 1:9-10).
  6. The greatest in the kingdom of heaven are the servants (Matthew 20:25-28; Luke 22:24-27).
  7. While ministers must rule to be faithful in oversight of churches, they emphasize by example.

But being ensamples to the flock.

  1. The third contrasting traits for faithful ministers is to exalt being an example rather than lord.
  2. Notice the words here pertaining to sheep … feed, flock, flock, and Shepherd … as in pastor.
  3. Rather than merely tell believers what they ought to do, even with scripture, they show them.
  4. Rather than be a hypocrite by not practicing what is preached, they fulfill it better than most.
  5. How effective is a salesman using a competitor’s product or service and not his own. Poor!
  6. God’s ministers should provide the living illustration and way to live (Heb 13:7; Phil 3:17).
    1. Paul called Timothy, though relatively young, to be an example of believers (I Tim 4:12).
    2. Paul charged Titus to establish a pattern of good works for others to follow (Titus 2:7).
    3. A minister must take heed to himself in addition to doctrine to save others (I Tim 4:16).
  7. This does not require ministerial perfection, but godly sorrow and repentance e.g. Peter.
    1. Peter wept bitterly of his horrible sin and was forgiven by Jesus for a leadership role.
    2. When he was a hypocrite at Antioch, it affected others causing Paul’s anger (Gal 2:13).
    3. Though being blamed again (think blameless), Peter was restored by true repentance.

4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

And when the chief Shepherd.

  1. Notice the words here pertaining to sheep … feed, flock, flock, and Shepherd … as in pastor.
  2. Bishops and pastor-teachers are shepherds, for they feed and oversee a flock of God’s people.
  3. The chief Shepherd is not Peter, nor any pope of Rome, but only Jesus Christ (Heb 13:20).
  4. A minister must not worry what his church thinks of him, but what God thinks (I Cor 4:1-5).
    1. Jesus Christ is not only the preeminent Shepherd, He also governs the other shepherds.
    2. See Paul’s name-dropping pastoral charges with authority (I Tim 6:13-16; II Tim 4:1-2)!
  5. Ministers should not ignorantly crave the office and its greater accountability to God (Ja 3:1).
  6. But this part of the exhortation is positive, for Jesus Christ will reward His faithful ministers.

Shall appear.

  1. Jesus is coming and there will be a judgment – ministers will be judged twice (I Co 3:10-17).
  2. Paul spoke very plainly of this time and event in light of his own great efforts (II Cor 5:9-11).
  3. Peter emphasized the second coming or appearing of Jesus Christ (I Pet 1:5,7,13; 4:13; 5:10).

Ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away.

  1. The only reward that a faithful minister should think about is that from Jesus Christ Himself.
    1. “Well done, thou good and faithful servant,” should be sufficient for ultimate motivation.
    2. Paul did not care what Corinth or others thought of him: only Jesus counted (I Cor 4:1-5).
    3. All the applause, appreciation, gifts, praise, rewards of men are nothing in comparison.
    4. The honor of serving Jesus Christ with the spoils of His victory is very great (Is 53:12).
  2. Men have competed in various ways to obtain earthly honor of crowns of branches or gold.
    1. All earthly honors disappear at death, which shows great foolishness (Ps 49:12-14,16-20).
    2. An incorruptible crown is all that matters, and we see it by faith (I Pet 1:4; I Cor 9:25).
  3. This crown is not so much for ministers only as it is an indicator and symbol of eternal life.
    1. Paul in context of a crown for ministerial diligence offered it to other saints (II Tim 4:8).
    2. There is little reason to presume that ministers walk around in heaven with pastor crowns.
    3. For the evidence of eternal life, ministers have the additional obligation of ministering.
  4. A crown of glory here, it is also called one of righteousness and life (II Tim 4:8; James 1:12).
  5. Daniel prophesied of ministers turning many to righteousness and being like stars (Dan 12:3).

Note #1: What can and should a church do with their pastor to fulfill this passage to God’s expectations.

  1. Be mutually thankful for God’s choice of offices and officers to get us knowledge and understanding.
  2. Be appreciative for truth and let joy show to affect others (Neh 8:8-12), like we do for our civil rulers.
  3. Pray for your pastor (Eph 6:19; I Thess 5:25). Hold him up like Aaron did the arms and rod of Moses.
  4. Be at peace, for a peaceful congregation helps every minister (I Thess 5:13; I Peter 5:5; Eph 4:3).
  5. Be Bible students grounded in the things the church believes and defend them (3:15; Prov 22:17-21).
  6. Earnestly contend for the faith once delivered (Jude 1:3) and zealously seek the old paths (Jer 6:16).
  7. Hate any thought of new doctrine or practice (Rom 16:17-18) and any false way (Psam 119:128).
  8. Silence backbiting tongues or brothers sowing discord by angry faces or more (Pr 6:16-19; 25:23).
  9. Pray the Lord of the harvest for more faithful laborers for His vineyard (John 4:35-38; Acts 13:1-3).
  10. Agree and cooperate with your pastor to preserve reverent assemblies exalting truth (Heb 12:28-29).

Note #2: Much more could be said about a faithful ministry from different angles found in the scriptures.

  1. For a variety of essays about a scriptural ministry.
  2. For much greater detail about the ministry … sermon series from July, 1986 not in e-format at this time.
  3. For challenges of perilous times .
  4. For inventions of contemporary churches .
  5. For character and methods of God’s prophets .
  6. For the rude content and style of preachers .
  7. For the duty of ministers for instant preaching .
  8. For comments on Hebrews 13:7,17 .

5 Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.


  1. This conjunctive adverb likewise by the Spirit helps the interpretation of this first sentence.
    1. Likewise. In the like or same manner, similarly. Also, as well, moreover, too.
    2. Peter had used this word already in comparing related or similar duties (I Pet 3:1,7; 4:1).
  2. If we submit to this word holding us to the context, we will not easily introduce a new idea.
    1. For this word likewise to be used here, there must be similarity between 5:1-4 and 5:5.
    2. The context is very clearly the ministerial oversight or rule that bishops have in churches.
    3. Since submission is the action and duty of this sentence, it must be to elders, or ministers.
    4. Submission was not taught in 5:1-4, but bishops were taught to take the oversight, so the required similarity in this verse cannot be submission, but rather the offices in context.
  3. If this first sentence is reduced to simply honoring age in the church, it is an inferior choice.
    1. Alternative meanings are inferior and violate likewise as giving a related or similar idea.
    2. Alternative senses are inferior and redundant with the next duty of mutual subjection.
  4. Various interpretations or applications of this first sentence have been multiplied by some.
    1. It is not a ranking of officers in the church, as inferior ministers to superior bishops.
    2. It is not a ranking of bishops according to age, for Timothy was young but with authority.
    3. It is not rising up to honor hoary heads, taught elsewhere, where submission is not a duty.
    4. It is not those young in grace, as I John 2:12-14, for submission is not their relationship.
  5. All that is left is to determine whether the language of the rest of the sentence is agreeable.

Ye younger.

  1. Bishops-pastors-teachers, the elders of 5:1-4, were conventionally and usually the older men.
    1. Elders became a general title for civil or ecclesiastical rulers by connection to mature age.
    2. The Jews, by God’s word, honored age so carefully that age terms could mean subjection.
    3. Thus, younger and elder are descriptive terms distinguishing church members and elders.
    4. The two adjectives, younger and elder, have no attached nouns, indicating a special use.
    5. Timothy was a clear and obvious exception, for he was an elder while a youth (I Ti 4:12).
  2. Jesus Himself used younger as a term of subordination rather than merely age (Luke 22:26).
    1. In the context of ministerial authority and ranks in the church, Jesus calmed His apostles.
    2. Age was important to identify honor, so Jesus used younger to describe under authority.
    3. The contrast is greatest to younger and then chief to servant, so age is not the real issue.
    4. So we compare spiritual things with spiritual according to Paul’s instruction (I Cor 2:13).
  3. John used children, young men, and fathers spiritually for church members (I John 2:12-14).

Submit yourselves unto the elder.

  1. See the explanation above for the word younger, which identifies elder as church officers.
    1. Jesus introduced the adjective younger as applying to those under authority (Luke 22:26).
    2. By extending His metaphorical usage due to contextual constraints, elder is church rulers.
    3. Ministerial oversight and rule was taught (5:1-4), so now it is time for church submission.
    4. The adjective elder might also be viewed as a collective noun for the elders of 5:1-4.
  2. Submission and honor are two different things, and they should not be confounded here.
    1. The word likewise introducing this sentence ties it to the ministerial oversight of 5:1-4.
    2. The subjection following for all church members toward one another is not of officers.
    3. Younger members should honor elder members (Lev 19:32), but this is not submission.
  3. Church bishops-pastors-teachers are clearly given authority over administration of churches.
    1. Taking the oversight, or assuming a right to rule, was already given to ministers (5:1-4).
    2. When Jesus went to heaven, he gave authority to ministers He left behind (Mark 13:34).
    3. Ministers are chosen from among men that show the ability to rule (I Tim 3:4-5; Tit 1:6).
    4. Ministers use the authority without apology and are honored for it (Tit 2:15; I Tim 5:17).
  4. Church members are to submit to their bishops-pastors-teachers as clearly taught elsewhere.
    1. Paul very clearly instructed the Jews of Judea to obey their pastors (Hebrews 13:7,17,24).
    2. Paul told the Thessalonians to highly esteem the preachers over them (I Thess 5:12-13).
    3. The examples of God’s judgment on Miriam and Korah are useful examples for all time.

