1 Peter 5:1-4
The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ…
I. THE STYLE AND CHARACTER HERE APPROPRIATED TO OUR DIVINE REDEEMER.
1. "Shepherd."(1) He has received His Church as a charge from the hand of the Father.
(2) He 'has ransomed the sheep with His most precious blood.
(3) He lives to gather the wanderers into His fold, by the power of His Spirit and the instrumentality of His Word.
2. "Chief Shepherd."(1) His infinite dignity.
(2) His official supremacy.
(3) The preeminent qualities He. possesses, for the office with which He has been invested.
(a) The comprehensiveness of His knowledge.
(b) His almighty power.
(c) His exquisite tenderness and sympathy.
(4) To Him all the subordinate agents in His kingdom are responsible.
II. THIS CHIEF SHEPHERD IS ABOUT TO APPEAR.
1. This fact is most certain.
2. The circumstances of His second coming will be marked with peculiar splendour.
III. THE RECOMPENSE WHICH WILL BE AWARDED AT THAT SOLEMN HOUR, TO THOSE WHO HAVE FAITHFULLY FULFILLED THE DUTIES OF THE OFFICE OF UNDER SHEPHERDS. —
1. The beautiful imagery employed by the apostle to exhibit this recompense — "a crown of glory that fadeth not away."
2. What are the substantial truths couched under this imagery?
(1) The approbation of his Master.
(2) The visible tokens and pledges of ministerial success.
(3) His own personal exaltation and felicity.Learn:
1. The vast importance of the Christian ministry as an ordinance of God for the present and everlasting welfare of His Church.
2. The true honour which is due, and ought to be presented, to those who have faithfully discharged this office on earth, and especially when their course has terminated.
Parallel VersesKJV: The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: