1 Peter 4:10
As every man has received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(10) As every man hath received the gift.—There is no definite article in the-Greek, which might be rendered, According as every man was gifted. They are reminded, as in 1Corinthians 4:7, that the gift was received, and for the same purpose. At what period these gifts were received it is hard to say, as in some instances the gift was of a spiritual nature, in others of a temporal nature. Each, however, has a gift of some kind for the benefit of the community.

Even so minister.—In the original, ministering. It is still an exhibition of the “intense charity” of 1Peter 4:8. The verb is the same as in 1Peter 1:12, where see Note.

As good stewards.—No one receives these gifts, spiritual or temporal, as his own; he is but a “steward,” and when he offers them to the Church it is not as a benefactor, but as a servant, “ministering.”

Of the manifold grace of God.—“Grace” is here used, not in its theological sense, but, as in 1Peter 3:7, in the sense of bountiful giving; and the beautiful word rendered “manifold” brings out the subtle and picturesque variety with which God arranges and distributes His bounty. But the emphatic word of the sentence is “of God.”

1 Peter 4:10-11. As every man hath received the gift — Or, a gift, spiritual or temporal, ordinary or extraordinary, (although the latter seems primarily intended,) so minister the same one to another — Employ that gift for the common good; as good stewards of the manifold grace of God — Of the talents wherewith his free love has intrusted you. If any man speak — In public assemblies, or in the social meetings of his Christian brethren; let him speak as the oracles of God — Let all his words be according to that pattern, both as to matter and manner, and more especially when he speaks in public. By this mark we may always know who are, so far, the true or false prophets. The oracles of God teach that men should repent, believe, and obey; he that treats of faith, and leaves out repentance, and fruits worthy of repentance; or treats of repentance and its fruits, but omits inculcating faith; or who does not enjoin practical holiness to believers, does not speak as the oracles of God; he does not preach Christ, let him think as highly of himself as he will. If any man minister — Serve his brother in love, whether in temporal or spiritual things; let him do it as of the ability which God giveth — That is, humbly and diligently, ascribing all his power to God, and using it with his might; that God in all things — Whether of nature or of grace; may be glorified through Jesus Christ — The wise dispenser of these gifts; to whom — As our great Redeemer and Saviour; be praise and dominion — Greek, η δοξα και το κρατος, the glory of them, and the power of dispensing them; or the glory of his wisdom, which teaches us to speak, and the might which enables us to act.4:7-11 The destruction of the Jewish church and nation, foretold by our Saviour, was very near. And the speedy approach of death and judgment concerns all, to which these words naturally lead our minds. Our approaching end, is a powerful argument to make us sober in all worldly matters, and earnest in religion. There are so many things amiss in all, that unless love covers, excuses, and forgives in others, the mistakes and faults for which every one needs the forbearance of others, Satan will prevail to stir up divisions and discords. But we are not to suppose that charity will cover or make amends for the sins of those who exercise it, so as to induce God to forgive them. The nature of a Christian's work, which is high work and hard work, the goodness of the Master, and the excellence of the reward, all require that our endeavours should be serious and earnest. And in all the duties and services of life, we should aim at the glory of God as our chief end. He is a miserable, unsettled wretch, who cleaves to himself, and forgets God; is only perplexed about his credit, and gain, and base ends, which are often broken, and which, when he attains, both he and they must shortly perish together. But he who has given up himself and his all to God, may say confidently that the Lord is his portion; and nothing but glory through Christ Jesus, is solid and lasting; that abideth for ever.As every man hath received the gift - The word rendered "the gift" (χάρισμα charisma,) in the Greek, without the article, means "endowment" of any kind, but especially that conferred by the Holy Spirit. Here it seems to refer to every kind of endowment by which we can do good to others; especially every kind of qualification furnished by religion by which we can help others. It does not refer here particularly to the ministry of the word - though it is applicable to that, and includes that - but to all the gifts and graces by which we can contribute to the welfare of others. All this is regarded as a gift, or charisma, of God. It is not owing to ourselves, but is to be traced to him. See the word explained in the notes at 1 Timothy 4:14.

