Isaiah 28 … Consider Him, the Costly Cornerstone

Therefore thus says the Lord God,
“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone,

A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed.
He who believes in it will not be disturbed,”

There’s a lot of good-time living going on in the nation of Israel, pursuing the pleasures of self-love and self-indulgence, oblivious to what lie ahead. But God had repeatedly told them, a life lived in pursuit of temporal accomplishments and pleasures will come to a screeching halt as the things of this world will all fade away.

Woe to the proud crown of the drunkards of Ephraim,
And to the fading flower of its glorious beauty,
Which is at the head of the fertile valley
Of those who are overcome with wine!

And today, I was so saddened at the thought of what was coming because they had refused His salvation and rejected His repeated warnings to choose their own way.

And into these warnings, the Lord God speaks, yet again, to tell His people exactly what He is doing.

Therefore thus says the Lord God,
“Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone,

A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed.
He who believes in it will not be disturbed,”

Some things of God are difficult to comprehend, but not this. He has made it abundantly and repeatedly clear. The foundation is laid and all who place their faith in Him, the Costly Cornerstone, will be saved.

Consider Him, the Costly Cornerstone

This prophecy about the Costly Cornerstone is repeated four times in the writings of New Testament.

After being arrested and jailed for proclaiming the Name of Christ, Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, boldly preached Isaiah’s words to the religious leaders of the synagogue. Leaving no room for doubt, Peter declared Jesus Christ as the chief Cornerstone and the only means of salvation.

“let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by this name this man stands here before you in good health. 11 He is the stone which was rejected by you, the builders, but which became the chief corner stone. 12 And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:10-12).

Peter again quoted Isaiah in his first letter to the saints who were scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia,” (1 Peter 1:1).

For this is contained in Scripture:
“Behold, I lay in Zion a choice stone, a precious corner stone,
And he who believes in Him will not be disappointed.”
This precious value, then, is for you who believe; but for those who disbelieve,
“The stone which the builders rejected,
This became the very corner stone,”
(1 Peter 2:6-7).

Paul also referenced this quote from Isaiah in two of his letters. To the church in Rome, Paul referred to the Costly Cornerstone that is to be pursued by faith:

but Israel, pursuing a law of righteousness, did not arrive at that law. 32 Why? Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as though it were by works. They stumbled over the stumbling stone, 33 just as it is written,
Behold, I lay in Zion a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense,
And he who believes in Him will not be disappointed,”
(Romans 9:31-33).

And to the church in Ephesus, Paul reminded the believers that they were being built as a holy temple on Christ Himself, the Costly Cornerstone.

having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus Himself being the corner stone, 21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, is growing into a holy temple in the Lord, 22 in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of God in the Spirit, (Ephesians 2:20-22).

And we know what this means. When God repeats Himself, we can be absolutely certain we had best pay attention.

Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a tested stone,
A costly cornerstone for the foundation, firmly placed.
He who believes in it will not be disturbed,”

  • Jesus Christ is the Costly Cornerstone, our Foundation tested and proven.
    • For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin, (Hebrews 13:8).
  • Jesus Christ is the Costly Cornerstone, our Foundation costly and precious.
    • knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, 19 but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ, (1 Peter 1:18-19).
  • Jesus Christ is the Costly Cornerstone, our Foundation firm and sure.
    • According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. 11 For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ, (1 Corinthians 3:10-11).
  • Jesus Christ is the Costly Cornerstone, our Foundation stable and secure.
    • Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever, (Hebrews 13:8).

How do we respond to Him, the Costly Cornerstone?

A building is only as reliable as its foundation. And God has provided His Foundation that has been tested and proven, is costly and precious, firm and sure, and stable and secure in Jesus Christ, the Costly Cornerstone. But God has given all of us a choice, and the choice is ours: on what will we choose to build our lives? It is up to us; and both choices are Costly.

Self-examination time:

Will we choose to build all that we are on Him, the Costly Cornerstone by trusting the exorbitant Cost He paid to save us from our sin and eternal judgment? Or will we choose to reject Him and build our lives on the pursuit of temporal pleasures and empty pride? Rejecting God’s gift of salvation is an extremely costly choice that will cost us for all of eternity.

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. 18 He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God,” (John 3:16-18).

But even when we have trusted Him for our salvation, we still have a choice on whether or not we will surrender to His work in our lives. Are we daily coming to Him, the Chief Cornerstone, in faith and obedience, and submitting to His work as He builds us into a spiritual house fit for His Holy Presence and holy service?

And coming to Him as to a living stone which has been rejected by men, but is choice and precious in the sight of God, you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ, (1 Peter 2:6-7).

Oh, let us understand that following Christ is Costly, and He calls us to count the cost that we would finish strong to the very end as a witness of His faithfulness in us.

“Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. 28 For which one of you, when he wants to build a tower, does not first sit down and calculate the cost to see if he has enough to complete it? 29 Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who observe it begin to ridicule him, 30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish,’” (Luke 24:27-30).

When we are tempted to build on the fading pursuits and pleasures of a world that is fading away, may we never forget that what we give up can never compare with what we will gain. Let us choose to give all that we are that we may gain Christ as we deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow Him, the Costly Cornerstone.

Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 25 For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Matthew 16:24-26).

But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, (Philippians 3:7-8).

Let’s Grow Together!

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