1 Peter 5:1-5 – A Humble Church and Faithful Elders

To the Elders

It is by no means easy for a young man to become a shepherd, and he ought not to be discouraged if he cannot become one in a day, or a year. An orator he can be without difficulty. A reformer he can become at once. In criticism of politics and society he can do a flourishing business the first Sunday. But a shepherd he can become only slowly, and by patiently traveling the way of the cross.

The shepherd’s work is a humble work; such it has been from the beginning and such it must be to the end. A man must come down to do it. A shepherd cannot shine. He cannot cut a figure. His work must be done in obscurity. The things which he does do not make interesting copy. His work calls for continuous self-effacement. It is a form of service which eats up a man’s life. It makes a man old before his time. Every good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. If a man is dependent on the applause of the crowd, he ought never to enter the ministry. The finest things a minster does are done out of sight and never get reported. They are known to himself and one or two others, and to God. His joy is not that his success is being talked about on earth, but that his name is written in heaven. The shepherd in the East had no crowd to admire him. He lived alone with the sheep and the stars. His satisfactions were from within. The messengers of Christ must not expect bands of music to attend them on their way. Theirs is humble, unpretentious, and oftentime unnoticed labor, but if it builds souls in righteousness it is more lasting than the stars.

Charles Jefferson

On Humility

Consider Jesus—matchless in dignity, and consummately humble. Recall the apostle Paul’s description of the mind we see in Christ, “who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross” (Phil. 2:5–8).

Humility is having the mind of Christ, which means not holding on to status in a way that hinders love. It means letting go of your own prerogatives. You can’t cling to your rights or rank or standing as a reason for failing to love someone. Humility is love freely flowing among people of different positions.

This is what we see in the Son. He didn’t let his own divine status hinder him from meeting the needs of sinful humanity. Instead, he pressed beyond his exalted place for the sake of love. More than that, he became a human who would die the most ignoble of deaths—death as a tried and condemned criminal on a cross. And yet it was his humility—not counting his rights and privileges as something to use for himself—that enabled our Lord to meet the needs of sinners like you and me.

Todd Wilson

Read 1 Peter 5:1-5. These verses speak to the elders on how they are to do their work. How can you as the church assist the elders in joyfully caring for the body? How does your own humility serve this purpose and assist them in caring for the church yourself?

How Deep the Father’s Love For Us by Stuart Townend

Posted on: February 3, 2017 - 7:50AM

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