Lectionary Reflection for the Fifth Sunday of Easter

This excerpt comes from 1 & 2 Peter (BTCB) by Douglas Harink, commenting
on 1 Peter 2:2-10:

As those newly begotten by God through the word, we now, like hungry infants, turn all of our desire toward that “milk of the word” with which our lives are fully nourished until the day of our salvation.

We receive this nourishment through the church’s preaching and sacraments. We receive it in the sanctorum communio, the concrete, gathered life together of the messianic community.

We receive it through the practices of corporate and personal scripture reading and study under the rule of faith. We receive it through the testimony of the saints and the writings of the Christian tradition. In each of these ways, and more, Christ gives himself to us as our food.

Quoting Ps. 34:8 in 1 Pet. 2:3, “Taste and see that the Lord is good,” Peter subtly and imaginatively makes an aural connection between milk or food and Christ himself.

Muers writes: “The passage we are considering [1 Pet. 2:2–3] is not explicitly Christological, but the words of verse 3—in their materiality, in the sounds they make—contain an echo; chrestos ho kurios, ‘the Lord is good,’ Christos ho kurios, Christ is Lord. This echo in turn serves as a reminder that the addressees of 1 Peter are being asked to relearn their desire in relationship to Jesus Christ. The indispensable condition of their need being met, of their being able to ‘grow up into salvation,’ is a particular human body.”

Peter appeals to our spiritual sense: the food that is Christ himself is not merely “good for us” because of its “nutritional value.” It is also delectable: it tastes good! Our desire for this food is moved not only by hunger, but also by delight; not only by need, but also by attraction; not only from our lack, but also from the savory allure of that which will abundantly fill it—God’s goodness. “He has filled the hungry with good things” (Luke 1:53).

Having once experienced this gourmet offering, which is truly good beyond imagining, how could we wish to return to the flavorless fast foods offered in the markets, malls, and carnivals of our society? In the kingdom of God the glorious, life-giving banquet is the big attraction (cf. Isa. 25:6; Luke 14:12–24). The aroma and flavor of Christ’s sheer goodness invite us: Come and dine!

©2009 by Douglas Harink. Published by Brazos Press. Unauthorized use of this material without express written permission is strictly prohibited.