1 Peter 5:5-7
Likewise, you younger, submit yourselves to the elder. Yes, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility…
The verse preceding is, "Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time." If we are truly humble we shall cast our care upon God, and by that process our joy will be exalted. Oh for more humility, for then shall we have more tranquillity. Pride begets anxiety. The verse which follows our text is this — "Be sober, be vigilant," etc. Cast your care upon God, because you need all your powers of thought to battle with the great enemy. He hopes to devour you by care.
I. First, EXPOUND the text — "Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you." The word used in reference to God is applied to caring for the poor, and in another place to the watchfulness of a shepherd. Our anxiety and God's care are two very different things. You are to cast your care, which is folly, upon the Lord, for He exercises a care which is wisdom. Care to us is exhausting, but God is all-sufficient. Care to us is sinful, but God's care of us is holy. Care distracts us from service, but the Divine mind does not forget one thing while remembering another. "Casting," says the apostle. He does not say, "laying all your care upon Him," but he uses a much more energetic word. You have to cast the load upon the Lord; the act will require effort. Here is a work worthy of faith. You will have to lift with all your soul before the burden can be shifted; that effort, however, will not be half so exhausting as the effort of carrying your load yourself. Note the next words: "Upon Him." You may tell your griefs to others to gain their sympathy; you may ask friends to help you, and so exercise your humility; but let your requests to man be ever in subordination to your waiting upon God. Some have obtained their full share of human help by much begging from their fellow Christians; but it is a nobler thing to make known your requests unto God; and somehow those who beg only of God are wondrously sustained where others fail. Cease, then, from man; cast all your care upon God, and upon Him only. Certain courses of action are the very reverse of casting all your care upon God, and one is indifference. Every man is bound to care about his life duties, and the claims of his family. Casting care upon God is the very reverse of recklessness and inconsiderateness. It is not casting care upon God when a man does that which is wrong in order to clear himself; yet this is too often tried. He who compromises truth to avoid pecuniary loss is hewing out a broken cistern for himself. He who borrows when he knows he cannot pay, he who enters into wild speculations to increase his income, he who does aught that is ungodly in order to turn a penny is not casting his care upon God. How, then, are we to cast all our care upon God? Two things need to be done. It is a heavy load that is to be cast upon God, and it requires the hand of prayer and the hand of faith to make the transfer. Prayer tells God what the care is, and asks God to help, while faith believes that God can and will do it. When you have thus lifted your care into its true position and cast it upon God, take heed that you do not pick it up again. Henceforth let us leave worldlings to fret over the cares of this life; as for us, let our conversation be in heaven, and let us be anxious only to end anxiety by a childlike confidence in God.
II. TO ENFORCE the text. I will give you certain reasons, and then the reason why you should cast all your care upon God.
1. First, the ever blessed One commands you to do it. If you do not trust in God you will be distinctly sinful; you are as much commanded to trust as to love.
2. Next, cast all your cares on God, because you will have matters enough to think of even then. There is the care to love and serve Him better; the care to understand His Word; the care to preach it to His people; the care to experience His fellowship; the care so to walk that you shall not vex the Holy Spirit. Such hallowed cares will always be with you, and will increase as you grow in grace.
3. And, next, you must cast your care upon God, because you have God's business to do.
4. You ought to do it not only for this reason, but because it is such a great privilege to be able to cast your care upon God.
5. Let me add that you ministers ought to cast all your care upon God, because it will be such a good example for your hearers. Oar people learn much from our conduct, and if they see us fretting they will be certain to do the same.
6. But the reason of reasons is that contained in our text — "He careth for you." Because He hath set His love upon us we can surely cast our care upon Him. He has given us Christ, will He not give us bread? See, He has called us to be His sons, will He starve His children? See what He is preparing for you in heaven, will He not enable you to bear the burdens of this present life? We dishonour God when we suspect His tenderness and generosity. We can only magnify Him by a calm faith which leans upon His Word.
(C. H. Spurgeon.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.
WEB: Likewise, you younger ones, be subject to the elder. Yes, all of you clothe yourselves with humility, to subject yourselves to one another; for "God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble."