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It is perilous times like these that challenge our faith and reveal the quality of the foundation we’ve built our lives on.

  • SKU: 06282020
  • EAN: 210000038519

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What Are You Standing On?

Matthew 7:24-27, 6:24; Exodus 20:3; Joshua 24:14; 1 Peter 1:6-7

June 28, 2020

 

 

Bible Verse

Matthew 7:24-27 (NIV)

24“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.

25The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.

26But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand.

27The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Note

These words of Jesus are spoken at the close of His matchless Sermon on the Mount. He touches on a multitude of relevant issues to all of us: How to respond to enemies, letting your light shine, keeping a clean heart, forgiveness, how not to worry, how not to lust, Not to retaliate to wrongs against us, having the right motives for giving, fasting, and praying. The model prayer, putting God first, having the right kind of treasures, trusting God to provide, warnings about false prophets, and much, much more.  And He closes with our text—an illustration of two men building a house. 

 

 

Illustration

One man builds on a foundation of rock, the other on a foundation of sand. 

Jesus says what every builder knows—The most important thing of all when building a house is not… 

the architectural plan, 

the size of the house, 

the inner furnishings, 

the interior design, 

the color of bricks you choose, 

or which side of the tracks you build it on. 

The FOUNDATION is the most important thing for any house. 

The FOUNDATION you build your house on will decide whether or not it survives the storms that inevitably come. 

It might be a fabulous, expensive, impressive, stand out house, but if it’s not built on a rock foundation it’s only a matter of time before a storm tests it. 

So Jesus’ entire focus is the FOUNDATION the builders choose to build on—one is ROCK (His teachings), the other is SAND (someone else’s teaching). Both houses look the same; they’re maybe even on the same block. You can’t tell a difference between the two—till a STORM comes. Suddenly from nowhere: 

The WINDS of adversity blow. The RAINS of trouble fall. The FLOODS of spiritual warfare strike the house. We see that the house built on Jesus’ teaching survives the storm. But the house built on sand crashes, and Jesus makes the point of noting, “Great was its fall.”

 

Note

Now, the house in Jesus’ teaching represents your LIFE. We’re all builders of a LIFE. Our LIFE consists of the sum product of hundreds of thousands of decisions made each and every day. And the DECISIONS we make are the byproduct of the values, world view, morality, and beliefs we have decided are true for us.

Now, here’s the deal:

Most people in our society focus, not on the FOUNDATION, but on the EXTERIOR—what others see. We focus on our looks, how much money we make, where we go to school, who we marry, what we drive, what street we live on, how big our house is, and so on. Rarely do we stop to think about the BELIEFS we build our house on…

Yet our beliefs are what makes up the FOUNDATION. Our FOUNDATION is comprised of the morality we choose to live by, what we believe about God, eternity, the Bible, and most importantly what we do with Jesus. And not just whether or not He is our Savior, but whether He’s our Teacher as well!

Because you see, practicing His teachings on forgiveness, sexual purity, what holds first place in your life, the things you treasure, what you worship, what you give your strength and effort to achieve—all make up your FOUNDATION.

We’re not supposed to cherry pick the verses we like and ignore the ones we don’t. No, the Bible is our roadmap, our unfailing GPS to guide us through our journey on earth till we reach heaven’s gates. What it teaches about: finances, morals, marriage, forgiveness, friendships, how to respond to enemies, trials, setbacks, and persecution we’re to embrace and obey! Jesus emphasizes not just HEARING what He said, but DOING it, LIVING it, PRACTICING it, making it part of your LIFESTYLE… 

This is how you create a rocklike foundation you can build your life on. Now, that said, let me talk to you about something I see happening in the American church as a whole. We live in a day where something called SYNCRETISM is gaining ground in God’s house. Syncretism is a fancy word that simply means “the combining of different beliefs” into a sort of religious stew. Syncretism is where you cherry pick the things you like from several different belief systems and sort of create your own personalized religion.

For instance, a good SYNCRETIST might choose: 

The “love and salvation” part of Christianity, Sprinkled with some eastern religious mysticism, Maybe a spattering of Islam (after all, we all worship the same God, right?) Salted with “I choose my own truth” relativism. 

Finished off with a healthy dash of Oprah’s New Age beliefs and Dr. Phil’s counsel and advice. Rather than allowing God’s word and the Lord Jesus to be our counselors in all things, we build our houses on a MIX—which is the SAND Jesus mentioned.

 

Note

Yet we find in the Bible that God has always told His people to avoid syncretism: 

 

Bible Verse

Exodus 20:3 (NIV)

3“You shall have no other gods before me.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Note

Joshua commanded Israel,

 

Bible Verse

Joshua 24:14 (NIV)

14“Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord .

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Note

Jesus taught against syncretism: 

 

Bible Verse

Matthew 6:24 (NIV)

24“No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Note

Now, the good thing about a storm like the one we’ve all been walking through is that—Storms reveal the SAND in your life. Storms expose where we’ve accepted: worldly values over kingdom values, misunderstandings about what the Bible teaches, misplaced trust in other things, wrong ideas about God, relationships we’ve accepted that are not centered around Christ, and so on. 

In other words, storms reveal where we’ve built on ROCK and where we’ve built on SAND.

 

Illustration

When gold is purified it is placed into an oven where it melts. Any impurities come to the top where they are skimmed off by the goldsmith. Your faith (including your foundation) works the same way. Peter wrote:

 

Bible Verse

1 Peter 1:6-7 (NIV)

6In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials.

7These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.

New International Version (NIV)

 

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

 

Note

In all our trials, Jesus the goldsmith, the author and finisher of our faith, skims off the top the impurities, the sand that has gotten into our foundation. It’s not pleasant, but the end product is stronger faith and greater fruitfulness!

So today I encourage you to: 

  1. Build your life ONLY on the foundation of Jesus Christ and God’s Word.
  2. Allow the Lord to expose any sand you may have been building on.
  3. Know that you’re going to emerge from this trying time purified, stronger, and more fruitful than ever!

 

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