Thursday, November 17, 2011

You Are Being Built Up As A Living Stone. I Peter 2. By Mrs. Noyo Edem

1 Peter 2
 1 Therefore, rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy, and slander of every kind. 2 Like newborn babies, crave pure spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow up in your salvation, 3 now that you have tasted that the Lord is good.
The Living Stone and a Chosen People
 4 As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him— 5 you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house[a] to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6 For in Scripture it says:

   “See, I lay a stone in Zion,
   a chosen and precious cornerstone,
and the one who trusts in him
   will never be put to shame.”[b]
 7 Now to you who believe, this stone is precious. But to those who do not believe,

   “The stone the builders rejected
   has become the cornerstone,”[c]
 8 and,

   “A stone that causes people to stumble
   and a rock that makes them fall.”[d]
   They stumble because they disobey the message—which is also what they were destined for.
 9 But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10 Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
Living Godly Lives in a Pagan Society
 11 Dear friends, I urge you, as foreigners and exiles, to abstain from sinful desires, which wage war against your soul. 12 Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.
 13 Submit yourselves for the Lord’s sake to every human authority: whether to the emperor, as the supreme authority, 14 or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. 15 For it is God’s will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish people. 16 Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves. 17 Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor.
 18 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. 19 For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God. 20 But how is it to your credit if you receive a beating for doing wrong and endure it? But if you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. 21 To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.

 22 “He committed no sin,
   and no deceit was found in his mouth.”[e]
 23 When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. 24 “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” 25 For “you were like sheep going astray,”[f] but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

Noyo Edem's Notes:
The new life we have accepted in Christ dictates that we must get rid of our old habits and consciously strive to live holy lives. We must love everyone around us and be considerate of our brothers and sisters in the Lord, and even be considerate of our "enemies". I Peter 2 encourages us to "rid yourselves of all malice and all deceit, hypocrisy, envy and slander of every kind. Like new born babies, crave pure spiritual milk..."

God has not left us alone to struggle to attain to spiritual maturity and perfection in this new lifestyle we have acquired in Christ Jesus. Instead, by the special grace of God the Father, the Holy Spirit is available to help each one of us to grow in the spiritual knowledge of God, and His Kingdom so that we can become mature Christians.

Today's passage states that we are being built up as living stones for our God. Jesus Christ is the Chief Corner stone and each of us are being built up to be parts of the unified body of Christ. Therefore, we must always try to emulate the example of Jesus Christ and be obedient to God, the Father. We must also do good deeds, because our God is good and holy. God wants us to be holy unto Him, because our God is a holy God.

May God help us to continue to strive to do His will in Jesus' name. May we learn to humble ourselves before God and surrender our lives to the Holy Spirit to lead us on the  path of righteousness in Jesus' name. Amen.

Prayer Points:
Thank God for this new day; bless His holy name for the things He has done for you and your families. Thank God for your salvation and pray for strength to remain faithful in your ministries.

Pray for wisdom to overcome all the worldly habits that you are still struggling with in your life. Pray that the Holy Spirit should reveal the things you need to change in your life so that you can grow up as a mature Christian.

Repent of your sins; pray for the forgiveness of the sins of members of your families and nations.  Ask God to give you the courage to forgive those that have sinned against you.

Thank God for answered prayers in Jesus' name. Amen.

Be blessed.

Mrs. Noyo Edem

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