Tag: living stones
Scripture reading for November 10th: 1st Peter 2
As Peter, the Apostle of Jesus Christ, wrote to persecuted and suffering Jewish Christians, he encouraged them with language that would speak to them from their heritage. He used the prophet Isaiah and the Psalms to paint a word picture that showed them God’s plan and their identity and purpose!
“As you come to Him, the living Stone–rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to Him–you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For in Scripture it says: “See, I lay a stone in Zion, a chosen and precious Cornerstone, and the one who trusts in Him will never be put to shame.” (1 Peter 2:4-6)(Isaiah 28:16)
God had given the nation of Israel a pattern for the temple. This temple was a shadow of the new “Temple” that He would build using “living stones”. The temple had a “cornerstone” that began the foundation of the building, insuring it was solid and true, horizontally and vertically. Jesus Christ was the “living Stone” of the spiritual “house” that God was building. He was rejected by men, specifically the Jews. However, He was precious to God, as His only and First-born Son. He, alone is the Cornerstone that is firm, straight, and true! All who trust in Him become “living stones” laid on the cornerstone. “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praise of Him who called you out of darkness into His wonderful light.” (1st Peter 2:9) What encouraging words bringing identity and purpose to those suffering persecution!
Scripture reading for November 23rd: 1st Peter 1:13-2:12
Peter’s name meant ‘rock’ or ‘stone’. Peter was told by Jesus after he confessed Him as the Christ, Son of the Living God, that on “this rock I will build My Church.” (Matthew 16:18) Jesus as the Son of the Living God was the “Living Stone” that was the cornerstone of the new temple of the new covenant. In today’s reading from Peter’s epistle, we have further insight on this new temple.
“Therefore, prepare your minds for action; be self-controlled; set your hope fully on the grace to be given you when Jesus Christ is revealed. As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as He who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: “Be holy, because I am holy.”” (1st Peter 1:13-15) Peter reminded these believers that they had been born again into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. (1st Peter 1:3) This new birth was a gift of grace from God but would bring about changes in thinking and actions. God called His children to obedience and conformity to His will and purposes. Foremost is the requirement of holiness. Holiness is the perfect character of God worked out in our thinking and lives.
“Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God.” (1st Peter 1:22-23) This new birth comes through the Living God’s living Word. The word for ‘seed’ is the Greek word for ‘sperm’! His word in us bring His life and character into us!
“As you come to Him, the Living Stone–rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to Him–you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.” (1st Peter 2:4-5) The ‘Living Stone, ‘ Jesus Christ is also the ‘Living Word’. When we are born again, we become ‘living stones’ that God is using to build His new temple. Like Peter, the ‘stone’, we confess that Jesus is the Christ, Son of the Living God! On that confession, God builds His church!