“Come to him, a living stone though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God’s sight, and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house,” I Peter 2:4-5. Hmmm. What does it mean to be a living stone that can be built into a spiritual house? Perhaps the best clue is found by ignoring the chapter breaks in the Bible and consider what the writer said just before he mentioned the living stones.
“For all flesh is like grass and all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls, but the word of the Lord endures forever.” I Peter 1:24
“Rid yourselves, therefore, of all malice, and all guile, insincerity, envy, and all slander. Like newborn infants, long for the pure, spiritual milk, so that by it you may grow into salvation—if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good,” I Peter 1:24-25 and 2:1-3.
Ahhhh! So a living stone is someone who recognizes the fleeting nature and temporal condition of life. We are not only like the grass, but our glory is like the flower of grass which will wither and fall.
Therefore, to become a living stone we must cling to the eternal voice of God, made known through the person of Jesus because God’s revelation endures forever. This is what transforms us from our perishing temporal condition to an imperishable seed that will not wither or fall.
But, there’s more!
To be a living stone that can be built into a spiritual house, we must rid ourselves of all malice, and all guile, insincerity, envy, and all slander! Did you catch that? To let ourselves be built into a spiritual house, we must shed the very things that hinder our ability to grow in ways acceptable to God. To be a holy image of God, we must mirror or reflect the same spirit that Jesus reflects. To offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God, we must first understand the type of sacrifice God expects of us.
Perhaps the sacrifice most acceptable to God is as simple as ridding ourselves of the desire to hold on to our hatred; or cling to our deceitfulness, dishonesty, jealousy; or to continue our smear campaigns against perceived enemies. If we were to put these things to death within us, would that be the type of sacrifice God expects? If so, then becoming a living stone that can be built into a spiritual house doesn’t sound that difficult, does it? Hmmm. Think about it.