Hey everyone! I hope you all are doing well. I am out of funny things to say to open this with, so just pretend I made you laugh (Laurel does it all the time–wait was that funny?)
Here I am with some devotional thoughts on a simple yet powerful lesson from Jesus. It comes toward the end of the Sermon on the Mount (Mat. 5-7) and the end of the less known Sermon on the Plain (Luke 6).
[Mat 7:24-27 ESV] “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.” (also Luke 6:47-49)
Jesus’s sermon was about the New Covenant principles he was revealing that are built off of the Old Covenant commands. He taught about righteousness and what righteousness actually is, about a religion beginning in the heart, about a faith that goes the extra mile. His words are the purest and wisest anyone has spoken. But what do you say about the people who ignore Jesus’ words? Jesus ends the sermon with a parable about obeying or ignoring his words. He gives two scenarios:
A wise man built his house on the rock. A foolish man built his house on the sand. When the elements came, the rain, floods, and winds, the house built on the rock still stood, but the house built on the sand did not.
This is a great illustration of Luke 7:35, “Wisdom is justified by all her children.” That is, wise acts/people are proven to be wise by their results/acts. In the end, it becomes obvious what was wise and was not. The house that withstood the rain, floods, and winds was proven to be wise.
Before the elements hit the houses, was it clear who was wise and who was not? What does a house built on rock look like? Doesn’t it look exactly like a house built on sand? Don’t a house with a foundation and one without look exactly the same? You would not be able to tell who was wise and who was foolish until the rain, floods, and winds.
Why was the wise man wise and the foolish man foolish? Consider what is at stake. This is his house, family, money, and safety. The foolish man did not weigh the options; he did not build his house with the long term in mind. Why would he have built his house on sand? Hypothetically, he could have wanted to not waste money on building a foundation, wanted cheap land on the sand, wanted a good view. He did not look forward and expect hardships, he handled a long term investment as if it was a short term one, with little forethought and care.
The wise man weighed the options, built his house with long term consideration; he considered his family’s safety and made a lasting investment. The wise man considered his future, considered his family’s well being, considered the future of his house.
It is easy to look at these two men and say, ‘This one’s smart; this one’s dumb’ after the fact–after the troubles have come. It would be harder if we were the foolish one. It is harder to determine who the foolish one and wise one is before the hardships come.
We all have to ask, “Am I building my house on the rock?” The real question is, “Am I putting my hope of eternal life, my house, on the rock, Christ’s words?”
This isn’t a pretty story Jesus is telling us–No, he is saying ‘whoever doesn’t do what I say is foolish!’ Wow, that is harsh, but it makes sense because who would willingly refuse to do Christ’s commands knowing their salvation is at stake?
Are we going to build our house on sand so it can be destroyed? Would you base your salvation on your feelings? My feelings change daily, I would have no confidence or comfort in my salvation. Are we going to base our salvation on the latest bestseller? There are millions of bestsellers, which one can save you? There would be no assurance in my salvation. Are we going to base our salvation on the Son of God, who has been appointed heir of all things, by whom God created the worlds? to whom all power and authority has been given in heaven and earth? who has promised us salvation if we believe in him and obey his commands? Is there any competition?
If you hear Jesus’ lesson and do not put it into practice, you are lacking forethought and wisdom just like the man who built his house on sand. If you hear Jesus’ lesson and do not put it into practice, then your life will soon crumble. When the figurative rain, floods, and winds come, will your figurative house stand? You hear Jesus’ words, will you do them?
If you want to make your house sturdy, come forward as we stand and sing–I mean, umm, pray to the Lord, study your bible, and give me a call if you need 🙂