Summary: Christ is the solid Rock. Christ and the cross are foolishness to some and they stumble and fall. Others stand on the Rock and place their trust in Him and in Him alone.

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The Solid Rock

The Good News of God

By Greg Johnson

February 28, 2007

Romans 9:30-33

God’s Word says (Romans 9:30-33 NIV) "What then shall we say? That the Gentiles, who did not pursue righteousness, have obtained it, a righteousness that is by faith; {31} but Israel, who pursued a law of righteousness, has not attained it. {32} Why not? Because they pursued it not by faith but as if it were by works. They stumbled over the "stumbling stone." {33} As it is written: "See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes men to stumble and a rock that makes them fall, and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame.""

In the 1800s, Edward Mote wrote a powerful hymn titled The Solid Rock:

My hope is built on nothing less

Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness

I dare not trust the sweetest frame

But wholly lean on Jesus’ name

On Christ the solid Rock I stand

All other ground is sinking sand

All other ground is sinking sand

Christ is the solid Rock. Christ and the cross are foolishness to some and they stumble and fall. Others stand on the Rock and place their trust in Him and in Him alone.


As Paul is writing Romans under the anointing of the Holy Spirit, most Jews had rejected the Good News of God concerning Christ Jesus. They continued to work for their righteousness through observing the traditions of man. They had taken the Ten Commandments that God gave Moses in Exodus chapter 20 and had added over 600 manmade laws to them. Their hope for righteousness was obeying all of these regulations. They were steeped in religion, but lacked relationship with God. They were working for their righteousness, but would never earn it.

Christ and the cross were foolishness to them. Their Messiah was not coming to suffer and die for sins, but to relieve them from their current difficulty; Roman oppression. Jesus, the solid Rock came and confronted their self-righteousness. They stumbled and fell. Jesus said (Mark 7:6-8 NIV) ""Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: "’These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. {7} They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.’ {8} You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men.""

In our day, many continue to stumble and fall as the Christ and the cross is foolishness to them. Christ, His death and His resurrection are under constant attack today. From the fiction of the Da Vinci Code to a Gnostic gospel called The Gospel of Judas to the documentary that airs this Sunday on the Discovery Channel by OSCAR-winning director James Cameron stating that they found the body of Jesus buried with His family. People continue to stumble over the Rock and try to earn their own righteousness.

Righteousness can never be earned. It’s not even deserved by wretched sinners such as I. Righteousness can only be declared by our Holy God. It all comes by faith in the Christ, His death for our sins and His resurrection for our life. We are justified by faith. Our righteousness is found in Jesus and we are declared righteous in Him through faith.

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