Nov. 26. Closing Admonitions from Peter

I Pet. 5:1-14

In view of the persecutions facing his readers, Peter turned his thoughts to the elders who would oversee them during those struggles. He identified himself as one of them who had actually been an eye-witness to the sufferings of Christ, and had also seen the glory that the faithful will ultimately enjoy.

Peter admonished the elders to take their responsibilities humbly, willingly, seriously and without greedy ambition. They were to oversee the church as a shepherd would feed and tend a flock of sheep. Their lives were to be proper examples of righteous living for the church. Ultimately, Christ, the Chief Shepherd will reward faithful elders with a permanent crown of glory. In order for elders to properly lead the church, there must be proper cooperation from the membership as sheep following their shepherd.

“Likewise you younger people submit yourselves to your elders.” It is important for younger people not only to submit to the eldership of the church, but to respect the age and experiences of other older people before them.

All Christians are to be humble and obedient to God’s commands in order to be exalted by Him in due time. As those Christians faced the perils of that time it was important for them to trust God for deliverance or for the strength to endure their hardships.

Peter concluded this epistle with a call for vigilance against the devil. His readers under extreme stress at that time were especially vulnerable to discouragement and following Satan instead of God.

The apostle ended his admonitions with a prayer that their sufferings would be brief and that they would soon be restored to peace, strength and stability.

Silvanus, another name for Silas possibly wrote and probably delivered this letter for Peter. He was a faithful worker in the church and had traveled with Paul on his second missionary journey about thirteen or fourteen years earlier.

Peter sent his own salutation of peace along with greetings from others in Babylon. Some scholars suggest that the “she” that he mentioned was probably his wife. It is more likely that “she” was the church at Babylon. Mark also sent his greetings.