It may sound strange, but in Australia, we have some great rocks! One of the most famous is what is now known as Uluru (previously Ayer’s Rock), a massive sandstone monolith in the heart of the Northern Territory’s arid “Red Centre”. Then in Western Australia we have what is known as Wave Rock which is a natural rock formation that is shaped like a tall breaking ocean wave. The “wave” is about 15 m high and around 110 m long.
Recently, my wife and I had the privilege of having a holiday and one of the places we visited was Wave Rock (see the photo)
“Rock” is a common word used in the Bible and it is often used as a descriptive name for God!
Here are some examples:
Jacob in his final speech speaks of God as the Mighty One of Jacob, … the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel. (Genesis 49:24)
Moses writes that God is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he. (Deuteronomy 32:4)
Hannah prayed, There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God. (1 Samuel 2:2)
And in Psalm 61 David mentions rock as follows:
1 Hear my cry, O God;
listen to my prayer.
2 From the ends of the earth I call to you,
I call as my heart grows faint;
lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
3 For you have been my refuge,
a strong tower against the foe.
David is in trouble and is seeking a safe secure place, a refuge, somewhere above where his enemies can reach him and harm him.
And as we saw from the scriptures above, God himself is that Rock, that secure place, that strong tower where we can find refuge from whatever is out to destroy us.
David “recognizes God as his Protector…against his enemies. And he wants that protection now, as he asks God to take him to the rock that is higher than I. The Rock is God…just as God is more powerful than he is (by far), so this protective rock is higher than he is and elevates him above the turmoil.” (# 30)
4 I long to dwell in your tent forever
and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.
5 For you, God, have heard my vows;
you have given me the heritage of those who fear your name.
6 Increase the days of the king’s life,
his years for many generations.
7 May he be enthroned in God’s presence forever;
appoint your love and faithfulness to protect him.
8 Then I will ever sing in praise of your name
and fulfill my vows day after day.
In the New Testament, “rock” is used for Christ, but in the sense of a solid foundation on which to build our lives upon.
At one time Jesus was teaching the people and he told the following parable:
24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” (Matthew 7:24-27)
In 2020, may God, our Rock, be our place of safety against the turmoils of our life and may Christ, our Rock, be our sure foundation against the storms of life that will threaten to cause us to crash.
“Rock of ages, cleft for me, Let me hide myself in Thee.” Amen