Behold, I lay in Sion - This intimates that the foundation of the Christian Church should be laid at Jerusalem; and there it was laid, for there Christ suffered, and there the preaching of the Gospel commenced.
A chief corner stone - This is the same as the foundation stone; and it is called here the chief corner stone because it is laid in the foundation, at an angle of the building where its two sides form the ground work of a side and end wall. And this might probably be designed to show that, in Jesus, both Jews and Gentiles were to be united; and this is probably the reason why it was called a stone of stumbling, and rock of offense; for nothing stumbled, nothing offended the Jews so much as the calling of the Gentiles into the Church of God, and admitting them to the same privileges which had been before peculiar to the Jews.
Elect, precious - Chosen and honorable. See on 1 Peter 2:4.
Shall not be confounded - These words are quoted from Isaiah 28:16; but rather more from the Septuagint than from the Hebrew text. The latter we translate, He that believeth shall not make haste - he who comes to God, through Christ, for salvation, shall never be confounded; he need not haste to flee away, for no enemy shall ever be able to annoy him.
Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture - Isaiah 28:16. The quotation is substantially as it is found in the Septuagint.
A chief cornerstone - The principal stone on which the corner of the edifice rests. A stone is selected for this which is large and solid, and, usually, one which is squared, and worked with care; and as such a stone is commonly laid with solemn ceremonies, so, perhaps, in allusion to this, it is here said by God that he would lay this stone at the foundation. The solemnities attending this were those which accompanied the great work of the Redeemer. See the word explained in the notes at Ephesians 2:20.
Elect - Chosen of God, or selected for this purpose, 1 Peter 2:4.
And he that believeth on him shall not be confounded - Shall not be ashamed. The Hebrew is, “shall not make haste.” See it explained in the notes at Romans 9:33.
If you are the conscious of your wants, do not devote all your powers to representing them and mourning over them, but look and live. Jesus is our only Saviour, and notwithstanding millions who need to be healed will reject His offered mercy, not one who trusts in His merits will be left to perish.... Satan suggests that you are helpless and cannot bless yourself. It is true; you are helpless. But lift up Jesus before him: “I have a Saviour. In Him I trust, and He will never suffer me to be confounded. In His name I triumph. He is my righteousness, and my crown of rejoicing.” ... TMK 112.4Read in context »
From the secret place of prayer came the power that shook the world in the Great Reformation. There, with holy calmness, the servants of the Lord set their feet upon the rock of His promises. During the struggle at Augsburg, Luther “did not pass a day without devoting three hours at least to prayer, and they were hours selected from those the most favorable to study.” In the privacy of his chamber he was heard to pour out his soul before God in words “full of adoration, fear, and hope, as when one speaks to a friend.” “I know that Thou art our Father and our God,” he said, “and that Thou wilt scatter the persecutors of Thy children; for Thou art Thyself endangered with us. All this matter is Thine, and it is only by Thy constraint that we have put our hands to it. Defend us, then, O Father!”—Ibid., b. 14, ch. 6. GC 210.1
To Melanchthon, who was crushed under the burden of anxiety and fear, he wrote: “Grace and peace in Christ—in Christ, I say, and not in the world. Amen. I hate with exceeding hatred those extreme cares which consume you. If the cause is unjust, abandon it; if the cause is just, why should we belie the promises of Him who commands us to sleep without fear? ... Christ will not be wanting to the work of justice and truth. He lives, He reigns; what fear, then, can we have?”—Ibid., b. 14, ch. 6. GC 210.2
God did listen to the cries of His servants. He gave to princes and ministers grace and courage to maintain the truth against the rulers of the darkness of this world. Saith the Lord: “Behold, I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on Him shall not be confounded.” 1 Peter 2:6. The Protestant Reformers had built on Christ, and the gates of hell could not prevail against them. GC 210.3Read in context »
Hear the only correct way for each human being to do if he would have a safe, all-round experience. “But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, [for there is a work to be done, that is neglected at the peril of the soul], this man shall be blessed in his deed. If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and the widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” Carry this out, as a test of pure and undefiled religion, and the blessing of God will surely follow. FE 461.1
“Wherefore also it is contained in the Scripture, Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner stone, elect, precious: and he that believeth on Him shall not be confounded.” Mark the figure presented in verse five: “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.” Then these lively stones are exerting a tangible, practical influence in the Lord's spiritual house. They are a holy priesthood, performing pure, sacred service. They offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God. FE 461.2
The Lord will not accept a heartless service, a round of ceremonies that are really Christless. His children must be lively stones in God's building. If all would give themselves unreservedly to God, if they would cease to study and plan for their amusement, for excursions, and pleasure-loving associations, and would study the words, “Ye are not your own; for ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's,” they would never hunger or thirst for excitement or change. If it is for our true interest to be spiritual and if the salvation of our people depends on our being riveted on the Eternal Rock, would we not better be engaged in seeking for that which will hold the whole building to the chief corner stone, that we may not be confused and confounded in our faith. FE 461.3Read in context »