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Text: 1 Peter 2:1-10
Title: “The Lord’s Building”
Subj: To show the materials God uses to build a church.

Intro:  Jesus said, “I will build My church...”  Matt. 16:16
   The most important event in _______________ is taking place in this location tonight!  I am speaking of the dedicating of this building to the glory of God.  Here, on this property will stand a lighthouse for _____________ and her visitors to see, that in a world of make-believe, God is real! Here is a place for sinners to find the Saviour. This is a place for backsliders to find forgiveness and reconciliation. Here is a place for blood-bought Christians to become part of a N.T. Baptist church. And here is a place for the Gospel to be sent around the world.  You have done a great work befitting our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ!  You cannot be proud, but you can be humbled and satisfied by this marvelous accomplishment that seemed so far from reality when you began.
   And Jesus said, “I will build My church…”
   The pattern for a building dedicated to the glory of God was set in the O.T.  It was called the Tabernacle.  The Tabernacle was a portable building for the worship of God that wandered with the Jews in the wilderness. Concerning the building of the Tabernacle the Bible says, “And they came, every one whose heart stirred him up, and every one whom his spirit made willing, and they brought the LORD’S offering to the work of the tabernacle of the congregation, and for all His service ....  And they came, both men and women, as many as were willing-hearted, and brought..”  (Ex. 35:21)
   The result of the peoples’ obedience in giving to God’s work is found in Ex. 33:9,11 where it says, “...the cloudy pillar descended and stood at the door of the tabernacle ... and the Lord spake unto Moses face to face as a man speaketh unto his friend.”

And Jesus said, “I will build My church…”
 
  And thus tonight we return to the concept of the original Tabernacle, a movable “structure” that that can be assembled and can meet in any location it chooses.  I trust you realize that you who are the members of this church are the actual church, and that this beautiful building only represents Grace Baptist church.  When you choose to assemble in this new building, then Grace Baptist church meets here.  When you disperse from this building, Grace Baptist is no longer assembled, but you, as individual members continue to represent Grace Baptist to your community and to carry out her purpose of doing what the Lord Jesus Christ would be doing if He was here in His earthly ministry. 
   I said all that to remind you of the gracious provision of God for His people, for it was God who instituted the Tabernacle and the Temple, and Christ who instituted His churches.  We rejoice in God’s provision for __________Baptist Church, for Jamaica and for the world as represented by this building.  We trust it will always be used for the glory of God. 

Text:  1 Peter 2:1-10 – “The Lord’s Building” – prayer

I. The Purification of the People; II. The Responsibilities of the People of God; III. The Need  for a Cornerstone; IV. The Rejection of the Cornerstone; V. The Description of the Spiritual Stones

The 1st step in building requires:
I. THE PURIFICATION OF THE PEOPLE
(1:22-23)
A. Wherefore
(takes us back to what went before, but we will look only at 1:22-23)
     1. Requires obeying the Truth
Joh 17:17  “Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy Word is truth.”
     2.  Requires the work of the Holy Spirit
Joh 16:8 “And when He [Holy Spirit]is come, He will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment”
     3. Requires the purification of your soul (inner man)
Joh 15:3 “Now ye are clean through the Word which I have spoken unto you.”
     4. Requires being born again (“born from above”) 

Jesus said to the most religious man of his day, “Ye (religious man) must be born again.”  (turn Jn 3:7, 15-18).  Jesus says to the most irreligious of our day, “Ye must be born again.”

         a. Not by corruptible (“perishing”) seed (not by descent from human parents, who are born to die: or any other human source) No man can save you.
         b. But by incorruptible (“imperishable”) seed, the Word of God  (the one source that will never pass away) 
             (1) Which Word lives and abides forever. (v23, 25)

Note:  To purify your soul you must, 1) Hear the Truth; 2) Obey the Truth; 3) Through the Holy Spirit; 4) Be born again
Are you saved?  Have you been born again?

II. THE RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE PEOPLE OF GOD (v1-5)

Note:  God used many of you to build this building, but it is God’s purpose to use you in building a spiritual house that will meet in this building and reflect His glory.  What a privilege!!  But to be a part of God’s building there are certain requirements for the building materials that must be met.  What a responsibility!!

A. [Once born again you’re responsible], Laying Aside (v1) (“putting away as if taking off clothing” or “as if washing off dirt & filth”).  You can’t wear the things of this world & the righteous robe of Christ at the same time!  Dirty people can’t serve a clean God! 

Robertson:  “Because of the new birth, a new life is demanded.” 

