Sovereign Grace (Psalm 118)

11 05 2006

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Psalm 118:22-23 22 The astone which the builders rejected Has become the chief corner stone. 23 This is 1the LORD’S doing; It is marvelous in our eyes.

This text drips with sovereign grace. Consider the scene that the Holy Spirit is painting here as the leaders of Israel, the very nation and community whom God has knighted to the be the megaphones for his excellencies (Ex. 19.5-6) and glory, this nation, led by religious men, rejected the corner stone.

The leaders were to be building the people of God into the image of God to the glory of God. But what happened? Jesus Christ, himself God, comes to them and he is rejected.

Even as John writes, he came to his own, but his own did not receive him (John 1.11). Jesus came to the people of God and he was rejected, refused, judged unworthy, and discarded like junk mail.

What in the world were they building? Surely it was not what God had in mind for the one who perfectly revealed God (John 1.18) was rejected, therefore God himself was rejected. Rather, they were constructing a monument of self-worship, resting on self-authority, to promote their own selfishness. It was nothing more than a contemporary Tower of Babel; they were building monuments promoting themselves.

Lest we think for a half a second that they were worse then us, remember that you and I would have done nothing different. Perhaps we would have been even less ‘religious’. We may have not been the ones who were spitting on the Savior but we would’ve mocked, jeered, and gladly driven the nails into his arms. We would have gladly attended the apparent silencing of the preacher of righteousness, having our consciences accommodated by the sickening display of ‘justice’.

But for grace yes indeed we too would’ve rejected him.

God has been gracious to his people; he has supplied and applied his lovingkindness through the glorious redeeming death of Jesus. God has indeed acted, using even the hard contrary hearts of national Israel through the strength of Rome to providentially amplify his glory through the harmonious demonstration of his love, holiness, righteousness, mercy and grace on the blood stained wood of Calvary where the cornerstone died.

Indeed to those whom grace has been applied we echo the Psalmist: it is marvelous in our eyes! Indeed it is! It is surpassing explanation or understanding. It is worthwhile and glorious to gaze without interruption at the cross. The humiliation and subsequent exaltation of the Lord Jesus is marvelous, extraordinary praise creating and beautiful in our eyes!!

Therefore, we find ourselves, by sovereign grace, in the tents of the righteous:

Psalm 118:14-15 14 The LORD is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation. 15 The sound of joyful shouting and salvation is in the tents of the righteous; The right hand of the LORD does valiantly.

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