Jesus the Rock | Matthew 7:24-29 (Mville)

May 11, 2014 Speaker: Christopher Rich Series: The King Has Come | Matthew

Topic: New Testament Passage: Matthew 7:24–7:29

Jesus the Rock - Matthew 7.24-29 from Damascus Road Church on Vimeo.


Kings Message Declared - The Book of Matthew

Wk22: Jesus the Rock - Matthew 7:24-29


Good Morning! We are continuing our series in the Book of Matthew, looking at Jesus the

promised Savior-King of God’s people. Jesus has begun His public ministry and has drawn a

large crowd to hear his preaching of the gospel of repentance meaning turning from sin to the

kingdom of God. This week we are closing out our look at the Message of the King as Jesus is

finishing his Sermon on the Mount. Jesus opened this sermon with the Beatitudes where he

says the kingdom of heaven will be for those we recognize their spiritual poverty and need for

the God. Jesus calls citizens of the kingdom to be salt and light to the world meaning we do not

retreat from the world but faithfully engage with it as ambassadors of a different and better

kingdom. Jesus then distills all the commands of the law and prophets down to love God and

love people. While appearing simple, this has deep implications over all aspects of our lives

including things as simple anger, as complex as lust and divorce, and as difficult as loving our

enemies. Disposition of our hearts towards God and people matter to God; but so do our

actions. Jesus gives us clear instructions on how we are to generously serve those in need, and

how to worship God as both a loving Father and just King, through prayer and fasting. In all that

we do we are to have an eternal perspective that changes our motivation from earthy gain to

eternal rewards and our daily anxiety and fear to everlasting hope, knowing God is with us now

and through eternity. We are then warned by Jesus against hypocrisy and the difference

between condemnation of others and discernment of character and behavior leading to a great

crescendo with the Golden Rule of “Whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to

them.” Where everyone says “yes and Amen!”, Jesus begins to clarify his teaching is difficult.

There is an easy wide path leading to destruction and a narrow hard path leading to life. There

are false prophets and teachers and there are those who think they are worthy of the kingdom

based on their own work but they will be denied entrance into the kingdom for not being “poor in

spirit” relying on themselves. This is a sermon and Jesus is preaching there are eternal

consequences at stake. As Jesus closes, we’ll see citizens of the kingdom are called to build on

the foundation of Jesus the Rock, under authority of Jesus the King.

Matthew 7:24-29 24

like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and

the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the

rock. 26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish

“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be

man who built his house on the sand. 27 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds

blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.” 28 And when Jesus

finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, 29

as one who had authority, and not as their scribes.

Jesus words are different

People were amazed by Jesus teaching because it was unlike anything they had ever heard.

The scribes and rabbis of Jesus day always taught referring to what previous teachers said

using tradition as their primary source of authority. Jesus preaching is different because he is

teaching as if he is THE authority. Several times Jesus says “you have heard it said…. But I

say…” The Sermon on the Mount is not universal common wisdom Jesus merely breathed in

from the air of the culture around him and exhaled back out. Jesus is not leading a discussion

group, he doesn’t say “so do we all think these are good ideas?” or “I’m sure we can all agree

on these basic principles.” Jesus is not building a consensus, He is building a kingdom. He says

these words “of mine.” So this section starts and ends with Jesus authority. He is not having a

discussion of theology or sociology. Jesus is not a philosophy professor, but a king declaring

the nature of his kingdom what citizenship in this kingdom looks like for those who “hunger and

thirst for righteousness.”

Hearing and doing

Like any preacher Jesus is rightly concerned that while people give him an audience and may

agree with what he is saying as he says it, maybe even get a little fired up towards action,

they will leave the sermon forgetting what was said and never put any of it into practice in their

lives. He knows we are prone to listen for information, but have little real desire to put into

practice what we hear for actual transformation. Jesus is clear there is no value in listening to

his sermon if you are not actually going to do what he has instructed. Agreement without action

is meaningless. James 2:17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. Jesus

knows there are people in the crowd who will hear him but misunderstand his teaching as ideas

to be carefully considered rather than instructions to carefully be followed. Jesus is not giving a

campaign speech hoping to become a king, he is giving declarations because he IS the King.

Jesus is lovingly warning everyone listening; there are consequences for failing to turn hearing

into doing.

One Desire: Home

Jesus warning against inaction is loving, because he is purposefully tapping into our desire to be

home. We all want to be home. We recognize there is a reality in living in this world that at times

we don’t feel like we are “at home”. All of us can struggle at different times and different ways to

understand where we belong. We have a restlessness to not be satisfied or completely at ease

for he was teaching them

in parts of our world or lives that don’t feel safe or warm. We want refuge from things that are

unpleasant or unsafe. We want familiarity. That is why Jesus doesn’t talk about building a shed,

a barn, a business, or a fortress he talks about building a home because homes are distinctly

personal. Home is a lot of things: Home is where you live, yes you may work in it or on it but

a home is where you know you live. Home is where family dwells together. Home is where you

rest from the work and stress of the world and recreate. Home is the refuge you run to when

things are bad. Home shelters you from the storms. Home is where you store provisions; it is

where you are fed to go back into the world. Home is where you invite others into your lives

through hospitality. Home is where memories are made, days are lived, and futures are planned

for. Home is where you know you belong. We all want these things.

