“Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? As for everyone who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice, I will show you what they are like. They are like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it, because it was well built. But the one who hears my words and does not put them into practice is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. The moment the torrent struck that house, it collapsed and its destruction was complete.”
A sometimes, maybe even often neglected aspect of Jesus’s ministry is his teaching. Healing and miracles, and of course Jesus’s death and resurrection are usually front and center, especially the latter. But Jesus’s teaching can easily be relegated almost to a footnote. Not to mention there are those who see Jesus’s gospel of the Sermon on the Mount, here in the passage above, the Sermon on the Plain, as law, something only to help us see our need of the Savior since we can’t keep it, in direct contradiction to our Lord’s words above (also Matthew 7:24-29). God in his grace in Jesus not only forgives us for what we’re unable to do, but enables us to do what left to ourselves, we can’t. Otherwise the plain words of scripture would make little or no sense. And at worst, Jesus’s words would be misleading, which we know is not the case.
The storms of life do come and go, but if our lives are built on the solid foundation of Christ, which includes his teachings, then we’ll withstand all of that, and in the end still stand. Not the case, sadly, for those who fail to build their lives on Christ. We build not for this old world with its values, destined to perish, but for the new world present already in Christ, and to someday take over in a new heaven and new earth. In and through Jesus.