Yea, all of you be subject one to another.

  1. Leaving the relationship of ministers and members, Peter exhorted all to mutual submission.
    1. This apostolic rule is not unique to Peter, for Paul taught the same to Ephesus (Eph 5:21).
    2. Paul also taught it to Philippi, where he identified it as esteeming others better (Phil 2:3).
  2. This is one of those one another duties that should be carefully observed in God’s word.
    1. The subjection here is for all members, and each one is to submit to any other of them.
    2. For more about one another duties .
  3. How does God expect each church member to be subject to every other individual member?
    1. This rule cannot confound authority relationships taught elsewhere e.g. ministers are not to officially submit to members, or husbands submit to wives, or parents obey children.
    2. This rule must include authority relationships taught elsewhere, for they are immediately in context with Paul’s similar instruction and are obvious roles for submission (Ep 5:21).
    3. However, this rule cannot be limited to authority roles, for the attendant humility is not.
    4. Yet, like ministers are to be examples, not lords, all members can submit to each other.
    5. Members should quickly seek to resolve any offences they have caused (Matt 5:23-24).
    6. Members should submit to the accusations of others and forgive quickly (Matt 18:15-35).
    7. Members should seek the lowest role in the church until pulled up higher (Luke 14:7-11).
    8. Members should in kind brotherly love and honor prefer one another (Romans 12:10).
    9. Members should ignore high things and condescend to men of low estate (Rom 12:16).
    10. Members should value Christian liberties of others more than their own (Rom 14:1-23).
    11. Members should bear the infirmities of the weak and not please themselves (Ro 15:1-3).
    12. Members should be likeminded one toward another to create church unity (Rom 15:6).
    13. Members should speak the same thing and be perfectly joined in judgment (I Cor 1:10).
    14. Members should choose to suffer defrauding and take wrong than to revenge (I Cor 6:7).
    15. Members should show charity, which in its first description, suffers long (I Cor 13:4-7).
    16. Members should bear one another’s burdens and serve their needs (Ga 6:2; I Thes 5:14).
    17. Members should denigrate themselves from time to time to exalt others (Ephesians 3:8).
    18. Members should in lowly minds esteem others better than themselves (Philippians 2:3).
    19. Members should forebear, forgive, and forget any offence by any other (Col 3:12-15).
    20. Members should confess their faults one to another and pray for one another (Jas 5:16).
    21. Members should humbly accept and appreciate correction/rebuke (Ps 141:5; Pr 27:5-6).
    22. Members should humbly serve one another with the spirit of footwashing (John 13:14).
    23. Members should be given to hospitality without grudging (4:9; Ro 12:13; Luk 14:12-14).

And be clothed with humility.

  1. Humility is the essence of this warning instruction to the church, so fully understand it.
    1. Humility. The quality of being humble or having a lowly opinion of oneself; meekness, lowliness: the opposite of pride or haughtiness.
    2. Humble. Having a low estimate of one’s importance, worthiness, or merits; marked by absence of self-assertion or self-exaltation.
    3. Subjection to ministers and members just taught requires humility against the old nature.
  2. The garment to cover each church member, thus to beautify every action, should be humility.
    1. When you put clothing on, it goes with you everywhere, and it is the image all others see.
    2. The memory others have of you should be the robe covering words and deeds – humility.
    3. If you have great zeal for the house of the Lord, let it be adorned with a robe of humility.
    4. If you have superior intelligence to the rest, let it be reduced to average by true humility.
    5. If you have more assets than others by God’s mercy, give more and condescend deeper.
    6. No matter who you are, what you have done or can do, or what you possess, get down!
  3. The success and glory of churches is by humility of each member toward each other member.
    1. You should always be girded with a towel to be eager to stoop, kneel, and wash dirty feet.
    2. Your spirit should be the same as David the king, I would happily be only a doorkeeper.
    3. Do not ask what your church can do for you, but rather only ask what you can for them.
    4. Do not ask the church to pray for you until you ask prayer for the needs of ten others.
    5. Give God the entire credit, honor, and glory for anything you are, have, or hope to be.
    6. This article of clothing makes a man or woman glorious to God and to all that are His.
    7. This adorns religion as quickly and completely as any virtue, for it is contrary to nature.
    8. It is not head-hanging, pious-talking, or meek-looking, but rather service to the lowly.
    9. Pride is the only cause of fighting (Pr 13:10; 21:24; Ja 4:1), and humility produces peace.
  4. Charity, the greatest, vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, seeketh not her own (I Cor 13:4-7).
    1. Paul, the greatest N.T. Christian, knew how to denigrate himself (I Cor 15:9; Eph 3:8).
    2. Always think and speak the best of others and least of yourself and your things (Phil 2:3).
    3. Put up with any offences by others, for you are not worthy of their carefulness (Pr 19:11).
    4. Promote rejoicing and weeping for honor or suffering of others (Ro 12:15; I Cor 12:26).
    5. Be a back-kisser of others rather than work in a backdoor compliment about yourself.
    6. Make it your business to spread every good virtue and deed about every other member.
    7. Avoid, sidestep, mock, or redirect any attempt by any to speak highly of you or yours.
    8. Do not offer your opinion until you are asked for it, and then speak briefly and modestly.
  5. Brotherly love and the kind affection of fellow saints seek and work for the benefit of others.
    1. Work hard to make others and their things more important than you and yours (Phil 2:4).
    2. Do you ask about others and avoid talking about your own things as much as possible?
    3. Do you listen well? Or are you thinking about what you are going to say to them next?
    4. Do you compliment freely? Or do you criticize better? Or working yourself into the mix?
    5. Do you ask know-it-all questions if someone gets something new, or kindly praise them?
    6. Settle all differences as quickly as you can, contrary to protective pride (Matt 5:23-24).
    7. Focus on serving others, which is a secret to being great (Luke 22:24-27; Ezek 16:49-50).
    8. When serving others, seek to serve those who cannot repay; God sees (Luke 14:12-14).
    9. Do not let your right hand know what your left hand does in charity service (Matt 6:1-4).
    10. Love to forgive and rejoice in mercy, for it part of humility and brings mercy (Jas 2:13).

For God resisteth the proud.

  1. The opposite to humility and our subjection to others is the vilest of all human faults – pride.
    1. Pride. A high or overweening opinion of one’s own qualities, attainments, or estate, which gives rise to a feeling and attitude of superiority over and contempt for others; inordinate self-esteem.
    2. Bible synonyms for pride include arrogancy, conceit, haughtiness, loftiness, highminded, glory, stoutness of heart, a lifted up heart, being puffed up, vainglory, and vanity.
    3. A wonderful verse like Jeremiah 48:29 combines several of these synonyms to help you.
    4. It is deceitful to think higher of yourself than you ought to think (Romans 12:3; Gal 6:3).
    5. If there is contention in your life, you can know it is from pride (Pr 13:10; 21:24; Jas 4:1).
    6. Pride is the thought and worry of what others think of you, with the desire of vainglory.
    7. Pride is the thought of self-preservation and self-defense in the face of the least criticism.
    8. Pride is the envy of the advantages of others, for you feel you deserve what they have.
    9. Pride is the comparison of yourself to others and finding the things in which you exceed.
    10. Pride is the expectation from others of what more they could or should be doing for you.
    11. Pride is the selfishness that hinders and limits you from being a true servant to others.
    12. Pride is the pleasure you receive at hearing about another experiencing evil or doing evil.
    13. For much more about pride from the word of God.
  2. This is a very severe and terrible warning, for if God resists you in any goal, you are stopped.
    1. If you have ears to hear, hear what the Spirit warns! If you do not, repent and open them.
    2. If God resists, you cannot start or move to success, for He is irresistible and immoveable.
    3. If God resists you, that should be enough of a warning, but the actual case is far worse.
    4. Hear the original from Proverbs 3:34, Surely he scorneth the scorners. Beware of God!
    5. The warning is worse than it sounds, for it is meiosis or litotes, designed understatement.
  3. Jehovah actively hates pride, and He will actively pursue the proud and bring them all down.
    1. The first sin was Satan’s pride, from I Timothy 3:6; read Isaiah 14:12-14; Ezek 28:12-17.
    2. How severe was his punishment? He and his are reserved for everlasting torment in hell.
    3. Pride is one of the devil’s main tricks to lead you to sin (I Jn 2:16; Luke 4:9-13; Gen 3:6).
    4. You avoid visual stimulus to fight lust of the eyes; you create limits for lust of the flesh.
    5. But the pride of life is with you all the time in your thoughts and can cause sin instantly.
    6. It is a Bible law that pride will cause destruction (Prov 11:2; 16:18; 17:19; 18:12; 29:23).
    7. Forget any comfort or strength you have in others, you will surely be punished (Pr 16:5).

