Respect for Leaders-1 Thessalonians 5:12-13

1 Thessalonians 5:12-13 Now we ask you, brothers, to respect those who work hard among you, who are over you in the Lord and who admonish you. 13 Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other.”

1 Tessalonicesi 5:12-13 Fratelli, vi preghiamo di avere riguardo per coloro che faticano in mezzo a voi, che vi sono preposti nel Signore e vi istruiscono, 13 e di tenerli in grande stima e di amarli a motivo della loro opera. Vivete in pace tra di voi.”


     Christ gave leadership roles to the church (Ephesians 4:11). They were the leaders who would provide pastoral care for the church. Paul was an apostle in evangelizing and planting churches but also served in the pastoral care role in the early development of the church. His advice to us as members of a local church carries great wisdom. 

     First, he encourages the church to respect their leaders. The word used for “respect” can also be translated “to know them”. In other words, you gain respect and appreciation for them when you know they are doing pastoral work. Second, Paul says to hold them in highest regard. Notice the superlative in reference to regard. It is not to exalt a person but to give the highest respect because of the work they do for the church. Third and maybe the hardest for the church is to live in peace with each other. Paul writes this in the imperative. It is a command. If you follow the advice of the first two, it becomes easier to obey the third. Paul talks about maintaining peace. Peace is something that, without a conscious effort to maintain, can very easily be lost. We must “contend for the faith” (Jude 3). Unrest and division in the church can be traced back to members not taking these spiritual commands seriously. 

Pray with me: Lord, I know You gave us spiritual leaders in our life to help us mature in the faith. Help me to respect, honor and love them for their work and help me to encourage others to do the same.

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