Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. (1 Peter 3:8 NIV)
In the preceding sections of this letter, Peter had given instructions about how to live in a pagan world, suffering as slaves, and how wives and husbands should live together. In this verse, he provides five attributes that should characterize a healthy church.
The word translated as like-minded means “living in harmony with.” In music, harmony describes two or more notes played together that give a fuller and richer tone than either of them alone would provide. In like fashion, while each of us within the body is different, we should work together in harmony, being more together than we could be singly.
To be sympathetic means “to suffer alongside.” It means that when your brother or sister is suffering, you are there with them. They do not have to go through it alone. Help them to stand strong.
Love one another as brothers and sisters. We are a family. And while we may have differences, the bonds that hold us together should be strong.
Being compassionate is similar to being sympathetic. It is being tender-hearted, easily moved by the trouble another person is going through.
To be humble is to put others first. It is looking to build them up rather than yourself.
What would life in the church be like today if we loved each other as brothers and sisters? If we were sympathetic and compassionate toward each other? And if we would work together in harmony and humility?