And giveth grace to the humble.

  1. God loves broken and contrite hearts of the humble, and He will draw nigh (Is 57:15; 66:2).
  2. Consider how richly God blessed Solomon beyond his request for his humility (I Kg 3:5-15).
  3. The Beatitudes begin with promised blessings to the poor in spirit and mourners (Matt 5:3-4).

6 Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:

Humble yourselves therefore.

  1. Peter used therefore to indicate a conclusion was drawn from the concluding warning of 5:5.
    1. If the threat and warning of 5:5 is truly severe, you must react and respond to the lesson.
    2. If you are to be subject to others and clothed with humility, then humble yourself now.
    3. If God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble, then humble yourself right now.
    4. The two duties, the warning, and the promised blessing of 5:5 deserve our zealous action.
    5. There are good reasons to get over yourself and pride to clothe yourself with humility.
  2. To learn and practice godly humility, there are rules and suggestions in God’s word for it.
    1. Wisdom by the fear of the LORD is to hate pride and arrogancy (Pr 8:13). Hate pride!
    2. Have a holy hatred for anything smelling like a backdoor compliment (Pr 25:27; 27:2).
    3. Anything you have is a gift from God; you should not glory as if you earned it (I Co 4:7).
    4. Novices and inexperienced men should wait their turn to be in any spotlight (I Tim 3:6).
    5. Mourn for every sin as James taught for true humility; protecting sin is pride (Jas 4:5-10).
    6. Learn to say you are sorry; do it when you should; and do it quickly before pride comes.
    7. Love correction and rebuke of others and confess faults (Ps 141:5; Pr 27:6; Jas 5:16).
    8. What is hard for you? That is the thing you should immediately go and do for the Lord!
  3. To learn and practice godly humility, there is a process to do it correctly – start with God!

Under the mighty hand of God.

  1. Start with God, for humility toward Him should be easy, He is greater than you by infinity.
    1. Your strength to do anything is less than nothing; your life ends by a clothespin (Is 2:22).
    2. When God taught Job humility, He gloriously listed differences between God and Job.
    3. God’s mighty right hand or arm will beat down all proud foes and exalt humble sinners.
    4. Get a vision of God and stand in awe of Him (Ps 4:4). It helped Job (Job 40:1-5; 42:5-6).
  2. Pray as a fool, telling God humbly from the heart you are ignorant and helpless (Ps 131:1-2).
    1. Copy Solomon’s prayer of being a little child and not knowing what to do (I Kgs 3:5-15).
    2. Copy Jehoshaphat’s prayer of no might and not knowing what to do (II Chron 20:1-19).
    3. Never pray as haughty Pharisees with self-righteous conceit of superiority (Lu 18:11-14).
    4. Become as a little child without the arrogant self-sufficiency of adults (Matthew 18:1-4).
    5. Pray for your enemies, which a man with active pride cannot easily do (Matt 5:43-48).
  3. Have a contrite heart –by repentance – to tremble before Him (Isaiah 57:15; 66:2; Mic 6:6-8).
    1. Even Ahab found mercy from God for humbling himself but outwardly (I Kgs 21:25-29).
    2. Even Manasseh was lifted up by the mighty hand of God for humility (II Chr 33:11-13).
    3. If you get down in humble repentance and tremble before His word, He will receive you.
    4. The fastest route to promotion in God’s sight is to get down, as Jesus taught (Matt 23:12).
    5. He will never despise the sacrifice of a broken and contrite heart (Psalm 34:18; 51:17).
    6. Beware hypocrites! This is in His sight! He sees your thoughts and intents (Heb 4:12-14).
  4. These were a suffering people, as can be observed in each chapter: see this sense of His hand.
    1. When God’s hand is heavy upon you with afflictions or suffering, humble yourself fully.
    2. If Job had chosen humility, God would have lifted the trials much sooner (Job 36:16-18).
    3. A big part of humbling yourself under God is to cheerfully bear up under His afflictions.

That he may exalt you in due time.

  1. God loves His children; He will not tolerate their abuse or neglect more than earthly fathers.
  2. Let God exalt you in His timing, but do not seek your own exaltation no matter the timing.
    1. David could have sought his own glory after Goliath, but he chose humility and grace.
    2. David could have sought his own glory by killing Saul, but he waited for God’s timing.
    3. By letting God have His own timing for his life and reign, David maximized his glory.
  3. God will exalt all in heaven, when He will formally declare His sons, but this is on earth.
    1. Compare 5:10, where after suffering a while, God would bless them with eternal glory.
    2. Compare 5:5, where after suffering humbly, God would bless with more grace on earth.
    3. God grants more grace and its related traits to those with contrite spirits (Is 57:15; 66:2).

7 Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

Casting all your care upon him.

  1. These Jews were suffering, as every chapter in this epistle indicates, including here (5:10).
    1. A great part of humbling yourself under God is to cheerfully endure designed afflictions.
    2. Paul was constantly in danger and warned of more, but it did not move him (Acts 20:24).
  2. Pride is partially a defense mechanism, an evil and vile one, to protect yourself from harm.
    1. If you trust yourself for safety, you sacrifice His guarantee of it (Psalm 127:1; Pr 21:31).
    2. David had learned the sweet lesson of totally trusting God for safety (Ps 127:2; 4:5-8).
  3. If you always exalt others, as taught in 5:5, then who will take care of you and your needs?
    1. Robert J. Ringer, Looking Out for #1, and other worldly deceivers feed the pride of man.
    2. Many think no one will care for them unless they talk about themselves and their needs.
  4. It is man’s duty to cast care, and it is God’s work to take care; do not try to do His work.
    1. The source of Peter’s faith came from David, who relied on the Lord often (Psalm 55:22).
    2. God’s examples and promises of care are great; you can ignore tomorrow (Matt 6:25-30).

For he careth for you.

  1. God Jehovah, the God of the Bible, is not a God at a distance for the welfare of His people.
    1. The great I AM THAT I AM, He humbles Himself to behold you on earth (Ps 113:5-6).
    2. David in great detail described God’s presence with him in all places (Psalm 139:1-18).
    3. He is not a Deity of Deism, and we are not Deists; neither does He watch from a distance.
  2. He does not let a sparrow to fall to the ground without His sovereign providence approving.
    1. His affirmation is that you are of more value to Him than many sparrows (Mat 10:29-31).
    2. Stuck between His comparison with sparrows is His knowledge of the hairs of your head.
  3. The details of His care of His children are very comforting and given with absolute authority.
    1. He counts your wanderings and has every tear in His bottle and in His book (Psalm 56:8).
    2. Even when David was poor and needy, He knew the Lord thought upon Him (Ps 40:17).
    3. David looked for human help and found none, but the Lord was bountiful (Ps 142:4-7).
  4. Circumstances change, but God does not, so you will always have a Friend that deeply cares.
  5. People change, even the dearest, but God changes not in life or eternity (Ps 27:10; Is 49:15).
  6. For much more about this God’s care for you.

8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

Be sober.

  1. The Christian life is far more serious than most teach, because a dangerous enemy seeks you.
    1. You are sober this way when you realize life is spiritually serious, not just carnally fun.
    2. Peter exhorted them to sobriety due to His coming and the end of all things (1:13; 4:7).
    3. Sober. Grave, serious, solemn; indicating or implying a serious mind or purpose. Quiet or sedate in demeanour; of grave, dignified, or discreet deportment; serious or staid in character or conduct. Compare duty of bishops and various others (Titus 1:8; 2:2,4,6).
    4. Joel Osteen and Joseph Prince ministries are shams by ignoring this diabolical warfare.
  2. This one compound sentence of two verses introduces us to a spiritual warfare for our souls.
    1. You are at war! A powerful enemy seeks to destroy you! A foolish life will let him win!
    2. We are creatures of flesh, bone, blood, and foolish – we underestimate the spirit world.
    3. The air is not just for breathing; it holds created spirits, good and bad, always near us.
    4. We want to remember what Jesus did for us legally, vitally, practically, and finally!
    5. By learning and holding Bible truth, we wage war against the strong man and his lies.
  3. You are part of a great drama that transcends anything you have every imagined naturally.

Be vigilant.