        1. All  (Evil)
            a. Malice (a passionate “desire to injure or see others suffer; evil”).
            b. Guile (“craftiness; deceit”; deceitful cleverness) 
            c. Hypocrisies (“actor wearing mask; seeming to be someone/something you are not”; falseness)
            d. Envies (“wanting what others have”; a feeling of discontent and resentment)
            e. Evil speakings (“back-biting”; gossip)
Application:  How do you “lay aside” all malice, guile, hypocrisy, envy & evil speech?  1) By an act of your will under the conviction of the Holy Spirit.  2) By repentance toward God.  3) By a renewed faith in Jesus Christ.

    B. (You’re responsible) Desiring (“intense longing for or pursuing after”)(v2)
        1. As (“like”) newborn (“just born [again]) babes (“infants”)
            a. Desire the sincere (“pure, unadulterated, unmixed”) milk (foundational truths) of the Word (this is Christ and/or the Word of God)
Heb 5:14 “But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.”
                1) Our milk, our meat, our desert!  Baptists are people of the Word!
            b. Desire the sincere growth (“increase”) from the Word
Lu 2:52  “And Jesus increased in wisdom  (“use of knowledge”) and stature (“spiritual] maturity”), and in favour (“good will”) with God and man.”
Application:  How do you build your desire?  1) By a continual remembrance of what Christ has done for you. 2) By an intent in your life of being like Christ.

   C. (You’re responsible) Tasting (“experience; enjoyment; nourishment”) (v3)
The milk of the Word draws and leads you to the conclusion...

        1. That the Lord is (P.T.) gracious (“good, kind, benevolent”)
            a. Gracious in salvation
            b. Gracious in changing your lifestyle from sinner to saint
            c. Gracious in giving you the Word of God
            d. Gracious in providing you with a church home.
            e. Gracious in providing you eternal life.
Application:  How do you “taste” the goodness of God?  1) By replaying the intruding of God in your life.  2) By reading or hearing about the intervention of God in other’s lives (Bible, books, preaching, teaching). 

    D. (You’re responsible) Coming (“approach, draw near”) (v4)
The milk of the Word leads you to the living Stone (Christ)
         1. To Whom [continually] coming (to the Lord)
             a. Not for salv., but for sanctification (right living)
                 1) Unto a living (“having vital power in itself and exerting the same upon the soul”) Stone (“large building stone shaped and wrought”)
             b. A disallowed (“rejected after testing”) [by men] Stone                

Note:  How many people have said “that I tried Christ and it didn’t work.”  But you don’t “try Christ,” you trust Christ! 

             c. A chosen (“appointed”) [of God] Stone
             d. A precious (“honored, prized”) Stone 

Note:  Four stones for four corners of the building--living, rejected, chosen, and precious. 
Application:  How do you come to the Lord?  1) By an act of your will to pray, attend all church services, and by becoming an example of Christ.

     E. (You’re responsible) Built Up to Offer Up (v5)
The milk of the Word makes you something you weren’t before

         1. As lively (“living”) stones (as Christ is, so the saved can be also)
             a. Are built (“built up from a foundation & established”) [by God]
                 1) This is the same word used by Christ, “I will build My church.” 

Note:  The Christian is “to come to be built up” into a spiritual building.  Every “brick” is important to the building! 

         2. Built up a spiritual house (“filled with & governed by the Spirit of God”)
Eph. 2:20-22 (turn)
         3. As a holy priesthood (“an active order of priests”) 
             a. One who intercedes for man with God (Rev. 1:6)
             b. One who can approach God directly (Heb. 4:16)
         4. Offering up spiritual sacrifices (freely given for another without expectation of return/reward).  Sacrifices with a spiritual intent.
             a. Acceptable to God
             b. By (“though”) Jesus Christ (Rom. 12:1-2) 
                 1) The Great High Priest
Application:  How are you “built up”?  1) By doing taking your responsibilities in the church seriously/faithfully.  How do you offer up?  By making available to God all you have, and responding to God in obedience when He wants to use you.

III. THE NEED FOR A CHIEF CORNER STONE (v6-7a) 

Note:  God now has the proper quality of materials to build the spiritual building, but He needs a chief corner stone to set the whole building correctly.  The cornerstone makes the building square, true, solid and unified. 

