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Wednesday in the Word

Second Baptist Church

February 6, 2013

1 Peter 2:1-5

  1. Verses 1-3. When we last studied 1st Peter we were reminded by the apostle in chapter one to be holy, love one another and to continue to let the word of God purify us as believers. The word in the last chapter was seen as a seed that begins to grow in us producing that which it intended to produce, love and purity. The beginning of the second chapter sees the word as spiritual milk that believers should crave like a newborn baby craves and longs for their mother’s milk. Believers should long for the word because the word of God will aid us in seeing the things in our lives that need to be removed as we continue to be purified for God’s glory. Peter list the things that the word will help us rid. These negative character qualities enumerated in verse one are hostile to true love. One cannot love with these attitudes and actions. Finally, these vices are also contrary to an appetite for the Word and the growth the milk of the Word produces. We cannot harbor malice and practice deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander and still desire the Word. To be full of these evils is to fail to have an appetite for the milk of God’s Word.

    1. The first evil is "malice." Rather than an attitude which hopes for the edification and blessing of another, malice hopes (and even strives) for the downfall of another. It is the opposite of well-wishing.

    2. Deceitfulness or deception, often rooted in hatred, and frequently found in relationship to our speech. This is an impure motive of the heart which distorts or opposes the truth and results in deceptive or misleading speech.

    3. Hypocrisy is the pretense of appearing to be one thing when we are really another. It may well be that words indicate one thing while our lives indicate another.

    4. Envy or jealousy. It is most difficult to seek the best for your brother when he possesses what you think you should have. Jealousy or envy wants what another has for you. Love is the willingness to give what you have to another.

    5. The evil of “slander” is literally a speaking against. It is the evil speech which seeks to defame or slander another. It is the opposite of speech that edifies. Instead of speaking to build up one another this kind of speech tears down with no intent to build up. It is simple speech meant to hurt and not help.

    6. Removing these things from our lives is the result of this new “seed” the Word of God planted in us. The Word of God creates a new heart in us requiring a new attitude. This new attitude can only be supported by a new desire. This new desire must be the word of God. Peter tells his audience to crave it, to become addicted to it like a newborn desires milk. A newborn is not satisfied until it has had its full of milk. In the same way we cannot be satisfied until we have made ourselves full of the Word. This means to seek it daily so that we can grow up into the new lifestyle and new attitude of a new heart in Christ. The more you and I begin to feast on the word of God the stronger our appetite for the word becomes.

  2. Verse 4. In verse 4, Peter calls our attention to the Lord Jesus Christ, whom he refers to as a “living stone,” precious in the sight of God but rejected by men. In verse 5, Peter points out the believer’s relationship to Christ. If He is the “living stone,” we are also “living stones,” stones which are being built into a dwelling place of God from which priestly ministry is conducted and spiritual sacrifices are offered.

  3. Verse 5. Because the Lord Jesus is the “living stone,” those who put their trust in Him also become “living stones.” These “stones” share in the life of their Lord. They also share in the ministry of our Lord. Through Him, we “as living stones” become a holy priesthood, offering up spiritual sacrifices to the Father which are acceptable because of Him. In this verse, Peter declares that the old physical covenant of physical temples, physical priests, and physical sacrifices has been done away with and replaced with a much better spiritual system. This is an important verse because it reminds us that the new priesthood is not some people but all believers who are joined together with Christ as living stones. We are also reminded that there is no longer a special place of worship such as a temple in Jerusalem, but that the temple has been replaced with the people of God who have been joined together to build a spiritual temple made of people not bricks and stones. Along with this new priesthood and new temple, our sacrifices are spiritual as well. God is looking for more than just a physical commitment from us, but he is looking for a spiritual type of worship which requires a commitment from our hearts and minds. A spiritual sacrifice must come from our desire to please God and not man. Our spiritual sacrifices are not for our pleasure but for the Lord’s good pleasure.

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