The elders who are among you I exhort, I who am a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that will be revealed: Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; nor as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock; and when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that does not fade away. Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for
“God resists the proud,
But gives grace to the humble.”
Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
Good morning friends. Peter’s speaks expressly in these verses about leadership, service, trust, mutual respect, humility and reward. First he starts with those in leadership, expressing the importance of their role and the virtues to pursue to enhance it, he addresses the younger folks on the need to be submissive, then the essence and blessings of a mutually symbiotic exchange of humility within christian communities. He made reference to this verse in proverbs, as he tries to highlight the blessings of humility;
Surely He scorns the scornful, but gives grace to the humble.
This same verse is mentioned by James as he tries to warn his friends against strife; stressing that strife is a by product of pride. Clearly from this verse we see the contrast between pride and humility, and God’s view on these subjects. Before I go any further, I feel the need to clarify that human dignity is an essential part of our psyche, and it is important in our relationship with God and others. And it should not be muddled up with pride, ego or narcissism.
With that in mind, pride can be simply defined as rebellion against the existence of God, and His place in our lives and the affairs of planet earth. We manifest this trait when we take God’s place in the circumstances surrounding our lives; in our existence, in our achievements, and in our accomplishments. When we operate without His active participation, when we feel we are masters of our destinies. In the psalmist’s effort to express his trust and dependency on God (humility), he penned these words:
Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; but we will remember the name of the Lord our God.
So dear friends, our acceptance of His lordship over our lives, and this consciousness in our relationship with others, can be qualified as humility. In this pride filled and self indulgent generation, we need to keep reminding ourselves of the words of Peter:
Be clothed with humility