From the Desk of Pastor Toby Powers
Truth Baptist Church
How Firm A Foundation!
Intro: In these verses we see the position of the people:
v. 14- Prominent Men (rule the people), he is speaking to the leadership of Israel
v. 15- Prideful Men (it shall not come unto us), they thought that somehow they would escape the wrath of God for their sins. God will not excuse sin. He will not let you by. He will not turn his head. God will deal with sin. They trusted in their false gods, their religious heritage, and the falsehoods of their corrupt doctrines to salvage them from the judgment of God.
Still all these things are not sufficient. When it comes time for God to deal with sin, leadership, strength, authority, religion, great swelling words of earthly wisdom, confidence in man, self, and the future will not be sufficient to bring man to solid footing before a sin avenging God in Judgment. There must be a mightier and weightier source of strength to stand the scrutiny of a Holy God’s Judgmental Eyes. Who can stand before God? Will you be able to stand? On What??? You can’t stand before God on just anything. Sinners trying to stand before God and convince him how good they have been is like a man neck-deep in quicksand offering to help you if you will just throw him a rope! You will need a firm foundation! Note verse 16. We have a firm foundation.
I. Providential Stone: “I Lay in Zion” Not just anything will do. Matthew 7 said to build on the rock. II Tim 2:19. In quoting this Scripture Peter said the stone was chosen of God (I Peter 2:4). You will not work out a deal with God; you will come God’s way or go to Hell!
II. Proven Stone: “tried stone” He has been tested and proven true. He’s a firm foundation in the fire (3 Hebrew Children). He’s a firm foundation in the flood (Noah). He’s a firm foundation in tribulation (Job). He’s a firm foundation at death (Stephen). There is no circumstance of life that you would better face alone than to face with God! He’s been tested!
III. Precious Stone: “precious cornerstone” I Peter 2:7, “Unto you therefore which believe he is precious,” Still to the disobedient he is a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense. This means to us, “he doesn’t mean much to this world, but he means the world to me!”
IV. Preeminent Stone: “cornerstone” Not any stone, but the stone of the corner. This is a place of stability, but it is also a place of prominence. The stone all will see is the cornerstone. Col 1:18-19, “And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence. For it pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell.” In the church the preacher, singer, deacon, or teacher is not to be preeminent; Christ is to be preeminent. We see ourselves as far too important most of the time.
V. Powerful Stone: “sure foundation” Though all men will stand before a sin avenging God, we do not have to stand in the quicksand of our own deeds. There is a foundation.
Conclusion: The hymnal “How Firm A Foundation” is written with a different verse of scripture indicating a different promise from God in each verse. (pg 127 of the Church Hymnal)
Verse One- Is 41:10 “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.”
Verse Two- Duet 33:25, “Thy shoes shall be iron and brass; and as thy days, so shall thy strength be.”
Verse Three- Is 43:2 “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.”
Verse Four- Is 40:11 “He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.”
Verse Five- Heb 13:5b “for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”
Unprinted Verse- II Cor 12:9 “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” It says:
When through fiery trials the pathway shall lie
My Grace all sufficient shall be thy supply
The flames shall not hurt thee, I only design
Thy dross to consume and thy gold to refine
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