  1. The Christian life has a dangerous enemy seeking to destroy that must be guarded against.
  2. Vigilant. Wakeful and watchful; keeping steadily on the alert; attentively or closely observant. Compare the only other Bible use in I Timothy 3:2 for a qualification of bishops.
  3. Peter exhorted them to watching due to Jesus’ coming and the end of all things (I Peter 4:7).
  4. You are vigilant when you are alert and examine your life to avoid any openings to the threat.
    1. You are at war! A powerful enemy seeks to kill you! A foolish life will let him win!
    2. You know in the life-and-death struggle of war a sleepy sentry can cost many lives.
    3. Christians do not have the luxury of resting in their beds before death (Isaiah 57:1-2).
    4. The battle cry for vigilance must be raised from sleep and death (Ep 5:14; I Thes 5:1-10).

Because your adversary.

  1. You have an adversary, and you are foolish and profane to ignore the clear, sober warnings.
    1. Adversary. One whotakes up a position of antagonism, or acts in a hostile manner; an opponent, antagonist; an enemy, foe. spec. The enemy of mankind, the Devil.
    2. Bible examples of adversaries are the Canaanites (Ex 23:22), the angel against Balaam (Num 22:22), Peninnah to Hannah (I Sam 1:6), David to the Philistines (I Sam 29:4), Hadad and Rezon to Solomon (I Kgs 11:14,23,25), Haman to Esther (Est 7:6), enemy to David (Ps 74:10), God and Nebuchadnezzar destroying Jerusalem (Lam 2:4; 4:12), the Assyrians against Israel (Amos 3:11), one you have offended (Matt 5:25; Luke 12:58), one taking advantage of a widow (Luke 18:3), and enemies of the gospel (I Tim 5:14).
    3. Satan and devil include in their meaning both adversary and slanderer, and the Bible devil accuses God to men (Eve), men to God (Job), and men against men (Cain).
  2. Consider some examples of diabolical deeds and intents of this spirit creature against you.
    1. He quickly corrupted our first parents to ruin Paradise and damn all men by three deaths.
    2. He took David and provoked him to number Israel against God’s word (I Chron 21:1-6).
    3. He overthrew Job’s life and health by moving armies, the weather, and his wife (Job 1-2).
    4. He and his angels are involved in the movements of pagan governments (Dan 10:13,20).
    5. He and his cohorts wrecked havoc in the life of the Gadarene, a lunatick son, and swine.
    6. A woman was bowed over 18 years by a spirit of infirmity from Satan (Luke 13:10-17).
    7. He wanted Peter, and the Lord allowed it, and Peter fell far and fast (Luke 22:31-32).
    8. He entered into Judas Iscariot and worked him up to conspire and betray Jesus (Jn 13:27).
    9. Satan took the covetous couple Ananias and Sapphira to steal and to lie (Acts 5:1-11).
    10. He went after the apostle Paul with a thorn in the flesh, but God used it (II Cor 12:7-8).
    11. There is power in the air that greatly affects men and leads them against God (Eph 2:1-3).
    12. The Holy Spirit chose the word and activity of wrestling to describe the fight (Eph 6:12).
    13. Those opposing themselves against truth are taken captive by the devil (II Tim 2:25-26).

The devil.

  1. He is a created spirit, which means he is only Potter’s clay for God’s own personal pleasure.
    1. However, he was created with intelligence and power far greater than any or all men.
    2. He is an evil spirit that was allowed to introduce evil into the universe for God’s glory.
    3. He likely knows you better than you know yourself and knows the buttons to affect you.
  2. He is known as Satan (adversary), the old serpent, Beelzebub (prince of the devils), the devil, the great dragon, Abaddon (destroyer), Apollyon (destroyer), prince of this world, prince of the power of the air, that wicked one, and Satan (Rev 9:11; 12:9).
  3. He is a murderer and liar; he is the very opposite of our blessed Lord (John 8:44; Ps 85:10).
    1. He moved Cain to kill his brother Abel (I John 3:12), and he lied to Eve (Genesis 3:1-5).
    2. God and His saints live by mercy and truth – his opposite (Ps 89:14; Prov 16:16; 20:28).
    3. When we detect hate, strife, or anything false, we know what spirit we are dealing with.
    4. Do not lie about envy, bitterness, or strife; it is from the devil of hell (James 3:14-16).
    5. He is the god of this world and blinds reprobates to God and Christ (II Cor 4:4; Ps 10:4).
  4. Consider an abbreviated timeline of his position, activities, and history with God and men.
    1. He was created before Adam, and likely before the days of creation, in a holy condition.
    2. He was a high and mighty angel, maybe the highest, similar to Michael the archangel.
    3. He sinned by pride and was cast down from his official duties in heaven (Luke 10:18).
    4. He retained the right to return to heaven, where he would accuse the saints (Job 1:6-11).
    5. Our Lord confronted and defeated many of his projects among men (Luke 10:17-20).
    6. Our Lord destroyed sin; he was confined to earth (John 12:31; Rom 8:33; Rev 12:7-10).
    7. He was bound from further deceiving all nations as before, until near the end (Rev 20).
    8. He will be cast into the lake of fire for eternal torment prepared for him (Matt 25:41).
  5. His end is certain – torment in the lake of fire forever (Mat 8:29; 25:41; II Pet 2:4; Re 20:10).

As a roaring lion.

  1. Sometimes he is a serpent or an angel of light and minister of righteousness (II Co 11:13-15).
  2. Not a couching lion here, but a roaring one; either for hunger or an indicator of persecution.
    1. The intent might be intimidation and to freeze in fear, rather than to stealthily approach.
    2. The intent of roaring may be merely his raging cruelty, confidence, and ravenous desire.
    3. Paul before Nero the first time was delivered out of the mouth of the lion (II Ti 4:16-18).
  3. He has at least three methods in the Bible … subtle serpent … angel of light … roaring lion.
  4. Lions are powerful, overpowering, ravening, vicious, cruel, heartless, fatal, confident, etc.

Walking about.

  1. He can be most anywhere or everywhere by moving himself and/or reports from his devils.
    1. He is not omniscient or omnipresent as God is, but he has an efficient and orderly army.
    2. He is not inferior in ability or knowledge as the holy angels in which we trust for help.
  2. Remember, the LORD called him twice to report of his movements on earth (Job 1:7; 2:2).
  3. Throughout the pages of scripture, we find him and his devils among pagans and Christians.
  4. If he can use any marital sexual defrauding, he can see your television and everything else.

Seeking whom he may devour.

  1. Satan’s agenda, desire, and intentions are the destruction of God’s kingdom and His people.
  2. He will take advantage of any soul with an opening by God’s permission or their foolishness.
  3. Remember his names of Abaddon and Apollyon, both of which mean Destroyer (Rev 9:11).
  4. He is not looking for those that resist him, for he flees them; he looks for carnal Christians.

9 Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.

Whom resist.

  1. You can resist the devil, though far mightier and smarter than you, because Jesus beat him.
    1. Resist. Of persons: To withstand, strive against, oppose: a. a person, his will, etc. b. an attack, invasion, blow, or hostile action of any kind. c. a moral or mental influence or suggestion. d. something proposed to be done or likely to happen, a law or command, etc.
    2. Compare Bible usage in Zechariah 3:1; Matthew 5:39; Acts 7:51; Rom 13:2; II Tim 3:8.
    3. James’ inspired promise is glorious – Resist the devil, and he will flee from you (Jas 4:7).
    4. The devil will not only leave you … he will flee from you … by your victory in Jesus.
    5. He can only take advantage of you if you give him a door or place in your life (Eph 4:27).
  2. This verse here is imperative – it is a command and rule of the gospel for Christian success.
    1. You must resist the devil, or he will devour you alive and you end up a carnal Christian.
    2. The devil, which is the source of devilish wisdom, will flee from those who resist him.
    3. The devil is the spirit behind the lusts of every sin in your life that steal you from Christ.
    4. You cannot and must not yield to him or his designs against you, no matter how terrible.
    5. Being born again, you have internal strength to resist the devil against sin (I John 5:18).
  3. How do you resist the devil? The Bible is not silent about effectively beating him in your life.
    1. The concept of resisting Satan is not difficult, is it? Do not do what he wants you to do.
    2. Jesus resisted him with three answers of scripture, and he left Him alone (Matt 4:1-11).
    3. Paul gave a clear description of the armor and actions to stand against him (Eph 6:10-18).
    4. Paul’s rule is to give no place to him by rejecting lying and anger (Eph 4:25-27; Jn 8:44).
    5. Paul’s similar rule is to identify his devices about the lack of forgiveness (II Cor 2:6-11).
    6. All that is in the world is three things shown three times (I Jn 2:16; Gen 3:6; Mat 4:1-11).
    7. You resist the devil by being strong in the word of God against any sin (I John 2:13-14).
    8. Hear the gospel well, since Satan snatches it away, brings persecution, etc. (Luk 8:11-15).
    9. Hate envy or strife; love peace and gentleness; they are either God or Satan (Jas 3:14-18).
    10. Be careful of a harsh spirit, or you are of another spirit, like sons of Zeruiah (Luke 9:55).
    11. You deny any opening by cutting off hands or plucking eyes (Matt 5:27-32; Rom 13:14).
    12. You must flee and mortify any lusts that you have (Col 3:5-8; II Tim 2:22; Prov 4:14-15).
    13. Prayer is powerful, but prayer with fasting was required for the lunatic (Matthew 17:21).
    14. The devils admitted that they knew Jesus and Paul and hypocrite imposters (Acts 19:15).
    15. You can do better than Lot, Achan, Samson, Saul, David, Amnon, Solomon, Ahab, etc.
  4. Do you need more specific examples of how and where you give the devil place in your life?
    1. The television is a pulpit of enticing sight and sound shows for worldly living (Ps 101:3).
    2. The Internet can be a pulpit and video monitor for his diabolical temptation of your flesh.
    3. The devil is in your bedroom, so do not give him place by defrauding of sex (I Cor 7:5).
    4. Avoid excessive activity and tiredness; recall how he tempted hungry Jesus with good.
    5. Relationships with the opposite sex must be carefully guarded, for he will work to ruin.
    6. Trust in the LORD with all your heart, for he will assist your understanding (Prov 3:5-6).
    7. Reject anything to do with witchcraft e.g. ouija boards, horoscopes, zodiac signs, Harry Potter, demonic games, palm readers, and other similar introductions to sorcery, etc.
    8. Women give place by modifying their proper role in marriage and home (I Tim 5:11-16).
    9. The greater your desire and activity toward Jesus Christ the less opportunity for the devil.
    10. Music has always been a vehicle for opening up the consciousness to devilish influence.
    11. Friends, contentment, hair length, and quick confession of sin all help resist the devil.

