Building Basics: Level and Plumb
Having good plans and a site with solid footing, the home builder can begin to construct the walls that complete the foundation. In our cold climate it is customary to pour a footer below the frost line and use concrete blocks to build a wall that forms either a crawl space or a basement. Placement of the first block in the first corner is crucial. As the blocks are placed, they must be perfectly level in all directions and remain plumb as each course is placed on top the last. It is no different for God’s spiritual house. Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: “Behold, I lay in Zion a stone for a foundation, A tried stone, a precious cornerstone, a sure foundation; Whoever believes will not act hastily. Also I will make justice the measuring line, And righteousness the plummet; The hail will sweep away the refuge of lies, And the waters will overflow the hiding place (Isaiah 28:16-17 NKJV).
God has selected Jesus as the perfect stone to form the first corner of his house. Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, in whom the whole building, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit (Ephesians 2:19-22 NKJV). Ironically Jesus was rejected by God’s own people. They deemed the perfect stone unworthy of the role. Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders of Israel: “If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well, “let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. “This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’ “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:8-12 NKJV).
When it comes to building, what is not seen is far more important to the longevity of the structure than the fit and finish of the trim. Jesus did not meet the expectations of the religious elite of His day. Isaiah spoke of Jesus’ lack of appeal based on appearance. Who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed? For He shall grow up before Him as a tender plant, And as a root out of dry ground. He has no form or comeliness; And when we see Him, There is no beauty that we should desire Him. He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief. And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him; He was despised, and we did not esteem Him (Isaiah 53:1-3 NKJV). God’s measuring devices are justice and righteousness (Isaiah 28:17). A King and Savior should possess substance over style. King Saul certainly looked the part but it was King David who had God’s heart (1 Samuel 9:2; 13:14). Thus, the promise to establish David’s throne forever (2 Samuel 7:4-17). David’s son, Solomon, was privileged to build the temple and David’s future descendant, Jesus, was privileged to build the church. We are privileged to serve as stones in the same structure (Ephesians 2:22).
The next time you look at your own house, think about the foundation that allows it to stand. Appreciate that the floors are level, that the walls are straight and that the roof is secure. Be thankful for the shelter and security it provides. The next time you look at God’s house, think about its perfect foundation, Jesus. Appreciate that it is perfectly level and plumb. Be thankful for the shelter and security this spiritual house provides. Be thankful for all the saints who serve as stones in that structure. Appreciate the ones who keep in line with the Savior allowing the house to remain true and strong. Lastly, be one of those stones.