Focus Day 5 Steady Foundation: Digging Deeper

Digging Deeper Days

Finding the original intent of Scripture and making good application to our everyday lives as we become equipped to correctly handle the Word of Truth!

Today is 2-for-1 Friday!
Check out Steady Foundation!

The Questions

1) What is the context leading up to these verses?

2) What is the rock on which we can build our house?

3) Will this rock foundation make my life easy or increase my material possessions?

Matthew 7:24-27

24 “Therefore, everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them will be like a sensible man who built his house on the rock.

25 The rain fell, the rivers rose, and the winds blew and pounded that house. Yet it didn’t collapse, because its foundation was on the rock.

26 But everyone who hears these words of Mine and doesn’t act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.

27 The rain fell, the rivers rose, the winds blew and pounded that house, and it collapsed. And its collapse was great!”

Original Intent

1) What is the context leading up to these verses?
The gospel book of Matthew was written with overarching goal of proving Jesus is the Jewish Messiah.  Matthew wrote specifically to Jews, who had discarded Jesus as being the promised Savior because He dared dwell with them in the flesh. This was not the untouchable God they had expected. Get a little more background and perspective info at (This website has helpful videos to capture the basic themes of biblical context). Chapter seven is in the middle of Jesus’ lengthy Sermon on the Mount (starts in chapter 5) where Jesus wades through the hearts of people. Jesus opens with the “Blessed” series pointing to the those who are broken in their sin and see the need for Him as Messiah are blessed. Jesus continues with many more practical teachings pointing to the heart relationship over outward, deceptively righteous living. Chapter seven wraps-up the Sermon on the Mount, warning of false teachings and giving wisdom on how to watch for the spiritual fruit of a person identifying as a Chris followers. Jesus then concludes by describing how those who build their house on the rock of Jesus’ teachings (verse 24) will not be caught off guard and washed away either for eternity or in the everyday trials of life. These “words of Mine” refer back to all of Jesus’ teachings, but specifically the entirety of the Sermon on the Mount in chapters 5-7.

2) What is the rock on which we can build our house?
In today’s Journey Study, “Steady Foundation,” Tawnya gives further verses pointing where to look for a strong foundation. Proverbs 3:18-19 states: “She [wisdom] is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her; those who hold her fast are called blessed. The Lord, by wisdom, founded the earth; by understanding he established the heavens.” Here, Scripture points to wisdom as being part of the foundation from the very beginning. This wisdom leads to life! But what is this wisdom? Is it simply our own personal lessons gained from knowledge and experience? No!
Who was with the LORD in the beginning? The Lord Jesus (John 1:1-18). In what way do we go? Through the Lord Jesus (John 14:5-7). As Pastor Timothy Keller notes in his series on wisdom, Proverbs 3 personifies wisdom, in part to make the book easy to understand by young boys or children in the setting it was written. However, this personification does point forward to Jesus, the embodiment of all wisdom. Seeking wisdom, salvation, and the way of Christ is itself the rock foundation; on this we are to build our lives.

3) Will this rock foundation make my life easy or increase my material possessions?
Hear the terrifying sound of a sand-castle-life crumbling at its end as Jesus declares, “I never knew you, depart from me”. (Matthew 7:23) If the “house” of our lives and our churches can be built on rock, not sand, then let’s find that rock! (Matthew 7:24-27) In Matthew 7, Jesus isn’t talking about a building or material possessions, rather He is referring to a spiritual building standing on HIM as the foundation. How do you know what foundation on which your life is standing? God’s “pruning” is the sure evidence of our relationship with the Vine, that is, God Himself. (John 15:1-7). Pruning is the process by which God, through His Holy Spirit, makes us more like Himself. When we are convicted of sin, when we have an appetite to love others, become active in church, and study His Word, we can know we are His. When we see His discipline in our lives, bringing our desires in line with His holy, righteous desires, we are seeing the sure evidence of our adoption as sons and daughters (Hebrews 12). Sanctification (that process of God’s Spirit shaping and refining us) is the evidencing proof of our justification (meaning the moment when we surrender our lives to Christ, recognizing He alone can rescue us from the punishment we deserve because of our sin). (Romans 5:1-5) One, either justification or sanctification, cannot and does not exist without the other. God uses this process to grow in every believer good spiritual fruit. To build your house on the rock is to hear what Jesus says and obey. To be foolish and build your house on the sand is to hear and ignore. Jesus is the only sure Foundation, the Rock on which we stand; all other ground is sinking sand. Where will you place your feet today?

