We need to return to the text of yesterday: 1 Peter 2:9-10. This is pure emerging church theology. Peter here does three things: (1) he universalizes election, (2) he privileges the marginalized, and (3) he declares a missional strategy.
Emphatically, Peter shoves it right to the front of the stage: YOU are an “elect nation, a royal priesthood…” Not anyone but YOU — that is, the resident aliens and temporary residents of Asia Minor. How so? Because they are local embodiments of the Church universal. This is not about individual Christians but about local bodies of Christ. And these folks were Gentiles — which is proven by 2:10, language of “not my people” becoming “my people.” Thus, Israel’s election is universalized. Israel is leveled or the Gentile believers are raised — doesn’t matter, for they are all one in Christ (Gal. 3:28).
Furthermore, the privleges mentioned here are a means of elevating the marginalized. The resident aliens and temporary residents are never treated as an elect nation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, or a people of God’s possession (this is pure covenant language). Suddenly, in Christ, they find themselves as Somebodies in God’s Plan.
But it is not about being Somebodies in God’s Plan — which is where we too often get stuck. It is about being given a missional direction for the life of the community of faith. They are directed to declare the praises of the one who has summoned them from darkness to the light.
Let me re-use my Eikon image. Humans are Eikons; they are, as a result of the Fall, cracked Eikons. Eikons have one mission in this world: “to eikon.” That is, to express, embody, incarnate and bring glory to God. And here Peter gives in a swift glow of emerging theology that very missional focus to his congregants: declare, in word and deed, God’s praise.