This is part 1 of my sermon notes. I’d like to acknowledge Frank Viola’s book: From eternity to here which helped me in preparing this talk

1 Peter 2:4-5
As you come to him, the living Stone—rejected by men but chosen by God and precious to him—you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ

So for a few minutes we are going to think about being living stones and about being built into a spiritual house.

Revelation 21:9-10
One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.” And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high, and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God.

Isn’t it interesting the angel said he was going to show John the wife of the Lamb and he shows him the Holy City, the new Jerusalem. God often uses pictures to describe his people. The most common ones are the Bride of Christ or the wife of the Lamb; the Body of Christ; the family of God; God’s building or God’s temple. So John is not just describing a city here. He is describing the people of God.

Revelation 21:11-21
It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal. It had a great, high wall with twelve gates, and with twelve angels at the gates…v.19The foundations of the city walls were decorated with every kind of precious stone. The first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire…the twelfth amethyst. The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl. The great street of the city was of pure gold, like transparent glass.

Three jewels are mentioned in this passage: gold, pearl and precious stones.

Let’s think about gold for a moment.
• Gold is shiny and is the only yellow metal.
• Gold usually exists as a pure metal.
• Gold does not corrode or stain.
• Gold has a high melting point (1064°C).
• Gold is about 19 times heavier than water (it’s nearly twice as dense as lead).
• Gold is malleable and ductile (can be beaten and drawn out into a wire).
• Gold conducts electricity.
• Gold is soft

Gold is purified and refined by fire. Fire draws out all its impurities thus making the gold pure. When gold is pure, it’s transparent. v.21 The great street of the city was of pure gold, like transparent glass. Nothing can be hidden in it.

God is building his city with gold, pure gold. We are his city. We are going to go through the fire in order to produce that gold.

About 20 years ago my husband had cancer. Following that time God gave me this verse:

Psalm 66:10-12 p.345
For you, O God, tested us; you refined us like silver. You brought us into prison and laid burdens on our backs. You let men ride over our heads; we went through fire and water, but you brought us to a place of abundance.

God allows suffering and difficulties to come into our lives in order to produce gold for the building of his house. It’s a good thing to remember when you are going through a difficult time. God is producing gold. It is also something we need to encourage each other with too. Whatever our difficulties, God wants to produce gold in our lives.

There are lots of verses in the Bible about gold and also about fire this is another:

1 Corinthians 3:9-16 p.686
v.9 For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, God’s building…v.12 If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man’s work…v.16 Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple…

Ok, that’s gold. Next we are going to think about pearls.