this Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.
[acts 4:11]
the stone of rejection
God has many names, most of which describe his power, authority, or love. but this name, the stone of rejection, can be a particularly encouraging one for us. Jesus was rejected so the Father could choose us; he was abandoned so we can be pursued; he was mocked so we could be praised according to his merit!
when we struggle in believing in God’s sovereignty, we can be tricked into thinking we need people’s approval to be effective in showing them God’s love and gospel. this can move us to bend over backwards people-pleasing and following made-up rules, but it doesn’t sound very much like what Jesus called us to. our life should show the evidence of God’s work, yes! but Jesus says we will be hated because of him. God doesn’t need people to approve of you or respect you—he just wants you. when all strategy and support of others fails, obedience is still enough.
i am encouraged by the fact that Jesus went first in being rejected, and doesn’t hide it, but carries it in his name, and bears its scars. Lord, help us to care only for your approval!
~ stephen hall