     A. As Contained (set within) in Scripture (Isa. 28:16)
          1. The Bible--our only source of faith and practice
          2. Christ--the subject of the Bible—revealed as the Corner-stone 

     B. As Confirmed & Authenticated by God (“I lay”) (v6)
          1. The Author of Scripture is the Holy Spirit
          2. The Builder of the building is the Lord Jesus Christ
          3. The Architect of the building is the Father
              a. A supernatural work 

     C. As Descriptive of Christ (v6) (What type of C.S. do we need?)
          1. A chief (“highest, most prominent”) corner Stone (“primary foundation stone of the structure”)  (Not 2nd best!)
              a. Laid (“set”) in Zion (Christ was born and reared around Jerusalem, or the place with the Presence of God).  (Not moveable and changeable!)             
          2. Elect (“chosen for the purpose”) [of God]
          3. Precious (“held in honor, prized; of very great value”) [by God]
              a. Do you appreciate His worth?         

     D. As Observed in Christians (v6c-7a)
          1. He that believes (“trusts in, puts confidence in”) (One we can rest on)
              a. He is not put to shame (“confounded, confused, mentally uncertain”)
Isa 26:3  “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on Thee: because he trusteth in Thee.”
              b. He recognizes what is precious [Christ] and what is false and/or profane (v7a) 

IV. THE REJECTION OF THE CORNER STONE (v7b-8)
A. The Stone to Those Who do not Believe
  (v7b)
            1. Disallowed (“rejected”) by the builders (religious "experts”)
                a. Every person is in the construction business building a life
            2. Made (“become”) the Head (“prominence”) of the corner
            3. A Stone of stumbling (“obstacle struck by accident”)
            4. A Rock (“projecting rock”) of offence (“a trap set to trip”) 

Note:  Four more “stones” for four corners of the building—rejected, Head, Obstacle and Trap. 

B. The Effect of the Stone on the Disobedient (v8)
     1. They stumble at the Word
         a. The Bible taken literally becomes their obstacle
     2. They are disobedient (“not to allow one’s self to be persuaded; to refuse or withhold belief”) to the Word
     3. They were also appointed (“set forth”) in the Word
         a. If you are here as a Christ rejecter, you are mentioned over and over in the Bible.  Your cause is lost, your end is Hell! 

Notice that there is no hope for those who reject Jesus Christ as the corner Stone! 

V. THE DESCRIPTION OF THE SPIRITUAL STONES (v9-10)
A. Pictured in the O.T. Nation of Israel, Confirmed in the N.T. Family of God
(v9-10)

Note:  As the Nation of Israel was supposed to be, so today's Christians can be.

Christians share in the attributes of Christ

    
1. A chosen (“picked out”) generation (“offspring; family”)
         a. United by Christ’s blood through the new birth
     2. A royal (“kingly, regal”) priesthood (“an order of priests”)
         a.. Marks of a priest
              1) One who offers [spiritual] sacrifices publicly (Do you?)
              2) One who acts as mediator between man and God (Can you?)
              3) One who is an indispensable source of religious knowledge for the people  (Are you?)
                  a) It was because of the priestly functions that the chosen people were brought into near relations with God and kept therein.
     3. A holy (“separate, distinct, unique”) nation (“people group”), with a “national” identity—Christian
     4. A peculiar (“God’s special, treasured possession”) people
     5. A praising (“telling”) people
         a. That you should
             1) Show forth praises (“virtue, moral goodness”) of Him
                  a) Who called you out of (“away from”) darkness (“heathenism, paganism, “I”ism” and all its spiritual ignorance; ending in Hell”)
                  b) Who called you into His marvelous (“excellent”) light (“knowledge, wisdom, purity, service; ending in Heaven”)
      6. A changed people
          a. In time past (“formerly & in a continuing state”)
              1) Not a people (no valid spiritual identity nor family) (Hos. 2:23)
              2) Had not obtained mercy (acts of grace)
          b. But are now (“at this time, which ended the former state ”)
              1) The people of God
              2) Have obtained mercy [at your conversion]. 

Concl:  The purpose of this new building is to house _________ Baptist Church and to be a lighthouse to this community; then _____________; then the world.  But it is the spiritual side of __________ Baptist that will make the difference, and that means the spiritual side of the members of __________ Baptist.

Are you good building material that will add to the spiritual life of this church?  Are you a clean, living stone that “fits” into God’s purpose and plan for this church?  Are you taking off and putting on characteristics that draw others to Christ and __________ Baptist.  We all have a lot of work to do.  Why not start tonight in getting things right.

Visitor and friend, we appreciate your presence at this dedication.  I know nothing of your present spiritual condition, but I do know that only by trusting Christ as your Saviour will you see Heaven, for “Ye must be born again.”  Jesus said it—you must believe and act on it.   The question is not “do you need to,” but will you come to Christ tonight.  

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