Faithlife Sermons

Matthew 7:24-27

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This is a parable or story told by Jesus to illustrate how people should respond to God’s Word.
Every sermon preached should seek a decision to be made by the listener. There should always be an application that needs to be made, or a lesson to be learned.
Jesus is asking his listeners here, “what will your response be?” How will you respond to these Words that I’ve spoken to you?
We should also note that Jesus sums up His whole sermon in this parable.
This is Jesus’ conclusion to His sermon and he demands a response.
So, the main question today that we want to determine is - what are you building your life on? What are you basing your hope on? Are you building your life on the rock or on the sand?

Appearances can be deceiving! (Money Pit Slide)

Who remembers this movie?
How many things were wrong with this house?
Looks can be deceiving!
Things can appear solid and stable from the outside, but if the foundation isn’t right - none of it matters!
Pharisees/False Prophets looked similar on the outside right? But we know that they were NOT genuine believers on the inside.

Foundations Matter! (Leaning Tower Slide)

Foundations are vital!
There are two approaches that builders take when it comes to foundations.
One builder wants to hurry up with the foundation so that he can get on with the “important” parts of the house. This guy just wants to “get on with it” so that he can get to the fun stuff.
One builder knows that the foundation IS the important part of the house.
These two approaches are fairly common as we look at Christianity today.
One approach to Christianity looks towards what WE can GET out of God.
The other approach to Christianity (the correct one) looks toward the GIVER of the blessings.
One looks towards what it can GET out of God, and the other wants God HIMSELF.
Tractor Supply West of town
I don’t know if you’ve noticed the new building being constructed out here West of town. If you’ve driven by there you’ve seen two HUGE holes in the ground.
And if you see those two holes, you think to yourself - why would they go down into the ground instead of moving up with the building?
Well, to put it another way - to go UP, you need to go down first. To go up with a great structure, you need to dig deep first and secure the foundation. If you are going to build a life that counts, you have to get to the roots of what matters. You have to dig deep and get past the surface.
Word Study - Petra vs Ammon
City of Petra:
Petra Entrance (Rock) - (Petra Entrance Slide)
Petra (Entire City) - (Petra City Slide)
Ammon (Sand) - Modern day Sri Lanka - (Sri Lanka Slide)
What does the Rock/Sand represent?
The Rock is God’s Word. It is the sure foundation of the Word of God.
Isaiah 40:8
1 Peter 1:24-25
The Sand is the system of the world, the culture, going with the flow of society - no matter where it takes you.
I can tell you from experience, there are certain places that you DO NOT want to build a house. I recently pushed a pond in on itself and got rid of it. It used to be a pond, but now it’s a flat spot. It looks nice and serene, like a nice place to put a house - except the fact that it has 15 feet in some spots of old pond mud underneath of it. You talk about a bad foundation?!?!?!

Ocean Front Property in Arizona

(Get Serious Here)
There are plenty of “real estate agents” selling lots on the sand today.
But these real estate agents, these false prophets are selling lots built on the sand all day long and people are buying them. They are buying a false gospel and then building their life around it - only to be disappointed when it fails.
Listen to what the false prophets tell you to do in these verses:
Ezekiel 13:10–14 ESV
Precisely because they have misled my people, saying, ‘Peace,’ when there is no peace, and because, when the people build a wall, these prophets smear it with whitewash, say to those who smear it with whitewash that it shall fall! There will be a deluge of rain, and you, O great hailstones, will fall, and a stormy wind break out. And when the wall falls, will it not be said to you, ‘Where is the coating with which you smeared it?’ Therefore thus says the Lord God: I will make a stormy wind break out in my wrath, and there shall be a deluge of rain in my anger, and great hailstones in wrath to make a full end. And I will break down the wall that you have smeared with whitewash, and bring it down to the ground, so that its foundation will be laid bare. When it falls, you shall perish in the midst of it, and you shall know that I am the Lord.
They tell people to “paint over their mistakes” and to whitewash their sins and all will be well. They smooth over all the things that God calls sin and they make it seem OK with a thin veneer of paint over it.
You can listen to these people preach and feel good about your sin!!! But it’s a TRAP!!! The devil wants you to feel good about your sin!!!
There’s MOLD on the walls in your house, and they are telling you to PAINT over it and all will be well! And people do this all the time!!! They BUY this stuff!

Common Storm/Trial

What does the storm represent?
It represents the storms of life (difficulties) & judgement day. Either application can be made here.
The storm affected both houses the same!
Christians aren’t immune from difficulty in this life! But we do get the strength of the Lord to endure the things that come at us!
The Christian life is often MORE difficult (In this world you will have tribulation!)
If our life is built on the Rock, then we will be different than the rest of the world and it will be difficult because we are constantly going against the grain!
DO NOT buy the lie that Christ makes life easy. He makes it WONDERFUL, but it isn’t easy. It is a hard, painful road that we travel - but it is WORTH IT!

Different outcomes of the storm

One stood the storm
The life that is built on the solid rock foundation of God’s absolute TRUTH can withstand any storm. I mean ANY storm, doesn’t matter what it is. And it isn’t our strength that helps us withstand the storm, it’s the FOUNDATION. It’s Christ that enables us to stand.
On Christ the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand...
One fell in the storm
“Great was the fall of it”
Once a sinkhole had started forming underneath the house and the wind started blowing, it fell apart. A life that is built on “religious activities” won’t withstand the storm. A life that is built on a “profession” only won’t withstand the storm.
Matthew 13:4-9 explains this for us very well.

"Blessed rather are those who hear the Word of God and KEEP it” - Luke 11:28

Obedience to God’s Word is the KEY to building your life on the ROCK.
Notice the difference between the wise builder and the foolish builder:
The wise builder v.25 “hears these Words of mine and DOES them”
The foolish builder v.26 “hears these Words of mine and DOES NOT do them”
Some common responses that the Bible talks about:
Ezekiel 33:31–32 ESV
And they come to you as people come, and they sit before you as my people, and they hear what you say but they will not do it; for with lustful talk in their mouths they act; their heart is set on their gain. And behold, you are to them like one who sings lustful songs with a beautiful voice and plays well on an instrument, for they hear what you say, but they will not do it.
James 1:22–25 ESV
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.
Be a DOER of the Word, and not just a hearer. How will you respond today? Don’t paint over your sin with a cheap coat of paint that the world sells. Make it right with God today and live by HIS WORD!
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