Stedfast in the faith.

  1. You cannot move away from the hope of the gospel in any of its claims, promises, or duties.
    1. Our faith in God’s promises provide a shield against his fiery darts of error (Eph 6:16).
    2. But here in this context we have the faith of the gospel of Christ by the definite article.
  2. Stedfast. Fixed or secure in position. a. Of a person, esp. a soldier in battle: Maintaining his ground. Also, of a battle: Fought without change of position. Of persons: Unshaken, immoveable in faith, resolution, friendship, etc. Also said of belief, purpose or affection.
    1. Evidence of eternal life and a partaker of Christ is holding confidence stedfast (He 3:14).
    2. You are to be stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the Lord’s work (I Cor 15:58).
  3. God wants worship in spirit and truth (John 4:20-24), so what will the devil do in response?
    1. We must guard our religion and ancient landmarks as carefully as we can against him.
    2. As early as Cain, there were innovations in worship by the devil, who then killed Abel.
    3. We preach the gospel to deliver men from his blindness (Acts 26:16-18; II Cor 4:3-4).
    4. Satan is very involved in Roman Catholicism and its blindness (II Thes 2:9; I Tim 4:1-3).
    5. He has another Jesus, spirit, and gospel that we must strictly reject (II Cor 11:3-4,13-15).
    6. The martyrs and remnant of Jesus resist him steadfastly even unto death (Rev 12:11,17).
    7. We must not get distracted or diverted with battles or conspiracies other than the real one.
    8. We must be so established in truth we will not be moved by scripture abused (Matt 4:6).
  4. One of the devil’s efforts for apostasy is persecution (Luke 8:13; Rev 2:10; 12:11; 13:15-17).

Knowing that the same afflictions.

  1. There is help, strength, and value knowing others have the same afflictions in Christ as you.
  2. There is no temptation that comes in your life that is not common among men (I Cor 10:13).
    1. You should know God is not peculiarly angry at you or has singularly forgotten you.
    2. You should know if God has delivered others from afflictions He can also deliver you.
    3. You should know you are not alone in bearing up under the devil’s temptations and trials.
  3. Did Peter by the Holy Spirit use afflictions here for temptations or for strictly persecutions?
    1. The two verses forming one sentence are transitional from temptations to persecutions.
    2. The two-fold warfare of spiritual enticements and physical tribulations are both here.
    3. The devil is behind both afflictions, whether directly himself or indirectly by rulers.

Are accomplished in your brethren.

  1. Accomplish. To fulfil, perform, or carry out (an undertaking, design, desire, promise, etc.).
    1. The verb is passive voice, meaning afflictions accomplish the design of another on them.
    2. The next verse will ascribe them as under the providence of God, as earlier (5:10; 1:6).
  2. If other Christians throughout the world could endure their afflictions, then these Jews could.
  3. Afflictions and tribulations are God’s design for perfection (I Pet 2:21; Ro 5:3-5; Jas 1:2-4).

That are in the world.

  1. Is it universality of suffering for all Christians worldwide or the short time they are on earth?
  2. It is true that all Christians in the world face a variety of afflictions by the devil’s influence.
    1. Each Christian must take up the Christian armor and resist the devil in sinful temptations.
    2. All that live godly in Christ Jesus suffer persecution, especially in last times (II Ti 3:12).
    3. Faithful saints everywhere suffer more or less, thus universality supports the argument.
  3. It is also true that only while Christians are on earth do they suffer the afflictions of Satan.
    1. Since not all were suffering the same way, this phrase may also fit their time in this life.
    2. Afflictions accomplished certainly does not apply to brethren out of the world in heaven.
    3. The world is where we suffer; the world to come is peace and rest (I Thes 3:3; II Ti 3:12).
    4. Believers have tribulation in the world, but he overcame the world (Jn 16:33; Ac 14:22).
    5. The inhabiters of the earth – in the world – are objects of the devil’s wrath (Rev 12:12).
  4. Since the audience was Jewish believers far off from Israel and suffering at the hands of the Gentiles, we also see an application that includes their Gentile brethren in similar afflictions.
    1. Sometimes world is used to describe Gentiles (Rom 11:12), and we believe it could here.
    2. Other times it is less obvious unless knowing the writer was Jewish (I John 2:2; 5:19).
  5. When the division in the sense of a clause or verse is too tight, we want to see all options.
    1. Instead of choosing one option above and restrict the verse, we see breadth (Ps 119:96).
    2. The term inspired ambiguity may confuse or offend some, but it means to see breadth.
    3. The way Paul took the law for oxen treading corn is an example of breadth (I Co 9:8-10).

Note #1: More about the devil and his efforts against Jesus Christ and His children in spiritual warfare.

  1. The Power of Darkness.
  2. Give No Place to the Devil.
  3. Jesus the Stronger Man.
  4. Abaddon and Apollyon.
  5. The Triumph of Jesus Christ.
  6. The Whole Armour of God.
  7. The Seed of the Woman.

10 But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.


  1. The inspired disjunctive but should not be neglected to get the fullest perspective of context.
    1. There is a contrast to be clearly seen by the use of the disjunctive opening a new thought.
    2. In opposition to the difficulty of afflictions by enemies, God is able and willing to help.
    3. Having established the cares and afflictions of life, there is help now and glory to come!
  2. The immediate context includes cares needing to be cast and a devouring adversary (5:6-9).
    1. The afflictions of the preceding verse certainly include persecution if not stressing such.
    2. Though the spiritual opposition and worldly persecution is great, God is yet far greater.
    3. God’s grace is appreciated to the degree you need it, which Americans in 2015 hardly do.
    4. It is our wisdom to appreciate it in spite of prosperity and to ask why we are not afflicted.
  3. The God of all grace has enough grace to help any believer that rightly submits to afflictions.

The God of all grace.

