The Pryor Times


March 1, 2012

Building on rock or sand?

I really enjoy looking at house plans.  I feel sure that most people would be very excited to have a house built according to their favorite plans.  But how would you feel if the construction workers started building you a new house on sand, without first laying a solid foundation?  If you are like me, you would immediately stop them and demand that they lay a solid foundation.  We all know that a house built upon sand would not last.

In Matthew 7:24-27, Jesus said that anyone who obeys what He says is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.  When the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, it did not fall because it was founded on the rock.  But Jesus said that those who hear Him and do not obey Him are like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.  When the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, it fell, and great was its fall.  It is very easy to understand how and why that would happen.

In this text, Jesus is expounding upon what He said a few verses earlier, in Matthew 7:21: “Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven.”  It is not enough to just call Jesus our Lord.  If He is really our Lord, we must obey Him.

Many people today want Jesus to be their Savior, but if Jesus is our Savior, He must first be our Lord.  Peter said in Acts 2:36 that God made Jesus both Lord and Christ.  Again, if Jesus is our Lord, we must obey Him.  To those who do not obey, Jesus asks in Luke 6:46, “But why do you call Me Lord, Lord, and do not do the things which I say?”

Our actions must be consistent with our words.  If Jesus is our Lord, that means He has power or authority over us, and we must submit to Him.  It is wrong to call Jesus our Lord if we are unwilling to obey His commandments.

Hebrews 5:9 tells us that Jesus gives eternal salvation to all those who obey Him.  I Peter 1:22 says that we purify our souls by obeying the truth.  The word of God is able to save our souls, but we must be doers of the word, and not hearers only (James 1:21-22).  Paul writes in Romans 2:13, “For not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified.”  These are just a few of numerous Scriptures that teach us the necessity of obedience.  Solomon wrote in Ecclesiastes 12:13, “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man's all.”  Salvation is a gift, but it is only given to those who obey the Lord.

What will happen to those who do not obey?  Like the house built on the sand, they will be destroyed.  In Romans 2:8-9, Paul says that those who do not obey the truth will receive “indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish.”  He adds in 2 Thessalonians 1:8-9 that those who do not obey the gospel will be punished with everlasting destruction in flaming fire.

We all recognize how foolish it would be to build a house on sand.  But Jesus wants us to know that it is even more foolish to endanger our souls by not obeying Him.  He loves all of us.  He demonstrated His love by dying for us while we were sinners.  In spite of our sins, He still loves us, and He wants to save us.  But He wants us to love Him in return.  And if we love Him, we will keep His commandments (John 14:15).

Don’t make the mistake of just hearing the Lord but not obeying Him.  Everyone who obeys Him will be saved, but everyone who fails to obey Him will be punished.  Are you building on solid rock, or are you making the mistake of building on sand?

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