Where are You Building Your House?

Matthew 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.”

In Context

Jesus had just finished saying that not everyone who says to him, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who is doing the will of God the Father who is in heaven (see Matthew 7:21-23).

And this was following a rather long discourse Jesus was having with his disciples on a wide variety of subjects in which he was giving them all kinds of instructions (commands) to follow. I will not touch on all of them, but you can read them in Matthew 5-7. I will only mention some of them. And some of them Jesus redefined, or I should say he broadened their understanding of what the commands really meant at the heart of them.

For he expanded “You shall not murder” to include hate (including rage and insults). And he taught that we need to make every effort to be reconciled with our fellow Christians if we know with certainty that they have something against us. And he expanded “You shall not commit adultery” to include lusting after someone in our minds, which would definitely include viewing pornography, affairs, and any forms of sexual lust and perversion.

He taught that we should love our enemies and that we should pray for those who persecute us. And he warned against religious hypocrisy and pride and doing things for show to try to look good to others for their approval. He taught us how we should pray, not like the hypocrites. Then he taught on forgiving those who sin against us. And he cautioned against laying up treasures on earth, but to lay up for ourselves treasures in heaven.

He taught us, too, not to fear for our future or for our provisions, for he will supply all we need, and he holds our future in his hands. He instructed us that we must enter into God’s eternal kingdom by the narrow gate and by the way that is hard, but that leads to life, and which few find. And he warned against entering by the wide gate, that does not lead to heaven, but which leads to destruction, which is the way that most people travel.

He warned, as well, against false teachers who were teaching in opposition to what Jesus taught, that we should test them all by their fruit. And this is something that is much needed in the Christian world today where wolves in sheep’s clothing abound, and where they are leading many people to reject the truth of the gospel that Jesus and his New Testament apostles taught, and to follow after a half-truth diluted and altered gospel of men, instead.

The Wise and Foolish

So, this section of the passage, which is a parable, of sorts, follows on the heels of all of that and much more that I did not mention. But it specifically follows Jesus’ words in which he said:

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.”

So, if we hear the words (instructions, commands) of Jesus, or we read them in the Scriptures, and I will add here also that if we read or hear the teachings of the New Testament apostles, which are intended for the church, and we are doing (obeying) them, we are wise with a godly wisdom. For the apostles spoke God’s God-breathed words which are now Scripture, and Jesus is God, so they spoke the words of Jesus Christ.

So, if we obey the Lord and we do what he says, then we will cease to do the things he says not to do, and we will be doing the things that he says we must do to be saved from our sins and to have eternal life with God. For God’s grace, which brings salvation, commands (instructs) us to say “No!” to ungodliness and fleshly lusts, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives while we await our Lord’s soon return (Titus 2:11-14).

And Jesus taught that if anyone wants to come after him that he must deny self, take up his cross daily (die daily to sin and to self) and follow (obey) him. For, he said that if we hold on to our lives (of living in sin and for self) that we will lose them for eternity. But if, for his sake, we lose our lives (die with him to sin) then we will have eternal life in him (Luke 9:23-26).

But if we hear or read Jesus’ words, including those of his New Testament apostles, which were (and still are) intended for us, the church, the saints of God, but we are not doing (obeying) them, then we are foolish (unwise, reckless, irresponsible, careless, senseless, vain, worthless, and self-indulgent, etc.). For, one day we are all going to be judged by God, and if we do not obey the Lord, and if we do not forsake our sins, we will not inherit God’s eternal kingdom.

[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:21-25; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Matt 7:21-23; Rev. 2-3; Rev 18:1-6; Rev 21:8, 27; Rev 22:14-15]

He Lifted Our Burdens

An Original Work / February 15, 2014
Based off Isaiah 9:2-7

People walk in darkness.
They abide in their sin.
It has power o’er them.
True belief escapes them.

Jesus Christ came to save them.
He gave His life up for them;
Crucified; died for our sin,
So we might be forgiven,
And have life up in heaven.

Many come to know Him.
God’s love now o’erflows them.
They rejoice in vict’ry.
Their sin is but hist’ry.

We were once bound in slav’ry.
Jesus lifted our burdens;
Set us now free from Satan,
So we now walk in freedom.
Sin has no more dominion.

Praise be to our Savior!
He showed us His favor.
He took all our burdens;
Cast them all upon Him.

He is our mediator;
The Light which shines in darkness.
Counselor in our troubles;
He gives peace now in our hearts;
Joy which is everlasting.

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