• Jesus is nearing the end of the Sermon on the Mount message.
• The words He taught in this message were life-changing, as are all of the teachings of Jesus.
• Life would never be the same for those who were in attendance to hear this great message from Jesus, or would life change for those who heard?
• One would think hearing this message from Jesus would indeed turn their lives upside down; however, one would think that ANYONE who listened to the teaching of the Lord would be a different person.
• We will get back to that thought in a bit.
• Life is not always easy, is it? Life is incredible, and I love life; however, life is not always smooth.
• SHOW THE HURRICANE SLIDE! HURRICANE MICHEAL IN FLORIDA OCTOBER 2018.
• When life gets rough, why is it that one person can make it through the difficult times, one marriage can make it through the difficult times of life, but others fall and are destroyed.
• We have all seen the devastation that natural disasters can bring. Hurricanes, tornados, floods, earthquakes, just to name a few.
• When the tornado goes through a town, it seems to look for the mobile home park.
• When you see pictures of the damage any of these disasters leave behind, you will see many homes and buildings destroyed, and you will see others that seem to make it through just fine.
• Why? Why do some buildings survive and earthquake, while others fall? Notice in the picture on the screen. Some buildings look virtually untouched.
• When you look at a building, can you tell which ones will withstand the earthquake and which ones will fall?
• Maybe, but maybe not.
• What is the difference between a building that will withstand the force of an earthquake versus one that will not?
• Is it the way the building looks, in other words, if the building is pretty, will it stand, or is there something more?
• In life, we have to make choices; the most crucial decision we make in life is what I decide to build my life upon.
• Let's turn to Matthew 7:24-25 as we examine the concept of Foundations.
Matthew 7:24-25 (CSB)
24“Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.
25The rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded that house. Yet it didn’t collapse, because its foundation was on the rock.
1: I. The rock.
• The focus Jesus places at the end of the Sermon on the Mount is one of the most critical points of emphasis of the Sermon.
• THEREFORE EVERYONE WHO HEARS THESE WORDS OF MINE...
• THESE WORD in the direct context speaks of the Sermon on the Mount; however, this thought applies to all that Jesus spoke and taught.
• The message has been delivered. The message has the potential to change the lives of the listeners. The word Jesus laid before the crowd could turn their world upside down, but the question, what will they do with those words.
• Have you ever heard a sermon or read a book that you were excited about.
• You thought to yourself as you listened or read, I AM GOING TO USE THIS WISDOM IN MY LIFE.
• I cannot tell you how many times I have done this very thing, and I would get excited about a concept, but then what?
• Subtly, Jesus is placing authority on what He says. He is saying that if you do something with what He says, something positive will happen.
• It is one thing to HEAR a message; it is another thing to DO something with that message!
• If you want to change something in your life, what do you need to do?
• Do you need to read a bunch of self-help books?
• If your relationship with your spouse is in tatters, do you need to read a ton of books on relationships?
• Do you need to get a Ph.D. in relationships? Is reading a bunch of books on a subject or receiving higher education on a subject a bad thing?
• I would contend educating yourself is a good thing. I am a strong proponent of education.
• A 2010 study conducted by McCoy and Aamodt compiled divorce rates for 449 occupations in the United States.
• They stated that 16.96% reported they had been in a marital relationship, but we no longer with their spouse (they were either divorced or separated.
• McCoy and Aamodt listed the occupation therapists, all other as having a divorce/separation rate of 24.20%, sociologists as 23.53%, social workers as 23.16%, counselors" as 22.49%, miscellaneous social scientists and workers as 19.65%, and psychologists as 19.30%. (https://pro.psychcentral.com/do-marriage-family-therapists-have-better-marriages/)
• These counselors have had an almost 25% marriage failure rate have a ton of knowledge, yet their own relationships were a mess.
• Jesus adds the key that will unlock joy and success, AND ACTS ON THEM!
• Acting on the words means to put them into practice in one's life!
• James addresses the concept of acting upon the Word of God!
James 1:22 (CSB)
22But be doers of the word and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.
• When I act upon the Word of God, Jesus says I will be a wise or sensible person.
• When we put the Word into PRACTICE, we are told we are building the foundation of our life on the ROCK!
• The ROCK is the teaching of the Word!
• A house is only as strong as its foundation!
• We looked at a beautiful home years ago; we really wanted that home; however, we found out the house had foundation issues, so we walked away.
• We know that a house with a bad foundation will eventually cause plenty of problems for a homeowner as well as a great deal of expense to fix the issues.
• Why dod you need to build your life on the foundation of the ROCK? You are free to build your life as you chose; however, building on the wrong foundation will cause issues.
• What a shame would it be to build a beautiful home, only to see it destroyed by the first storm to hit it?
