Wednesday, April 01, 2009

I Peter 2:6

For in Scripture it says:
"See, I lay a stone in Zion,
a chosen and precious cornerstone,
and the one who trusts in him
will never be put to shame."
(NIV)
In case you were wondering, this is a quote from Isaiah 28:16.

When I read passages like this, I can find great assurance in them, but if I was honest, there is that little nagging thought in the back of my mind that is trying to reconcile the words of this passage to what I experience in the real world. I know, because I have taught the Bible for many years now that I should not ultimately base my understanding of things on my experiences, and I truly do believe that the Bible is the very Word of God, but that logical, analytical side of my mind craves the reconciliation of the truth of the word with what I have seen.

Where that part of my brain has a problem is in the words, "...never be put to shame." And that part of my brain begins to think very finitely. So, as it dwells in the here and now, I hear stories of people who are trusting in God who (to that part of my brain) are being put to shame. They are being humiliated and attacked, they are being abused by others and ostracized by their families and their peers. It seems as if they are being put to shame.

But, lets think a little bigger. Here is a passage from Hebrews that might help a little bit:
Others were tortured and refused to be released, so that they might gain a better resurrection. Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. They were stoned; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated— the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground.
These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.
Some read passages like these and get even more distressed, but if you look back in Hebrews just a few verses there is an even better explanation, when it comes to Abraham. It says,
By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.
Hebrews 11:9-10
There is a different city, whose architect is God. The cornerstone of that city is Jesus Christ. If you put your hope in Him, you will never be ashamed!

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