Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture, “Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on him will by no means be put to shame.” Therefore, to you who believe, He is precious; but to those who are disobedient, “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone,” and “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.” They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed. (1 Peter 2:4-8)
Rejected By Men
At the end of the year the holiday season draws to a close with a last flurry of activity in the New Year celebrations. The irony and fickleness of man is for a few days he celebrates the birth of Jesus with fervor and then immediately turns his attention to the frivolity of a New Year’s bash quickly forgetting the “reason for the season” and the whole nature of Jesus Christ. It is not long after a new year begins that life returns to the mundane and worthless pursuits of carnal gain with concerns over the stock market, political wrangling, health worries and the mad paced life of looking out for the interest of self. Religion or at least a passing look at the story of Jesus quickly fades from the mind as the Bible is forgotten, rejected and restricted from public view or discussion. A brief respite is found in spring when a few days are dedicated to the resurrection of Jesus but otherwise the poinsettias die and the Easter lilies stop blooming. When Jesus came to earth He came because He was sent by the Father. Even among His own people He was rejected as being nothing more than a carpenter’s son who offended them with His teachings. They would eventually reject Jesus of Nazareth and press the Romans to have Him crucified which they did. For many years after His death His disciples claimed to have seen Jesus of Nazareth alive but again most people rejected the claims. Two thousand years removed from the Roman cross that held the Son of God suspended between heaven and earth men still reject Jesus stumbling over the word that proclaims His glory and His majesty. He continues to be a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense. The pitiful hypocrisies of those who celebrate the birth of Jesus a few days in December quickly vanish to reveal their true nature of human wisdom guiding their lives down a spiral journey of self-destruction. Jesus is rejected by men but He is chosen by God and precious.
There are two views of Jesus and these two views detail the separation of men from one another. Most people look at Jesus with a casual eye of interest but do not believe He is the Son of God. Many proclaim a belief in Jesus as God’s son but their lives tell a different story. They reject the teachings of Jesus as their sole guide being disobedient to the word. Like the Jews that rejected the nature of Jesus the majority of men today will not accept the man from Nazareth as being anything more than a good man who did good things and nothing else. He is not precious, He is not special and He is not their Lord. Everything God could do for man is embodied in the sacrifice of His Son and most men reject that sacrifice as useless. They will not accept the fact they are flawed creatures that need saving. Believing Jesus is the Christ the Son of God will not fit into their plan and desires of life and so they reject Him. On December 25 they will sings songs about His holiness and December 26 go back to their carnal driven passionate lives of fleshly desires. January 1 is the holiday of heathenism allegiances to the gods of the lust of the flesh, the pride of life and the lust of the eye. And the world turns another year older doing the same thing it has done since the fall in the garden. The greatest gift God could give man is rejected.
The second view of Jesus is found in the lives of the few, the chosen and the elect. Jesus was chosen by God and Jesus was precious to the Father. His disciples look upon Him as the most precious gift man has ever known. As a holy priesthood the child of God serves in the temple of grace the great high priest and king known as Jesus Christ. The spiritual sacrifices of love and devotion flow from the hearts of the faithful who worship Jesus every day of their lives. They are not impressed with the carnal trappings of a holiday season that view Jesus through hypocritical spectacles of offense. Each first day of the week the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus is on their lips and on their hearts. He is not rejected but received. Jesus becomes the bedrock of the soul of the faithful who look at Him as the chief cornerstone of their life, the elect of their souls and precious to their outlook in life. They are not ashamed to be called His children and to let the world know of their discipleship in His church. Therefore to those who believe: HE IS PRECIOUS! Jesus is not the reason for the season. He is the reason for life. Jesus is the meaning of life, the message of life, the hope of life and the purpose of life. Every moment of every day in every month of every year the story of Jesus is precious and vivid and purposeful. He is the Christ, the Son of the living God and His people adore His every day of their lives. Most men reject Jesus. God’s people worship Jesus. Which are you?