Today we continue our series from the book by Dr. Tony Evans, “Can God be Trusted in our Trials?”
Today we’ll focus on laying a foundation that can withstand any trial.
Dr. Evans says being blown by the winds of a difficult trial is a poor time to discover that your spiritual Foundation is shaky or weak. So he’ll be giving us some tips that we’ll be sharing over the next few weeks about laying a solid foundation for our lives that would enable us to withstand any test or trial that the world, the flesh, or the devil can throw at you. The architect for the job is Jesus Christ himself.
Jesus finished The Sermon on the Mount with one of the best-known stories in all the Bible – he told of two men who built houses on different foundations and then describes what happens to each man’s house. We read this in Matthew 7 verses 24 through 27:
“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. 25 The 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.26 But 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. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”
So as we look at this story, we see a tale of two men. They had a lot in common, but they also had one crucial difference.
The similarities are that each man has the same dream. Each man wanted to build a house for his family. But we could also say that both men had the same pastor. Jesus said that both men heard his words. They both listened to the same sermon and both men were exposing themselves to the truth of God.
But the similarities between these two men faded into the background when the storm hit, because the wind and the waves revealed one critical difference between them – a different Foundation to their homes.
The difference is so major that Jesus called the first man ‘wise’ and labeled the second man ‘foolish.’ So we need to consider those terms.
So how can we avoid a foolish foundation? Foolish originates from a Greek word that means “moron.” A fool in the Bible is not someone who lacks cognitive ability, but a person with a complete lack of biblical comprehension and discernment…so a lack of skill in living. What’s worse is that the fool doesn’t recognize his foolishness so he can correct it.
You can’t build your house on sand, because if you try to dig deep, the sand will cave in. The foolish man went with the cheap and easy way out. He didn’t want to pay the cost, or take the time, to lay a strong foundation to his house.
So what made the difference? Jesus said it was the difference between just hearing his words and putting them into practice. Both men had all the proper ingredients for a firm foundation. They heard Jesus’ words. They both sat under the Word, but the first man took the Word home with him and applied it; and the second man left what he heard on the Pew along with his bulletin when he left church. It’s the difference between acting from a divine standpoint and a human standpoint.
More about that next week! Thanks for listening!
– Joe and Todd