A few weeks ago, I preached on “too valuable not to be used.” I had a second message prepared but have not been able to preach it. Today, I am putting it into a blog format.
God’s Kingdom increase is dependent on our willingness to provide additional time towards this cause. We do not know why He set it up this way, but He commissioned every believer to carry the Gospel. I don’t know about you, but I have always struggled with sharing my faith with others. Oh, there are moments and situations where it is easy, but it isn’t easy in most cases.
The closer that we move to the return of Christ, the more imperative it is for us to make ourselves available to be used. Time is running out. This fact calls us to set aside the frivolous pursuits of life and work together to build God’s kingdom. I’m sure each of you struggles as I do.
God has given each of us a story, testimony. No one can deny what God has done for us. We must press into the scripture we so often quote, “we overcome by the blood of the lamb and the word of our testimony.”
I Peter 2:5-9 “5 And you are living stones that God is building into his spiritual temple. What’s more, you are his holy priests.[a] Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God. 6 As the Scriptures say,
“I am placing a cornerstone in Jerusalem,[b]
chosen for great honor,
and anyone who trusts in him
will never be disgraced.” [c]
7 Yes, you who trust him recognize the honor God has given him.[d] But for those who reject him,
“The stone that the builders rejected
has now become the cornerstone.” [e]
“He is the stone that makes people stumble,
the rock that makes them fall.” [f]
They stumble because they do not obey God’s word, and so they meet the fate that was planned for them.
9 But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests,[g] a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.”
Here you will see that we are all living stones and priests. This is where we will focus today. You are a living stone, a priest, and too valuable not to be used. Every one of us has a part to play in the growth of the Kingdom and this local body. If you solely leave it to full-time ministers, there may be growth, but it will be slow and inconsistent. When every one of us comes to a fresh realization that God wants to use us, we step into that, like the early church, we will see explosive growth. Let’s look more closely at our text.
Verse 5 indicates that we as living stones are cut to fit our perfect spot in the Kingdom. This is not random; this is intentional. God takes us and the gifts that He has given us, coupled with the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives, and He places us where He wants us. You are too valuable not to be used.
Verse 6 reminds us that we, living stones, are built on the Cornerstone Christ Jesus. Is 28:16 is quoted here, “Therefore, this is what the Sovereign Lord says: “Look! I am placing a foundation stone in Jerusalem, a firm and tested stone. It is a precious cornerstone that is safe to build on. Whoever believes need never be shaken.” Both of these verses refer to the stone being in Zion or Jerusalem. This must be a reference to the crucifixion and resurrection of our Lord in that city. This brings us salvation, and in this city, the cornerstone was laid down. Because of Jesus’ resurrection, He is living, and so are we. We are living stones, active in the work of the Kingdom of God. You are too valuable not to be used.
Verse 7 states that to the living stones, Jesus is precious. One interpretation of the original Greek indicates that we are honored because He has made us living stones in His temple. For those who reject Him, He is tossed aside like an unwanted stone. They see no value in Him or His sacrifice.
Verse 8 alludes to Is 8:14, where it says, “He will keep you safe. But to Israel and Judah, he will be a stone that makes people stumble, a rock that makes them fall. And for the people of Jerusalem, he will be a trap and a snare.” Because they reject Him, they will not find salvation. This has occurred since the time we walked and worshiped in the physical temple. The religious leaders rejected Him. They denied His deity, though the prophets clearly said that He would come. This speaks of disobedience and unbelief. We are not called to save people, but to show them how to be a disciple. It is up to them to accept or reject Christ the Cornerstone.
Verse 9 moves us from the structure of the spiritual temple to the fact that we also serve as a kingdom of priests. All of us have a role to play in the construction and for His service. You are too valuable not to be used. Peter states here that we are chosen…that is not by accident. We are royal…we are part of the King’s family. We are holy…set apart for the work of God. We are special…not common. For this, we praise Him. This kingdom of priests do as the OT priests did; we serve Him, sacrifice for Him, and worship Him. This priesthood is made up of every believer. Oh, if the modern church could grasp the impact of this.
We are part of His temple; we are His priests; this results in Kingdom growth. There must be preparation for us to effectively serve as priests. We cannot usher others into the presence of God if we have not been there ourselves. It is time for us to rise in the name of our God and the power of the Spirit. It is time we take our rightful places in the Kingdom, setting aside distractions. It’s time to shut off the voice of the enemy and recognize our position in Christ.
You are called to be a priest.
You have a role to play.
You are too valuable not to be used.
You need to examine your life.
Ask yourself, where do I spend my time?
Where do I spend my money?
What distractions keep me from being used?
What lies have I believed that tell me I am not usable?
You are a priest of the Most High God…start acting like it.
Do your part.
When each of us fills our spot in the temple and works God’s priest, the Kingdom grows. Just think what would happen here, in this part of Christ’s body, if each of us would invite one person to church every week. What we began living like Jesus lived rather than how the world lives. Those around us would see a change in our language, our attitude, and our priorities. Each of these will impact those around us. What if God has called us to be a royal participant in his work rather than a common observer of His work? God has called you. It’s time to step up. You are too valuable not to be used.