“Open for me the gates of righteousness; I will enter and give thanks o the Lord. This is the gate of the Lord through which the righteous may enter. I will give you thanks, for you answered me; you have become my salvation. The stone the builders rejected has become the capstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in ou eyes. This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” (Psalm 118:19-24 – The Capstone)
A “capstone” was either a crucial stone used to secure the foundation or a keystone used as the primary stone in an arch. According to this psalm, a rejected stone became the chief building block in this psalm, a rejected stone became the chief building block in God’s building plan. New Testament Christians with their sensitivity toward Jesus’ rejection and their certainty of His significance saw this as a reference to Jesus. There are at least six direct references to verse 22 in the New Testament (Matthew 21:42; Mark 12:10; Luke 20:17; Acts 4:11 Ephesians 2:20; 1st Peter 2:7).
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Dear Abba, the reference to the Capstone is an easy one for Christians, not just because it is found in the Old and New Testaments, but it was referenced by prophets who were speaking about what God told them to speak. For us, to see the rejection of the builder of a stone for a key piece of structure, and Jesus as the One who came to this earth to reveal to us God in three concept and that even though the Father and the Son are in heaven, the blessed and holy Counselor, the Holy Spirit was left with us to guide us in our daily lives. In the meantime continue to pray our troops serving in faraway lands and those in the continuing conflict between Russia and Ukraine, that a peaceful solution might be found and let the fighting be silenced. We also pray for those who are suffering in body, mind, and/or spirit, with friends, family, and for those we don’t know. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Adversity introduces mankind to itself and also can lead us to Almighty God.”
“In that day this son will be sung in the land of Judah: We have a strong city; God makes salvation its walls and ramparts. Open the gates that the righteous nation may enter, the nation that keeps faith. You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trust in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord, the Lord, is the Rock eternal. He humbles those who dwell on high, he lays the lofty city low; he levels it to the ground and casts it down to the dust. Feet trample it down—-the feet of the oppressed, the footsteps of the poor.” (Isaiah 26:1-6 – Prayer, Belief, and War and Peace)
Redeemed Israel was given a song of peace and deliverance. The words are addressed to God, so it is a prayer and the prayer is not a petition, for prayer is agreeing with God and proclaiming the work of God. Perfect peace is one of God’s gifts to those who trust in Him. Confidence in God rules out fear and anxiety over lesser things. The prophet looked to peace in thew last days. The mare of peace is ultimately individual rather than national. Peace is based on steadfast trust in God. Such trust produces internal, personal peace trust in God. As we all know, Judah did not place their trust in God as a nation, but even then, God allowed a remnant of Judah to survive.
SECOND THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’” (Matthew 7:21-27 – Day of the Lord)
This statement from Jesus refers to the future day of judgment for those whose lived bear evil fruit. It is the day when the faithful and genuine enter the future kingdom. “That day” will be one of separation based on true character as revealed in outward conduct. It will be a day of surprise for those who performed public actions and even demonstrated unusual power but never committed their lived in submission to Christ!
Miraculous powers do not give proof of authentic faith. Many in the first century claimed miraculous powers; like the magicians at Pharaoh’s court and sometimes succeeded. The claim is centered around “in your name.” False disciples gain public acclaim for themselves. The source of their success is not easily explained. Their lack of faith is clearly evident. They do not act in accordance with God’s will. Love for self, not for others, dominates their lives. Jesus claims as His own only humble, obedient servants. Like Jesus’ teachings, the people recognized in His teachings “authority” to speak as He did. One day we will all be accountable, for those who makes claims of faith, without true faith, will be humbled.