“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few … Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven …
Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 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.
And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 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.” (Matthew 7: 13-14, 21, 24-27)
Our Lord warns us that the most impressive life, if built not to please Him but to please self, crashes in the end, even as the most impressive of sandcastles washes away in a mighty flood.
For a life built for self-aggrandizement may fool others with an artful and carefully-structured outward appearance of godliness, but if not built on His foundation of truth — and with no weighty reflection of the Lord’s glory as a result — that foolish life lacks eternal value.
Jesus warns: A life lived to impress in this kingdom falls with a great crash in the next.
True Christianity “does not consist in mere notions, however just or scriptural, but in a conformity of heart and life to the will of God. We must not, however, mistake, as though our works were the foundation whereon we are to build (that would indeed be a foundation of sand): Christ is the only foundation of a sinner’s hope; the only rock on which we must build; but then we must show that we do build on Him, by the super-structure which we raise upon Him: and if the super-structure be not such as to prove that we are founded on Him, our hopes of standing in the day of judgement are vain and delusive.
A house whose foundation is deep, and fixed upon a rock, will stand, whatever storms or tempests may beat upon it… And when the most specious structures shall fall, to the confusion and ruin of those who erected them, the wise builder shall dwell secure amidst the desolating judgments and the wreck of the worlds.”
(Charles Simeon (1759-1836), Discourse 1334, The Wise Builder)
Oh let’s listen to Jesus today! Let’s heed His words of warning. We must come before God and ask Him to show us which foundation, sand or rock, we are really building our life upon!