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Sermon Summary. The author, attributed to the Apostle Peter, is writing to a community who is experiencing persecution because of their faith. The church was under persecution and was likely growing weary. We all know that experiencing persecution, rejection and being despised cause fatigue. In times of fatigue and strife, we sometimes revert back to the worst thoughts, ideas (and even behaviors) that we have about ourselves or that others/society attribute to us. Peter reminds them of who they are in Christ. He reminds us as well. What society has to say about you/them is COMPLETELY irrelevant. He reminds us how even though they despised and killed our king, Jesus arose triumphant. We arise with him.
No, it is not what society says about you. It is not what other people say about you. It’s not even what you say about yourself. Our God and your creator has declared that you are . . . “a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, and God’s special possession.” Praise God for bringing us out of the darkness and into the marvelous light.
Living Stones/You Are Being Built. In verses 3-6 there are a couple of things we see. Once we “taste and see that the Lord is good” we then begin to draw close to God. As we draw close to him, the author tells us that God begins to build us into a spiritual house and a royal priesthood.
Jesus Chris, Cornerstone/Reality of Rejection. In verses 6-8, we see Christ as the cornerstone of life. We see two realities . . . some are embracing Christ and others are rejecting Christ as a reaction to Christ. The community in this text was experiencing persecution and needed; they needed to be reminded that this — persecution, rejection, despising — a reality of the Christian journey.
Remember what they did to Christ. Isaiah 52:14 tells us he was beaten beyond all recognition. We note the depths of mocking and abuse that was done to him — and all because he spread the message of love. We may not experience it to this degree but we will experience attacks, attacks of persecution, attacks of rejection and being despised. This is why we must remember who we are and praise God.
Remember Who You Are. Verse 9, prayerfully brings peace and rejoicing to the soul. The writer is reminding God’s people of who they are during this time of persecution. He is reminding us of the same during our down times.
Always remember always the reality of persecution. As we become more bold in our witness, it will not decrease but it will increase. Sometimes we will not even be aware of it but in other times it will weigh heavily on us. Always be reminded, that you are God’s chosen people, a holy nation, God’s special possession, and a royal priesthood. Remember to declare the praises of the one who has brought you out of darkness into the marvelous light.