Summary: Today, we live in the new dispensation we call the age of grace, where all believers are priests with instant access to the Throne Room of God, anytime day or night. As priests, we are to offer up spiritual sacrifices, which are in contrast to the animal,
Scripture: 1 Peter 2:4--12 (The Living Bible)
4 Come to Christ, who is the living Foundation of Rock upon which God builds; though men have spurned him, he is very precious to God who has chosen him above all others.
5 And now you have become living building-stones for God's use in building his house. What's more, you are his holy priests; so come to him--you who are acceptable to him because of Jesus Christ--and offer to God those things that please him.
6 As the Scriptures express it, "See, I am sending Christ to be the carefully chosen, precious Cornerstone of my church, and I will never disappoint those who trust in him."
7 Yes, he is very precious to you who believe; and to those who reject him, well--"The same Stone that was rejected by the builders has become the Cornerstone, the most honored and important part of the building."
8 And the Scriptures also say, "He is the Stone that some will stumble over, and the Rock that will make them fall." They will stumble because they will not listen to God's Word nor obey it, and so this punishment must follow--that they will fall.
9 But you are not like that, for you have been chosen by God himself--you are priests of the King, you are holy and pure, you are God's very own--all this so that you may show to others how God called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.
10 Once you were less than nothing; now you are God's own. Once you knew very little of God's kindness; now your very lives have been changed by it.
11 Dear brothers, you are only visitors here. Since your real home is in heaven, I beg you to keep away from the evil pleasures of this world; they are not for you, for they fight against your very souls.
12 Be careful how you behave among your unsaved neighbors; for then, even if they are suspicious of you and talk against you, they will end up praising God for your good works when Christ returns.
Is anyone here wearing jewelry?
Any rubies or emeralds?
Any precious stones?
We wouldn't normally think of using that word "precious" to describe a rock or a stone, yet we've all heard the phrase "precious stones."
Well, three times in this passage, verses 4, 6, and 7, Peter uses the word "precious" to describe our Lord Jesus and surprisingly, he portrays Christ as a precious stone.
There're a number of titles which have been applied to Jesus Christ which are linked to either his person or His ministry.
As the Messiah, He's been called the Aforepromised; the Anointed One; the Messiah; the Son of God; King of the Jews; the Lion of Judah; the Comforter; the Counselor; the Prophet; the Suffering Servant; the Lamb of God; the High Priest; the Dayspring and Day-star.
In terms of his sovereignty and authority, he is called Lord; Head; Prince; Chief Shepherd; Chief Cornerstone; the Word of God; the Firstborn; the Firstfruits; the Forerunner.
In His work of salvation, he is Jesus; Savior; the Surety and Mediator of the new covenant; the rock and the Author of life.