Peter’s letters contain much good advice for today and the challenge to believe and develop a faith in God. This is true for those who have spent a lifetime believing but now struggle in a godless world. The world distracts us from taking “the pure spiritual milk”, and many are experiencing a spiritual famine. God’s words through Amos are true of today, “Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord GOD, ‘when I will send a famine … not a famine of bread, nor thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD’” (8:11). Now think about what Peter wrote, “as newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that you may grow up to salvation” (1 Peter 2:2).

Many people today have no time for Christianity or God. Who can blame them, judging by what they see of most churches today. It is a poor shadow and a distortion of the message Peter and other Apostles preached with energy and commitment so that the gospel became known throughout the Roman Empire: indeed Roman historians writing in AD 110-120 testifed how Nero put hundreds of Christians to death in Rome (in AD 64) – just thirty years or so after the resurrection and ascension of Jesus to heaven. How the message must have spread! Peter quotes from Isaiah: true believers must “offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in Scripture: ‘Behold I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious, and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame’” (verses 5,6; see Isaiah 28:16).

Peter, like Isaiah, is building up a picture of a spiritual house with Jesus as the cornerstone of the building, from whom all the measurements are taken. He makes the point, “if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good” (verse 3). What is spiritual tasting like?

So many taste and enjoy the things that appeal to them. But those fed on “pure spiritual milk” … “come to him (Jesus), a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God, chosen and precious, you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house” (verses 4,5). The words of scripture, carefully read, compared, fitted together and understood, provide “the pure spiritual milk”. It is the nutrient that leads to growth, “that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvellous light … now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy” (verses 9,10). Let us associate with those who take “spiritual milk” every day and make sure we are part of God’s “spiritual house”.