Luke 6:46-49 (NIV) “Why do you call me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ and do not do what I say? I will show you what he is like who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice. He is 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.”
The only sure foundation for life is found in the Scriptures, especially in the words of Jesus. However hearing, or even knowing His words by heart, is not enough. Only obedience to those words will equip a person for life in the kingdom. At the last judgment, there will be no test on memory verses to determent a person’s beliefs, but a thorough inspection of their life and actions, which are the surest indicators of what they believe (Revelation 20:12-130.
Jesus, as usual, gave a powerful illustration to cement this fact in peoples’ minds. The person who not only hears what Jesus says, but who puts those words into practice, enabling them to become foundational in their lives, will find that, like a house with a deep and solid foundation, they will be enabled to stand firm, no matter what storms shake his or her life.
On the other hand, those who simply hear Jesus‘ words but don’t make them foundational to their lives have a whole different outcome. They will end up building their lives, not on God’s eternal truths, but on the shifting sands of public opinion, situational ethics, and popular theology. When the storms of life hit these people, and they will, the results will be catastrophic: a complete collapse and, ultimately, destruction.
Many have heard Jesus words. Some of those even have those words emblazoned on tee shirts, or bumper stickers, or Bible covers. But only those who allow the words of Jesus to become internalized, to not only penetrate their hearts, but to work a transformation there, will find the words able to act as a strong foundation, one that will stand through all the storms of life.
Father, thank You that these precious teachings of Jesus have been so faithfully preserved for us in the words of Scripture. Help me to always read these words, not for information, but to allow them to sink deep into my heart, to transform my whole life and worldview, and to move me to act in ways that reflect Your character and Your glory. Amen.