1 Peter 2:4-5 ESV
“As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, 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.”
The church is the body of Christ comprised of all who believe in Jesus Christ with God-given faith, who have been crucified with Christ in death to sin and raised to walk in newness of life in him, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. We are now to be walking according to the Spirit, and no longer according to the flesh. For if we live according to the flesh we will die in our sins, but if by the Spirit we are putting to death the deeds of the body (flesh), we will live with our Lord for eternity.
[Rom 6:1-23; Eph 4:1-24; Rom 8:1-14; Rom 12:1-8; 1 Co 12:1-31; Eph 5:17-27; Col 3:16; Heb 3:13; Php 2:1-8; Heb 10:23-25; Rom 15:14]
Therefore, the church is not a physical building called “church,” and it is not a business or a corporation under the state or a church denomination, although many have turned her into that, in practice. But she is a spiritual building and she is made up of living stones (us who are true believers) with Jesus as our cornerstone and as our head.
And we are not to grow ourselves as a business being marketed to the people of the world, but we are to be being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. And the main sacrifice that Jesus requires of us is that we die with him to sin and that we live to him and to his righteous, no longer living as slaves to sin, but walking in obedience to his commands.
For, because of what Jesus did for us on that cross, we are to present our bodies to the Lord as living sacrifices, holy and acceptable to God, which is our spiritual worship of God. And we are no longer to be conformed to the ways of this sinful world, but we are to be transformed in heart and mind so that by testing we may discern what is the will of God for our lives – his good and acceptable and perfect will (Romans 12:1-2).
[Matt 7:21-23; Matt 24:9-14; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; 2 Tim 1:8-9; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
1 Peter 2:9-10 ESV
“But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”
We as God’s people are to be a holy spiritual nation. And to be holy means to be separate (unlike, different) from the world because we are being conformed to the likeness of Jesus Christ. And so we are not to be like the world or to blend in with the world. And we are not to immerse ourselves in our culture in order to be acceptable to the world. We are to stand out as different because now we are following Jesus in obedience to his ways.
Prior to believing in Jesus Christ we were dead in our sins, separate from God, unable in our own flesh to be acceptable to him. But by faith in Jesus Christ we were crucified with Christ in death to sin and raised to walk in newness of life in him. And now we are no longer in control of our own lives. Now we are his possession, and he owns us, and so we are now to live according to his will and to do the things he says we ought to do.
And not only are we now to give our lives fully over to the Lord, to be his completely, to do his will for our lives, but we are to be sharing the gospel of our salvation with other people. So we all should be proclaiming the excellencies of him who called us out of darkness into his marvelous light. For he called us out of our sinful lives to now walk in his truth and righteousness, in the power of God, to the glory of God.
1 Peter 2:11-12 ESV
“Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul. Keep your conduct among the Gentiles honorable, so that when they speak against you as evildoers, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day of visitation.”
So we are to now live on this earth as those who do not belong to this world, as though we are strangers on earth. We are no longer to be doing and saying all the same things that the ungodly do and say. But now our lives should be lived for the glory of God. And our lives should be dedicated to serving our Lord at all times with ears always open to hearing our Lord speak to our hearts with his gentle leading and guidance.
And we absolutely must be those who are abstaining from the passions of the flesh, who are no longer walking in sin, but who are now walking in holiness and in righteousness, in conduct and in practice. Now we should be people of integrity, truth tellers, faithful, morally pure, living godly and holy lives to the glory of God. And we should be those who are saying “No!” to sin as a matter of daily practice in our lives.
An Original Work / April 15, 2012
Walking daily with my Savior
brings me joy.
Loving Father; precious Jesus;
He’s my Savior and my Lord.
Gently leads me; follow Him.
I’ve invited Him within.
Now abiding in His presence,
oh, what peace.
From my self-life
He has brought me,
By His mercy, full release.
Hope and comfort,
peace and safety Jesus brings
When I daily bow before Him;
Obey freely; do His will.
Follow Him where’er He leads.
Listen to Him; His words heed.
Now obeying his words fully,
oh, what love
That He gives me
By His Spirit, from above.
Loving Father; precious Jesus,
He’s my friend.
With my Savior, by His Spirit,
I will endure to the end.
Share the gospel, tell what’s true.
Witness daily; His will do.
Tell the world of how their Savior
bled and died.
On a cruel cross He suffered
So that we might be alive.