v1 Now I want to say something strongly to the elders (leaders) who belong to your group. I say this because I am an elder also. I saw the trouble and pain that people caused Christ. And, like you, I will live always with Christ, who is so very great and powerful. When he comes again, everyone will see how great he is. I say this strongly to you. v2 Watch over the group of God’s people that God has given to you. Be like a *shepherd to them. Do this work because you want to do it. That is how God wants you to be. Do not do it just because you have to do it. Do not do this work because you want to receive money. Instead, do it because you want to help people.
v3 Do not try to rule over those people that God has given to you. Instead, do good things yourselves, so that they can copy you. Show them the right things that they should do. v4 As a result, Christ, who is the *Shepherd of all of us, will give a gift to you. He will give that gift to you when he comes again. He will give you a beautiful crown that will never become old or less beautiful.
v5 You younger men also must obey the elders (leaders). And all of you people must be ready to be like servants to each other. Because the Bible says:
‘Some people think that they are better and more important than other people.
They think that they are always right.
God is an enemy to people who think like that.
But he is good to people who do not want to be very important.
He is good to people who are ready to be like servants to other people.’
v6 God is very powerful and strong to help you. So, be his servants, and let him rule you. Then he will cause you to be great and important at the right time. v7 Tell God about all the things that make you sad or afraid or angry. Give your thoughts about those things to him and let them remain with him. Do this, because you matter to him.
v8 Think seriously and watch carefully. Be ready, because your enemy, the *Devil, walks about like a lion (a big wild animal). He is like a lion that makes loud noises. He is looking for someone that he can eat. v9 Refuse to obey the *Devil. Instead, be strong against him because you choose to believe God strongly. Remember that, all over the world, Christians like you are having the same kind of troubles and pain.
v10 You will have trouble and pain for a short time. But after that, God, who is so completely kind, will make everything right. God has caused you to be united to Christ, so that you will live with him always. You will live with him in the beautiful place where he lives. And God will make you completely as you should be. He will make you strong, so that nothing can ever stop you believing him. v11 God will rule always! This is true.