  1. With adversity, persecution, and suffering, the God of heaven and His grace are very helpful.
  2. All the grace you will ever desire, expect, need, or obtain is from the God Jehovah of grace.
    1. There is no other source or example of grace that we can compare to the grace of God.
    2. God’s grace is so complete in quality, extent, timing, and duration for perfect security.
  3. What is grace? Demerited favor God richly gives unconditionally to rebel, wicked enemies.
    1. This is one of the grand themes of our church – the sovereign grace of God in salvation.
    2. We do not use foolish definitions like unmerited favor that start with man neutral to God.
    3. Grace is more than mercy, if both are truly defined, for mercy only withholds judgment; grace not only withholds judgment but also brings honor and reward as positive gifts.
    4. How much grace did it take to design a plan to kill His own Son to satisfy His justice … to adopt lowly creatures that profanely despised Him and His word to honor His enemy?
    5. For much about true and false grace.
    6. Eternal life is unconditional.
  4. No being has ever overcome greater inhibitions and restrictions of his nature to show mercy.
    1. God is holy and just, and He cannot approve any iniquity by anyone, no matter what.
    2. God is inhibited by His nature to punish all offenders without mercy (Ex 34:7; Nah 1:3).
    3. So He made His Son of a woman and sent Him as the Substitute for us to die for our sins.
  5. No being has ever forgiven greater offences than our God to forgive us from Eden to now.
    1. Creating our first parents perfect in a perfect world, they despised Him and blamed Him.
    2. But not only do we have the first Adam’s sin against us, we have added countless more.
    3. In spite of creation, providence, conscience, and scripture, we gladly follow His enemy.
  6. No being has ever rewarded so graciously and so greatly as God adopting us as His sons.
    1. Rulers on earth, in very rare circumstances, may pardon enemies to try again in society.
    2. But God not only pardoned us – He atoned for us and then adopted us as His own sons.
    3. This adoption carries all the benefits of the concept – eternal inheritance of all He owns.
  7. No matter what afflictions you face or endure, there is ongoing grace from the throne of God.
    1. Your difficulties touch your high priest to allow you boldly to seek help (Heb 4:15-16).
    2. He suffered in the world like you suffer, so He can comfort and succour (Heb 2:17-18).
    3. He is perpetually at the right hand of God to make intercession for you (Rom 5:10; 8:34).

Who hath called us.

  1. The foundation and capstone of grace is the gift of eternal life, by which all other needs pale.
    1. Paul comforted Romans that their afflictions work together for God’s purpose (Ro 8:28).
    2. Paul comforted Romans that by God sending His Son all needs were givens (Rom 8:32).
  2. What is the call of God? It is not an invitation, offer, or request given verbally or in writing.
  3. There are three calls of salvation, but we do not have to strictly divide them every time.
    1. There is God’s appointment, choice, and ordination of you to eternal life by His will.
    2. There is God’s regeneration of you by His powerful command to live vitally as a son.
    3. There is God’s invitation by the gospel to the full enjoyment and power of His salvation.
    4. For example, many are called by the gospel, but few chosen to eternal life (Matt 22:14).
    5. If we choose the first, the other two follow; if we choose the last, the others are requisite.
    6. We limit God’s word more than necessary, if we always restrict such words to one phase.
    7. Ordinarily, and a general rule that we hold, God’s sovereign call leads to the gospel call.
  4. What does it mean to be called of God? It means God chose and appointed you as His child!
    1. The Romans were called of God (Ro 1:6-7), or chosen of God (I Cor 1:24-29; I Pet 1:2).
    2. Your calling is your chosen or appointed role or vocation (I Cor 7:17-24; Eph 4:1 cp 5:1).
    3. Luke wrote an inspired commentary that ordination to eternal life fits the bill (Act 13:48).
    4. Our calling, or appointment, is to obtain eternal life through Jesus Christ (I Thess 5:9).
    5. God’s call can be appointment, or regeneration as a son, or the gospel call to act like one.
    6. The call here is different and more than an invitation, offer, or request for us to choose.
    7. It is God’s charge, command, order, ordination we should be in heaven’s eternal glory.
    8. Consider how Jesus was called to be a priest after the order of Melchisedec (Heb 5:4,10).
  5. We must understand God’s calling, His appointment to eternal life (II Tim 1:9; II Peter 1:10).
    1. While there may be a call of God that refers to regeneration, usually it refers to election.
    2. Note that the context equates “call” and “chosen” as very similar (I Cor 1:24-26,27-28).
    3. Remember, it is those ordained to eternal life who believe the gospel gladly (Acts 13:48).
    4. Your calling is your vocation or appointment or ordination – God called Paul (Rom 1:1; I Cor 1:1), which was also ordaining him (I Tim 2:7) and appointing him (II Tim 1:11); it was much more than invitation, offer, or request on the road to Damascus (Gal 1:15-16)!
    5. God has not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by Jesus Christ (I Thes 5:9).
  6. We choose by internal evidence that Peter emphasized sovereign appointment to eternal life.
    1. The contextual issue at stake is making it to heaven and being glorified there with Christ.
    2. The means by which He makes this call is Jesus Christ, not preachers about Jesus Christ.
    3. God does call by the gospel, but not by Jesus and not to eternal glory (II Thess 2:14-15).
  7. The most important issue about calling is to determine if you are called as a vessel of mercy!
    1. Based on what Paul wrote in Romans 8:28, the evidence of calling is your love of God.
    2. Do you see in the gospel and show by a new life God’s power and wisdom (I Cor 1:24)?
    3. Peter listed eight things that when done prove your calling and election (II Peter 1:5-11).
  8. For more of God’s call, see notes for I Peter 2:9.

Unto his eternal glory.

  1. God lives in unbelievable glory from eternity to eternity, and He wants you there with Him.
    1. This is incomprehensible if you consider Him rightly and consider yourself rightly.
    2. So intimate and personal is the relationship, He has formally adopted us as His own sons.
    3. Any appearance of God or angels on earth was stupendously brilliant and overwhelming.
    4. Paul’s visit to the third resulted in him hearing things not lawful to utter (II Cor 12:1-4).
    5. Man’s eyes, ears, and heart have never imagined the things God has for us (I Cor 2:9).
  2. If God has called us to His eternal glory, who cares about the little affliction in this world!
    1. Paul mocks in a brilliant comparison our light afflictions for a moment (II Cor 4:17).
    2. Paul concluded in Romans that the sufferings and glory cannot be compared (Rom 8:18).
  3. Coming eternal glory has been a theme from the epistle’s start (1:11,13,21; 4:13-14; 5:1,4).
  4. To rightly appreciate this gift of future glory, we must lightly value the prosperity of this life.
    1. Americans in 2015 have far too much in luxury and far too little in affliction and trouble.
    2. It is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 19:24; I Tim 6:6-10).

By Christ Jesus.

  1. God’s grace in eternal life is not a choice to acquit or clear sinners, but choice in a Saviour!
  2. Every expression like this must be taken in a perspective of limited atonement for the elect.
    1. If there is value in Christ Jesus, then it is chosen, certain, applied, and effectual value.
    2. If Jesus Christ did all needed to save all men, then God’s grace was not by Jesus Christ.

After that ye have suffered a while.

  1. It is important to grasp, believe, and remember that suffering is a good and productive thing.
    1. For this reason James and Paul detailed the good results of suffering (Ja 1:2-4; Ro 5:3-5).
    2. Prosperity has never been a good means for perfection, just ask Jeshurun (Deut 32:15).
  2. As is apparent from what Peter wrote this far, his readers faced suffering of persecution.
    1. From the first to last chapter, it is mentioned (1:6-7; 2:19-21; 3:14-18; 4:1,4,12-19; 5:10).
    2. We must honestly identify different suffering to relate, since we are not truly persecuted.
  3. There is an interpretational choice to make regarding the application of this dependent clause.
    1. Is the time of the suffering here on earth, with the four works of God realized in heaven?
    2. Is the time of the suffering here on earth, with the four works of God realized on earth?
    3. Is it some combination of both, in that there are two compensations for godly suffering?
    4. We choose to order our emphasis of four works on earth while suffering before heaven.
    5. But do not forget or ignore that you will be perfect, established, strong, settled in heaven.
  4. Suffering is good, and it is wisdom to appreciate its value and virtues for your perfection.
    1. There are benefits of experience and hope when afflictions and suffering end (Ro 5:3-5).
    2. There are benefits of patience during afflictions and suffering … so let it ride (Jas 1:2-4).
    3. Most afflictions are not incessant, constant, or perpetual, as he had written (I Peter 1:6).

Make you perfect.

  1. Take note! The setting is the God of all grace and incredible and eternal plans for you (5:10)!
  2. Your gracious Father will perfect you by suffering as a good result of it (Jas 1:8; I Peter 1:7).
  3. Your gracious Father will perfect you for or without suffering (II Cor 9:8; Heb 13:21).


  1. Take note! The setting is the God of all grace and incredible and eternal plans for you (5:10)!
  2. Stablish. Variant of establish, to render stable or firm. To render stable in faith, virtue, etc.
  3. Your gracious Father will establish you through or without suffering (II Thes 2:16-17; 3:1-3).


  1. Take note! The setting is the God of all grace and incredible and eternal plans for you (5:10)!
  2. Your gracious Father will strengthen in or out of suffering (II Cor 4:16; Phil 4:13; Ps 73:26).

Settle you.

  1. Take note! The setting is the God of all grace and incredible and eternal plans for you (5:10)!
  2. Afflictions and suffering upset our equilibrium and tranquility, but God graciously restores.
  3. Your gracious Father will settle you down to calm serenity (II Cor 4:8-10; Isaiah 26:3-4).

11 To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.

To him.

  1. The God of all grace that sent Jesus Christ to earn eternal glory for us is the object of praise.
  2. The reason for your existence, one way or another, is the glory of God. Give it to Him today!
  3. All spiritual or worship activities should end like this epistle with a call for God’s praise.

