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(STORMS OF LIFE]
SCRIPTURE - MATT 7:24 - 27 JULY, 2001
Therefore, who ever hears these sayings of Mine and does them, is like a wise man that built his house on a rock, and the storms came and beat on it, and it fell not, because it was built on a rock.
And, whosoever hears these sayings of Mine and does them not, is like a foolish man that build his house on sand, and the storms came and beat on it, and great was the fall of it.
SUBJECT - THE STORMS OF LIFE
One of the biggest problems many Christians have today, is dealing with problems that come in to their lives. Some can handle them very well, while others seem to fall apart. Jesus, after finishing His sermon on the mount, ended it with this parable. It is plain, and to the point. After reading this tract, you should better understand why things happen, and how to be better prepared to handle them.
First, we see that Jesus is talking to a certain group of people. He was talking to those that had sat there and listened to Him expound on how one, should live their lives, and treat others. Naturally, He also told them about their relationship to God. This part is primary.
He talked about how to treat friends, and enemies. He covered the whole gamut of human existence. Then, He finished up with the subject scriptures.
We can tell He was talking to those that were present, because He said, 'Whosoever, hears these sayings of Mine....' That, right there, excludes those that have not heard His teaching.
Anyway, He then went about to split the group up, in to two distinct smaller groups. Those that followed what He said, and those that ignored what He said. Notice, there was no middle ground. You either did, or you didn't.
From there, He went in to detail about building a house. One group, built their houses on a Rock (firm foundation), while the other built theirs on sand (an unstable foundation.)
In constructing a house, it is essential that you first, make the foundation sturdy, and immovable. If you don't do that, then, no matter how much money you spend on the rest of the house, it won't be worth one plug nickel. The sturdier the foundation, the longer it will last.
The same thing can be said about our lives. The foundation that we build it on, will determine, how we hold up, not during good times, but during the storms of life.
If you will notice in the subject verses, Jesus says that storms came and beat on both houses. This should let you know, that just because you live your life according to what God says is right, does not mean that you will not have adversity.
In fact, all you have to do, is look at Jesus' life, and see all the adversity He went through. And if He went through it, then you will have to, as well.
Jesus said, 'And the storms came.'
Today, too many Christians, profess to be strong in the Lord. They walk around with their chests stuck out, and their heads high in the clouds. And, there is nothing wrong with that. They have a reason to be like that, seeing who they are, and where they are going. But, the problem is, many of them are like that, because everything is rosy, and bright in their lives. When things are going good for anybody, they will act as if they are 'king of the world.' Nothing can stop them. They are on a roll.
But, as soon as things start getting a little rough, then they begin to go in to mild depression. They don't smile as much. They look subdued, and have very little to say, about anything. Some, even completely withdraw from being social and active.
If the problem is of massive proportions, then they go berserk, or in to deep depression, and maybe even get suicidal. This is the scenario that I am painting of the world [the unsaved]. They are like this, because when things go bad, they have nothing left to fall back on. Their total focus is on their bank accounts, their health, their power, and influence, and their jobs. Let either or all of them vanish, and as far as they are concerned, they might as well die. They can't cope.
This is the foundation the world is built on.
Then, we have those that have a much greater foundation on which their lives are built. It is one that has 100% durability. One that has stood the test of time. One that, no matter what happens, will always triumph, and leave those that are anchored to it, with peace of mind, and victory.
A glaring example of this type of rock solid durability, and the victory of those that are trusting in it, is found in the book of Job.
Here is a man, that had it all. Riches, family, servants, and influence. But, in one day, ONE DAY, it all came crashing down on him. He lost everything, just about. All of his wealth, his servants, his children, and, with all that, his influence. In the 20's, the same thing happened to a lot of rich people, and the result
was, many of them, killed themselves. But, Job, though distressed, did not let the circumstances, that came upon him, cause him to act foolishly.
Then, if that wasn't bad enough, some days later, he was stricken with, what could be described as a form of leprosy, or maybe even cancer. His wife came to him and said, in so many words, 'If serving God, is going to get you all of this misery [talking about all the things that had happened to them], you might as well curse Him, and die!' Notice, this was his wife, his help mete, the one that is supposed to stand by her man. How quickly she forgot about all of the good things that they had, prior to this episode.
Job said the right thing to her, when He replied, 'Woman, you talk like some worldly person, that doesn't know God. Shall we like Him when things are going well, and reject Him, when they go bad???'
Job's faith in God, was such that he said, no matter how bad things are, right now, I am going to wait, until my change comes. This meant, he knew, things were going to get better, and he was going to keep serving God, because without Him, he had no hope. Job did have a rough time of it though, but his faith in God remained in tact. The end result of this loyalty came, when he ended up, with at least 7 times more, than what he lost.
I would dare say, many of these shouting, tongue speaking, bible toting, going to church 7 days a week Christians, would be just like Mrs. Job, wanted her husband to be, if they lost 1/10th of what they had. Why??? Because they are more interested in the blessings, than the blesser. Their stuff, is their god. They just go to church, to thank God for what He has given them, and they want Him to continue to add to them. If they lose one little thing, they get upset.
They forget that Jesus, gave up everything, including His own life, to be obedient to the Father.
One thing about building a house on a firm foundation, is that it usually costs more to build, and therefore, may leave you with less frills, but it will stand the test of time.
A house that is built with cheap materials, may allow you to have more frills and other comforts, but it will fall apart when storms come against it.
Notice, when talking about this particular house that fell, He says, 'Great was the fall of it."
Have you ever seen or perhaps been in a house that was hit by a violent storm??? Many times, the house may be blown apart, meaning the walls, the roofing or some other parts may be destroyed, but the frame remained, and the house could be rebuilt. And, have you seen how some houses were so demolished, that it didn't even look like a house had been there at all??