Summary: What should motivate us to keep on coming to Jesus? Just to supply our needs?
“Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, now that you have tasted that the Lord is good. As you come to him, the living Stone — rejected by humans 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.” (1 Peter 2:2-5, NIV).
Picture in your mind a nice or wonderful place that you visited. Not only you cherish your happy experiences and the beautiful sites you reached, but you desire to keep coming back in that place.
In the late 70’s, when I was still single, it was my first time to reach Baguio City. It was popularly known, then, as “City of Pines.” Indeed, pine trees abounded in the place. I could even notice a mature pine tree standing almost at the center of a road. Houses were just distributed sparsely in the mountain, unlike today that you could hardly notice the mountain, because it is almost covered with houses!
Because cars then were few, you could even walk on the road, not on the sidewalk.
While it is normally hot in the country (Philippines), Baguio was extra cold that when you used the blanket at night, as if, it was wet.
It was my first time to fall in love – I “fell in love” with a place: the City of Pines. And during those times, I longed for to come always in that place.
This time, however, I would not encourage you to come to Baguio or to any other place, but to a particular Person. I would like you to “Keep Coming To Jesus,” which is my topic this time, as we deal with our text (1 Peter 2:2-5), particularly verse 4.
So, why should we come to Jesus? Should we come to Him, so we could just ask something that we need? Should we come to Him simply because we have nowhere else to go?
But, before we proceed, let’s remember again that the one who wrote the letter was Peter, who denied Jesus three times, but later confessed his love for Him also three times. And he remained faithful to His Savior until he suffered his own death.
He addressed the letter both to the Jewish and the non-Jewish Christians, who were scattered throughout Asia Minor and were suffering local persecutions. Later the persecutions even became intense and widespread.
And now, in our text, He pointed out to his readers some things to do, as believers who were suffering difficulties or persecution.
Last time, we focused on verse 2, “Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation.”
Now, we will direct our attention on verse 4, “As you come to him, the living Stone — rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him…”
The verse declares that Jesus is “precious.” So, what should motivate us to keep on coming to Him?
Perceive that Jesus is Precious.
In the early part of the verse, the New Living Translation renders it this way: “You are coming to Christ, who is the living cornerstone of God’s temple…”
Peter was not actually inviting the believers to come to Jesus. He was saying that they are “coming to Christ.” Or, in the NIV: “As you come to Him…” – they are actually moving toward Christ.
“Come” in the Greek is “proserchomai” – meaning, “to approach” or “to draw near.” Initially, believers come to Jesus in repentance and faith, but the Greek verb implies “a continual drawing near as well.”
Peter was declaring that the suffering believers were seeking continual communion with Christ, who is “the living Stone” – the very important part of God’s Temple. But while they – referring to those who “have tasted that the Lord is good” -- come to Jesus, the tendency of other human beings was to reject Him. This “living Stone,” according to Peter was “rejected by humans.”
Peter was also implying that those persons who tried to persecute or harm them were actually rejecting Christ!
What they rejected, however, according to Peter, was “chosen by God and precious to Him.” Normally, people would not find Christ appealing or pleasing. But, in the sight of the Heavenly Father, He is “precious.” In Greek, it is “entimos” – meaning, “precious, dear, more honourable, in reputation.”
The Christians, during the time of Peter, kept on coming to Christ – seeking to commune with Him, they perceived that Jesus is precious, as God Himself perceived or regarded Him to be.
In our time, people have also the tendency to reject Christ – to refuse to come to Him. They would not believe or put their trust in Him. In fact, they could not love Him, no matter how “powerful” or “free” is their human will. Why? Jesus is not attractive to them. He is not precious.