Summary: All men are building, all builders choose a foundation. All foundations will be tried. Only one foundation will stand the storm of judgment.
MATTHEW 7: 24-29
THE TWO FOUNDATIONS IN LIFE
Here is the familiar story of two men building their homes (lives). Both men had access to the same materials. Both had choices as to where and how to build their homes (lives). But one man’s house stood while the other man’s house collapsed in the great storm (judgment). The difference was in the foundations. One built on the Rock, the Eternal Rock, the other on the shifting sands of time.
Our passage pictures contrasting responses to the Word of God and the outcome for obeying or not obeying the Word (CIT). This story stresses the importance of obedience to Jesus’ words. [Jesus gives special emphasis to the identification of His words with Himself.] All men are building, all builders choose a foundation. All foundations will be tried. Only one foundation will stand the storm of judgment. There is no eternal foundation other than Jesus Christ, the Rock of Ages.
This parable or story applies to the lifelong process of building godly character. We are all building a life. Every (cherished) ambition , every (formulated) thought, every (thought-filled) word, every (responsive) action is a block in the gradual building of the structure we raise up as our life. Does it rise to the glory of God or for our own glory?
I. BUILDING FOR ETERNITY, 24-25
II. BUILDING FOR THIS AGE/TIME, 26-27.
III. BUILDING UNDER AUTHORITY, 28-29.
Verse 24 amounts to an implied invitation to obey the Word of God and build your life on the eternal foundation of God. “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock.
Jesus presented the two options open to His listeners. Each is responsible for what they had heard and must make a choice. They could build on one of two foundations. One foundation was likened to a solid rock and the other to sand. The foundation determines the ability of a structure to withstand the elements [rains, waters and winds].
Jesus calls the person wise [10:16; 24:45; 25:2, 4, 9] who builds his life upon the Rock. Notice though that no one actually builds upon the eternal foundation of Christ until he acts or obeys the Word of Christ. No one builds or benefits from the Word until he acts upon it in obedience. Profession does not avail unless one does the will of God (7:21-23).
The wise response to the message of the Kingdom is pictured as building one’s house on bedrock in verse 25. “And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock.
In Palestine, land becomes baked hard in the summer, causing even sandy and unstable areas to appear rock-solid. The true test doesn’t come until the rain falls and the floods come.
If you were going to build a house you would make certain that your foundation would stand the test of the elements that come against it. Jesus here is saying, “Be careful upon what you build your life. Build on something tried and true. Establish or found your life upon “the Rock.” [Jesus Christ Himself is the Rock (Isa. 28:16-17, 1 Pet 2:6, Rom. 9:33, 1 Cor. 3:11; 10:4).
What are you doing to STAY HEALTHY? Notice that I didn't ask what you know about good health. There's a big difference. That's a point Dr. Neil Solomon made in his newspaper column. He wrote, "So you'd like to stay healthy-most people would. Fine, what are you doing about it?" He concluded, "I've always been puzzled that so many people take better care of their cars than they do of themselves."
Let's apply this to another area of life. What are we doing to stay spiritually healthy? I'm not asking what we know about staying spiritually healthy. Most of us are well-versed on that subject. We're familiar with much that our Lord said to us in His Word, but what are we doing about it? The wise person doesn't just hear-he hears and does something about it. We do wrong when we fail to do right.
[Symbolically the rains, floods and winds represent the troubles, problems, trials, severe dilemmas, persecutions, tribulations and calamities of life. The one who builds upon the rock by not only hearing but doing the Lord’s teaches will find Him their support and rock of refuge in the distress of life. Even the sudden, unexpected storms of life will not totter or up end you.]
The wise builder searches for the true meaning of life until he finds the Word of God. He searches the Word and finds the Rock. He searches the Rock and makes it his foundation. Then he builds his life upon the Rock of Ages according to the everlasting Word.