Summary: This is part of a 100 year celebration of the Church of the Nazarene. The main part of the message is God’s people as the church.
The church as the chosen people
1 Peter 2:1-10 Read
Church of the Nazarene in Middletown, Pa. Is one of 63 churches in what’s called the Philadelphia district and one of 428 districts that make up the Church of the Nazarene globally.
So you can see that the church is bigger than just us and making an impact globally as well as locally.
In October, 1908 a group of holiness leaders met at Pilot Point, Tx. (Outside Dallas) under a tent to begin and bring a vision to pass.
Most denominations are started because of a breaking away. Bad blood, difference of government format, but that day, leaders came together from numerous Holiness denominations, joining together for a common cause- Holiness ,the pursuit of holiness, living out holiness in their lives.
They were confident that the working of the Holy Spirit in people’s lives could change them for ever. They represented about 10,000 members(small amount) New body of believers realized that their combined efforts ,that they had strength that they did not have alone.
They developed a strong sense of identity. They were Nazarenes, they were confident in the working of the Holy Spirit, they were compassionate, they had a heart for evangelism, they were passionate about the message of holiness.
Today, 1.6 million people call the church of the Nazarene home, 140 languages, 151 world areas.
Out of one, we have become many.
Peter, in this passage of scripture tells that we are to get rid of any thing that would hinder or destroy our relationship with Jesus Christ.
That Jesus Christ is the living stone, the foundation that we build our relationship to God.
He tells us that to some this will be a stumbling block, rejection of Christ, and a disobedience to the message that Christ brought.
But to the believer; just the Nazarene’s- No , but all believers that put Jesus Christ as their foundation of salvation.
V9-10- “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”
In that text, you have the body of my message this morning.
T We are chosen people
T We are Holy people
T We are sent people
I. Chosen people
Through the writings of Peter, God lets us know that we are a chosen people.(selected and thought of).
*Especially in a world that fights to find purpose.
*Believing if there is a God, that he is out there and we have no excess to him.
He tells us that they,(Israelites) and us today have not done this by our own source. That God called them into being his people.
1 Peter 1:2- tells us that we are brought into being by the “sanctifying work of the Spirit”
God is the initiator, the originator for our redemption.
*It is by His grace and mercy that He calls each of us to Him
*By his grace and mercy he calls us into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ
Some will respond and some won’t
Christians (those professing Jesus as Lord) from all denominations cannot stay the same way that they werebefore they met Christ.
*We must move away from the selfish and evil things.
*We must set your heart on the things that nourish us and please God.
Hypocrite- in the Greek means to be an actor.
In Christianity , a hypocrite would be one to pledge his allegiance to Christianity for his/her own profit, or one who pretends or acts, to put on a mask, to be one way with one sect of people and another way with a different sect of people.
V4-10- Peter gives us the nature and function of the church.
The early church understood the living stone, Jesus Christ was the foundation to a relationship with God.
To accept him -He would be Savior and friend.
To reject him-Judgement and condemnation.
Peter came to the great truth with this when Jesus asked him “who do you say that I am”?
You are the Christ The Son of the living God Mt. 16:16
Jesus replied: “ blessed are Simon, son of Jonah for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven, and I tell you that you are Peter, on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell will not overcome it.”
On Peter, No On the foundation that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that God ordained the church.
Some will accept it- they become the chosen ones
Those that reject it- face judgement
1 Peter 2:10- “once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God”
Today we live with some uncertainty. The economy, the war.