• We need to build our lives on the rock-solid foundation of Jesus Christ! You know one reason why?
• Because the world is not going to be easy, we need a solid foundation to be able to hold up during the storms of life.
• Jesus continues with the story by saying that the rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded the house.
• In Israel, because of the hills and mountains, it was common to endure sudden violent storms.
• The Jordan. the mainstream, was annually swollen to a great extent and became rapid and furious in its course.
• The other streams that were dry most of the year would become swollen with rain and pour water down into the plains below.
• Some of the poor would build homes in these unsafe areas, and as soon and the seasonal storms hit, they would lose their homes.
• The crowd knew exactly what Jesus was telling them.
• Jesus finished this verse by saying that the house did not collapse!
• The reason the house did not collapse was not that it was pretty on the outside, but rather, it was built on the rock!
• The Burj Khalifa (BURGE KA-LEAF-A) tower in Dubai was officially opened with great fanfare on January 4, 2010.
• At 2716 feet, it is the tallest freestanding structure in the world.
• It stretches up over one-half mile from the ground and is virtually the same height as the former World Trade Center Towers stacked on top of each other.
• The foundation for this enormously tall structure is 80,000 square feet.
• It’s comprised of 59,000 cubic yards of concrete with 192 pilings (each one 4 feet in diameter) driven 164 feet into the earth.
• The foundation alone weighs 110,000 tons.
• This $1.5 billion building project took five years to complete, and one-fifth of that time was spent on the foundation.
• Any project of enduring significance requires a great foundation, and that fact doesn’t change when it comes to spiritual matters.
• Jesus was identified as The Rock, and He declared He would build His Church on nothing less than the bedrock truth of who He is.
• Make sure He is the foundation of all you are and all you attempt. bbc.co.uk; technovelgy.com; Associated Press, 1/5/10
Matthew 7:26-27 (CSB)
26But everyone who hears these words of mine and doesn’t act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.
27The rain fell, the rivers rose, the winds blew and pounded that house, and it collapsed. It collapsed with a great crash.”
2: II. The sand.
• Now we turn to the next builder and his home.
• Verses 26-27 refer to the person who HEARS the Word of God and DOES NOTHING WITH THE WORD!
• The Word sounds nice, the Word is appealing, yet with no effort to act on the Word, all that beauty does nothing.
• This thought reminds me of a couple of things.
• One is the couple who put a TON of effort and money into a wedding.
• The WEDDING is expensive and perfect. Everything looks great, but the couple did not spend any time working on the relationship.
• They liked the IDEA of being married more than putting in the work to have a successful marriage.
• Another thing I have learned over the years of my life.
• DO you know that you can read tons of books on how to eat a proper diet and how to exercise, yet I have never lost a pound of weight by merely learning about diet and exercise, I needed to put those principles into practice!
• By the way, I have also learned that watching stuff on HGTV does not turn my home into a paradise; I need to put those lessons into practice!
• When Jesus speaks of the person who built their house on the sand, to what does sand refer?
• The sands are human opinions as opposed to following the words of Jesus!
• The foolish builder who builds his house upon the sand, cannot possibly hope that the structure will survive the heavy winds and rain characteristic of seasonal Palestinian storms.
• When I build my life on the words of men versus the Word of God, my life will not be able to withstand the storms of life.
• Like a house of cards, the fool's life crumbles.
• Most people do not deliberately seek to build on a false or inferior foundation; instead, they just do not consider their life's purpose!
• Many lives end up in ruin, not because of outright rebellion, but rather because of lack of thought, planning, and prayer.
• Christians, it is our job to try to get people to think about the true purpose of life.
• Rember the picture of the destruction left by Hurricane Michael?
• SHOW PICTURE AGAIN.
• Most of the homes were destroyed, yet some withstood the best Michael could throw at them.
• How can that be?
• It is all begins with the foundation!
• If you want to be able to stand strong through whatever life throws at you, you need to consider building your life on the foundation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!
• Spend the bulk of your time strengthening, reinforcing, and building your foundation, and you will be glad you did!
• In the story Jesus shared at the end of the Sermon on the Mount we notice that both builders had much in common.
• Both built homes.
• Both saw immediate success.
• Both had similar goals and desires.
• Both faced storms.
• The difference between the two, however, was their foundation.
• One was built on sand. With sand as the foundation, there was no internal substance to support the superstructure.
• One was built on rock. This foundation provided internal reality to support the external structure.
• The difference may not have been immediately visible to people if they did not observe the building process.
• The difference, however, was revealed in the storm.
• This life provides plenty of storms and tests our faith.
• If our faith is grounded below the baseline into the bedrock of Christ, our life will be proven to withstand the toughest of situations.
• We can make it through life’s toughest seasons when we focus on Christ as our foundation.