1 Peter 4:11-15


1 Pet 4:11 (KJB)
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 for ever and ever. Amen.
Oracles - Word or utterance
Minister - Serves
Ability - Provide for or underwrite
If anyone speaks concerning anything, let them speak the word of the Lord. At this time revelation, tongues, dreams, and visions were still being used of the Lord because the Bible would not be completed for about another thirty years. So Peter is exhorting that if anyone has anything to say, let it be the word of God. With the time of persecution imminent, Peter did not want a bunch of superstitious or philosophical meanderings confusing and causing the people to become more fearful as the time approached. He also states that if anyone is able to minister or to serve, then let them do it fully according to the spiritual gift God gave them. The word in the Greek for “ability” carries with it the meaning of “being fully provided for or fully underwritten.” Therefore, out of any of the service or the words preached, then let God have the glory through the Lord Jesus Christ. Praise and dominion belongs to God for granting us this salvation and for seeing His children through the roughest times in their life.
1 Pet 4:12 (KJB)
Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:
Strange - Shock or a surprise
Fiery - Fiery ordeal or trial
Trial - Temptation, testing, or experience
Some strange thing - Foreign or alien
Peter is now exhorting them to not be surprised that persecution is coming. He wants his readership to know that we live in a hostile world, one which is openly hostile to the gospel. You can have any religion you want and the world will applaud you but the minute you begin to preach true Christianity, then all the world will come against you. This is not a strange happening since Satan is the god of this world and anything to do with the Lord Jesus Christ will be met with hostility, even to the point of death. All one needs to do is something simple like hand out tracts and you will be met with opposition very quickly. Peter expects the Christian to factor in persecution into their lives because it is coming. As the passage states, “which is to try you.” It does not say which may try you, it is coming and we must be prepared for it.
1 Pet 4:13 (KJB)
But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.
Partakers - Sharers
Exceeding - Jubilant
If there is one great aspect about the gospel message it is that when the suffering is over, there is always a promise of jubilee. Peter states that since we have shared in Christ’s sufferings, we will also share in Christ’s glory. It does not matter how great or how small the sufferings are, the true believer will have glorious peace for all eternity. (2 Cor 4:17-18 KJV) For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; {18} While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 speaks to this beautifully. Paul calls present persecution light affliction, especially when we compare it to the fate of those afflicting the true believer. Those who killed and tortured the true believers throughout time will have a far worse time of suffering, theirs will be eternal while the believer’s was only temporal.
1 Pet 4:14 (KJB)
If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified.
Reproached -Scorned or reviled
Happy - Blessed
Resteth - Give or take one’s rest, refresh
If we are scorned or reviled for something we did then we rightly deserve it but if we are reviled for the name of Christ, then we are blessed. The Lord Jesus Christ was also reviled and when we are reviled, we are partaking in the same type of persecution the Lord Himself experienced. This persecution would show the identification of the believers with the Lord. This would make it a kinship with the Lord Jesus. Then we are told that the Spirit of Glory and of God rests upon us. These are two names for the Holy Spirit. The word “resteth” carries with it the meaning of “refresh.” This what part of the ministry of the Holy Spirit is, is to revive or refresh the believer, especially when they undergo persecution. When we are hot and someone gives us a cold drink, it refreshes us. When the Holy Spirit refreshes our spirit, we are able to continue on in the Lord’s work even if His work at the present time is undergoing persecution. The Lord imparts His strength to the believer in proportion to the suffering they endure. (Deu 33:25 KJV) Thy shoes shall be iron and brass; and as thy days, so shall thy strength be. We see this principle written in Deuteronomy 33:25, that no matter what our day will hold, the Lord will give us sufficient strength to endure it. Just like years ago, the Holy Spirit is spoken evil of today. He is called a force or spirit. I once heard a Christian preacher compare the Holy Spirit to the force in Star Wars. This is a form of blasphemy because the Holy Spirit is the third person of the Godhead and is never to be referred to in an inferior way or to some false religious tenet. Blasphemy of the Holy Spirit carries the same penalty today as it did when the Lord pronounced it when He was here on earth.
1 Pet 4:15 (KJB)
But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men's matters.
Busybody - Meddler, gossip, or nosey person
Here Peter continues his admonition that the Christians should only suffer for the name of Christ not for breaking the law. This wrecks a Christian’s testimony and also brings suspicion upon the rest of the Christians. When we sin, we never sin alone because it affects others. There is a ripple effect when it comes to sinning. What I mean by that is if you throw a rock in a pond or pool of still water, the rock goes in and creates ripples in all directions and that is what sin does. One of the worst sins that a Christian commits is the sin of gossip. Have you ever heard anyone say, “pray for him because…” They are in essence making public something that should be kept quiet. (Prov 11:13 KJV) A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter. If someone gives you a piece of gossip, then let it die with you and if you have the opportunity, exhort the one bringing the gossip to you that you are not interested in gossip.