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Isaiah 28:16-17 meaning...

The Foundation Stone:

Verse 16 begins with a declaration from the Lord Yahweh—a proclamation of a foundational truth. The imagery of a stone, specifically a cornerstone, is used to signify a firm and unshakable foundation. This cornerstone is described as "tried" and "precious," indicating its reliability and value. The metaphor of a cornerstone draws parallels to the significance of Jesus Christ as the cornerstone of the Christian faith. This verse echoes Ephesians 2:20 (WEB), which refers to Jesus as the cornerstone of the spiritual "household of God."

  • Belief and Patience:

The verse continues with a message of trust and patience: "He who believes shall not act hastily." This is an assurance that those who place their faith in the firm foundation—the tried and precious cornerstone—will not be rushed into making impulsive decisions. It's a reminder that genuine faith is marked by a patient and steadfast reliance on God's plan, rather than succumbing to the pressures of haste or fear.

  • Justice and Righteousness:

Verse 17 introduces the themes of justice and righteousness. The Lord declares that justice will serve as the "measuring line," and righteousness as the "plumb line." This imagery underscores the principles by which God evaluates and aligns His creation. It's a reminder that God's standard is one of righteousness and equity, serving as a contrast to the ways of the world. This concept echoes the call for justice and righteousness found throughout the Bible, urging us to align our lives with God's moral standards.

  • Sweeping Away Deception:

The latter part of verse 17 employs vivid imagery to depict the removal of falsehood and deception: "The hail will sweep away the refuge of lies." This evocative image suggests that falsehoods and deceitful shelters will be exposed and rendered powerless in the face of divine judgment. The notion of "waters overflowing the hiding place" further emphasizes the futility of attempting to hide from the scrutiny of God's truth.

  • Relevance and Application:

Isaiah 28:16-17 resonates across time, inviting us to consider the foundational aspects of our faith and the principles that shape our lives. It calls us to place our trust in the tried and precious cornerstone—Jesus Christ—and to exhibit patient faith in the midst of life's uncertainties. It also challenges us to align ourselves with God's standards of justice and righteousness, standing against deception and falsehood.

  • A Message of Assurance:

Ultimately, these verses convey a message of assurance and guidance. They assure us that God's foundation is unshakable and trustworthy, providing a secure anchor for our lives. They guide us to cultivate a patient faith that is rooted in the cornerstone of Christ. They call us to uphold justice, righteousness, and truth in a world that often distorts these values.


As we reflect on Isaiah 28:16-17, may we embrace the significance of Jesus Christ as the cornerstone of our faith—a foundation that is both tried and precious. May we embody patient trust in God's plan, align our lives with principles of justice and righteousness, and stand firm against falsehoods. In doing so, we build our lives upon a foundation that can withstand the storms of life and the tests of time.


Isaiah 28:16-17. Thus says the Lord Yahweh, “Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious cornerstone of a sure foundation. He who believes shall not act hastily. I will make justice the measuring line, and righteousness the plumb line.”