A Stumbling Stone

A Stumbling Stone

Because they did not seek it by faith, but as it were, by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumbling stone.  (Rom 9:32)

Behold I lay in Zion a stumbling stone, and rock of offense, and whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame.  (Rom 9:33)

. . . and “a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense.” They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed.  (1 Pet 2:8)

The gospel of Jesus Christ is distasteful to many unbelievers.  The salvation that God has provided through Jesus Christ becomes a stumbling stone and a rock of offense to them.  The Bible tells us that this will be so.

Unbelievers may stumble or be offended about a number of points.  Let’s look at several of those points.

  • The Bible tells us that Jesus suffered, died, and was resurrected. If someone doesn’t believe in resurrection, this can be a point of stumbling.
  • The simplicity of salvation, because it is a gift to be accepted/received, may be “too good to be true” for many. It’s just not complicated enough and doesn’t include enough works for them.
  • Some people think the church and its people are weak. The church has no political agenda, and we have no military might.  This is not attractive to the carnal mind.
  • Yet other folks believe that they are good people, and have never done anything seriously evil. Therefore, they believe, that they don’t need anything more than that.

Our own attitude towards Jesus and His gospel determines our spiritual welfare.  He is a sanctuary to those who bless Him. He is a place of refuge, peace and security to those who believe in Him. However, to those who reject Him, He becomes a stone to trip over. He becomes a devastating stone of judgment to the proud of heart. Many people crash into Him and trip over Him because they try to live as if He doesn’t exist. Jesus Christ will always be a stumbling stone to those who refuse to trust in Him.

How very blessed are all those who love the Lord Jesus!

God, Our Refuge & Strength

God, Our Refuge & Strength

 

Whom have I in heaven but You?  And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.  My flesh and my heart fail; but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.  (Ps 73:25-26 NKJV)

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.  (Ps 46:1)

Sing for joy to God our strength . . . (Ps 81:1)

These Bible passages state that God is our REFUGE [fortress; hiding place; protection; sanctuary].  This is important to know, that in times of trouble or stress, He is a place of safety for us.  He’s a refuge in the storms of life.  When problems or sorrows confront us, and we all have them, He is right next to us, willing to shelter us under His wings. (Ps 91:1)  When we turn our hearts and thoughts to Him, and pour out our hearts to Him, He provides comfort as well as grace. He also gives us inspiration and creative ideas on how to handle our situation.   

These Scriptures also remind us that God, through Jesus, is our STRENGTH [courage; security; stability; power].  He provides strength of heart, mind and body to help us to persevere and press on to the solution to whatever confronts us.  Jesus is our Savior and Redeemer.  He is a miracle-working, wonder-working Friend.  Cling to Him and to His Word. 

In the midst of the storm, He is the Rock upon which we stand.  (Ps 40:2)  That’s Good News!