Won’t Get Fooled Again

This “12 stone memorial” series of articles began with the catch-phrase “Don’t Get Stoned Again”  as a wordplay on the song, “Won’t Get Fooled Again” (1971, The Who). It’s not likely anyone will get stoned, as was done in ancient Israel as punishment for grievous sin, but as Christians, we often get fooled…again and again.

“Won’t get fooled again” is often a reminder to oneself to be more cautious after having been deceived or lied to by someone that was expected to be honest and trustworthy. I know I’ve experienced that and I’m guessing you have too.  So, don’t get fooled again! Be watchful and be discerning.  We will only get fooled again if we listen to what the world teaches instead of what God reveals in His Word.

Notably, this song has been time-tested and is still popular more than forty years later.  Why?  Because it conveys a universal and timeless message.  The lyrics begin by lamenting the dysfunction that exists in our world. The song speaks of man’s fight against his fellow man — a fight that has escalated in wars throughout history. The lyrics are hauntingly prophetic.

We’ll be fighting in the streets
With our children at our feet
And the morals that they worship will be gone

And the men who spurred us on
Sit in judgment of all wrong
They decide and the shotgun sings the song

As Christians, we know that this fight will continue until the day Jesus returns to judge all wrong.
The most familiar words of this song are in the refrain…

I’ll tip my hat to the new constitution
Take a bow for the new revolution
Smile and grin at the change all around
Pick up my guitar and play
Just like yesterday
Then I’ll get on my knees and pray
We don’t get fooled again

While these words were written about the political condition in our country in 1971, not much has changed over the years.  Remember, there’s nothing new under the sun (Ecc 1:9). Perhaps the stage and the characters are different, but the script remains the same.  Wars of many kinds rage on and new government officials try to institute changes—some good, some bad.  People continue to “get fooled again,” especially by the world’s lies, and wars continue to be waged and take a toll on all people.

As Christians, we know that a true and better “new constitution” will one day come. It will be a constitution of a Kingdom ruled by Jesus and one in which “every knee will bow” and “every tongue confess” (Rom 14:11).  But until that time, our best defense against the evil, lies, and foolishness of our world is, as the song suggests, to “get on our knees and pray.”  Seeking the Lord in all we do, is the only way to find true wisdom, direction, hope, and rest.

Stones in the Bible

We have been gathering stones, but not for the purpose of death (as they were used in stoning in ancient Israel). We have been gathering stones for the purpose of living and remembering. Our confidence and our hope is in Jesus and it is increased when we remember who our God is, what He has done for us, who we are in Jesus, and His faithfulness to act in the future as He has done in our past.

We’ve gathered ten stone—each one a testimony to our great God.

Stone 1:  A Stone and a Name—in Genesis and Exodus (Don’t Get Stoned Again)
Stone 2:  A Stone of Rest—a pillow of comfort in Genesis
Stone 3:  A Stone Covered Well in Genesis
Stone 4:  A “Mizpah” Stone of Blessing—and God’s faithful watch in Genesis
Stone 5:  A Stone of Precious Promise—Jesus, My Rock
Stone 6:  A Stone of Foundation and Victory—Jesus, My Banner
Stone 7:  A Stone of Deliverance and Memorial—Jesus, My Saviour
[12 stones you can’t pick up, but you need to know are there]
Stone 8:  A Stone of Help in 1 Samuel–an Ebenezer Stone—Jesus, My Hep
Stone 9:  A Stone of Remembrance of God’s Power and Provision—Jesus, My Provision
Stone 10: A Stone of Praise—Jesus, My King

We need two more stones to complete our…

12 Stones Memorial

Now we add the last two stones. Stone number 11 we’ll pick up quickly. That will give us time to find the last stone…a very special stone.

In the Gospel of John, we read about Jesus changing the name of Simon, son of Jonah, to Cephas:

John 1:42  And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone.

Cephas is an Aramaic name (the language spoken at the time of Jesus’ earthly ministry).  It means “stone” and is translated in Greek as “petros,” in Latin as “petra,” and in English as “Peter.”  It is therefore appropriate that our 11th stone comes from Peter, “the stone.”  We pick up our 11th stone in Peter’s first letter, in which he speaks of all those who belong to Jesus as “lively stones.”

1 Peter 2:4-5  To whom coming, as unto a living stone [=Jesus],  disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,  Ye also, as lively stones [=us], are built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.

