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Rejected and yet Chosen

1 Peter 2:4
As you come to him, the living Stone – rejected by humans but chosen by God and precious to him (NIVUK)

The Lord Jesus Christ is the most significant person who ever walked this earth.  He made it! (Colossians 1:15-16).  He made people to be in God’s image (Genesis 1:26) and chose to be born in a human body too, but was then rejected by the people He had called to belong to Him (John 1:10-11).  Even so, 2000 years since He was physically seen, He is still spoken about all over the world and those who believe in Him are given the right to become children of God (John 1:12-13). He is unique; not one among many equal religious founders; not a historical figure to be analysed, but the Chief Executive of all creation (Hebrews 1:1-2) to be loved, worshipped and obeyed.

Jesus is God's choice of Saviour for the world (1 Peter 1:20), and very ‘precious’ to Him (Isaiah 43:4).  The word ‘precious’ means valuable and costly and highly honoured - Peter also uses it in His letter to refer to faith, the blood of Christ, Christian character and God’s promises.  Here, Peter uses Psalm 118:22-24 to liken Jesus Christ to a very precious stone (a keystone or capstone), holding a building together.  Its unusual shape disqualifies it for any other role and is therefore rejected by builders looking for a simple block for a wall.  But when placed in its designed place, it gives every other stone a reason for being there.  Of course, buildings are inanimate, but Jesus is described as a ‘living stone’, meaning that He is alive and gives life, meaning and relationship to all other stones (1 Peter 2:5). Jesus is both the foundation of God’s living holy building, the church, and its capstone (Ephesians 2:19-22).

If we are to be accepted by God, we must come to Jesus (John 14:6).  Without a personal relationship with Jesus, we have no part in God’s holy building, the church.  Alas, many will not come to Jesus; they will slander, ridicule or ignore Him.  They cannot see how precious He is to God or how precious He is to believers. They reject Him and the eternal life He offers.  But Jesus predicted His rejection (Mark 8:31) also using the words of Psalm 118:22-23 to say, "Haven't you read this scripture: " 'The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvellous in our eyes'?" (Mark 12:10-11). Those words made a big impression on Peter (whose name means 'stone'), and he repeats them in this letter.

But when we come to Him, when we receive Jesus, we share both His preciousness to God and the world’s rejection. In choosing to unite with Jesus we also unite with Father God who chose Jesus to be the Saviour of the world - even before He created it (1 Peter 1:20)! So, the Lord Jesus Christ is very precious to Father God, and should be precious to all those who love Him. But many may have never understood what He has done, or why He is so precious. (If you or they are not sure about this, then click onto www.crosscheck.org.uk. and share the video with others). However, if the Holy Spirit assures you that you belong to God (Romans 8:16), then do not be discouraged if other people at work or home reject you; remember that Father God has chosen to accept you because you trust in Jesus.

Father God. I am so grateful that You chose Jesus Christ to be my Saviour; and that His death was the only perfect and sufficient sacrifice for my sins, and for the sins of the whole world. Forgive me for not holding Him more preciously in my heart. Help me, when others reject me because I love Jesus; and reassure me that You have chosen me as Your own precious child. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
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© Dr Paul Adams