#0040 Jesus is the Chief Cornerstone; but who are the other foundation stones lined up next to Him upon whom the Kingdom will build? 6
42 Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: “‘The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; the Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes’?
43 “Therefore I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit.
44 Anyone who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.”
45 When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard Jesus’ parables, they knew he was talking about them.
46 They looked for a way to arrest him, but they were afraid of the crowd because the people held that he was a prophet.
Matt: 21 42-46 (NIV)
- The cornerstone is the reference point for building the Kingdom of God. Jesus is that cornerstone.
- What qualities is He looking for in a foundation stone?
- Are these qualities found in the religious imperative of salvation or does there exist a dilemma—disqualifier made up of conflicting interests emanating from the denominational religions world?
- Are there non-religious persons or groups that fit the profile of a foundation stone?
- Are there persons/groups out of history that fit the profile?
- What might religious persons do differently in order to get a piece of this action?
We’ve been spending a lot of time and energy talking about philosophies and behaviors that won’t fit next to Christ who is the Chief Cornerstone of the foundation of the Kingdom. We’ve adopted this approach of highlighting the negative side because there aren’t many concepts and campaigns which fit well with the Kingdom model—especially within Christian forums and circles. The reason for this, as we’ve already mentioned, is Christian imperatives aren’t focused on the Kingdom; they’re focused on salvation instead. Outside of Christian bubbles, however, there are a few examples of initiatives and movements which seem much more aligned with Jesus’s teachings and Kingdom philosophies. Revisiting the illustration of the cornerstone for a moment…the cornerstone of the building is the first stone laid down in the foundation and is from then on used as the reference point for the building project. The cornerstone must be laid level and its dimensions must be square and exact so that all the other stones can take their place positioning cues from it. This is the only way the building will stand up straight and be pointing in the direction it’s meant to.
We talked a bit about the Democratic field of presidential candidates and how they seem to be much more in consensus over the issues and about what the best is for the country relative to it moving forwards. Their ideas are obviously ones more focused upon the American people. In this way these democrats are unified or harmonious in their views, whereas the Republicans tend to be contentious and divisive. Using the illustration of foundation stones, if you are cantankerous and uncooperative you aren’t going to be able to lie next to and align with anybody else, including Jesus. It doesn’t matter whether or not you claim to be a born-again-Christian you’re not going to be a useable commodity in Jesus’s Kingdom blueprint. Another notion along these lines occurred to me in the wake of crafting the ideas of the previous two postings. In both of them I highlighted the conservative’s fixation with homosexuals and how God would have them (Christian believers) deal with this scourge of deviant behavior. The whole precedent for their disdainful position on homosexuals is derived from the Old Testament and the Mosaic Law in particular. This also applies to a lesser extent to the New Testament quotes they are bound to include as well. My point is that in going back to the Mosaic Law—and each and every time they do so—they are, effectually using that as the cornerstone of their truth, their doctrine. Not Jesus. In this they have begun building a new structure and one that doesn’t fit the design of the Kingdom.
Bernie Sanders is polling high in the campaign and the main plank in platform is financial reform in America. The main thrust of this issue is that the rich are getting richer and the middle class is stagnating or going backwards. Elizabeth Warren, another Democratic champion for this cause, is also all about this reform and she is a watchdog at the throats of the banks and other giant financial institutions. Today this is a very hot topic in the presidential campaign—on the Democratic side, anyway, but this whole concept of income inequality and the vanishing of the middle class really got a boost in September of 2011 during the height of the Occupy Wall Street Movement. This movement came on the coattails of another action in the Middle East, the Arab Spring.
The Arab Spring (Arabic: الربيع العربي, ar-rabīˁ al-ˁarabī) was a revolutionary wave of demonstrations and protests (both non-violent and violent), riots, and civil wars in the Arab world that began on 18 December 2010 in Tunisia with the Tunisian Revolution, and spread throughout the countries of the Arab League and its surroundings. While the wave of initial revolutions and protests faded by mid-2012, some started to refer to the succeeding and still ongoing large-scale discourse conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa as the Arab Winter. The most radical discourse from Arab Spring into the still ongoing civil wars took place in Syria as early as the second half of 2011.
From Wikipedia the free encyclopedia: Arab Spring
Both the Arab Spring and the Occupy Wall Street movements were initiated by the Spirit of God and they are good examples of foundation stones trying to form in the foundation of the Kingdom. There are many articles on the Occupy Wall Street movement available online; but I chose this one because it shows the inside workings of it and it gives us insight into the way God’s inspiration can flow through a group of people who share the same vision. It gives us a rare look into the Kingdom dynamic Jesus seemed to be talking about all the time. At the same time it gives us a sense for why this Kingdom dynamic was so off-putting to the Pharisees and why it’s befuddling to their L-Directed brains. Check out some of the concepts, logistics, determination and motion and momentum these people were putting into play and doing so on the fly. Keep in mind both of these movements were by and large impromptu and spontaneous in that they seemingly flared up out of nowhere and grew into an intense light and energy manifestation. These people were drawn (some might say called) together for their clearly defined task. The Arab Spring split into two movements: 1) the non-violent faction which became OWS and from there the stage two movement which Bernie Sanders is fostering and 2) the violent faction which spooled up the Al Qaida and now ISIS/ISEL terrorist regimes.
Previous Kingdom initiatives of the past century:
As you browsed through some of these records could you feel the Holy Ghost fill you inside. This emotional attachment with these people and these events is what binds us all together as people. it’s God calling us to be together in a better way–in a Kingdom way. Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Religious people can get in on the action, but first they have to begin digging into the Gospels to find Christ’s Kingdom message there. Next they will have to find ways to embrace a new narrative; one which champions a win-win philosophy and a gospel message featuring unconditional love. This concludes this series on Jesus as the Chief Cornerstone.
Look for the next posting on Sunday November 22.