February 28

Text: Matthew 7:26, 27

"And everyone who hears these words of Mine, and does not act upon them, will be like a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand.  And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and burst against that house; and it fell, and great was its fall." (NASB)

Matthew 7:24-27 is a parable that contrasts wisdom and folly by using building sites for houses.  The point of the parable was to contrast hearing and doing with only hearing.  In the lesson he shared, Jesus looked for more than agreement.

Note several things: (1) Jesus’ objective was more than being interesting or even being thought provoking.  The objective: Change religious behavior to righteous behavior.  (2) The only difference in the houses was their site—not their construction.  (3) The storms manifest themselves in the same way—perhaps it was the same storm.  (4) The difference between enduring without major damage and total loss was the sites.  (5) Some situations will support a house in severe circumstances, and some situations will not.  Everyone knew the importance of placing a house on a durable site!  (6) The primary contrast was listening to act and listening with no intention of acting.  Being there was not sufficient!

Observations: Some things will sustain life in difficult times, and some will not.  Jesus said only one thing endures all of life’s problems—his teachings.  Though this is not a part of this lesson that Jesus gave, his teachings even will endure the storm of death.  Jesus declared his sayings were adequate for all of life!

Either Jesus was extremely arrogant or he dealt with reality.  The first decision we each must make is to decide for ourselves who Jesus is.  Was he arrogant beyond belief?  Was he an intelligently insightful man, but nothing more?  Did he deal with our reality?  Did he actually come from God?

Our answer concerning his identity determines the building site for our lives.

Suggestion for reflection: How do you determine the building site for your life?  (Consider 1 Corinthians 15:12-19.)

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