Be glory.

  1. God is infinitely glorious with or without our existence, obedience, praise, or worship.
  2. But it is an inspired and perfect benediction to call for it to be remembered and praise given.

And dominion.

  1. God has infinite dominion with or without our existence, obedience, praise, or worship.
  2. But it is an inspired and perfect benediction to call for it to be remembered and praise given.

For ever and ever.

  1. God’s glory and dominion are eternal and have not been altered from eternity to the present.
  2. God is worthy of all creatures to use eternity forever and ever for His praise and worship.


  1. A Hebrew word used in all languages will be used three times in the epistle (4:11; 5:11,14).
  2. To God’s glory and dominion, we assent and agree (I Cor 14:16), and let it be so (Jer 28:6).
  3. It is so in truth; let it truly be so. We concur, and we endorse and commend the benediction.
  4. It is good, though the correspondence is not completed, to follow a benediction with Amen.

12 By Silvanus, a faithful brother unto you, as I suppose, I have written briefly, exhorting, and testifying that this is the true grace of God wherein ye stand.

By Silvanus.

  1. This is the same as Silas, the companion of Paul in his travels and joined in several epistles.
  2. The name Silas is a contraction of a name Silvanus; the former is used 4 times, the latter 13.
  3. As Paul’s traveling and preaching companion, he surely visited the churches identified (1:1).
  4. By the verse’s next words Peter identifies him as a man his readers had known extensively.
  5. By the verse’s ending, his role confirmed Peter’s gospel the same as Paul’s to these Jews.

A faithful brother unto you.

  1. Silvanus, or Silas, had been a faithful companion and fellow preacher with the apostle Paul.
  2. Peter does not identify Silas’s faithfulness to him, but rather to the audience addressed (1:1).
  3. Let there be in churches of Jesus Christ, even known by geographic range, faithful brothers.

As I suppose.

  1. Peter does not doubt the faithfulness of Silvanus but defers to the experience of the readers.
  2. If sent by these Jewish brethren in Asia, or sent by Paul, Peter knows the man can be trusted.
  3. Suppose. To hold as a belief or opinion; to believe as a fact; to think, be of opinion.
  4. The word allows his confidence in Silas to be based on their knowledge of him, not his own.
  5. Should we be alarmed that Paul wrote of reckoning coming glory to surpass sufferings?

I have written briefly.

  1. Given the glorious excellence and diversity of the subjects covered, the epistle is quite short.
  2. To fully expand on the topics covered would be an epistle or treatise of considerable length.
  3. Peter admitted not covering everything nor exhaustively treating the gospel for the purpose.

Exhorting, and testifying.

  1. Peter in this epistle had not barely acquiesced to Paul’s doctrine, but declared and pressed.
  2. Exhort. To admonish earnestly; to urge by stimulating words to conduct regarded as laudable. To recommend earnestly; to insist upon.
  3. Testify. To bear witness to, or give proof of (a fact); to assert or affirm the truth of (a statement); to attest. To profess and openly acknowledge (a fact, belief, object of faith or devotion, etc.); to proclaim as something that one knows or believes. To bear testimony. To declare solemnly.

That this is the true grace of God.

  1. Peter’s epistle here did not at all counter what Paul had preached to these Jewish readers.
  2. It is key to remember that Paul often dealt with Jewish legalists, especially law-loving Jews.
    1. Paul and Barnabas traveled from Antioch to Jerusalem to confirm doctrine (Acts 15:1-2).
    2. Paul wrote the Galatians, infected by legalism, to confirm doctrine by Peter (Gal 1:1-10).
  3. We do not care if Martin Luther, John Calvin, John Gill, BJU, the SBC, or the UN agrees.
  4. We do care that our doctrine and practice absolutely and exactly follows our Lord’s apostles.

Wherein ye stand.

  1. Paul had preached to these brethren, converted them, baptized some, and formed churches.
  2. They were committed to the gospel of Paul, and Peter confirmed that it was the true gospel.

13 The church that is at Babylon, elected together with you, saluteth you; and so doth Marcus my son.

The church that is at Babylon.

  1. Here is a marvelous statement of scripture, that when Peter was sought, he was in Babylon!
    1. Peter was with a church, with a Jewish membership, in the place of the ancient Babylon.
    2. We trust every word of scripture for value, and we remember good ministry (I Ti 4:1-6).
    3. Delight in each word of God and rejoice as much as in, “Drink ye all of it” (Matt 26:27)!
    4. Let God be true, and every man a liar, especially every foul bird of the Roman brothel!
  2. It is valuable to consider that there is no Bible evidence for Peter having ever been in Rome.
    1. The Catholic Encyclopedia claims Peter reigned as pope from 33 to 67 A.D., as head of the Roman Church.
    2. It is quite amazing that the first great controversy was settled at Jerusalem by James, not Rome by Peter!
    3. This epistle was written about 60 A.D., when Peter should have been well set on the papal throne in Rome.
    4. Paul, though listing many names in Romans 16 and throughout that epistle, makes no mention of Peter.
    5. If Peter ruled at Rome, Paul would have listed him first and far above others noted among the apostles.
    6. As chief bishop of Jesus Christ, sole possessor of the keys of the kingdom of heaven, Paul quite ignored it.
    7. It is a wonder Paul called on the Romans to rectify their disorders without instruction to Peter to help them.
    8. Since Paul would not take advantage of others’ labors (II Co 10:12-16), how could Rome be Peter’s work?
    9. Should we surmise Peter was on a sabbatical and the great church met in Aquila and Priscilla’s house?
    10. There is no Bible evidence that Peter ever visited Rome or had anything to do with the converts there, just like there is no Bible evidence for the Legion of RCC speculative doctrines e.g. assumption of Mary, etc.
    11. If Peter were not at Rome, papist claims to Rome’s ascendancy, Peter’s supremacy, and succession fails.
    12. We find Peter around 60 A.D. penning his first epistle from Babylon (I Pet 5:13), about 1800 miles away.
    13. Many Jews did not return with Ezra and Nehemiah and noted at Pentecost as dwelling in Mesopotamia.
    14. Peter taught the circumcision, not uncircumcision, as Paul noted and Peter admitted (Gal 2:9; I Pet 1:1).
    15. Papists on I Pet 5:13, requiring him in Rome, have suggested Babylon as a mystical name! See Rev 17:1-6!
    16. These fools will consign their church and pope to the infernal regions of hell to place Peter in Rome!
    17. Let God be true, but every man a liar, especially those deluded devils of the teachers of the Roman brothel!

Elected together with you.

  1. We believe the Bible and love each word, which includes election, chosen, predestinated, etc.
    1. It is amazing Arminians conclude that election and predestination are hardly in the Bible.
    2. It is amazing to us God’s election of men to salvation is most everywhere in the Bible.
    3. Peter did not describe readers as electing, as if they had chosen Jesus for their salvation.
    4. The choice is God’s and by His own will for any in Christ Jesus (Eph 1:4; II Tim 1:9).
  2. There were a number of churches of believers involved in this mutual declaration of election.
    1. Peter wrote to churches throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, Bithynia (1:1).
    2. Peter wrote from the church at Babylon, a leftover Jewish enclave and believers (Ac 2:9).
    3. Our unity is the incredible blessing by God’s sovereign choice to put us in Christ Jesus.
    4. Every baptized believer and church member is by confession and fact elect in Christ.
  3. We can and should talk about our election with great joy, just as Jesus taught (Luke 10:20).
    1. God has made countless choices for every part of your life from parents to nation to generation to abilities to looks to opportunities to circumstances … but election is greater.
    2. We can make our election sure, and we can know it of others (II Pet 1:5-11; I The 1:2-4).
  4. For more about the truth of election.
  5. For more about the truth of election.
  6. For more about the truth of election.

Saluteth you.

  1. The bond we have in Christ Jesus warrants us saluting one another, in or out of this church.
    1. Salute. To address with words expressive of good wishes, respect, or homage, esp. with some customary formula of that import; to greet in words. See Rom 16:5,7,9-16,21,22.
    2. Fathers delight in children getting along; believers should honor and respect each other.
    3. Our relationship in the family of God and kingdom of Christ trumps family and friends.
    4. When we have our family and friends in the kingdom and also in the same church, glory!
  2. Old Testament greetings in the LORD are wonderful (Ruth 2:4; Psalm 35:27; 70:4; 129:8).
  3. New Testament greetings in the Lord Christ are wonderful (Phil 4:21; Tit 3:15; III Jn 1:14).

And so doth Marcus my son.

