Summary: 1Peter 2:6-9b. “The Living Cornerstone” 1) Coming to the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:6), in having: 2) Affection for the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:7-8), that believers are: 3) Chosen by the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:9a), resulting in 4) Serving with the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:9b).
1 Peter 2:6-9b 6 For it stands in Scripture: "Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious, and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame." 7 So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe, "The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone," 8 and "A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense." They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do. 9 But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, (a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.) (ESV)
As a congregation, we’ve been involved in an exciting building project to construct a new auditorium to add to our existing meeting space at 82 Church St. S. in Ajax. In moving this project forward, it has meant a lot of architectural details. One marvel of architecture is the new standard of buildings. Engineers have examined how stress put on buildings impacts the structure and stability. They have learned from past earthquakes and other events to design many modern buildings to withstand great stress. The design is no accident. The pieces perfectly fit together for maximum stability.
As the Apostle Peter wrote the book of 1 Peter, under the diving inspiration of God. When he wrote it, he was writing directly to the people in Asia Minor, modern day Turkey, they were a people under great stress and persecution. He wanted to instill within them hope, since God puts people together in a holy temple, perfectly fit to withstand all attacks, threats and stresses. A testimony to the perfect sovereign work of God is the resurrection of Christ. Because Christ is alive, His people, are perfected joined together for a divine purpose.
After an entire year of dealing with the difficulties around COVID, and yet another limited lockdown, perhaps you come here today under stress, with apparent chaos in your life and wonder how Easter, the celebration of the resurrection of Christ makes any difference? How do events that happened more two thousand years ago make any difference today?
God brings a people together because of the person and work of the resurrected Christ. Believers in Christ come to Him as “The Living Cornerstone” and are perfectly joined together in God’s building. The Apostle Peter explains that those who believe in Him are alive also. In 1 Peter 2:6–9b he shows this in three ways first through: 1) Coming to the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:6), in having: 2) Affection for the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:7-8), that believers are: 3) Chosen by the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:9a), resulting in 4) Serving with the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:9b).
Because of the resurrection of Christ, believers are enabled in:
1) Coming to the Living Cornerstone (1 Peter 2:6),
1 Peter 2:6 6 For it stands in Scripture: "Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious, and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame." (ESV)
God called His people to behold or view the Messiah as the cornerstone that the Father Himself laid in Zion—Israel, and more specifically the mountain in Jerusalem (cf. 2 Sam. 5:7, 1 Kings 8:1, Pss. 48:2, 51:18, 102:21, Isa. 2:3, 4:3, 10:12, 24:23, 30:19, 52:2, Jer. 26:18, Amos 1:2, Mic. 3:12, Zeph. 3:16, Zech. 1:17). The Prophet Isaiah explained this: Isaiah 2:3 and many peoples shall come, and say: "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob, that he may teach us his ways and that we may walk in his paths." For out of Zion shall go the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem. (ESV). As Christ was put to death on Mount Calvary in Jerusalem, Zion, God the Father was establishing the reality of the new kingdom or His spiritual rule over the hearts of all who believe in Him (cf. Luke 17:20–21). Therefore, figuratively, Zion can refer to the new covenant as Sinai does to the old covenant (cf. Gal. 4:24–25), or to heavenly blessings as Sinai does to judgment (cf. Heb. 12:18–23). The writer of Hebrews tells Christians that they have come to “Mount Zion” by having come to Jesus and His church (Hebrews 12:22–24). (Redford, D. (2007). The New Testament church: Acts-Revelation (Vol. 2, p. 267). Cincinnati, OH: Standard Pub.)
Please turn to Matthew 16
The conviction that Jesus Christ has been raised from the dead (1:3) and is alive has encouraged the use of the paradoxical phrase “living stone.”... Its further use here with reference to Christ and to the community as a temple (a “spiritual house”) may imply a contrast with “dead” stone idols and stone temples with which the readers would have been thoroughly familiar. (Stanton, G. N. (2003). 1 Peter. In J. D. G. Dunn & J. W. Rogerson (Eds.), Eerdmans Commentary on the Bible (p. 1497). Grand Rapids, MI; Cambridge, U.K.: William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.)