1 Peter 2:7-8
To you therefore which believe he is precious: but to them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed…
I. THE PERSONS, TOGETHER WITH THEIR FAITH, TO WHOM JESUS IS PRECIOUS.
1. The grace of faith, which renders Jesus precious to the soul, is not the faith of assent, or such a faith by which men credit the testimony of Jesus through the gospel.
2. It is not only a believing of Christ, but a believing in Christ — the soul's receiving of, and resting upon Him alone for righteousness, pardon, and salvation.
3. That faith works by love (Galatians 5:6).
(1) This faith is ever attended with an affectionate desire of the company of Jesus Christ (Song of Solomon 4:6; Psalm 4:6; Job 23:3; Isaiah 26:8).
(2) With delightful thoughts of Him (Psalm 139:17).
(3) With cheerful service to Him (Psalm 119:4, 5).
(4) Such as believe in and love the Lord Jesus in sincerity, are tender of His name and honour.
(5) They are afraid to offend Him.
(6) True faith in Christ, and sincere love to Him, are ever attended with the soul's longing to be more and more like Him — in humility, in patience, in service, in resignation, and in holiness.
(a) It is such a faith as is the act of a living soul; for these believers, to whom Christ is precious, are said to be "new born."
(b) Those to whom Jesus is precious are such as have "tasted of His grace."
(c) They are described by their living by faith on Christ — "to whom coming."
II. UPON WHAT ACCOUNT IS JESUS PRECIOUS TO THEM THAT BELIEVE? I answer, in general, that it is from His suitableness to them, their relation to Him, and the benefits they receive from Him. But, more particularly —
1. Jesus is precious to believers, in the constitution of His person, which is very wonderful.
2. On account of His excellent qualifications and rich anointing for His work, as Mediator between God and men.
3. On account of the discharge of His offices of Prophet, Priest, and King, in order to the salvation of His people.
4. On account of the relations that He stands in to them that believe. He is their Head of influence, and they are members of His spiritual Body. He is their Shepherd. He is their best Friend — loving, tender, compassionate, sincere, sympathising, and constant. He is their great Physician and Healer.
5. On account of the display of His transcendent love and riches of His grace in order to their salvation.
6. He is most precious to believers, as whatsoever makes any of the creatures lovely, desirable, and precious one to another, is originally in Him; it is in them as a cistern, but in Christ as an inexhaustible fountain.
(1) Is beauty one ground of the creature's delighting in each other? The Lord Jesus excels them all (Psalm 45:2).
(2) Does wisdom recommend any creature to the affection of another? The Lord Jesus is the Wisdom of God. He not only governs the world in wisdom, but as a Prophet He teaches men to know God and Himself, which is eternal life.
(3) Does usefulness in any creature bespeak the affections and esteem of others? Jesus Christ is more than all the creatures put together; He is all things to His people — their light, their life, their food, their strength, their clothing and ornament, their riches and honour, their guide and leader, their healer, their advocate and intercessor, and all in all.
(4) Does a meek and quiet spirit, attended with patience and humility, commonly win the esteem of fellow creatures? Jesus Christ excels them all in these most desirable endowments; He is a perfect pattern of humility and meekness for all His disciples.
(5) Does faithfulness to any trust win the love and esteem of one to another? This is eminently found in Jesus Christ (Hebrews 3:2).
(6) Does sincere and ardent love in anyone call for the love and esteem of Others? The Lord Jesus excels them all; no creature can possibly love another at such a rate as He has done; His love is strong as death, many waters cannot quench it. And it is as free as it is great and uncommon.
III. HOW DO BELIEVERS SHOW THAT CHRIST IS PRECIOUS TO THEM?
1. By choosing Him for their own, and careful endeavour to clear up their interest in Him.
2. By their frequent and delightful thoughts of Him (Psalm 139:17).
3. By earnest desires of His presence, communion with Him (Job 23:3; Psalm 42:1, 2).
4. They yield to Him the seat and habitation of their very hearts (Ephesians 3:17).
5. By making use of Him, for all the ends that God the Father has appointed Him.
6. By their sincere love to Him.
(1) They love to think of Him, and their love inclines them to think and speak honourably of Him.
(2) They love His image wherever they can perceive it (Psalm 16:3).
(3) They love His Word (Job 23:12; Romans 7:22).
(4) They highly esteem His ordinances, and the places and means where they may enjoy Him.
(5) They are careful to keep His commandments (John 14:21).
(6) They desire to be more and more like Him (Romans 8:29).
(7) They rejoice in Him, and all He is made of God to them (Philippians 3:3).
Parallel VersesKJV: Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner,