Summary: If you wish to stand in the storm, you will hear and obey; if you do not you will experience destruction.
Standing in the Storm
Text: Matthew 7:13-27
Reading: Matthew 7:24-27
This weekend brought a rare event to the San Diego area – weather! We experienced a rare powerful winter storm system that brought about weather about as wild as it gets in Southern California. Driving winds, stinging rain, at least for a little bit, just long enough to appreciate the power of God’s creation. I really enjoy a good storm, at least when I am observing it through my windows while in the protection of my living room. The wilder the storm the more appreciative I am of the walls and roof which stand between me and the storm. At times such as these, my thoughts invariably turn to the passage that is the text for our lesson today: read Matthew 7:24-27.
I.The Context Of The Text
A.“Therefore…” (v. 24).
1.The “Therefore” requires we know what the word is “there for.”
a.These verses are a part of a teaching by Jesus which we most often refer to as the Sermon on the Mount.
b.It is important to note that when Jesus begins this teaching He is speaking to disciples:
Matthew 5:1-2 “When Jesus saw the crowds, He went up on the mountain; and after He sat down, His disciples came to Him. He opened His mouth and began to teach them…”
c.The parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders is part of the conclusion of the Sermon on the Mount that begins at 7:13.
2.As we reach the conclusion of this teaching we find three parables dealing with two choices:
a.Two gates, two destinies on the other side--life or destruction (7:13-14).
b.Two types of trees; those which bear good fruit and bad.
1)Don't be deceived! (7:15-20)
2)Know true Christians by their works.
c.Two foundations; one sound and one weak.
3.All three representing the two possible outcomes to our lives.
B.“Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine…” (v. 24).
1.Because there are only two ways and because there are so many deceivers and because not everyone enters the kingdom of heaven, you must listen to me!
2.To know how to stand in the storm, we are going to focus on the lessons to be learned from the parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders.
II.Everyone Is A Builder
A.In Scripture, the word “house” is used:
1.…of a person’s own self as in the house of the unclean spirit in Matthew 12:43-45.
2.…of a person’s family as in their household (1 Timothy 3:4-5)
3.…of the church itself which is the Lord’s house (1 Peter 2:5-9)
B.Whether a person is building a life, a character, a family, a career or a congregation, the Godly principle is to build wisely!
1.Everyone is building the house in which they live; consciously or unconsciously (non-decisions.)
a.What distinguishes the builders is the foundation they choose to build on!
b.The foundation of a person’s life is what they have chosen to believe in, what doctrine to obey, what truth in which they put their faith.
c.That foundation will determine how you weather the storms of life.
III.Everyone Faces Storms
A.Storms and Outcomes.
1.Both houses are hit by a storm, but only one stands in the storm.
a.Storms will come--for everybody; every house we build will face a storm.
b.Jesus is not teaching a parable about how to build our houses in protected areas. There are no storm-free housing zones!
2.This may involve physical storms, natural events...
a.Such as wild fire, hurricanes, or floods.
b.In which we may lose all our possessions.
c.How will our house stand in the face of such “storms”?
3.We may also face more figurative storms…
a.Such as illness, loss of loved ones, financial setbacks
b.In which we may lose our health, our wealth, or our family.
c.Our ability to weather such “storms” will depend on the quality of our "building".
4.This is a parable about foundations, not avoiding the weather. The outcome is determined by the foundation we're sitting on.
B.Floods Test The Foundation
1.Isaiah 59:19 describes the enemy coming against the people of God like a flood.
2.Revelation 12:15 The serpent (Satan) sends a flood against God’s people hoping to sweep them away.
3.In the world today the enemy sends floods of all kinds against our foundation. He knows that if he can get people to embrace something other than the worlds of Jesus it doesn’t matter what they build because it will ultimately fall.
C.Winds and Rain Test the Structure
1.Ephesians 4:14 (NASB) As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming;
2.There are many voices today that say God’s commandments are not necessary, that there are many paths which lead to heaven but God says there is only one foundation which will stand in the storm.