May 1 – Sermon on the Mount – The Two Foundations

Read Matthew 7:24-25

Did you know that the Apostle Peter’s name translates into the word ‘Rock’? I love this fact because Peter’s name originally was Simon and it was Jesus who changed his name as He told him in Matt 16:18 and that it was:

“…upon this rock that I will build my church and all the powers of Hell will not overcome it.”

I am enamored by the Apostle Peter.  He is one who laid his life on the line for his Lord, and his strengths and weaknesses are exposed for the world to see through the Bible. He demonstrates moments of brilliance, faithfulness and loyalty driven by a personality of passion beyond compare.  Likewise, the Bible shares with us how his weaknesses revealed times of doubt, impetuous action and neediness. However, there are some incredible connections to Peter’s life that Jesus (and the Bible for that matter) show us in the kind of person it takes to follow Jesus. 

To start with, Jesus words in Matt 7:24-27 paint a visual of a wise and a foolish builder.  One choosing to build his house on a rock, unmoved by the storms, water and wind due to a firm foundation, and the other on sand which could not stand the pressure. Now consider this in light of the previous verses that Jesus shared.  He spoke of the road to hell being wide, the gate to the Kingdom as narrow and for few.  He spoke of trees and teachers as being revealed by their fruit and His message to the crowds at the sermon dug deep.  His connection to building a house on an immovable foundation becomes clear- let the foundation be driven by truth.  

Enter Peter.

What an amazing, intentional and unconventional move by Jesus to pick Simon and change his name to ‘Rock’ – and to state that He is building the church on the Rock! Furthermore, the gates of hell (there is that word again “gate”)- the hell that is easy for many to get into, the hell where the road is wide and false prophets are waiting to devour people into – cannot stand against the church and the Rock!  Praise God that, despite the stories that Peter is known for where he stumbled, the foundation that he is known for was built by the ultimate craftsman.  The victories in Peter’s life far outweighed the shame of losses.

Remember, only Peter stepped out of the boat in Matthew 14.

Our prayer for the Church, and for ourselves as individuals can this week be:

  1. God, thank you for showing us (me) the way to build my life.
  2. God, thank you for giving us the foundation which is founded in truth.
  3. God, thank you for your faithfulness to teach us how to be wise in building our faith in you.
  4. God, thank you for exemplifying through Peter that, though the storm may come, that, which is built on the rock, will not be washed away.

Joe Rubino

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