Use one or both of these questions to introduce the lesson.
1. What does it mean to be mature?
2. Describe the phases of life from infant to adult. How do they differ?
Read 1 Peter 2:1-3
1. First Peter was written for Jewish and Gentile believers early in the life of the church. In chapter 1 Peter wrote about being holy and having sincere love for one another. How do the attitudes and actions Peter listed in verse 1 of chapter 2 prevent us from pursuing holiness and loving one another?
2. Milk is the first food and source of sustenance for infants. The word spiritual in verse 2 (rendered milk of the word in other translations) provides a mental picture of newborn believers. Why is this a powerful image for Christians who want to grow up in their faith and salvation, and what practical steps can be taken to mature in this way?
3. Read Ephesians 4:11-16. In addition to God’s Word, we have support from others. What does spiritual maturity look like and what happens to the church when this happens within the body of believers?
Read 1 Peter 2:4-8
4. The Christian’s role model is our Savior. Talk about what spiritual sacrifices look like in
everyday life. What does it mean to live our lives as if we are part of a holy priesthood?
5. In verse 5, what do you think Peter (“the Rock”) meant when he called believers “living stones”?
6. How can Jesus Christ, the living Stone, cause people to stumble? Discuss who is at fault in the stumbling and why.
Read 1 Peter 2:9, 10
7. Consider the phrases “chosen people,” “royal priesthood,” “holy nation,” and “special possession.” How do they relate to us as individuals working together within the church?
8. According to Peter, what is the purpose of being the people of God? Talk about what you will do this week to build up your church as you offer your life to Christ.
Conclude your group time with prayer, using the following as a guide.
Father, thank you for the privilege of serving you as part of the church, Christ’s body. Jesus, you are the cornerstone of our faith and salvation. Use us as living stones to provide a foundation for future believers. Holy Spirit, enable us to build up our churches by offering our lives as spiritual sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God. Amen.