First Peter 2:4-10


Christ is not the building or the spiritual temple. 

Christ is a stone, the foundation stone, of the temple.

We are all stones in this same spiritual temple.



This is the seventh reference to the stone in scripture:

1)      the stumbling stone in Isaiah 8:14

2)      the foundation stone of Isaiah 28:16

3)      the founder rock in Isaiah 51:1

4)      the rejected tones in Psalm 118:22

5)      the supernatural stone in Daniel 2:34

6)      the stone that brings injury in Zech 12:3

7)      the living stone in 1 Peter 2:4


rejected” by

1)      the nation of Israel

2)      by unbelievers in every nation today



We are part of a local church, but we are also part of the universal church through out the church age.


Mat. 16:18 – Jesus said he would build his church

1 Kings 8:27 – the temple in Jerusalem was the Lord’s house with his presence

1 Corinthians 3:17 and 6:19 – We are that temple today as the universal church.


The localized presence in Jerusalem was replaced by the indwelling in every believer.

When anyone accepts Christ, the living stone, they become a stone in that building.


The building that Peter is referring to is a temple. 


We still bring offering, sacrifices and do the service of a priest in this spiritual temple today.

The New Testament refers to these priestly works in the church age:

1)      offering of faith in Philippians 2:17

2)      gifts of money as fragrant offerings in Philippians 4:18

3)      our bodies as living sacrifices in Romans 12:1

4)      the sacrifice of praise in Hebrews 13:15

5)      a gentile convert as an acceptable offering in Romans 15:16

6)      Paul’s death as a drink offering in 2 Timothy 4:6


As a new order of priests we have:

1)      immediate access to God

2)      we personally serve God

3)      we minister to others outside the body of Christ

4)      we serve others in the body of Christ

5)      we have something worthy to bring to God as a holy priest



Here Peter uses scripture (OT) to back up his teaching.

It is interesting to see that the apostles taught but also used scripture to back up their teaching.


Isaiah 28:16 – a foundation stone is:

1)      carefully chosen

2)      very costly (“precious” as in unique)

3)      carefully crafted

4)      carefully placed


Some stones from the ancient middle east have been found to measure 69 feet long by
12  feet high by 13 feet tall


In Isaiah 28 the prophet was telling his generation to build on this unmovable, sure, true                                                              stone instead of human philosophies and temporary solutions.


Jesus is the foundation stone of this new temple just as he is Wisdom upon which God based the                                                entire spiritual and physical creation.


1 Corinthians 3:10

Ephesians 2:20



Warning #1:


Greek says: “for you, therefore, who believe is the honor”


Christ is honored by God

All who are built on him will also be honored


Jesus used Psalm 118:22 in Matt.21:42.

There the builders where:

1)      the worldly religious leaders forming their own  God and temple

2)      the worldly political leaders forming their own kingdom


This foundation stone that was rejected will be chosen also by God as the final stone in the structure.



Warning #2:


Isaiah 8:14 – not to accept Christ is to stumble over Christ

Christ is the step, the way, the door

To consider Christ unworthy is to:

-         stumble over the step

-         get lost from the way

-         fail to find the door


There is no other step, way or door.  A person without Christ is hopeless.


“Destined” does not refer to predestined by God to be lost, unsaved or to go to hell                                                                                           because that is what God choose for an individual:

1)      The main verb of 2:8 is “stumble”

2)      The word “disobey” is a participle subordinate to the main verb

3)      “destined” refers directly to “stumble”

4)      So, God “destined” for them to stumble but he did not destine them to “disobey”

5)      The unbeliever disobeys the gospel on their own free will.

6)      Anyone who disobeys the gospel by rejecting Christ has done so by their own                                                               free will and the only thing left for them is to then stumble on Christ or on this Stone.

7)      God then destined them to stumble when they disobeyed.  (This verse does not say that                                                             God destined them to disobey.)



Israel was to live in the land and be a light. 

People would come to them and see the glory of God.

The Queen of Sheba and Naaman both came to Israel and found God.


But, the church is not localized and waiting.

The church as a spiritual temple is everywhere and going out fulfilling the great commission.


Our Purpose is the same as Israel:  Be a light.

Our Methods are different:  Matt. 28:19-20


Two Groups:

1)      Unbelievers – stumbling towards shame

2)      you who believe” – on their way to honor and vindication.


Peter has now explained why his believers are suffering in the world.

The unbelievers have different purposes, goals and standards than the believer.

There will be a conflict that will result in the suffering of believers.

This conflict will be the focus of Peter’s through out this letter.

His instruction will include continuing to be a light to the unbeliever so that they will                                                                     trust in the Living Stone Jesus.