Even so minister the same one to another - In anything by which you can benefit another. Regard What you have and they have not as a gift bestowed upon you by God for the common good, and be ready to impart it as the needs of ethers require. The word "minister" here (διακονοῦντες diakonountes) would refer to any kind of ministering, whether by counsel, by advice, by the supply of the needs of the poor, or by preaching. It has here no reference to any one of these exclusively; but means, that in whatever God has favored us more than others, we should be ready to minister to their needs. See 2 Timothy 1:18; 2 Corinthians 3:8; 2 Corinthians 8:19-20.

As good stewards - Regarding yourselves as the mere stewards of God; that is, as appointed by him to do this work for him, and entrusted by him with what is needful to benefit others. He intends to do them good, but he means to do it through your instrumentality, and has entrusted to you as a steward what he designed to confer on them. This is the true idea, in respect to any special endowments of talent, property, or grace, which we may have received from God. Compare the 1 Corinthians 4:1-2 notes; Luke 16:1-2, Luke 16:8 notes.

Of the manifold grace of God - The grace or favor of God evinced in many ways, or by a variety of gifts. His favors are not confined to one single thing; as, for example, to talent for doing good by preaching; but are extended to a great many things by which we may do good to others - influence, property, reputation, wisdom, experience. All these are to be regarded as his gifts; all to be employed in doing good to others as we have opportunity.

10. every—"even as each man hath received," in whatever degree, and of whatever kind. The Spirit's gifts (literally, "gift of grace," that is, gratuitously bestowed) are the common property of the Christian community, each Christian being but a steward for the edifying of the whole, not receiving the gift merely for his own use.

minister the same—not discontentedly envying or disparaging the gift of another.

one to another—Greek as in 1Pe 4:8, "towards yourselves"; implying that all form but one body, and in seeking the good of other members they are promoting the good of themselves.

stewards—referring to Mt 25:15, &c.; Lu 19:13-26.

As every man hath received the gift; any gift, office, faculty, or ability, whereby he may be serviceable to the good of others, all which are received of God, 1 Corinthians 12:11 Ephesians 4:7.

Minister the same one to another; dispense and communicate modestly and humbly, not lifting himself up above others upon the account of his gifts, but remembering he hath received them, and is a steward to dispense them.

As good stewards; and therefore faithful in distributing his Lord’s goods.

Of the manifold grace of God: by grace he means the same as by gift before; and so by manifold grace, the various gifts given to them of God, 1 Corinthians 12:4-6. As every man hath received the gift,.... That is, from God, as the Syriac and Ethiopic versions add. This is a general rule laid down by the apostle, according to which, distribution of every kind, whether in things temporal or spiritual, is to be made, even according to the nature, quality, and quantity of the gift received: the greatest gift God bestows on men, next to himself, Son, and Spirit, and received by them in this life, is special grace; which God gives of his sovereign will and pleasure, liberally, abundantly, without the deserts of men, or conditions to be performed by them; of this kind are faith, repentance, hope, and love: the next to this is the ministerial gift, or what qualifies men for the work of the ministry; which is not anything in nature, or what is acquired by art and industry, but is a gift of grace, which is bestowed on some in a higher, on others in a lower degree: and besides these, there are the gifts of nature and providence, as human wisdom, and the knowledge of things natural and civil, riches and wealth, and the various good things of life; for there is nothing a man has in nature and in grace but what is a gift to him, and what he has received: and according to the measure of the gift received, be it what it will, the exhortation is,

even so minister the same one to another; or to, and among yourselves; to your neighbours or companions, as the Syriac, version renders it; if the gift be special grace though that itself cannot be imparted from one to another, yet the knowledge of it may; and it becomes such who have an experience of the grace of God upon their hearts to make it known, both to particular friends in private conversation, and to the church of God in public, for the use and edification of others, and the glory of God's grace: if the gift be a ministerial one, whether it be greater or less, for it is not in all alike, it is not to be wrapped up in a napkin, and hid in the earth, or to lie neglected, but to be stirred up, and used for the benefit of the souls of men: and if it is a temporal one, the good things of this life, according to the measure of them, that a man has, he is to minister to the supply of the poor; and as God has prospered him, he is to distribute to the necessities of others; as men freely receive, be it what it will, they should freely minister it, according to the nature and measure of it:

