Matthew 7:24-29 NIV
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.”
28 When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, 29 because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.
In Matthew, chapter 7, Jesus talks about many things.
He warns against judging the souls of others. He talks about the power of prayer. He talks about the narrow and wide gates and says the wide gate leads to destruction.
He talks about false prophets and teachers who come in sheep’s clothing but are in fact ferocious wolves. He says, “by their fruits you shall know them.” Therefore, we can and are expected to judge the “fruits of others.”
He talked about true and false disciples and warned that not everyone who calls Him “Lord” will enter the kingdom of heaven. In other words, it takes more than words. It takes “doing the will of the Father.”
Then, we come to our scripture for this lesson.
Jesus uses the analogy of building one’s house on a rock versus building the house on sand.
All of His listeners would understand the peril of building their house on the sand, where it would be demolished by the winds and rain.
Likewise, they would know the benefit of building on solid rock, whereby the house would withstand the forces of nature and remain upright.
However, His message to the disciples and listeners wasn’t intended to critique home building methods. It was an analogy that was much deeper, and it involved their spiritual lives. It involved their souls.
BUILD YOUR HOUSE UPON THE ROCK, NOT ON THE SAND
He says, “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.”
My thinking is that Jesus isn’t just talking about the words He spoke here in chapter 7 of Matthew, but all of the words He spoke on this earth. If those words are put into practice, He says “it is like a wise man who builds his house on the rock.”
When the rain and winds come, this house is able to withstand the storm and remain standing, because its foundation was strong. Its foundation was upon the rock.
On the contrary, those who hear the words of Jesus and do not put them into practice, are like a foolish man who builds their house upon the sand. This house cannot withstand the rain and winds and it falls with a great crash.
STORMS WILL COME
God does not promise that everything will go perfectly for a Christian. He does not promise that there will not be trials or problems. He does, however, promise to never leave us and to help us endure and overcome the trials of life that come our way.
Let’s take a look at some of the storms of life that might come our way.
Here are just a few.
- Loss of job
- Financial distress
- Death of a loved one
- Family problems
- Estrangement of a child
- A child or grandchild getting hooked on drugs
- A child or grandchild living a life of sin
HOW DO WE PREPARE FOR THESE STORMS?
We prepare for the storms of life that will surely come our way, by building and living our life on the solid rock of Jesus.
With this foundation, we can be assured that our lives will not be washed away by the storms. We may feel battered by the winds at times, but our "house" will not come crashing down.
Yes, we will have storms, but on the solid foundation of our relationship with God through Jesus Christ, we will not be shattered or broken.
When Jesus asked Peter “who do you say that I am”, Peter said “Thou art the Christ the Son of the living God”, Jesus said upon THIS rock I will build my church. Not on Peter, but upon the realization and fact that Jesus is the Son of God.
15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
17 Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. 18 And I tell you that you are Peter,[b] and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades[c] will not overcome it.
When we live our lives centered on Christ, our spiritual foundation is firmly planted on the rock of our Lord. It is solid and secure.
Let’s use the analogy that Christ used. Sure, the roof will sometimes leak. The house may need repairs from time to time and the house may shake during a storm. But it will not come crashing down.
Of course, we will have problems and trials where we must depend on God to help us, looking to Him for strength and peace.
If our “house” is built upon Jesus Christ, we can be assured that God, who is in total control, will see us through. He will never leave or forsake us.
Hebrews 13:5 NIV
5 Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said,
“Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”[a]
It doesn’t take an architect to know the benefit of building a house on a solid foundation, rather than building it on sand. It is, according to Jesus, the difference between being wise or being foolish.
If our lives are grounded firmly on the solid foundation of Jesus as Lord and upon His words and teachings, we are wise. Very wise.
However, if we are not grounded on this solid foundation, Jesus says we are foolish.
We may not have wisdom on all subjects or in all aspects of life, but we can be sure that we have wisely chosen how to live our life and the eternal destination of our soul.
When we accept Christ as Savior, believing and obeying His words, our spiritual house is in order, and it is constructed on a strong foundation. His foundation. The only strong foundation.
When we accept Christ as our Lord and Savior, we can take comfort, peace and strength from Psalm 23:4, knowing that with steadfast trust and faith, God will be with us, helping us and seeing us through the darkest of valleys.
Psalm 23:4 KJV
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.