Passage: 1 Peter 4
1 Peter 4:8 Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. 9 Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling
The Power of Hospitality
- Eating together is good for us
- People want to be with one another
- We need one another
The Dictionary definition of Hospitality: the friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.
In Greek hospitality is a combination of two words Philo: love – to manifest some act or token of kindness or affection; to kiss; to love, regard with affection, have affection for; to like, be fond of, delight in a thing; to cherish inordinately, set store by.
And Xenizo: to receive as a guest
Hospitality helps us to love one another deeply (1 Peter 4:8)
The reality is that hospitality is difficult, let us be aware of the danger of grumbling (1 Peter 4:9)
Hospitality is an avenue through which many of our spiritual gift can be used
1 Peter 4:10 Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.
Read through the Gifts below and consider how each of these can be used as we practice hospitality.
Prophesy, serving, teaching, encouraging, giving, leadership, mercy, wisdom, knowledge, faith, healing, miracles, administration, discernment of spirits, tongues, interpretation, Apostles, Prophets, Teachers, Pastors, helping others.
- In this moment in history, hospitality is vital because now more that ever we need to open our lives, our homes and our hearts to others using the gifts the Holy Spirit has given us!
Hospitality formed the foundation of the Christian movement.
Are we prepared to set aside time each week to eat with others?
Hospitality allow us to love one another and reach out.
There are three ways in which the new Testament complete the sentence, “the son of man came …’ the son of man him not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many’ (Mark 10:45) ‘the son of man came to seek and save the lost.’ (Luke 19:10) ‘the son of man has come eating and drinking …’ (Luke 7:34) Robert Karris concludes: ‘in Luke’s Gospel Jesus is either going to a meal, have a meal, or coming from a meal.’ Tim Chester in his book “A Meal with Jesus”
Sharing meals together on a regular basis is one of the most sacred practices we can engage in as believers. Missional hospitality is a tremendous opportunity to extend the kingdom of God. We can literally eat our way into the kingdom of God! If every Christian household regularly invited a stranger or a poor person into their home for a meal once a week, we would literally change the world by eating! Michael Frost in his book “Surprise the World!”
The table ought to be the primary symbol of the Christian gathering. It represents hospitality, inclusivity, generosity, and grace. In many churches today, I suppose, the primary symbol might be the pulpit or the screen. These churches seem to believe that Jesus said, “every time you meet together, listen to a sermon and sing.” Now, I’m not against sermons or singing, but if we took Jesus’ directive seriously, we’d know that the table is a better metaphor for Christian worship. Michael Frost in his book “Surprise the World!”
- As you consider the importance of hospitality, what do you think about the above quotes and how do they challenge you and the church?
- In your life how can you use hospitality to minister to others, both Christians and non Christians?
What have I found interesting?
What has challenged my life, attitudes and actions?
How would this habit help me to become more like Jesus?
How would this habit help me to introduce others to Jesus?
What practical steps do I need to take to incorporate this habit into my life?
Is there there anything I need to pray about, explore further or extra help I need?
Is there someone I should to share with, pray with or encourage