Note: The advice of Peter and the advice of Paul about the gifts of ministry are echoes of one Spirit. God gives the gifts of ministry, and we are to serve to the strength of the Spirit.
Adult PM Bible Study – S – E – R – V – E
See also: Nehemiah 9:17; Ecclesiastes 5: 1, 2; Proverbs 23: 29,30; Romans 12: 6-8; I Corinthians 12: 8-11; I Thessalonians 5:6
S – Strange – v. 4 – The life in Christ is a strange life, since it is a life lived for God and not self.
E – Evangelism – v. 6 – The Gospel gives the lost the opportunity to prepare to meet their Creator
R – Readiness – vs. 7-9 We must be ready for the end of the age. We can prepare by our demonstration of love to the chosen of God and the children of God.
V – Vocation – vs. 10 – 11 God has given you a work in the church. The talent that God has given should be used to the fullest.
E – Exaltation v. 11 When the church serves God and God’s children as it should, God gets the glory.
Exemplary story: Mary and Olivia were best friends at school, but they never seemed to be able to spend time visiting after school. Mary had to keep up with her little sister or Olivia had to rush off to a practice at the gym run by her mother. The two were happy when they were both in the same gym class, and it was evident that Olivia’s mom was teaching her about gymnastics. Finally, a day came when Olivia invited Mary to her home for a visit. She said her mom asked just one thing. Olivia was to stick to her gymnastics practice even when her guest came to visit. The girls had a good visit, and Olivia kept her promise by bringing Mary along to the gym for the daily two-hour practice. Later Mary said to Olivia, “Now I know why your mom is so strict. She is training you to show everyone how talented you are.” Our spiritual talents need to be exercised faithfully, just as our bodily talents need to be exercised.
I Peter 4: 1Therefore, since Christ suffered in his body, arm yourselves also with the same attitude, because he who has suffered in his body is done with sin.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, Son of God, may our suffering for righteousness in this world not be in vain.
Thought for the day: Mothers trade birth pains for bundles of joy.
I Peter 4: 2, 3 As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly life for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God. For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do – living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry.
Prayer: Almighty God, Our Heavenly Father, may our days and hours be spent in fulfilling your will.
Thought for the day: Some time spent and some seed sown produce weeds and thorns, other time spent and other seed sown produce sweet fruit. You choose what crop you want to harvest.
I Peter 4: 4, 5 They think it strange that you do not plunge with them into the same flood of dissipation, and they heap abuse on you. But they will have to give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, for our lives and deeds we seek only your approval and your blessings.
Thought for the day: Those who do wrong can always find someone to admire their work.
I Peter 4: 6 For this the reason the gospel was preached even to those who are now dead, so that they might be judged according to men in regard to the body, but live according to God in regard to the spirit.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for giving us a message of hope.
Thought for the day: Some sermons are strong enough to wake the dead
I Peter 4: 7, 8 The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. Above all love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
Prayer: Merciful God, may your loving spirit in us bless all your children.
Thought for the day: The batteries for the end-of-the-world clock never go dead.
I Peter 4: 9, 10 Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, we give thanks for the talents you have bestowed on each through your Holy Spirit.
Thought for the day: In God’s church no pews have people without a talent to serve God.
I Peter 4: 11 If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen
Prayer: Lord Jesus, may we prove faithful in our calling and our service.
Thought for the day: Selfish service is tiresome service, but selfless service is light service.