Everyday Application

1) What is the context leading up to these verses?
Before building, a builder needs plans and blueprints for what will be built. If there is no plan or intentionality, one might get a house they did not want or a building that looks like a heap of bricks and dirt.
Have you considered what kind of house you are building or even desire to build? Do you find yourself looking to your parents, friends, and magazines for inspiration, and hoping for a nice house to result? Or are you studying Christ’s words (Matthew 5-7) and taking them to heart?
Success and happiness in a vocation is a blessing. Hard work and reaping benefits is a good thing! However, is the striving for success interfering with the goal of Christian living: to follow Christ and make disciples? Living out Christ’s teachings begins at home, being patient with your spouse and children, and pouring energy into the relationships around you. Evangelism (simply, telling others about the hope of Christ) is the centering calling for every Christian, but before you travel to the ends of the earth to share Jesus, are you building spiritually your own character and evangelizing your own household and neighbors for Christ?

2) What is the rock on which we can build our house?
Pastor Timothy Keller observes that setting Christ as the foundation for life is like a path taken day-by-day. He explains that wisdom is not something instantaneously received in a moment of a big decision. Rather, wisdom is the daily seeking of Christ through His Word that builds a steady foundation, equipping us to honor God when storms arise. (verse 25) When we hear the words of Christ and act according to them (verse 24), we are building a life on the Steady Foundation of Jesus. Understanding Christ’s words takes day-by-day discipline and humility to seek and study. Plan how you can better understand Scripture, perhaps beginning by picking a gospel letter (Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John) for a month. Research the background with foot notes and commentaries or videos like the ones from Bible Project. Print off or write out Scripture. Write out your questions. Verse-by-verse, mark what Scripture teaches about God, and, in contrast, what it teaches about the human heart and our need for a Savior. The task seems unending because the wisdom and depth of the LORD is unending. Rejoice in each lesson and trust God redeems the time spent in seeking HIM.

3) Will this rock foundation make my life easy or increase my material possessions?
Many of us would rather have an easy life than a God-honoring one. Jesus didn’t call us to seek a balanced life, the easy life, or our best life now, rather to lose our life and find it in Him alone. (Luke 9:23) Who would choose to live in the midst of a fire? Yet, it is the only way to be refined. Sanctification and an easy life are incompatible. If God intended every day of your life to be easy, it would be. But, in His infinite grace, He intends for our everyday lives to be His platform of refinement.  If you are looking for a life that matches filtered social media images, then be careful, you may be looking for a life focused more on yourself than on honoring God.  Be careful with desiring more outward possessions and beauty. It is possible that once you have them, they will start to possess you.
We have hope today not because life is easy, people love us, and we are strong, but because God exists and He is our Father. May our passion for Christ always be greater than our passion for an easy life.

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Digging Deeper is for Everyone!

1) Take this passage (or any other passage).
2) Read it, and the verses around it,
several times
3) Write down your questions
as you think of them.
4) Ask specific culture related questions and be ready to dig around for your answers. Google them, use, or look them up in a study Bible and read the footnotes (click on the little letters next to a word and it will show you
other related verses!). (
5) Check your applications with other trusted Christians that you are in community with and embrace the fullness of God
in your everyday!

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Why Dig Deeper?

Finding the original meaning is a huge deal when we study Scripture and can make all the difference in our understanding as we apply God’s truths to our everyday lives.

In our modern-day relationships, we want people to understand our original intention as we communicate; how much more so between God and humanity?!

Here’s a little bit more on why we take Digging Deeper so seriously.

Study Tools

We love getting help while we study and is one of many excellent resources, providing the original Hebrew (Old Testament) or Greek (New Testament) with an English translation.

Want to know more about a specific word in a verse? Click on “Strong’s Interlinear Bible” then click the word you’d like to study. Discover “origin”, “definition” and hear the original pronunciation – That Is Awesome!

Want more background? Click “Study Tools”, then pick a few commentaries to read their scholarly approach, keeping in mind that just because a commentary says it, doesn’t mean it’s true. (just like the internet :-))

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