“19 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21 In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22 And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.”
Growing up my home wasn’t always a pleasant place to be. There were more seasons of my childhood where I felt like my home was a place that even I didn’t belong. I was, in some ways, an outsider in the very place where I was supposed to feel like I belonged. Not having any blood brothers and sisters and being outnumbered by my stepbrothers certainly played a role in this feeling. That isn’t how home is supposed to feel.
Perhaps, this is why I think the family of God combined with the metaphor of a household is so powerful. In this passage the foundation is the apostles and prophets, but Jesus remains the cornerstone. I believe the reference to apostles and prophets here is a reference to the Old Testament that prophesied about the cornerstone (Isaiah 28:16) and the apostles teaching about Jesus who was that cornerstone. The household of God which includes anyone who has put their faith in Jesus becomes the temple where God resides. Think of that, God’s presence among us!
This is the beauty of being welcomed into the family, it is the place we belong, it is our home. We are never the outsider. In fact, this passage is about how gentiles were being welcomed into the family of God. It isn’t reserved for just the Jews. In fact, just a few verses earlier it says, this:
“11 Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (which is done in the body by human hands)—12 remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.”
I’m one of those gentiles being brought into the family of God, His household, being built up…that’s me. That’s probably you too. What a blessing to be included.
What was your home life like growing up? Did you have amazing parents who demonstrated God’s love? Was your home life troublesome? What does it mean for you to be part of God’s family, His household, His dwelling place? Reflect on that privilege and spend some time expressing thanks to God.