Take Time to Be Holy
This month we resumed our study through 1 Peter, starting with a reading and reviewing of 1 Peter 1 - 2:5.
STUDY & PROPOSITIONS
Our text of focus for this month is 1 Peter 2:6-10.
Christ is precious
Christ is precious to God the Father, and He is precious to us as well.
God has made Christ the main issue
God could have let the world run its course and left it alone in its sins, but He did not do that. He sent Christ. Of all moments in history, this is the biggest watershed moment. Of course, there are other major and impactful historical events that took place, such as the worldwide flood & Noah's Ark, the Tower of Babel, and the selling of Joseph into slavery. But even compared to these moments, God sent Christ into the world, and made Him the most important person and His life and ministry the most important event that ever took place in history.
Verse 2:6 mentions the "corner stone," which is what was laid down at the extreme angle (sometimes used of a building's foundation or the stone that joins two walls, etc.). A good corner stone is critical for ensuring the proper construction of a building. In a similar way, Christ is critical for the Christian's building up into holiness. There is no other way for Christians to grow apart from Christ.
Christ is essential and crucial for us to live as God's people. Without Christ, we cannot achieve anything as Christians nor as God's children. Without Christ, Christians have no salvation. And, as 1 Peter tells us, without Christ, Christians have no growth.
Christ will not disappoint us
The sense is that believers will never be disappointed in Christ.
Believers are so fully invested in Christ, that if Christ were to be revealed to be disappointing in any way, we would be greatly ashamed.
Peter can say this because the Scriptures say this. Peter also saw Christ's works and knew Him firsthand. He saw the risen Christ, saw Him transfigured, and saw Him ascending back into heaven. He was an intimate witness to Christ's ministry and teachings. Peter really knew Christ firsthand, and he was certain that Christ will never disappoint us.
Sometimes, we can make investments with great hope - whether in finance, housing, products, vacations, or other things. But it is never guaranteed that those investments will live up to our hopes and expectations. In contrast, Christ will never put us to shame, nor will He ever disappoint us. 1 Peter 1:13 tells us to completely place our hope in Christ. The hope and future that we have in Christ is certain, and it cannot disappoint us.
Things can compete with our hope in Christ. For example, we can look toward money as something that can grant us future security, or temporary happiness in being able to buy the things you desire, but in reality it can never fulfill hope like Christ can. A pursuit of money can be consuming, perhaps even to the point of compromising morality.
Rejecters of Christ will be put to shame
Believers trust in Christ and will never be put to shame, but unbelievers will be put to shame because they rejected Christ, the most precious thing! In rejecting Christ, they have no perfect cornerstone, and thus their foundation is doomed from the start. Without a solid foundation, the building cannot stand.
Rejecters of Christ were predetermined
Verse 8 tells us that rejecters of Christ were appointed and predetermined - specifically, they were predetermined to stumble over Christ as the cornerstone they rejected.
Does this mean that rejecters of Christ are automatically predestined for hell? It is not for us to say or judge, and Peter is only guaranteeing that people will stumble, but does not go so far as to say they will never be able to repent or be saved.
Rejection of Christ was still going on at the time that Peter wrote this letter, and we can observe that it is still going on today.
Believers must persist as excellent witnesses to those who reject Christ, because there is always an opportunity for repentance and salvation - even for the staunchest rejecter (1 Peter 2:12, 1 Peter 3:1-2).
A note about "double predestination"
Some people think that this passage is talking about double predestination, which is to say that God has actively chosen some to believe and thus be saved, and in the same way, God has actively chosen some for damnation. They hold that God’s predestination for salvation and His predestination for damnation are symmetrical. Our church believes in an asymmetrical double predestination.
We hold that God's predestination in salvation is asymmetrical, in that God actively foreknew, called, justified, and glorified those whom He chose for salvation, but that Scripture does not affirm that God actively appointed unbelievers unto damnation in the same way. We can see this in Scripture where the predetermination of the elect unto salvation is described in the active voice but the predetermination of the non-elect is described in the passive voice (Rom. 9:22-23). Theologians use the term “preterition” to describe this concept. The term preterition means "to pass over," and this properly describes the active act of God in choosing the elect for salvation and the passive act of God in choosing the non-elect for damnation. We believe that preterition is an accurate reflection of Scripture that stops short of affirming an active predestination for wrath.