Some of you have attended, or know of, Faith Free Presbyterian Church, in Greenville, South Carolina. What you may not know about the church building is that it rests on a large rock of solid granite. During construction the builders had to use dynamite to blast the surface because it was too hard for even a heavy drill to go through it. One member of the church remembers working on his hands and knees to try to chip away thin layers of the rock so that concrete could be poured to make a level sidewalk. It was hard work with no short cuts. But one thing is certain—the church building has a solid foundation! It won’t be sinking in mud come the next hard rain.
In Matthew 7:24–27 the Lord Jesus uses the picture of two houses to teach a very important lesson about wise living. He compares a person who pays attention to and obeys God’s commands (a wise person) to someone who builds his house upon a rock. No matter what comes into the life of the wise builder, he is able to keep a clear head and a steady heart because he has a firm trust in the Word of God. He has trusted the Lord’s promises to save his soul. He knows what the Bible says and can recall it to mind when he faces temptation and hard situations. Because decisions based on the Bible will have God’s blessing he knows he will be led in safe paths.
But there is another kind of builder Jesus mentions in this passage. The Lord describes a careless builder as one who builds his house on sand. He is the very opposite of the wise builder. The Lord calls him “a foolish man” in verse 26. Imagine such a house. Think of a strong wind or a wave of the sea coming at it. Surely it would not be long before it would be completely swept away. Sand shifts easily in the slightest breeze. If you have ever been to the beach and seen it washed back and forth constantly by the water, you will understand perfectly. The man who puts no value on God’s Word, is a man setting himself up for a fall.
Job 5:7 says that “man is born unto trouble, as the sparks fly upward.” It is a sure thing that troubles will come at some time to all of us. The question is, first, do you know the Lord Jesus as your Saviour? Then, are you well acquainted enough with God and His ways to have the faith to see you through? Have you listened when His Word is being taught, so you will be able to stand strong in the comforts of God’s promises and assurance of His love? Or are you neglecting God’s Word and crowding out His voice with thoughts of play and pleasures? Perhaps you are putting off turning from sin and coming to Christ in saving faith. Don’t build your life on sand, day after day putting your time and energy into a house that will not stand. Consider this warning from the Lord Jesus himself, and ask Him to make you a wise and careful builder to the glory of God.