Today’s Message (Easter V)

1 Peter 2:2-3 – Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation—if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.

The apostle Peter assumes that the Christians to whom he is writing have experienced the goodness of the Lord.  In fact, it would be quite strange for people who have confessed faith in Christ not to acknowledge that he is indeed good.  People must trust only what is good and true, and without that trust our faith would be meaningless.  So, as those who have tasted and seen the goodness of the Lord, we long for more of his pleasing nourishment and crave, as Peter puts it, that “pure spiritual milk.”

We say that we shun evil and injustice and that we hunger after righteousness, and we are probably telling the truth.  When assessing our own goodness, we talk a good game.  But, in truth, we often neglect to encourage what is right and true.  We also hate our enemies and fail to see any hope for them.  Finally, we believe God has abandoned us and is simply letting the world rot to its core.  That is so often, our response, or “our take on the matter”.

God is different.  He sees much more clearly than we the presence of sin and death in our world.  He knows with infathomable insight the waywardness of his image-bearers.  Yet God in Christ comes to us in love, offering forgiveness and new life through his own redemptive suffering and death.  He takes our sins upon himself and overcomes the death through the power of his resurrection.  He actually restores the goodness in us that he pronounced in creation, when he said that we were “very good.”

How in our response to that kind of love and mercy can we say anything other than that God is good?  We should say with the psalmist, “Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!  Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!  Oh, fear the Lord, you his saints, for those who fear him have no lack!  The young lions suffer want and hunger; but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.” (Psalm 34:8-10)

When we have known this kind of goodness, we will obviously want more.  But there is something else we must remember.  In an attitude of thanksgiving for the divine goodness we have known, we must show others the same goodness God has shown us.  In other words, “Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit. Turn away from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it” (Psalm 34:13-14).  Or, as Peter puts it, “So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander” (1 Peter 2:1).

We believe that God is good.  Now let us desire all the more the goodness of his nourishment, that “pure spiritual milk,” and let us strive to be that “royal priesthood” through whom he blesses the world.

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