A Firm Foundation

Reminded this morning that building a firm foundation doesn’t prevent a flood.

“Why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? Everyone who comes to Me and hears My words and does them, I will show you what he is like: 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.”   ~ Jesus

(Luke 6:46-48 ESV)

In Jesus’ story about two guys who built houses, one on a firm foundation the other not so much, what’s in common is that they both got hammered. The “stream broke” against the house whose foundation was solid just as it had against the house without a foundation. Having a solid foundation didn’t prevent the disaster.  In fact, it was laid because the wise builder knew that in life tough things are gonna happen. At some point, the waters are going to rise, the river’s going to burst its banks, and a flood is going to test the nature of the foundation. Floods happen to everyone. Not a matter of if they will . . . but when they will.

The other thing I’m taking note of is what lays a deep foundation.

Everyone who comes to Me and hears My words and does them . . . (v. 47)

It was the one who came to Jesus, listened to Jesus, and then obeyed Jesus whose house withstood the flood.

It’s the three-legged stool that keeps from tipping. A two-legged stool isn’t going to cut it. The flimsy foundation builder also came and heard, but he did not do (v. 49). That’s what set the two builders apart. They both came to Jesus. They both heard His words. But only one heeded Jesus and followed His way. And that made the difference in the flood.

Obedience made the difference. How come?

I don’t know that I often think of obedience as a foundation builder? We obey because we believe it’s the right the thing to do. We obey because we believe that disobedience results in consequences. We obey because we believe it pleases the Lord. We obey because we believe, at the end of the day, blessing comes from obedience. In short, we obey because we believe.

And I’m thinking that’s what drives the foundation deep. We believe what we hear and so we do. And so active faith becomes the firm foundation.

Faith is what takes the coming, and the hearing, and produces the doing. And so, while obedience is the X factor determining whether or not a firm foundation gets laid, faith IS that firm foundation. Because obedience is but the outcome of belief.

But someone will say, “You have faith and I have works.” Show me your faith apart from your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.

(James 2:18 ESV)

Our salvation, in its entirety, is through faith. Not only were we saved by faith (Eph. 2;8), but we are still being saved–even when the streams break–by faith. And one day, we know that we will be saved by faith, when we’re forever taken from this land of weak river banks and overwhelming floods.

Come. Hear. Do. By faith.

And the foundation will be firm. The house will stand. And the floods will not shake it.

By His grace. For His glory.

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