QTVOTD: An elder is not above discipline…

“So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed:” 1 Peter 5:1-2 ->me:  This is another day where I am not able to get past even just one verse in my quiet time.  Peter is exhorting the elders of the church but what caught my eye is Peter’s phrase “and a witness of the sufferings of Christ”.  Why doesn’t he say “and a witness of the resurrection of Christ” or “and a witness of the transfiguration of Christ”?  I think this is because Peter is recalling for us his own pain and frailty during the Passion of Christ; when Peter failed so miserably by denying his Lord 3 times.  I think he is reminding elders that even he, a denier of Christ can be redeemed and reconciled to God.  Peter is an ‘elder’ who has sinned, repented, been restored, and will share with Christ in glory. He can rightly ‘exhort’ any elder in whose life there is sin, likewise to repent and be restored before God’s disciplinary refining fire reaches him.  Peter may be borrowing from Ezekiel 9:6 where judgement begins with the house of God – “So they began with the elders who were before the house.”  On another level, the reference to Christ’s sufferings may also serve as a reminder to the elders that just as Christ was willing to suffer for them, so they should be willing to endure hardship and suffering for the sake of those in their churches.

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