Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers and elders of our people, are we being questioned today because we’ve done a good deed for a crippled man? Do you want to know how he was healed? Let me clearly state to all of you and to all the peopl e of Israel that he was healed by the powerful name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, the man you crucified but whom God raised from the dead. For Jesus is the one referred to in the Scriptures, where it says, ‘The stone that you builders rejected has now become the cornerstone.’ There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.” (NLT)Acts 4:8-12
Peter refers to these priests and leaders as being the builders because he is using aword picture here. These builders were building a spiritual house, not a real house. The training process that the Rabbis taught through all three houses (orbeth), The House of the Book, The House of Interpretation and the House of Allusion, were used to develop the spiritual maturity of the nation of Israel. They were building a spiritual house much like Peter refers to below. But the irony and pity of the whole process is that these very leaders or teachers and priests had rejected the very Cornerstone which God told them would come and upon which the whole structure would be built – namely the Messiah. Yes, this Cornerstone also refers to the Messiah, the Christ.
The clearest most appropriate of all these stones to represent Christ is that He is the Head Foundation Stone. Here again is what I wrote about it in Gem 1419.
This stone is the first laid stone at the key point of construction at ground level. It was the first stone laid in the foundations. Great care was taken with its placement.It had to be level and rightly aligned in order to set the lines and levels for the stones which were to be laid beside the head foundation stone. The first foundation stone governed all the angles and lines of all other stones. The lines, levels and plumb lines of the completed building all depend on their alignment to the foundation stone.
This first stone will set the level and direction for all other stones laid beside it. It also sets the vertical line at 90 degrees (or plumb line) so that all following stones will maintain the integrity of the building. The first stone is absolutely crucial to set the lines for the whole structure. How significant that is when this concept is spiritualized.
Let’s look at the significance of the Cornerstone or the foundation stone from other parts of Scripture.
Together, we are His house, built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets. And the cornerstone is Christ Jesus Himself.Ephesians 2:20
For we are both God’s workers. And you are God’s field. You are God’s building.1 Corinthians 3:9
And you are living stones that God is building into His spiritual temple. What’s more, you are His holy priests. Through the mediation of Jesus Christ, you offer spiritual sacrifices that please God.1 Peter 2:5
He existed before anything else, and He holds all creation together. Christ is also the head of the church, which is His body. He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So He is first in everything. For God in all His fullness was pleased to live in Christ, and through Him God reconciled everything to Himself. He made peace with everything in heaven and earth by means of Christ’s blood on the cross.Colossians 1:17-20
For He holds the whole body together with its joints and ligaments, and it grows as God nourishes it.Colossians 2:19
But God’s truth stands firm like a foundation stone with this inscription: “The LORD knows those who are His,” and “All who belong to the LORD must turn away from evil.2 Tim 2:19
Righteousness and justice are the foundation of Your throne. Unfailing love and truth walk before You as attendants.Psalm 89:14
Dark clouds surround Him. Righteousness and justice are the foundation of His throne.Psalm 97:2
It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built.Luke 6:48
The Cornerstone is used both figuratively or metaphorically and spiritually or messianically. The Cornerstone has two other components to it – related to salvation and related to judgment. Do you see that it is you who determine the outcome for you as an individual?It is all to do with what you do with or how you react to the Cornerstone. Did you pick up the two strands of thought related to the outcome regarding the Cornerstone?If you invite the stone to come and save you, the One Who comes in the Name of the Lord will be a blessing. If you reject the Cornerstone or stumble over it, i.e. If the Christ or Messiah become a stumbling stone to you then you will be broken to pieces and crushed. On the one hand salvation, on the other, judgment.
Note these verses:
God sent His Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through Him. There is no judgment against anyone who believes in Him. But anyone who does not believe in Him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son.John 3:17-18
The prime purpose of the coming of the Christ is to save, not to judge. We invite judgment on ourselves when we reject the one who God appointed as the saviour of the world. If you reject, deny or dismiss the One and only One who can save you, then you condemn YOURSELF to eternal judgment. Many blame God for being a loving God who judges and sends people to hell. But stop and think about it a moment. If God in His wisdom and His omniscience knows exactly what you need to save you but you in your ignorance or WILLFULNESS reject it, what alternative options does God have? You have condemned yourself to a Christless eternity because you have rejected the Cornerstone. Do you see how all encompassing this thought and this Divine plan are? Do you now see a greater significance between THIS ONE and that one? There is none like THIS ONE, the Cornerstone, Jesus Christ. He is beyond compare. He is God’s One and Only.
Now look at the following verses:
Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have — Jesus Christ.1 Corinthians 3:10-11
And of course these verses lead naturally to the way Peter finishes his sermon:
There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved.Acts 4:12
That will be the focus of the next Gem. This is a huge verse. It is the capstone of Christianity.
The Church should live its life as if Jesus died YESTERDAY, rose from the dead TODAY, and is coming back TOMORROW.Martin Luther
If you got off track, Jesus died so you could get yourself together and come back into alignment & fulfill your Destiny!T D Jakes
Don’t let Jesus Christ be your stumbling block; make Him YOUR Cornerstone.Ian Vail
Align and level up your life with the Cornerstone, the One Who holds the universe together, the One Who came down from heaven for you.Ian Vail
Of all the judgments we pass in life, none are as important as those we pass on ourselves!Rick Godwin
One may understand the cosmos, but never the ego. The self is more distant than any star.G. K. Chesterton
Humility is nothing else but a right judgment of ourselves.William Law