Notice that while we are the “lively stones,”  Jesus is the “Living Stone” to whom we have come.  Peter continued in writing about stones, using them to reveal the Person of the Lord Jesus Christ:

1 Peter 2:6-8  Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion a chief corner stone [=Jesus], elect, precious: and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded.  Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed [=Jesus], the same is made the head of the corner, And a stone of stumbling [=Jesus], and a rock of offense, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed.

In Peter’s words, we see Christ as the Living Stone (v. 4), the Corner Stone (v. 6), the Rejected Stone (v. 7), and the Stumbling Stone (v. 8).

All people will be confronted by the Living Stone (1 Pet 2:4). Some will stumble over Him,  as the Stumbling Stone (1 Pet 2:8), and call out to Him to be lifted up.  They will see Him as the Corner Stone (1 Pet 2:6), the foundation upon whom their new life (house) will be built.  Others will foolishly make Jesus the Rejected Stone (1 Pet 2:8) and will build their house without the Corner Stone. Woe to them who get fooled by the lies of the world.  Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6).

Stone #11

Our 11th stone represents both a lively and a living stone. The lively stone is us — all who belong to Jesus — and the Living Stone is Jesus.  Our lively stone is IN the Living Stone, united and secure forever.

Stone 1:  A Stone and a Name—in Genesis and Exodus
Stone 2:  A Stone of Rest—a pillow of comfort in Genesis
Stone 3:  A Stone Covered Well in Genesis
Stone 4:  A “Mizpah” Stone of Blessing—and God’s faithful watch in Genesis
Stone 5:  A Stone of Precious Promise—Jesus, My Rock
Stone 6:  A Stone of Foundation and Victory—Jesus, My Banner
Stone 7:  A Stone of Deliverance and Memorial—Jesus, My Saviour
[12 stones you can’t pick up, but you need to know are there]
Stone 8:  A Stone of Help in 1 Samuel–an Ebenezer Stone—Jesus, My Hep
Stone 9:  A Stone of Remembrance of God’s Power and Provision—Jesus, My Provision
Stone 10: A Stone of Praise—Jesus, My King
Stone 11: A Lively Stone in a Living Stone —Jesus, in whom 
we live, and move, and have our being. (Acts 17:28)

Stone #12

There’s one last stone and only you can find it.  We’ve gathered stones from the pages of Scripture and we just added the stone of salvation in Christ.  The final stone is not found on the pages of Scripture. It is buried in the soil of your heart.  If the soil is rich and cultivated you will find it easily.  If the ground is hard and has not been tended, the stone will be there but you might need to search for it.

A Stone of God’s Faithfulness

Think back on your life.  Remember all the things the Lord has given you and all that He has done for you.  Find you 12th “stone” — a memory of God’s faithfulness etched upon your heart, and add it to your stone memorial. Let it remind you always of what God has done for you and the hope you have of future promises yet to be fulfilled.

While this is the 12th stone in our stone memorial, it does not need to be the final stone.  Continue to add more stones of God’s faithfulness in your life.

Do not look only for the beautiful, water-polished stones that represent Christ’s abundant gifts and graces that He’s given you in the happy, simple, and easy times.  Look also for the rough-edged rocks, and even the huge boulders, that represent Christ’s presence, provision, and protection in the most difficult, trying, and troubling times of life.  The stones, rocks, and boulders that almost crushed us are some of the most beautiful reminders of God’s work in our lives.

Never stop building your stone memorial. Reflect upon the stones from Scripture and the stones of remembrance from your life.  Let them be a continual reminder of our loving, merciful, and gracious God.

Psalm 78:35  And they remembered that God was their rock, and the high God their redeemer.

Psalm 97:12  Rejoice in the LORD, ye righteous; and give thanks at the remembrance of his holiness.


Be Ready Always...

to give a reason for the Hope that you have (1 Peter 3:15).  When you can’t share the gospel with your words, share it by leaving tracts that tell people about God's grace.

When leaving a tract, always be diligent to pray about the short gospel message. Pray that it be found by someone who is in need of Jesus’ saving grace, and pray that the person will have a tender heart and open ears to receive the gift Jesus desires to give them.  

By the power of the Holy Spirit, even a small tract can help in turning a broken sinner from darkness to light.


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