That God is in the midst of a building program is clear in Scripture. He is the architect. He is also the developer, the sub-contractor, and the tradesman. He even supplies all the material.
And it’s recycled material. All of it, at one point, soiled. All of it, apart from His great makeover program, damaged goods. But all of it now redeemed and renewed such that it is suitable for God’s design and purposes. Material which cost the Father dearly to secure, but which He delighted to purchase for this one of kind eternal structure. Material which is being laid in the context of a Foundation which is perfect–a Chief Cornerstone, elect, precious –a Living Stone chosen by God. Material which has been reconstituted to take on the properties of the Foundation. Material like living stones.
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.
(1Peter 2:4-5 ESV)
Man! What a building program! What a high and lofty structure! A living, breathing sanctuary . . . a people-building. Designed to function as a God-ordained priesthood. Given the sacred occupation of offering up spiritual sacrifices to the Father through the Son. In Ephesians it says that this structure has been architected such that each member is fit together perfectly so that it grows into a holy temple, being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit (Eph2:20-22).
And the materials? That would be us. Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. Those who believe Jesus is the Son of God sent from heaven. Those who have placed their faith fully in His finished work of redemption on the cross. Those who have been regenerated and made new. Like I said, one-hundred percent of the material used for God’s great building program has been recycled.
We, along with every believer through the ages, are like living stones. Purchased at great cost. Having no “textile” quality in ourselves but given new “properties” suitable for building with when we were made new creations in Christ. Having been made living stones just like THE LIVING STONE. Ransomed into the likeness of Christ for the purpose of being conformed to the image of Christ, and all this so that we might be incorporated into the building whose foundation is Christ.
Like living stones being built into a spiritual house . . . that’s us! We’re each a piece of the puzzle . . . a small shard of colored glass in the mosaic . . . a measure in the opus . . . one face on a multi-faceted diamond. We are living stones shaped and fitted as He has determined. Placed exactly where He wants. Woven into an eternal design for the purpose of offering up spiritual sacrifices to the One who alone is worthy to receive honor. Like living stones, we’ve been put together for the glory of God.
What a privilege. What an undeserved, grace wrought privilege. To be counted as living stones fit for His sanctuary. To be recruited into a holy priesthood with such a high and holy calling. To be cemented eternally with His Son to form a house of eternal praise. It really is a bit overwhelming.
And who’s up to the task? Not me in my own power. Not me in my own strength and determination. But the life I now live as a living stone, I live by faith in the Son of God — THE LIVING STONE — who loved me and gave Himself for me (Gal 2:20). And the textile strength I possess as needed for such an unearthly structure is that of the indwelling Spirit of God — the power of the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead (Rom. 8:11). And the “right” I have to consider myself suited for such a grandiose building program is the right I have been freely given as a child adopted by the Father (Gal. 4:4-7).
Like living stones. Who da’ thought? God thought. And thus, He bought us, and He brought us, into this amazing building program.
All by His grace. All for His glory.