"And coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected by men, but choice and precious in the sight of God.... For this is contained in Scripture: 'Behold, I lay in Zion a choice stone, a precious cornerstone and he who believes in Him shall not be disappointed.' This precious value is for you who believe. But for those who disbelieve, 'The stone which the builders rejected, this became the very cornerstone,' and 'a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense'; for they stumble because they are disobedient to the word, and to this doom they were appointed." (1 Pe 2:4-9)
- "But when the fullness of time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, in order that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive adoption as sons." (Gal 4:4)
- "He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind, to set free those who are downtrodden, to proclaim the favorable year of the LORD." (Lk 4:18-19)
- "For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin." (Ro 8:3)
- "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have eternal life." (Jn 3:16)
- "For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through Him." (Jn 3:17)
God Himself has laid this tested, costly stone! Oh - all praise and honor and glory be unto Him who has orchestrated this salvific symphony!!
This sovereignly laid stone is "a tested stone." Multitudes have, by grace, placed their faith and their lives on this stone - and it has NEVER failed any who were truly resting on it. Christ is a tested stone. He is a sure stone. He does not falter. He does not fail. He will not let us down. Trusting in the stone that God has laid will not disappoint - "To You they cried out, and were delivered; in You they trusted, and were not disappointed." (Ps 22:5)
This sovereignly laid and tested stone is also a "costly cornerstone." Salvation is freely offered to us in the gospel but it was provided for us at the greatest of costs. It cost Christ! It cost God taking on flesh and becoming man. Christ who "although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. And being found in the appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross" (Ph 2:6-8). This laid and tested cornerstone cost much more than we can ever imagine or comprehend. God became man to save us!
Note also that Christ is not just any stone, He is "the cornerstone"! Christ is the stone upon which our lives must be built if our foundation is to be strong and sure. There is no other rock, there is no other foundation, there is no other way. He alone is "the way, the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father but through [Him]." (Jn 14:6)
Hear the glad tidings of mercy that Isaiah is holding forth here. God has laid a tested, and costly cornerstone for us in Christ. "He who believes in it will not be disturbed." What am I building on today? Is it the costly cornerstone of Christ or the straw shack of self and sin? What am I believing in today? Is it the sure and tested Rock that God has laid or is it the shortsheeted bed of falsehood that my sin has laid? Have I made a covenant with death and Sheol or have I entered into covenant with Christ? There is only one sure and tested way.