as good stewards of the manifold grace of God; for they are but stewards of whatsoever gifts they have; and therefore, if they would approve themselves good stewards, they should minister the same in proportion to their reception of them. Manifold and various are the graces of the Spirit of God, and the rich experiences communicated to men, which are not only for themselves, but for the good of others also: gifts for public usefulness are different one from another; one man has one gift, and another has another; or the same gift is not alike in all, in some greater, and in others less; and all are but stewards: they are accountable for them, and the use of them, to their great Lord and master: and various are the doctrines of the grace of God; of the grace of the Father in election, in the everlasting covenant, in the mission of his Son, in the free justification of sinners by his righteousness, in the free and full pardon of all their sins, in the adoption of any into his family, and in the gift of eternal life; and of the Son of God, in engaging as the surety of his people from everlasting, in assuming their nature in time, in obeying, suffering, and dying in their room and stead; and of the Spirit of God in regeneration and sanctification; and of all these mysteries of grace the ministers of the Gospel are stewards; and it is required of them that they be faithful. Temporal good things are given to men, not for their own use only, but for others; and they are but stewards of them; the original proprietor is God, and to him they must give an account of their stewardship, and how they have used and disposed of the manifold gifts which God of his goodness has put into their hands; so that this last clause contains a reason or argument enforcing the above rule.

{8} As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, {9} as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

(8) He shows the use of charity, that is, that every man bestow that gift which he hath received, to the profit of his neighbour.

(9) A reason, because that whatever gift we have, we have received it from God on this condition, to be his disposers and stewards.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
1 Peter 4:10. Second manifestation of love. It is presupposed that each one has received a χάρισμα: ἕκαστος καθὼς ἔλαβε χάρισμα] καθώς, not equal to ὅς, but pro ratione qua, prouti (Wahl), “according as.”

χάρισμα] as in Romans 12:6; 1 Corinthians 12:4; 1 Corinthians 12:28; not an office in the church. Every man should, according to the kind of gift he has received (not: according to the measure of it, ἐν τούτῳ τῷ μέτρῳ, ἐν ᾧ ἔλαβε vel ut Paulus: ὡς ὁ Θεὸς ἐμέρισε μέτρον χαρισμάτων, Romans 12:3. Pott: still less can καθώς be referred to the manner of receiving; Lorinus: sicut gratis accepimus, ita gratis demus), administer it for his brethren, εἰς ἑαυτούς, i.e. for their benefit, and therefore for that of the entire community. διακονεῖν (a transitive verb, as in chap. 1 Peter 1:12): vocula emphatica; innuit Ap. quod propter dona illa nemo se debeat supra alios efferre, aut dominium in alios affectare, sed aliorum ministrum sese sponte constituere (Gerhard).

ὡς καλοὶ οἰκονόμοι ποικίλης χάριτος Θεοῦ] With ὡς, cf. chap. 1 Peter 1:14 : as is peculiar to the καλοῖς οἰκονόμοις, which, from their vocation, Christians should be. With οἰκονόμοι, cf. 1 Corinthians 4:1; Titus 1:7. According to de Wette and Weiss, there is here an allusion to the parable of the talents, Matthew 25:14.