Two Men: Wise v Foolish

Both the wise and the fool want the same thing and are looking for it in the same place. The

want safety, they want comfort, they want to be near the river (life comes from water, we

all needs water) they both are building. They have the same goal and the same desire but

dramatically different outcomes in how it plays out. What is difference? What separates the two?

They are both in the same place, listening to the same sermon, preached from the same Jesus,

and wanting the same things yet they respond differently.

Jesus says the wise are the ones who actually put his words into practice as they build. Those

in construction are know there are building codes and best practice that need to be followed for

a structure to be sound. These codes and practices can often require a lot more effort, make a

job take longer, and cost more, but they are worth it for the long term health and stability of the

home being built. Luke 6:48-49 48 he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the

foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could

not shake it, because it had been well built. 49 But the one who hears and does not do them is

like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation.

Luke’s account of the sermon says wise was willing to dig deep. There are no effective short cuts

when it comes to building a lasting home. You have to go beyond or below what is easily seen

on the surface.

The foolish man, Jesus says, is the one who hears Jesus words and teaching finds them

agreeable but does not actively put them into practice. Let’s give the foolish builder some slack

here. It wasn’t like the foolish man obviously chose the wrong ground, or was trying to fail. The

ground looked good on the surface, it was near the river maybe even in the same neighborhood

as the wise man. The failure was in heeding the instruction to dig deep below surface to find out

the ground below was not rock but rather sinking sand. Proverbs 19:2 Desire without knowledge

is not good, and whoever makes haste with his feet misses his way

There are always going to be aspects of Jesus teaching the world will find attractive or

encouraging but where people stumble is on Jesus authority and acting on His instructions. I

have had unbelieving friends and coworkers in the past that liked aspects of biblical marriage

or parenting they have heard or seen me live out but just didn’t think all the Jesus stuff was

that important. They like what is on the surface but are not interested in the firmness of the

foundation or the long term consequences for building on poor ground. Many want the benefits

of dwelling in the King’s house, few want the responsibility of Kingdom citizenship. Do you know

what foundation you are building the house of your life on? Have you taken the time look below

the surface of your desires to dig deep and see what lies beneath?

Two houses: Built on Rock vs Built on Sand

Jesus goes on, both the wise and the foolish build very similar houses very close to one

another. On the outside they many not even seem that different all. Both house may function

very well for a time. Even when people enter them they may have very few noticeable

differences. We can easily focus surface level appearances and neglect the soundness of

the foundation. No one ever comes into our houses and says hey let’s check out your firm

foundation when everything looks great above ground. We only begin to give the foundation

attention when we start to see cracks above the surface or begin to feel the structure bend and

flex making it unstable. Sometimes problems in foundations develop slowly over time. Slow

shifts can lead to dramatic changes over time that can make a home uninhabitable even when

there are few pressures from the outside of the house. We visited a house for sale in Texas that

was beautiful outside and looked great online, but slowly over years the foundation had shifted

a whole foot making the windows and doorways odd angles and in one room Tara was taller on

one end then I was on the other. While still good looking it was not suitable to live in without a

new foundation being dug and poured, and it would never be as structurally strong as if it had

been built on a solid foundation in the first place.

The foundations we are resting and building our lives on regularly need to be surveyed and

maintained, but if our foundations are fundamentally flawed or corrupted no amount of surface

maintenance can prevent major consequences when outside pressures being to build. My

Dad’s wood boat was always beautiful on the outside but the hull planks were never checked

so dry rot set in. The boat looked great in the garage but when it went out in a rough river a

hole opened up and the boat sank. Jesus is warning lovingly. Hearing and not doing will lead to

destruction when the storm comes.

One Storm

Rain in Palestine is not as frequent as it is here. When rain comes, it comes suddenly and it

comes violently. Both the house of the wise and the foolish are hit with the same storm. Waters

rise, floods come, winds howl with overwhelming destructive power. The wise and the fool

both run into the homes they have built. The home’s primary function as protective shelter from

the elements and the storm is put to the ultimate test. It is at this time the clearest difference

is seen between the two houses, between the wise and the fool. Between those who hear

and agree with Jesus as a teacher and those who act for Jesus because he’s King. A storm is

coming; there will be difficulty and calamity. It’s not questions of if a storm is coming, it is when.

