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First Peter
Chapter 5
verses 8-14
King James Version

8) Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion,
walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
9) Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are
accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
10) But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by
Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish,
strengthen, settle you.
11) To him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
12) By Silvanus, a faithful brother unto you, as I suppose, I have written
briefly, exhorting, and testifying that this is the true grace of God wherein
ye stand.
13) The church that is at Babylon, elected together with you, saluteth you;
and so doth Marcus my son.
14) Greet ye one another with a kiss of charity. Peace be with you all that
are in Christ Je-sus. Amen.

Ross’ Updated Paraphrase

8) Be serious, be watchful; because your enemy the devil, as a roaring lion,
walks about, seeking whom he may devour:
9) whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing the same afflictions are done to
your brethren who are in the world.
10) But the God of all grace, who has called us to his eternal glory by the
Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, make you mature, establish,
strengthen, settle you,
11) to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
12) By Silvanus, a faithful brother to you, as I suppose, I have written briefly,
exhorting and testifying that this is the grace of God in which you stand.
13) The church which is at Babylon, elected together with you, greets you;
and so does Mark, my son.

14) Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace be with you all who are in
Christ Jesus. Amen.

There are times to be jovial and tell jokes, and there are times to be serious
and sober in one’s thoughts. When considering our souls and their
destinies, the time is always one to be sober and serious. We spoke of things
in terms of being a matter of life and death, but there are things of far
greater consequence: matters of heaven and hell.

“And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but
rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.”
(Matthew 10:28 KJV)

The devil, Satan (Hebrew for adversary), is the enemy of mankind. He is like
a lion on the prey, seeking for anything he may devour. He is to be resisted
by and in the faith – the gospel – the Word of God. This is how Jesus
resisted him in the wilderness.

“Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the
devil. And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward
an hungred. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son
of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and
said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that
proceedeth out of the mouth of God. Then the devil taketh him up into the
holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple, And saith unto him, If
thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his
angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up,
lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. Jesus said unto him, It is
written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. {tempt: or, try, or, put
to trial, or, proof} Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high
mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of
them; And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall
down and worship me. Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan:
for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt
thou serve. Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and
ministered unto him.” (Matthew 4:1-11 KJV)

Paul speaks of how to resist the devil.

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the
wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against
principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this
world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you
the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day,
and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about
with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet
shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the
shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the
wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which
is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the
Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all
saints; And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my
mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel, For which I am an
ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.”
(Ephesians 6:10-20 KJV)

The devil seeks to destroy us. He seeks to tempt us. But, we can resist his
temptation. If we fail, it is due to our own weakness.

“Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be
tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted,
when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath
conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bring-eth forth
death. Do not err, my beloved brethren.” (James 1:13-16 KJV)

We can do all things through Jesus who strengthens us.

The temptations we face, whether in times of peace or persecution, are the
same which have al-ways plagued man.

“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love
the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the
lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the
Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust
thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.” (1 John 2:15-17
KJV)

The question is: How will we face temptation? Will we face it in faith, by the
faith, with the help of God and Christ? Or will we try to face temptation
alone? Or, will we just give in to temptation?

God may allow us to suffer for a while, even as Jesus was tempted for awhile
in the wilderness; but, he will bring us to maturity, he will establish us as
his children, he will strengthen us in Jesus Christ, and he will settle our
nerves and souls.

To God be “the glory and the dominion for ever and ever. Amen.”
The epistle was delivered by the hand of Silvanus. Remember, this is before
the time of a postal service.

The purpose of this epistle is succinctly stated: “this is the grace of God
wherein ye stand.” Peter was exhorting them to remain true to the faith they
had obeyed – to commit their lives to a suffer-ing Savior who had shed his
blood for them – to live the life of holiness God had called them to – in short,
to be Christians. This is the ground they were to stand on regardless of what
forces on earth, or beyond the earth would do.

The church at Rome (Babylon) greets them along with Mark (probably a
reference to John Mark, the author of the Gospel).

It ends with encouraged exchanges of greetings symbolic of love and peace.
Amen.