Jesus the Rock - Type
Alcatraz was a secure unit for inmates off the coast of San Francisco. It is currently a tourist attraction a bit like Robbin Island near Cape Town. Films have been made about it and it is commonly referred to as 'The Rock'. Alcatraz is pretty secure but it is not a pleasant place to reside in for a long period of time!
The first mention of stones in the above context is contained in Jacob's prophecy concerning the destiny of his sons in Genesis 49:24 "By the hands of the Mighty God of Jacob from there is the Shepherd, the Stone of Israel"
Moses continues the theme in his song in Deuteronomy 32:3-4.
"For I proclaim the name of the Lord: Ascribe greatness to our God the Rock, His work is perfect; For all His ways are justice, a God of truth and without injustice; Righteous and upright is He."
The Properties of Rock and the Character of Christ
Generally speaking rocks are comprised of a hard substance that endures. They do not change much over time. If someone was escaping from Alcatraz they would probably want to cling to the rock on the other side of the shore. With respect of Yahweh's covenant promises 'Malachi 3v6 tells us "I am the Lord, I do not change;" Also Hebrews 13:8 says that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever."
God the Rock never has an off day due to ill health. He neither sleeps nor slumbers. He never makes mistakes nor has shortcomings. He is never late and nothing slips past His heavenly net. Neither do obedient acts toward Him go unnoticed. His judicial system is superior to anything of human origin and He is entirely just to the minutest detail. He doesn't deal in injustice or compromise and Titus 1:2 recalls God cannot lie.
The Stone Cut Without Hands
In Daniel Chapter 2 Nebuchadnezzar had a dream of a metallic statue made of gold, silver, bronze, iron and clay representing the Babylonian, Mede-Persian, Greek and Roman Empires that would follow. Nebuchadnezzar watched while "a stone was cut out without hands, which struck the image on its feet of iron and clay, and broke them in pieces." (v34) Jesus is the Stone cut without hands and "the Stone that struck the image became a great mountain and filled the whole earth." (v35)
The Chief Cornerstone
In Psalm 118: 22 it is written "The Stone which the builders rejected has become the Chief Cornerstone." What does that mean? During Jesus 33-year earthly ministry most of the Pharisees, Sadducees, Scribes and teachers of the law rejected Jesus the Chief Cornerstone for the two stone tablets that were given to them by God the Rock. They also added to the law in an attempt to avoid breaking it.
When Jesus spoke the parable of the wicked vinedressers he quoted Psalm 118:22. Paul refers to Jesus as the "chief cornerstone in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord" (Ephesians 2:21) and Peter quotes Isaiah saying "Behold I lay in Zion a chief cornerstone, elect, precious, and he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame." (2 Peter 2:6)
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