Isaiah 28:16-17 16

laid as a foundation in Zion, a stone, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone, of a sure

foundation: ‘Whoever believes will not be in haste.’ 17 And I will make justice the line, and

righteousness the plumb line; and hail will sweep away the refuge of lies, and waters will

overwhelm the shelter.”

Jesus says the house of the fool will not stand when the storm comes because it is built on a

weak foundational lie that merely agreeing with Jesus’ teaching has the same saving power

as trusting Jesus as Savior and actively following Jesus as Lord. For the house built on the

foundation of inaction Jesus says, “great was the fall of it”, this is total collapse. We don’t have

imagine the consequences of what it means for homes to be built in places with shifting ground,

we saw it last month the destruction can be deadly.

One Rock and One Authority

A storm is coming for all of us. What is the foundation you have been building on and what is the

refuge you run too when the storms come? How have they held up for you? Have they kept you


Proverbs 18:10 The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is


Psalm 62:2 He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.

We need to build on a foundation stronger than any outside storm. The rock is stronger than the

storm. Jesus is the rock we build on, Jesus is the power we build from, Jesus is the authority we

build under.

I Cor 3:11 For no one can lay a foundation other than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ

Acts 4:11 This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the


therefore thus says the Lord God, “Behold, I am the one who has

Because of Jesus was rejected as God and King by men he endured the deadly storm of the

cross all of us foolish builders deserve for disobediently building our house with our own plans,

on foundations of our own will. Because Jesus is more than a good teacher, he is the great God,

he has full authority over death, even his own. So even in the storm of real physical death, when

the flood waters of the sealed tomb completely submerse his lifeless body, His house does

not suffer a total collapse, but rather stands firm in the unshakable foundation of the Creator

of the Universe, and by the power of the resurrection Jesus walks out of the tomb to build new

lives, new homes, and ultimately a new kingdom for his people. He builds so we build. We

build on the foundation of Jesus, because of the salvation of Jesus, the Holy Spirit builds in us.

Phil1:6 And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring to completion

at the day of Jesus Christ.

Jesus is closing his sermon and saying “in all the aspects I’ve laid out in this sermon and more

it is not enough for you to profit by merely agreeing these are good idea or that you’d like to

one day put them into practice. I will die and shed my blood for you not so you can remain

inactive and dead, but so you can have new life where you actively building today before the

storm comes tomorrow.” We are all building something. As Christians we are to build on the

foundation of Jesus under the authority of Jesus. We can often do the opposite. We build under

our own authority, using our own power, and we use things we are to build with and instead use

them as our foundation. We’ll start personal and work out.

We are not build our lives with our kids as our foundation because they can be shifting sand

(talk to a parents of children who they loved and engaged with well growing up who are not a

blessing but a constant source of pain) we are to build into our kids on the foundation of Jesus.

We don’t build our lives on our marriages as our foundations, we build into our marriages on the

foundation of the Rock.

We don’t build our lives on our sexuality as our foundations, but build into our sexuality on the

foundation of the Rock and live it under the authority of the Jesus.

We don’t build our lives on the foundation our jobs or our careers. They go away with a quick

turn of the economy or decision from management. We build into our work on the foundation of

the Rock

Eph 2:19-22 19 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with

the saints and members of the household of God, 20 built on the foundation of the apostles

and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, 21

being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22

in whom the whole structure,

In him you also are being built

together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.

Jesus is preaching to a large crowd, he’s not having a one on one. This is what his church is

supposed to look like! We don’t build this church with any other foundation than Jesus and His

commands. We don’t build around one preacher or pastor, or Road Group leaders, or strategy,

or branding. These are foolish foundations because pastors fail, relationships can break,

strategies and branding can grow stale. When storms hit the church would fall apart. Build on

the foundation of Jesus, under His authority and when the storm hits and the floods come, the

church remains.

Matthew 28:18-20 18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth

has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the

name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20

have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Look around at this room at one point all of Christianity on the planet was represented by a

group smaller than this. A storm had hit, Jesus the preacher of this great sermon who spoke

with authority had been taken by the religious and governmental authorities and executed on a

cross for claiming to have ultimate authority. They sought refuge not alone, but together, in an

upper room with the doors and windows were closed a locked to keep out the howling wind and

rain of Jewish and Roman oppression. And Jesus comes into the room and says “Peace be with

you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you”

And on the foundation of Jesus, his perfect life, his death in our place for our sin, empowered by

the Holy Spirit, and under Jesus authority that group of 120 dug deep and built, teaching others

not just the words of Jesus but how to observe/obey/do the commands of Jesus and that house

went from 120 scared people in Jerusalem 2000 years ago to a few billion people around the

world who claim the name of Jesus as their King. What can we build as a church with Jesus as

the foundation, the power of the Holy Spirit, and under the authority of King? Trust Jesus!

teaching them to observe all that I