Chapter # 2 Paragraph # 1 Study # 2
August 2, 2009
2 As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:
3 If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
4 To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,
5 Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.
6 Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.
7 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,
8 And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.
9 But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
10 Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
1901 ASV Translation:
2 as newborn babes, long for the spiritual milk which is without guile, that ye may grow thereby unto salvation;
3 if ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious:
4 unto whom coming, a living stone, rejected indeed of men, but with God elect, precious,
5 ye also, as living stones, are built up a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
6 Because it is contained in scripture, Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: And he that believeth on him shall not be put to shame.
7 For you therefore that believe is the preciousness: but for such as disbelieve, The stone which the builders rejected, The same was made the head of the corner;
8 and, A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence; for they stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.
9 But ye are an elect race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for God's own possession, that ye may show forth the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
10 who in time past were no people, but now are the people of God: who had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
- I. Therefore.
- II. The Pre-condition(s) [See Notes for 07/19 and 07/26].
- A. There has to be a "setting away from".
- B. There has to have been a "birth".
- III. The Major Imperative.
- A. Is encapsulated by the verb "desire".
- 1. The word so translated is used in an illuminating way in 2 Corinthians 5:2. In that place Paul indicated a "groaning" that accompanies this "desire". That would indicate that the "desire" was pretty strong. And the desire is identified as "to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven". However, the strength of this "desire" is probably attached to some of the other issues involved, like our circumstances and how much of a problem our "body" is giving us.
- 2. Philippians 2:26 associates this "desire" with being "full of heaviness" when it was frustrated.
- B. Is focused upon "the sincere milk of the Word".
- 1. Logos Library's Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament Based on Semantic Domains says that the word translated "of the Word" by the Authorized Version means, "pertaining to being genuine, in the sense of being true to the real and essential nature of something". The word is apparently not found in the Septuagint and is only used twice in the New Testament (Romans 12:1 and this text by Peter). Its root is "logos" and, by that derivation, is tied to the "Logos Doctrine" of the New Testament which boils down to "a detailed expression of ultimate reality". Thus, apparently, Peter had final reality in mind as a key description of the "milk" that newborns are to desire.
- 2. In addition, Peter adds the descriptive marker "sincere". It is a word that is only used here in the New Testament and is built off of the word he used in 2:1 that is translated "guile". The idea of "guile" is, as we pointed out in the Notes for July 26, the attempt to accomplish one's objectives by methods that are sufficiently, recognizably, ungodly that they are intended to never be exposed. The "milk" is completely without this corruption of motives. There are no attempts in the "genuine milk" to hide the guiding motivations, or the actual actions. Nothing is done in the darkness.
- C. Has, as its objective, "growth" unto "salvation".
- 1. Since "justification", as a part of the biblical concept of "salvation", is an either/or concept, there can be no "growth" in it. Since both "sanctification" and "glorification" are elements of "salvation" that have on-going, developmental, characteristics, there is a possibility of "growth" in both of these realms. "Growth" in sanctification is not in terms of that integration into the provision of Christ for being "set apart unto God", but is, rather, in terms of the outworking of that provision in the actual affairs of body, soul, and spirit in the present life. And, since glorification is directly tied to the progress one makes in sanctification in this life, that door stands open in terms of possibilities (growth). Thus, the objective of the "milk" for the newborn is progress in the application of "salvation" to the current physical, emotional, and spiritual bondages that exist as carryovers from the "former lusts" (1:15) and the patterns set in place by "the forefathers" (1:18). Paul applies this principle in 1 Corinthians 6:12 where he declares that even "lawful" things can, sometimes, bring about "subjection to authority" that is totally unwarranted. He also explains how this all works out in terms of "salvation" in 1 Corinthians 13:3 by letting us know that "freedom" from various bondages exists in being genuinely motivated by "love" and that such love is the only "rewardable" factor in the judgment that leads to final glory. Thus, "growth" unto salvation means steady progress in eliminating every attitude/action that is driven by bondage.
- 2. Clearly, "growth unto salvation" is a long-term concept that begins with "milk" and progresses into a variegated diet that produces total "health" as a "freedom from bondage" reality.