“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (7:24)
On this past Sunday, we concluded our study of the Sermon on the Mount. Sinclair Ferguson offers this final exhortation in his book on the Sermon. He wrote:
What does it mean to build on a solid foundation? It means more than hearing God’s word taught and becoming familiar with it, or even agreeing with it. We can do all that and still be a spiritual fool (7:26). Obedience to Christ’s word distinguishes the wise man from his foolish neighbor. (pg. 170, emphasis original)
He then concluded:
…Jesus did not preach it (the Sermon) in order to be admired for his homiletical skills. He preached it to produce obedience. He preached it so that the authority people recognized in his preaching might be realized in their lives. (pg. 171, emphasis original)
Ferguson’s final line is so compressed and rich it’s worth repeating:
(Jesus preached the Sermon) so that the authority people recognized in his preaching might be realized in their lives.
“And when Jesus finished these sayings, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, for he was teaching them as one who had authority…” (7:28-29a)
How will we respond? Amazement? Agreement? Admiration? Mere Hearing? May we hear and believe with the Word taking root, bearing the fruit of obedience.