Therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation: he that believeth shall not make haste. Isaiah 28:16
Jesus is fitly compared to a “stone” for strength and durability. He is a “Savior, and a great one”–”mighty to save.” “I have laid help upon one that is mighty.” If it were probable that the fact of His Deity should be announced in a voice of thunder from the eternal throne, can we suppose it would be uttered in terms more decided and explicit than those which fell upon the ear of the exiled evangelist from the lips of Christ Himself? “I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, says the Lord, who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.” And what a needed truth is this! None but an almighty ransom could have saved from going down to the pit. Jesus is our ransom, and Jesus is the Almighty.
The Redeemer is not only a stone, but a “tried stone.” The grand experiment has been made–the great test has been applied, and to answer all the ends for which the Lord God laid it in Zion, it has proved completely adequate. Never was a foundation tried as this. In the eternal purpose of redemption, Omnipotence tried it. In the Divine mind there existed no lurking suspicion, no embarrassing uncertainty as to the result. The Father knew all that this foundation was to sustain, and well He knew, too, that it was capable of sustaining all. Stupendous were the consequences. His own glory and the honor of His government were involved; the salvation of His elect was to be secured; death, with all its horrors, was to be abolished; life, with all its immortal, untold glories, was to be revealed; hell was to be closed, and heaven opened to all believers. With such momentous realities pending, with such mighty and glorious results at stake, the Eternal mind, in its purpose of grace and glory, would lay for a foundation a “tried stone.” Blessed Emmanuel! how effulgently does Your glory beam from beneath Your prophetical veil! You are that “tried stone,”–tried by the Father, when He laid upon You all His people’s sins and transgressions, bruised You, and put You to grief. Tried by the law, when it exacted and received from You Your utmost obedience to its precepts. Tried by Divine justice, when it kindled around You its fiercest flame, yet consumed You not. Tried by the Church, built upon You so securely that the gates of hell shall never prevail against her. Tried by poor sinners, who have brought their burdens of guilt to Your blood, and have found pardon and peace. Tried by believers, who have taken their trials to Your sympathy, their sorrows to Your love, their wounds to Your healing, their weakness to Your strength, their emptiness to Your fullness, their petitions to Your ear, and have never, never been disappointed. Oh yes, You are that “tried stone” to whom I would come moment by moment.