42 Jesus said to them, “Did you never read in the Scriptures,
‘THE STONE WHICH THE BUILDERS REJECTED, THIS BECAME THE CHIEF CORNER stone; THIS CAME ABOUT FROM THE LORD, AND IT IS MARVELOUS IN OUR EYES’? 43 Therefore I say to you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a nation, producing the fruit of it. 44 And he who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; but on whomever it falls, it will scatter him like dust.” Matthew 21:42-44 (LSB)
The message to the Christian throughout the New Testament is to deny self, to view with contempt the temporal or world system, to understand that love of the temporal and genuine discipleship are mutually exclusive because it is from the former which all genuine believers are being delivered. This deliverance is progressive mortification of all carnal affections and impediments. This must be so in order for the Christian to attain more speedily the heavenly Kingdom of Christ. It is to Christ’s Kingdom that all believers are called by the grace of God and it is revealed to them in His Son. All believers have received this by faith, possessed it by hope, and have therein confirmed it by Holiness of life.
This process of sanctification can make the narrow path we are called to travel to the Celestial City to be bewildering at times. The travail of the journey can distract us from our devotion to our Saviour and cause us to focus on the fires of tribulation instead. We are exhorted in God’s Word to walk by faith, not by sight. If we walk by sight then we will eventually tire in our frustration and become faint in our pilgrimage. The exhortation is to examine Christ. If we do then we will see that He was treated with contempt and rejected almost by the whole world. He tells us that this rejection was actually the fulfillment of Scripture, which testifies that He should be the stumbling stone to the reprobate, but the sure foundation of salvation to the faithful. Because of this, we should not become discouraged and full of doubt. If this message finds you imprisoned in Doubting Castle by the Giant Despair then I encourage you my brethren to remember the promises given to us when we met our Saviour at the Cross. These promises will open any lock in Doubting Castle and will enable us to flee Giant Despair. The reason this is so is that our Saviour is not a helpless bystander in our pilgrimage. He is the foundation stone or cornerstone of our faith.
Reposted from March 2020.