JESUS THE CORNERSTONE
My Rock and my Salvation, I cling to You today.
Read Luke 20:9–19
The Parable of the Tenants
9 He went on to tell the people this parable: “A man planted a vineyard, rented it to some farmers and went away for a long time. 10 At harvest time he sent a servant to the tenants so they would give him some of the fruit of the vineyard. But the tenants beat him and sent him away empty-handed. 11 He sent another servant, but that one also they beat and treated shamefully and sent away empty-handed. 12 He sent still a third, and they wounded him and threw him out.
13 “Then the owner of the vineyard said, ‘What shall I do? I will send my son, whom I love; perhaps they will respect him.’
14 “But when the tenants saw him, they talked the matter over. ‘This is the heir,’ they said. ‘Let’s kill him, and the inheritance will be ours.’ 15 So they threw him out of the vineyard and killed him.
“What then will the owner of the vineyard do to them? 16 He will come and kill those tenants and give the vineyard to others.”
When the people heard this, they said, “God forbid!”
17 Jesus looked directly at them and asked, “Then what is the meaning of that which is written:
“‘The stone the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone’[a]?
18 Everyone who falls on that stone will be broken to pieces; anyone on whom it falls will be crushed.”
19 The teachers of the law and the chief priests looked for a way to arrest him immediately, because they knew he had spoken this parable against them. But they were afraid of the people.
a Luke 20:17 Psalm 118:22
New International Version (NIV)
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ReflectPicture one of your favorite old buildings and think about its permanence in the landscape.
Jesus can’t be more direct in his condemnation of the religious leaders than he is here. They can’t fail to identify themselves in this story of rejection and betrayal – and neither can the crowds who hear it. The killer punch line from Jesus (17) takes them right to biblical prophecy (Psalm 118:22; Isaiah 28:16). And with it comes a pointed warning (18) that seals his arrest warrant.
Jesus is often referred to in the New Testament as the cornerstone, which is essential to sound construction. This is the foundation stone at the base of a building, often joining two walls. Its accurate position is vital; all other stones are set in reference to this one, so the integrity of the whole structure depends on it. Masons would inspect many stones carefully to find the ones they wanted for this role.
Jesus identifies himself as the “cornerstone” (Mark 12:10, 11) – the “precious” rock upon which his church of all believers is built (Ephesians 2:20–22; 1 Peter 2:4–8). That same stone, says Peter, is a stumbling block for all who reject him.
How secure does your life feel today? Jesus Christ can hold you firm. He can be your cornerstone. Make your hand into a fist and pray to Jesus: “You are my cornerstone.” Remember this through your day.
Jesus, may I not reject You as my cornerstone. May I build all my life and actions around You today.