A Living Stone, Not a House
“You yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.”
1 PETER 2:5
Every one of us is a stone and not a house. In a day where the world is bursting with ambition, pride, and contempt for God and man, it is important for us to remember this. We are living stones, and together God is building us into His spiritual house. But no person is a house of their own.
What we must understand about being living stones is that we should never aim to be more than a stone and yet we must realize that it takes a life of whole devotion in order to make us a worthy vessel, and life lived as a holy stone.
Man always wants to be the house. He wants to be as god to others, being more than them. He wants to be the whole of these things in and of himself. Yet the Bible teaches us that only Christ is the whole of things, the all in all (Col 3:11). Christ is the only one who is the fulfillment of everything (John 5:39, Matt 5:17, Luke 24:27). And this means that our seeking to be such things of ourselves is not righteous but is the greatest evil and sin. And yet it is all too common today for people to believe they are seeking righteousness in such ambitions when they are seeking nothing more than to “be like God” (Gen 3:5).
When we look through the corridors of all of human history, one thing we learn is that no person, not even the greatest of saints, was ever of themselves a “house”. They were only ever a stone. When we look at David, we see one of the greatest men who has lived—devoted to God and faithful to obey Him—and yet David died and his life ended. In him was no fullness, but only something that was passing.
When we continue and look at Elijah or Isaiah, the same thing is true of them. While their life was absolutely significant, there was not a fullness in and of themselves. Or we look at the great apostles Paul, Peter, John, or James; each of these men’s lives mattered precisely because they were faithful to Christ, and yet each of these men died. Each of their lives were only stones in history and never were the house.
The significance of Christ is that He is the one who possesses such substance in and of Himself. He is the fullness of God dwelling bodily (Col 2:9). Of Him is life, truth, and the way. And no other person in all of human history is ever such a person, nor will there ever be. This was the significance of the loaves (Mark 6:52): that Christ alone possesses these things of Himself. That is the significance of Christ. That He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6). He is the resurrection and the life (John 11:25). He is God (John 1:1).
And it is precisely this that man tries to be. He tries to be the fullness of these things in and of himself rather than bowing to Christ who is alone these things. That is what is the root of all evil in this world, and that is the root of pride.
It is from this that we learn two very important things in which we are to walk as Christians. Firstly, that we should not have contempt upon being a stone. Contempt upon this shows our wicked covetousness of what belongs to Christ, the exact same evil heart of pride that the devil possesses. Secondly it also shows us that we should not think that being a stone is to live a lazy life of ease. Rather, we should see just how much is required of us in order to be living stones; indeed, it requires our whole lives (Matt 16:25). It requires that we lose our whole lives to the One who alone is the fullness of God Himself.
We should greatly value being living stones. It is the highest honor in this entire world, bestowed by God through His Son upon us. We should marvel at God’s grace, not seek His throne. God alone is the One. He alone is the One worthy of glory and praise, the One who alone has power, life, truth, wisdom, and goodness. It is all of these things that we seek in order to own them of ourselves, rather than possess them by the righteousness of Another.
Christ is the fulfillment of all things. And we either submit to this or we continue in the same evil pride in which we began in the garden. Let us always be wary of the great dangers to our soul of either being idle in all that God gives, failing to be worthy of all that He has given in His Son (Eph 4:1, Rom 12:1-2), or in walking in a wicked pride and covetousness, seeking the things that belong to Christ not out of submission to Him but out of an evil heart that seeks to rob the One True King of His crown. May we realize the great glory in being a living stone, and live our lives daily after such great purpose and meaning, and may we repent for all the ways we have sought to be a house rather than a stone, in contempt of our fellow brother (Matt 23:8) and of God’s Holy Son.
October 29, 2020