Watch the video above. Take note at around 1:44 where Luke Skywalker says, "I am looking for a mighty warrior." What Luke didn't realize is that he was already talking to the one he was seeking. The only problem was the mighty warrior didn't look like one. Luke had high expectations of this mighty warrior and not some puppet named Yoda. This scene always reminds me of the nation of Israel and the Messiah (Jesus). Read on and see what I mean.
The word Messiah means “Anointed One” or "Christ". For centuries the Jews were anticipating a great warrior who would one day come to set things right. Their expectations were kept alive from generation to generation, till the “fullness of the times,” when Messiah came, “made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law.” They were hopeful that their Messiah would come and bring Israel back to their intended glory. Since the Davidic king is the chosen ruler of God (2 Sam. 7:8-16), (the) ‘Messiah’ is often associated with the prophetic expectation that God would raise up an ideal Davidic ruler to occupy the throne of Israel. This basically means the Jews were looking for a great and mighty warrior King, not Jesus. They were looking for one who would lead the charges of battle and establish Israel to its rightful place as a “World Power” as the chosen nation of God. But that is not necessarily what they got when the Messiah came to the earth. The Jews were expecting one thing, but God had a different plan.
The text for today and tomorrow is 1 Peter 2: 4 – 8. As we look at this passage I think it will give us a glimpse at how the people of Israel completely missed their coming Messiah, and in their spiritual blindness they rejected and turned their backs on God Himself. The key verse we will look at is verse seven which reads, “The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone.” This is a quote from Psalm 118:22 and is referenced and quoted five times in the New Testament. It is quoted in three Gospels by Jesus and twice by Peter… once in Acts and once in his first letter.
What does this verse mean? What is being implied here? What is up with this stone that was rejected and what does it reference? We find the answer in Acts 4:11 when we find that the “stone” referred to in this Psalm is in fact Jesus. In their search for a great and mighty warrior King the Jews completely overlooked Jesus as their true Messiah. Had they really understood the prophecies concerning the Messiah they would have realized that Jesus was/is the fulfillment. Even today the Jews are anticipating the coming Messiah and do not recognize Jesus Christ as the Messiah.
This stone which the people of Israel rejected turned out to be the most important stone... the Cornerstone. The cornerstone is most often the large stone placed in the foundation at the principal corner of a building but occasionally could be the top or final stone of a building. Most biblical occurrences of this term are metaphorical. How could this have happened? It is hard for us to imagine that the people of Israel could have been so blind and hard hearted.
Easton, M. (1996, c1897). Easton's Bible dictionary. Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
Achtemeier, P. J., Harper & Row, P., & Society of Biblical Literature. (1985). Harper's Bible dictionary. Includes index. (1st ed.) (630). San Francisco: Harper & Row.
Achtemeier, P. J., Harper & Row, P., & Society of Biblical Literature. (1985). Harper's Bible dictionary. Includes index. (1st ed.) (189). San Francisco: Harper & Row.