Display a New Identity

                                         I Peter 2:1-12

                                       March 18, 2007

 

 

v. 1 - these practices come from Satan and have the taint

            of hell.

 

They are a class of sins to which Christians are especially

prone.

 

v. 2 - a "babe" - weak, helpless, who could guess what a babe

            could become?  to see the new-born child of God grow

            into the perfected spirit bowing in eternal glory before

            God's throne!

 

Luke 2:52 - "And Jesus increased in wisdom, and in stature,

            and in favor with God and man"

 

Growth is spontaneous - no man can add to his stature one

cubit! - under the right conditions life cannot help but grow.

 

            The new birth comes from God but the new man

            must grow - that growth is not spontaneous - progress,

            growth in grace, requires earnest prayer, watchfulness,

            constant self-denial and takes time.

 

"sincere milk of the Word" - spiritual nourishment of the soul.

 

 

The Word of God is the original soul food! - The truth has in it

all that a soul needs.

 

There is no bodily craving more intense than hunger - the

infant cries for food - such keenness of appetite should mark

every Christian - infants do not need to be told to seek the

mother's breast - but mature people through indifference

and often a positive distaste for the wholesome food which

God gives, neglects the soul's welfare.

 

A preference for any book or TV show to the Bible?

 

If we will only use the ample means provided for us and let

our souls feed on the Word of God we shall grow as certainly

as the child from infancy into adulthood - mark that growth -

lines on the doorway of children at different ages.

 

Ps. 119:103 - "How sweet are thy words to my taste!  yea,

            sweeter than honey to my mouth"

 

v. 3 - "O taste and see that the Lord is good" - Ps. 34:8

 

            "prove me now"  - Mal. 3:10

 

v. 4 - "to whom coming"  - the Greek shows that the

            "coming" is not an act done once for all but an

            act that is done repeatedly.

 

 

 

v. 5 - Your own place to fill - your own work to do

           

            a building not material, but spiritual, consisting not

            of inanimate stones but living, sanctified, souls

            resting on no earthly foundation, but on the Rock

            which is Christ!

 

A flaw of man is his refusal to grasp the pure spirituality

of the Divine nature!

 

Eph. 2:20-22

 

"ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said,

I will dwell in them, and walk in them, and I will be their

God, and they shall be my people" - II Cor. 4:16

 

God comes and makes His abode in every believing soul.

The Divine Spirit can fill and penetrate each human

spirit as easily and completely as the sunshine drenches

and saturates the mist, every particle is suffused with

fiery brightness.  ****

 

John 14:23

 

"Ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, a holy nation"

                                                Exodus 19:6

 

Prov. 23:26a - "My son, give me thine heart" - the chief

            sacrifice that we can offer is ourselves - that is all

            He asks and all that we have to give.

 

 

v. 6 - The Stone - both the Foundation on which the

            building rests and the Chief Corner-Stone -

            which holds the walls together so that the "whole

            building fitly framed together and compacted in

            all its parts groweth unto a holy temple unto the

            Lord" - Eph. 4:16

 

Christ is the Foundation Stone - all the universe rests on Him!

 

His Person underlies all being, all peace and all nobleness!

 

The closer Christians are bound by spiritual union with

that one Corner-stone, the closer will they be bound

(mortared) together.

 

There is strong support - "underneath are the Everlasting

Arms"

 

"he that believeth on Him shall not be confounded"

 

We need not fear piling all our cares and sorrows on Him,

the Foundation!

 

"other foundation can no man lay, than that is laid,

  which is Jesus Christ" - I Cor. 3:11

 

 

 

Those who have built their lives on other foundations

will stand terrified when they feel the crumbling under

them at the last day - a much more serious situation

than helplessness in an earthquake!

 

In simple trust look to Jesus today - take Him for who

He is, the Incarnate Son of God!

 

You will never be "confounded" or put to a shame!

 

Miss Illinois - Tiger Stadium - Bill Glass Crusade - 1970's -

"Reach Out to Jesus - He's Reaching out to You"

 

Faith is but stretching out the hand to His extended hand!

How can we do that if our hands hang listlessly by our side

or resolutely clenched behind our backs?

 

Faith builds on that Foundation - unbelief, which is

disobedience, pulls down that Rock of offence on its

own head and is ground to powder by its fall!

 

 

The greatest disobedience is unbelief!  All disobedience

flows from unbelief!  Problem in the world today/leaders

leaving Christ out of the building?

 

"This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom

 He hath sent"  - John 6:29

 

 

v. 7 - Thank God!  The unbelief and disobedience of men

            cannot turn aside the purpose of God - the Living

            Stone that was once disallowed is become the Head

            of the corner.

 

Ps. 118:22-23

 

v. 8 - The Living Stone is not only made the Head of the

corner to the confusion of the disobedient, but becomes

also to their destruction a Stone of stumbling, they fall on

that Stone, and are broken!

 

Hurt, maiming, destruction, are the appointed

consequences of rejecting Christ just as salvation

is appointed for believers!

 

Matt. 21:44

 

The idea is willful opposition - sin hardens the heart

and then there is the danger of eternal sin - Mark 3:29

 

It is God's ordinance that disobedience should end in

stumbling but there can be repentance - perseverance

in disobedience must end in everlasting death!

 

"A Stone of stumbling and a Rock of offence" - it is no

light thing to reject the Son of God, to set the cross at

naught, to despise the love of Him who died upon the

cross for us!

 

Such sinners against their own souls must fall!

 

Daniel 2:34,45 - That Stone must become a great

            mountain and fill the whole earth and

            resistance to the decree of the Most High

            can only END IN RUIN AND DESTRUCTION -

            those who reject the Living Stone must in the

            end be crushed beneath it - Matt. 21:44

 

v. 9 - "chosen" - Deut. 7:6 - Israel by circumcision

                        Christians by baptism

 

A private, special, treasured possession of God -

 

Isaiah 43:21

 

The church of God He hath purchased with His own

blood - Acts 20:28

 

Called....."out of darkness into His marvelous light"

 

God designed us to be a mirror of Himself - every

creature has this for its highest end, to glorify God -

of all creatures man is the highest revelation of the

character of God; and among men, man redeemed is

the highest - I think of the second-class citizenry to

which that secularist have relegated modern Christians -

What will happen when the shoe is on the other foot?

When you try to appear before God at the marriage

supper of the Lamb with out a wedding garment,

without proper attire?

 

"Holiness to the Lord" is the badge of those who are

consecrated to His service" - Exodus 28:36

 

v. 10

 

v. 11 - "fleshly lusts" - it is the soul against which they

            fight - the soul which was first breathed into man

            by God.

 

To lose one's soul is to lose one's all - no apparent

gain can compensate for that TREMEDOUS LOSS!

 

v. 12 - implies close attention - the Gentiles/world

            watched/watches the conduct of Christians,

            narrowly scrutinizing them to discover faults

            and inconsistencies.

 

 

Peter hopes that the holy lives of Christians may be

made the means of leading men to Christ in the time

of visitation.

 

A Christian's life consists in symmetry and conformity

to the Word of God as its rule - therefore he ought to

study that rule and to square his ways by it!

 

Gospel preaching must be supported by gospel living.

Next to the inborn ungodliness of the natural heart,

the great hindrance to Christ's kingdom is the

Church's own  ungodliness!

 

Righteousness will not satisfy the world  - there must

also be love.

 

The influence of Christian character on the world is

incalculable.

 

"By your good works which they shall behold, they

may glorify God in the day of visitation"

 

Unbecoming conduct may harden men in sin & unbelief;

becoming conduct may prepare the way of the Lord.

 

"abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul"