Peter is calling his reader to seek spiritual truth and become transformed people. A people who reflect Jesus’ design in their lives, right down to their core. A changed stone to match the Original.
I like Peter’s reference to Jesus as the Chief Cornerstone as well as a Stumbling Stone. Jesus as Lord and Savior is the foundational cornerstone of our faith in Him. This encompasses ALL that He did, from creation, throughout His physical life on earth, to the end of time. Without that one uniting piece, everything else would crumble away. That is our firm foundation; our cornerstone of faith.
But to those who refuse to accept even a portion of His claim, He is a stumbling stone instead. Either Jesus is EXACTLY who He said He was or He is a COMPLETE fraud. You already know which camp I’m in and why. The evidence is OVERWHELMING in His defense.
Anyway, on to the Stone. When I was thinking about our reading the concept of the stone stuck out to me. I was thinking about the fact that our Stone never changes. He is ALWAYS the same. But here He is depicted in two diametrically opposed roles, to the people anyway.
To those who believe, He is a firm foundation to build upon. His characteristics make our “building” straight and true. He is our measuring line. Our True Corner to use for all references in our construction. With one true corner that can be used to measure all other corners made, the result is a well-made dwelling. One any carpenter would be proud to put his stamp on. I know one Carpenter’s stamp I want!
To those who don’t believe in Him, He messes up ALL their building plans. He is the “hump in the floor” that everyone keeps tripping on.” He is the one corner that doesn’t match up in their building. He is the piece that had to be built around instead of incorporated into the building. That’s because they started with a “cornerstone” that is flawed.
My physical house is like that. There isn’t a square corner in it. When we went to remodel it we had to make things work as best as we could. Special pieces had to be cut to hide the imperfections. Every room and every wall has some of those imperfections. Even the floor is uneven. Short of tearing it all down and starting with one true square corner, there is nothing that can be done to correct it.
In the natural world, little peculiarities in construction are not uncommon. Sometimes they even add “character” to a building. But over the lifetime of the building they create problems. In the physical world, the problem can simply be knocked down and rebuilt. They have temporary impact.
In the spiritual world the same is true with the “inconsistencies” but their impact is MUCH farther reaching. The consequences of building with or without Jesus have eternal impact. Fortunately Jesus is MORE than willing to help each of us “knock down our old building” and start over.
That one Stone that kept getting in the way of our building stayed exactly like It was from the beginning. We kept tripping on It. We kept trying to move It to clear our path. We tried molding It to fit our design. Our chisels couldn’t cut It. Our shovels couldn’t lift It. Even our efforts to ignore It failed. It WOULDN’T be moved, no matter how hard we tried. And without it being moved, what we built fell apart.
Only when we changed OUR design to match the Stone’s did we begin to have real success; lasting success. Each new building block was modeled after the Original. They ALL fit together that way. The final “building” would stand for eternity.
Father God, I want my “building” to stand for eternity. I know I have a LONG way to go before my building block looks like the Original. Thank You for giving me Jesus as my model. His life and teachings give me the perfect example. It is so easy for me to get “out of square.” Thank You for correcting my directions over and Over and OVER again. You never give up on me and on fashioning me into the perfect form You created me to be. The work is FAR from over! But I trust You to keep working on me until You can see only Your reflection in me.
Lord Jesus, help me be more like You every day. In my attitudes. In my conduct. And in my love for all the other people You created. Thank You that I finally discovered that it is ME that needs the changing. Keep working on me, in me and through me.