1 Peter 4:7-11 “7 But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer.8 And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.9 Use hospitality one to another without grudging. 10 As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion forever and ever. Amen”
- Have you been diligent in prayer this week for your family, business and those in your care?
- Are you taking the time daily to pray to God and seek how God would direct you for each day in your family and business?
- Are you praying for the salvation of those who need the Saviour in your service as employees?
Peter says that we need to be disciplined and watchful in prayer. How are you going to start?
Begin to set aside some time each day to pray even if its only a few minutes to begin with. Then as you learn to speak to the Lord on behalf of those around you increase your prayer time. Be diligent in prayer because God calls us to pray and not cease. Jesus spoke often of persevering in prayer. He said to keep on asking, keep on seeking and keep on knocking at the door of heaven and you will be heard.
I know the power of being diligent in prayer not just because God said its effective but because I have experienced, time and time again, just what great things God accomplishes through prayer. So let me encourage you as Peter says, “Become watchful and diligent in prayer
Have Selfless Love toward One Another
The second way that Peter describes how we should conduct ourselves in view of Christ’s coming is that we are to have selfless love toward one another. In light of Jesus’ words that at the end, the love of many will turn cold, Peter says that especially in the difficulties of these last days we must persevere in showing love toward one another.
The love that Peter mentions is a special love. This love is special for three reasons
It is God’s love – The first reason that this love is special is that it is God’s love. The Greeks had several words to describe love. This word love, “agape” was very limited in its use by the Greeks. But Jesus and the Apostles picked up the word and used in a completely new sense.
This is the love that God is. 1 John says, “God is agape (love).” Its source is God and it is described for us in seeing the depth of God’s action for us. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” This agape love is selfless. It always has the best interest of others in mind. It causes one to seek the highest good. As you can see this love is supernatural. It is not something that can be conjured up by our own willpower or desire. Our own desires are selfish and corrupt.
Yet Peter commands us to love one another with the love that God has for us . How can this be? How can we accomplish such a thing? You must realize that the only way you will ever be able to love one another with God’s love is by the power of the Spirit of God. And this is not impossible for the Christian. It is only possible for the Christian. Paul said in Romans that since the Spirit of God dwells in you, you have all the resources you need to live a life pleasing to God and accomplish His will. And that includes loving one another.
It is a fervent love
The second reason that this love is special is that it is a fervent love. The word that Peter uses here in telling us to love fervently is literally the word for being stretched out. This is a love that is both constant and intense. One commentator says that the term was used to describe a horse at full gallop. And we use a similar terminology when we say that someone was running flat out. It describes someone giving it all they’ve got. Is this the love that you have for one another? Are you giving it all you’ve got?
Peter says that we are to love each other fervently. Are you loving one another fervently like the athlete who is giving his all in the final race of a competition? This is how Peter says we are to love. It is a love that is stretched out for one another.Do you see yourself reaching out to others around you?
Do you see others reaching out in this kind of love? Practice this kind of love and you will see others practising it as well. Do you take time to help others in their walk as Christians? Do you see how you can meet their spiritual and physical needs? What are you doing as part of the body of Christ to show Christ’s love to those who need it? We need to show Christ’s love to those around us.
Part 4 and closing next week, stay tuned
Stephen for the Kingdom Builders Team