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 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. – 1 Peter 2:4-6
Dear Brothers and Sisters
I hope this finds you well.
At our recent online Bible studies we have been thinking about the Church. We began by looking at Peter’s description of the church from the verses above. Peter begins by describing the church as those who have come to “the living stone.” This living stone is a name for Jesus. He is living because he died and rose again. His function as this living stone is to be the cornerstone. The cornerstone is the most important stone in any building. It’s the stone that all others are built on. Get this stone wrong and your whole building will fall apart. As the cornerstone, Jesus is the foundation of the church. He is the one we are to build our lives upon. We do this as we believe in his saving death and resurrection and follow him every day of our lives. As we do this Peter tells us we become living stones who are being built into a spiritual house. This spiritual house is not made of bricks and mortar but of ordinary people who have trusted in Jesus. The work of building a spiritual house of people is what God is doing in the world. He is calling to himself people from every nation and cultural background imaginable. This means that the church is bigger than any one person or geographical location.
This doesn’t mean that individuals do not matter. They do. Every person comes to Jesus based on their individual faith in Him. It also doesn’t mean that geographical locations do not matter. They do. The church is local as well as global. But what it does mean, though, is that you and I are part of something that is far bigger and greater than just our individual lives here in Morden. We are part of God’s world-wide building project. Understanding this means we cannot view church simply as something that is done on an individual basis. When we come to Jesus we also become part of his people. We cannot be Christians on our own. Being part of his people means we need to be committed to them; regardless of the pandemic, regardless of things being different to usual, regardless of what church services currently look like. Without the church, we cease to be the people God is calling us to be. As God’s people we get to become part of something that is bigger than any one of us and we get to play our part in God’s plan for his church. This plan is one that will echo down throughout the ages and into eternity. What an amazing privilege!
It has been great to see St Martin’s committed to God’s people over the last 12 months. It’s my prayer that, as we move forward, we will continue to be committed and we will see what an important privilege it is to be part of God’s people.
Yours in Christ