  1. Marcus is likely John Mark, son of Mary, who held a prayer meeting for Peter (Acts 12:12).
    1. Barnabas (or Joses) was his uncle, for his mother Mary was Barnabas’s sister (Col 4:10).
    2. He is referred to as Marcus in two other places by Paul (Colossians 4:10; Philemon 1:24).
    3. Paul and Barnabas took him on after bringing money to Jerusalem (Ac 11:27-30; 12:25).
    4. They took him with them on their first evangelist trip, but he deserted them (Ac 13:5,13).
    5. Barnabas, with nepotism, wanted him on the second trip, but Paul did not (Ac 15:36-41).
    6. Yet, Mark repented and became profitable to Paul and ministry (II Tim 4:11; Phm 1:24).
    7. He wrote the gospel carrying his name, and tradition says he led a church at Alexandria.
  2. Peter had a personal relationship with this Mark, likely using son for in the faith or ministry.
    1. Peter seemed to know John Mark early by picking Mary’s house in Jerusalem (Ac 12:12).
    2. Not one of the twelve, tradition says he wrote his gospel from what Peter taught him.
    3. With endorsements from both Paul and Peter, his gospel is authenticated to us as legit.
    4. It is worthy of note to read Mark 16:7 and see Peter identified separately from the others.
  3. The relationship of father-son in the faith is a very precious one, and used in the scriptures.
    1. Paul called himself a father to Corinth (I Co 4:15) and the churches of Galatia (Gal 4:19).
    2. He called himself father to Timothy, Titus, Onesimus (Phil 2:22; Tit 1:4; Philemon 1:10).
    3. Jesus specifically rejected using Father as a title, but not as a description (Matt 23:5-12).
    4. We do not need a Big Brother club; we should be fathers to those younger in the church.
    5. The gospel bond is a brotherhood, but within the brotherhood we must serve the younger.

14 Greet ye one another with a kiss of charity. Peace be with you all that are in Christ Jesus. Amen.

Greet ye one another.

  1. The bond we have in Christ Jesus warrants us greeting one another, in or out of this church.
    1. Greet. To accost or address with the expressions of goodwill or courtesy usual on meeting; to offer in speech or writing to (a person) the expression of one’s own or another’s friendly polite regard. See Romans 16:3,5,6,8,11; I Cor 16:20; II Cor 13:12.
    2. Salute. To address with words expressive of good wishes, respect, or homage, esp. with some customary formula of that import; to greet in words. See Rom 16:5,7,9-16,21,22.
    3. Fathers delight in children getting along; believers should honor and respect each other.
    4. Our relationship in the family of God and kingdom of Christ trumps family and friends.
    5. When we have our family and friends in the kingdom and also in the same church, glory!
  2. Old Testament greetings in the LORD are wonderful (Ruth 2:4; Psalm 35:27; 70:4; 129:8).
  3. New Testament greetings in the Lord Christ are wonderful (Phil 4:21; Tit 3:15; III Jn 1:14).

With a kiss of charity.

  1. Peter was specific about the affection and unity of greeting, for it deserved a kiss of charity.
  2. Paul also instructed the brethren to kiss (Rom 16:16; I Cor 16:20; II Cor 13:12; I Thess 5:26).
  3. The following points were preached May 26, 2002 (I Thess 5:26), May 30, 2004 (I Cor 16:20), December 26, 2004 (II Cor 13:12), and March 9, 2014 (Rom 16:16). A short version was preached April 22, 1990 (Footwashing).
  4. As children of God and saints in His church, we realize “blood is thicker than blood,” in that the blood ties in Jesus Christ are stronger, deeper, and more precious than family, so warm physical expressions of affection and unity should be pleasant, not painful, and it should not surprise us that Peter refers to it as a kiss of charity.
  5. Personal and physical greetings are incompatible with envy, strife, bitterness, division, or enmity, which exalts physical affection as a protective tool against such things; Paul and Peter opposed these sins to magnify unity and peace of the Spirit among followers of Christ.
  6. We hug relatives, close friends, and others in moments of great affection or appreciation, but kissing is quite rare in the American culture other than for romantic or family purposes.
  7. We find the kissing exhortations among apostolic salutations, not among rules for brotherly love or church unity (Rom 16:16; I Cor 16:20; II Cor 13:12; I Thess 5:26; I Peter 5:14).
  8. And they are so positioned in their salutations to likely be little more than the “xox” we put at the end of some personal letters with words like, “Give everyone a hug for me,” or as parents may sometimes exhort squabbling children, “Now give each other a kiss.”
  9. Kissing was part of greetings in the New Testament (Mark 14:44), but such salutations were not universal, especially personal and intimate ones (Luke 7:44-46; Gal 2:9).
  10. We find little difference here from their practice of washing feet, which was done in their culture for the dry and dusty climate and lack of socks and enclosed shoes. And there is further similarity with the anointing of oil, which was also a kindness due to climate that was shown sometimes but not always (Luke 7:46). As we do not require footwashing, public or private, neither do we require kissing, since it is not a social custom in our nation.
  11. Jesus told the apostles to wash one another’s feet (Jn 13:12-17), but we know this only illustrated humility and service; the churches did not practice such a rite, or Paul would not have used it as a unique mark of exceptional widows (I Tim 5:10). Advocates of feet washing argue vigorously for it while ignoring Bible kissing, though it has greater Bible support.
  12. Jesus understood there would be no need to wash feet for those with closed shoes (Jn 13:10).
  13. We want to do more than shake hands, for a handshake holds the other at a distance, and shaking hands is not considered a personal or intimate form of greeting or saluting among good friends. You do not greet close family or dear friends with handshakes.
  14. If we choose the literal and direct sense of this text as a literal and perpetual rule, do men kiss women? Do women kiss men? (Women kissed Jesus very affectionately and intimately.) On the hands? On the feet? On the lips? On the neck? How often? How long? Both morning and evening services? With or without hugging? The reason these questions exist is because it was a social custom, which we have lost and therefore do not grasp the method or limitations.
  15. How could we keep the designation “holy,” since kissing would be so very unusual to both participants and observers, due to its lack of use in our culture and society?
  16. How could we keep the designation “charity,” since kissing would cause many questions, much awkwardness, and even offence depending on how done, by whom, and how often!
  17. The right hand of fellowship given to Paul was a public act of authoritative approval (Gal 2:9), not a personal greeting or salutation of personal affection and love, which leads us to separate it from our practice of greeting new members with more affection than a handshake.
  18. If we lived in a country where kissing was accepted as appropriate greeting by intimate friends, we might well apply this passage differently, with a general understanding of the rules of that culture.
  19. Even in a culture and time where it was accepted, Paul always limited it to a “holy kiss,” which rejected any lascivious kiss (Pr 7:13) or treacherous kiss, like that of Judas.
  20. In another place, brother John exhorted to greeting mutual friends by name (III John 1:14). Does this add to the kiss requirement so that proper scriptural greetings require names and kissing? Should the full name be used? Or is the first name enough without the surname?
  21. We understand the emphasis to be “greet” and “charity,” with “kiss” being their custom.
  22. Therefore, we will continue to apply this passage with regular hugging between those of the same sex and infrequent hugging of those of the opposite sex, which is the more intimate form of greeting in our society and culture, and far superior to casual greetings.
  23. Let all be sober about this text and its cross-references, for any foolish, light, frivolous, or mocking treatment of kissing based on this text shows a foolish or profane spirit worse than not keeping it.
  24. For more about the heresy of footwashing in the church …

Peace be with you all.

  1. Consider Peter’s benediction or salutation of peace upon his readers after the content here.
    1. He had warned of suffering and persecution for Christ in every chapter of the epistle.
    2. But He had also explained to them the purpose and value of their suffering for the Lord.
    3. But He had also explained the great glory and joy that would occur at Christ’s coming.
  2. In spite of suffering, enemies, or temptations, Jesus has overcome the world (John 16:33).
    1. Jesus secured for us peace with God, peace for our own souls, and peace with all others.
    2. There is peace by walking with God that is unnatural to men (Isaiah 26:3-4; Phil 4:6-7).
    3. So great is the victory won that there is peace in any earthy event and then even at death.
  3. They could even have peace about Paul’s “anti-law” gospel and against the Jewish legalists.
  4. He opened the epistle with multiplied grace and peace to them, and he closed with both (1:2).

That are in Christ Jesus.

  1. The blessing of peace cannot and should not be given to natural men that are yet in the flesh.
  2. The securing of peace with God and peace for eternity is in Christ – eternal, legal, vital, final.
  3. Knowledge and experience of peace practically walking with God is also and only in Christ.
  4. For these Jewish believers, there was not peace in Moses or the Law, only in Christ Jesus.
  5. We have nothing to offer those that are outside Christ Jesus or living contrary to His gospel.


  1. This Hebrew word used in all languages was used three times in the epistle (4:11; 5:11,14).
  2. To the entire epistle, this postscript, and the benediction of peace, we consent and agree (I Cor 14:16), and let it be so (Jer 28:6).
  3. It is so in truth; let it truly be so. We concur, and we endorse and commend the benediction.