καλός] expression of irreproachable excellence; see 1 Timothy 4:6; 2 Timothy 2:3. The Lord of the Christians, as the οἰκονόμοι, is God; the goods which He entrusts to their stewardship are His ποικίλη χάρις; χάρις is here the sum of all that has fallen to the share of believers through the grace of God; the individual manifestations of it are the χαρίσματα, the homogeneous character of which is marked by the singular, and their variety by ποικίλη here subjoined with reference to the preceding καθὼςχάρισμα.1 Peter 4:10 f. supplement the foregoing directions for the inner life of the Church and rest partly on Romans 12:6 (with simpler classification of gifts), partly on the conception of disciples as stewards (Luke 12:42) serving out rations in God’s house.—διακονοῦντες, in the widest sense (as διακονία in Acts 6:1; Acts 6:4; 1 Corinthians 12:5) in accordance with the saying, the Son of Man cameto minister (Mark 10:45), which is interpreted here, as part of the pattern, by the addition of an object (only here and 1 Peter 1:12); cf. 2 Corinthians 8:19, τῇ χάριτιτῇ διακονουμένῃ ὑφʼ ἡμῶν.—οἰκονόμοι. The title is applied to all and not only to the governors as by St. Paul (1 Corinthians 4:1; Titus 1:7); compare the question of St. Peter which precedes the source (Luke 12:41 f.).10. As every man hath received the gift] The two verses remind us of the like precepts in Romans 12:6; 1 Corinthians 12:4; 1 Corinthians 12:28. The tense of the Greek verb (“as every man received the gift”) implies the thought that the gift came at a definite moment, probably at that of the laying on of hands. Comp. Acts 19:6; 1 Timothy 4:14. The words “As every man received” may be equivalent to “Let every man use his gift according to its nature or purpose,” which agrees best with Romans 12:6, or they may, more probably, be an echo of the “freely ye received, freely give” of Matthew 10:8.

even so minister the same one to another] The Greek verb means something more than “use” or “administer.” It implies that men were to see in the gifts they possessed no ground for boasting, but only a call to more lowly service. They were to be, as in the next clause, “stewards” of those gifts. The thought that men are stewards, not possessors, of what God has given them in their outward or their inward life was, of course, a natural one (1 Corinthians 4:1; Titus 1:7), but here we can scarcely fail to recognise an echo of our Lord’s teaching. Peter had heard the parable of the steward who “wasted his lord’s goods” (Luke 16:1-12) and his Lord’s question, Who then is the faithful and wise steward? (Luke 12:42). In the “manifold,” or better, perhaps, varied grace of God, we have implied a much greater diversity of gifts, such as we find in 1 Corinthians 12:8-10, Ephesians 4:11, than those which the Apostle specifies. He confines himself, indeed, to the one broad division between the gifts that shewed themselves in speech and those that shewed themselves in act.1 Peter 4:10. Καθὼς, even as) Understand shortly afterwards, so.—αὐτὸ, that (gift) itself) without striving after another.—ποικίλης, [“manifold”] varied) distributing various gifts, with reference to the speech, or ministering. See next verse.Verse 10. - As every man hath received the gift; rather, according as each received a gift. The aorist ἔλαβεν, "received," seems to point to a definite time, as baptism, or the laying on of hands (comp. Acts 8:17; Acts 19:6; 1 Timothy 4:14). For the gift (χάρισμα), comp. Romans 12:6; 1 Corinthians 12:4, "There are diversities of gifts." Even so minister the same one to another; literally, ministering it towards one another. The gifts of grace, whatever they may be, are talents entrusted to individual Christians for the good of the whole Church; those who have them must use them to minister to the wants of others (comp. 1 Peter 1:12, where the same word, διακονεῖν, to minister, is used of the gift of prophecy). As good stewards of the manifold grace of God. We seem to see here a reference to the parable of the talents (comp. also 1 Corinthians 4:1; Titus 1:7). Christians must be "good stewards (καλοὶ οἰκονόμοι)." There should be not only exactness, but also grace and beauty in their stewardship - the beauty which belongs to holy love, and flows from the imitation of him who is "the good Shepherd (ὁ ποιμὴν ὁ καλός).";;The gifts (χαρίσματα) are the manifestations of the grace (χάρις) of God; that grace from which all gifts issue is called manifold (ποικίλη), because of the diversities of its gifts, the variety of its manifestations. A gift (χάρισμα)

Originally, something freely given: a gift of grace (χάρις). Used in New Testament (a) of a blessing of God graciously bestowed, as upon sinners (Romans 5:15, Romans 5:16; Romans 11:29); (b) of a gracious divine endowment: an extraordinary gift of the Holy Spirit dwelling and working in a special manner in the individual (1 Timothy 4:14; 2 Timothy 1:6; Romans 12:6, Romans 12:8). So here.

Manifold

See on 1 Peter 1:6.

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