<<base, groundwork>>

The OT prophets and OT sacrifices prepared the way and laid the basis for the ultimate sacrifice of Christ for sin, with His life and teaching becoming Christianity’s foundation (1 Cor 3:11). The ministry of the NT Apostles was to build on and extend that, like adding further levels, keeping faithful to God’s

A sure foundation is vital

master plan and under His direction, Christ being the chief cornerstone – the reference point (Mk 12:10; Act 4:11). In turn, each Christian contributes to building or extending Christ’s Kingdom (His church) here on earth (1 Cor 3:10; Eph 2:20-22). Some work is durable and precious, done by His direction and with the Holy Spirit’s power accomplishing God’s purposes and some is worthless, not standing up to the test as it is a work of the carnal flesh (Zech 4:6; 1 Cor 3:12-15).

Jesus said when people listen and put into practice His teachings, it is like building on a solid rock foundation which provides stability, while those who hear but don’t carry out His instructions are like builders on sand, when the testing comes the result is destruction (Mt 7:24-27). There was probably little to distinguish between the two structures; the significance of the foundation (or lack of) was evident when the storm came – one house stood firm, the other fell with a great crash. The foundation, which Jesus said was “hearing these words of mine and putting them into practice”, determined the stability during the buffeting and the enduring ability to avoid

destruction. Without such a solid foundation all else is vulnerable and in danger of ruin. Am I building my life on the solid, unshakable Word of God, doing what it says, or on the shifting, unreliable sands of society’s ‘if it feels good, do it’ philosophy? It is not our wisdom, salvation or church attendance that gets us through the storm. While these are crucially important aspects of Christian life it is doing what we hear Him say that will get us through the storm. God has bound Himself to honour His Word, and our obedience aligns us with it and activates His power on our behalf. 

Foundations are a preparation for the future; they are ultimately out of sight below ground level and must be robust enough to support what is built, to withstand the inevitable destructive forces that will come. Effort is involved – to clear the surface rubble and dig deep, onto rock or solid substrate that will provide stability for what will come later (Lk 6:48).  Past accomplishments lay a foundation for future exploits. David had a track record – a dead bear and lion. He was confident the Lord would help him conquer this blaspheming giant. He had faith in the size of His God not the misleading impression of the opposition (1 Sam 17:34-37,45-49).

In a parable, using a different image, Jesus said, if there is no sustaining root the plant lasts only a short time because it can’t receive nourishment (Mt 13:21). The message is clear – as a priority establish and continue to strengthen your connection with God. We have the opportunity to put

Is my life ‘built’ on Christ?

ourselves where we can’t be dislodged, by sending down roots now before the time of trial. Our inner character needs to be maintained by continually making wisdom choices, living with integrity, challenging any wrong motives and thoughts together with a balanced lifestyle so the output of our resources does not exceed the input causing it to crumble under the pressures of life. Everyone will encounter storms; often these are unpredictable and come at inopportune times with little notice. What ultimately happens to us is because of the foundations (or lack of them), that we have (or failed to) establish.

See also: forethought, frame of reference, plans and purposes, preparation, rock, stability, survival.