Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble… For whoever would love life… must keep his tongue from evil... He must turn from evil and do good; he must seek peace and pursue it. 1 Peter 3:8-11 (NIV) Whoever...
You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house. 1 Peter 2:5 (NIV)
When God’s people came into the land of Canaan, God told them they were not to worship in any place of their own choosing. They were to seek the place that God would choose to put his name (Dt. 12:5).
King David discerned that Jerusalem was the place, so he made it his capital city and his son Solomon built a temple there. When the temple was dedicated, the cloud of God’s presence filled the temple. There was a place on earth where God’s name would be honored and God’s presence would be known.
When Peter wrote this letter the temple was still standing in Jerusalem (circa AD 64). But Jesus had spoken about a day when the temple in Jerusalem would be destroyed. Not one stone would be left on top of another (Mat. 24:2). That happened in the year AD 70 and the temple in Jerusalem has never been rebuilt since.
So within a few years of Peter’s letter, the temple would be gone. But if there is no temple, the obvious question is: Where is God’s presence to be known? Peter gives us the answer: “As you come to him… you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house” (2:5).
God’s presence is known wherever a community of believers gather together to worship Jesus.
In the past, God’s presence was known among the stones of the temple. Now, God’s presence is known in the community of his people.
Where are you looking for/expecting to find God’s presence?