Partner with as God uses us to make a difference for those displaced by Russia's war on Ukraine.
Click to donate today!

Bible Commentaries

Mahan's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament

1 Peter 5

Verses 1-14

Humility in his service

1 Peter 5:1-14

1 Peter 5:1. Peter is not speaking to the elders in age but to the men whose business it is to teach and preach the word of God. Most believe that an elder is tied to a particular church, while an apostle has authority in all the churches. Peter calls himself an elder and an apostle, a witness of the sufferings of Christ and of the glory of Christ, having been with the Lord all the days of his ministry and his transfiguration. However, today’s elders also are witnesses or preachers of his suffering and glory, having seen them by faith.

1 Peter 5:2. Elders and pastors are to feed the people of God the word of God (John 21:15-17; Acts 20:28). Elders are to take the leadership of the church, not by coercion or constraint but willingly, not motivated by advantage, pay, personal power, and praise but for the glory of God with a cheerful spirit (Hebrews 13:7; Hebrews 13:17).

1 Peter 5:3. Pastors and elders are not to rule with an iron hand over God’s people as though they were kings and lords; but being examples and patterns of love, kindness, honesty, and doctrinal soundness, they are to lead the church.

1 Peter 5:4. Pastors are called shepherds in the scriptures, but really we are but under-shepherds. Christ is the great Shepherd the chief shepherd; and when he shall appear, the faithful pastors and elders shall hear the Master say, ‘Well done.’ This crown of glory is God’s eternal glory and happiness. Like the crown of righteousness, it shall be to all those who love his appearing (2 Timothy 4:8).

1 Peter 5:5. Since the elders and pastors are usually men of years and proven experience (1 Timothy 3:4-6), the younger would be those younger in the faith as well as in age. The younger in the church are to give due respect to spiritual leaders and are to follow their teaching and counsel as it is true to the Scriptures.

Every member of the body is to be clothed in humility, with freedom from arrogance and pride toward one another. God sets himself against the proud, the overbearing, the boastful, and the presumptuous; and he gives grace and blessings to the humble (Ephesians 4:1-2).

1 Peter 5:6. Therefore, humble yourself under the mighty hand of God. Bow and patiently bear every affliction, look not on your own things but on the welfare and happiness of others, work graciously for the glory of God and the good of the church, do the humble tasks, look not for recognition and praise; for sooner or later the truly humble and gracious will be exalted by the Lord God! (Matthew 23:11-12; John 13:12-17.)

1 Peter 5:7. Cast all of your cares, your worries, your anxieties, your concerns, and your fears once and for all on Christ. He cares for you affectionately, having loved you from the beginning; and he cares for you watchfully, giving his angels charge over you (Hebrews 1:14; Hebrews 13:5-6).

1 Peter 5:8. ‘Be sober and vigilant.’ There are several things that are indicated here.

1. Sobriety or moderation in the use of wine, along with watchfulness over our conduct and attitude, for the glory of Christ.

2. Seriousness of mind and carefulness to maintain sound beliefs and practices personally and in the church.

3. Sincerity in our profession, our prayers, and our worship, trying the spirits whether they be of God.

All of this is necessary because your enemy, the devil, roams about like a hungry lion seeking someone to seize upon (Luke 22:31; Job 1:8-12).

1 Peter 5:9. Withstand temptation and fight against error of spirit and flesh. Be firm in your faith, rooted and grounded in Christ Jesus, knowing that all believers throughout the whole world have the same conflicts, the same trials, and the same enemy! (John 16:33; 2 Timothy 3:10-12.)

1 Peter 5:10-11. After you have suffered awhile in this world, the God of all grace (who chose you in Christ, redeemed you by his mercy, and called you to repentance and faith by his spirit) will complete and make you what you ought to be and what he predestined you to be just like his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ! (Philippians 1:6.)

To him be the glory for all things! (1 Peter 4:11.)

1 Peter 5:12. Peter sent this letter by Silas, who is mentioned often in the book of Acts.

1 Peter 5:13. Marcus is probably John Mark.

1 Peter 5:14. A kiss of love is an expression of true Christian affection.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Used by Permission.
Bibliographical Information
Mahan, Henry. "Commentary on 1 Peter 5". Mahan's Commentary on Selected Books of the New Testament. 2013.