Today’s Reading: Isaiah 51:1-9
Daily Lectionary: Jeremiah 5:1-19; Matthew 22:23-46

Listen to me, you who pursue righteousness, you who seek the Lord: look to the rock from which you were hewn, and to the quarry from which you were dug. Look to Abraham your father and to Sarah who bore you; for he was but one when I called him, that I might bless him and multiply him. (Isaiah 51:1-2)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Through the prophet Isaiah, the Lord gives us a little theology by geology. The Lord calls His people Israel a rock. Doesn’t sound very flattering at first, but it is descriptive. Abraham was the foundation God laid for His people and His promise, but ultimately, it was the Lord Himself who was the bedrock, cornerstone, and terra firma beneath Israel’s feet.

Yes, Israel was a chip off the old rock of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, but not always in a good way. The Old Testament is layered with the stubborn, stiff-necked, rebellious, rock-hard sin of Israel. Our history is no different. Within each of us is a heart of stone. Our sinful flesh is black as obsidian and hard as granite.

Through His prophet Isaiah, the Lord calls to us, His new Israel, to look, but not to ourselves, or at our stubborn, sinful hearts of stone. We are to look instead to the Rock from which we are hewn: Christ our cornerstone. Jesus was born to walk the rocky, dusty soil of this fallen world for you. Jesus was crucified on top of the stony mountain top called Golgotha for you. Jesus rose from the dead and rolled away the boulder of His grave to bless you.

And now, you are God’s house of living stones. Built for His own habitation. Given the Holy Spirit, who takes our hearts of stone and replaces them with hearts of righteousness. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. -Rev. Samuel Schuldheisz

We are God’s house of living stones, Built for His own habitation. He through Baptismal grace us owns Heirs of His wondrous salvation. Were we but two His name to tell. Yet He would deign with us to dwell With all His grace and His favor. (Built on the Rock, LSB 645:3)

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