“Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious.”
Peter now turns to how the Christian should respond to their new life in Christ. He begins with the believer’s privileges in Christ. We are in a new status quo with God. We can draw on what we already have. We do not have to earn or deserve privilege from God.
Those who have new birth are a new building (vv. 4-8) and new people (vv. 9-10).
Verses 4-8 presents the Lord Jesus as three stones: a “living stone,” a “precious cornerstone,” and a “stone of stumbling.”
Coming to Him as to a living stone
This coming is not our initial coming to Christ in salvation. It is the close, intimate fellowship with the Lord. There are none of us so close to the Lord that we could not be nearer. We want to close the gap between us and the Lord closer every day.
“Coming” conveys the idea to come forward toward a reference point or go near to. In some places, it means to move forward toward someone and with them responding reciprocally. In some places “coming” signifies a consent, implying a coming to agreement with (Acts 7:31; I Tim. 6:3; He 4:16; 7:25; 10:22). Sometimes it conveys the idea of taking the initiative in association with someone (Acts 10:28). The focus of “coming” is upon the initiative.
Note the word “coming” in the following passages:
Hebrews 7:25, “Therefore He is also able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.”
Hebrews 10:22, “Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.”
Hebrews 11:6, “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.”
The words “to whom” and “coming” have the same word that means face to face. This is an intimate fellowship with the Lord. Therefore, “coming to Him” is not coming to him in salvation. This is coming to him in worship.
The grammar indicates that as we come to Christ, we come personally and habitually. This is intimate communion between the Lord and us. We have access to him as a perennial privilege.
Christians can fellowship with the living Stone. In 1:3, Peter talks about a “living hope” and in 1:23 to the living Word. We do not normally think of a stone as living. We think of a stone as dead. We have the phrase “stone dead.” This makes the paradox of the living Stone all the more significant. Jesus the Stone lives because he rose from the dead. Isaiah calls the Messiah a stone (Isa. 8:14; 28:16).
The living Stone is a contrast to the pagan temples with their ornate stones. However, ornate these stones might be, they were still dead. We can have fellowship with Jesus the living Stone because he is a person, and can enter into vital fellowship with him.
Not only does the stone live, but it also gives life. We can share his resurrection life in time. A stone depicts strength and solidity.
There are none of us so close to the Lord that we could not be closer.
Jesus has eternal life in himself. He is the Living Stone. Those who accept him as their Savior begin eternal life at that time. We begin eternal life upon the moment of trust in Christ.
To this Stone, God asks us to come. This is not a physical coming into his presence but a coming into fellowship with him. We go to him by faith.
Are you daily in fellowship with the Lord by faith?