There is a well-known hymn that is often sung which has the lyrics in part… “In Christ the Solid Rock I stand”. Have you ever wondered what this song is referring to? What is this solid rock of Christ and how exactly do we stand on it? How do we even know if we are there or not?
The truth of the Bible is that if we are not firmly on the solid rock of Jesus, then we are on what the Bible calls “shifting sand”, a dangerous and ultimately deadly place to be. So today we will be looking at the solid foundation of Jesus Christ, including how to recognize it and how to get there if we are not currently there.
There is a rather well-known teaching of Jesus that is often used by preachers to promote law-keeping. It is found in Matthew 7:21-27, let’s read it now:
“Not every one that said to me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of my Father which is in heaven.
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? and in your name have cast out devils? and in your name done many wonderful works?
And then will I profess to them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity.
Therefore whoever hears these sayings of mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man, which built his house on a rock:
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat on that house; and it fell not: for it was founded on a rock.
And every one that hears these sayings of mine, and does them not, shall be likened to a foolish man, which built his house on the sand:
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat on that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.”
Strong words indeed, yet there is more to this verse than just what we read on the surface. Always remember that Christianity is not about religion, but it is about relationship. That is a phrase which has gone around the world and back again, but it is no less true. To prove this from scripture, let’s examine verses 22 and 23 more closely:
“Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? and in your name have cast out devils? and in your name done many wonderful works?
And then will I profess to them, I never knew you: depart from me, you that work iniquity.”
Many people have asked the question how these apparent frauds could actually experience the kind of results that we read about in verse 22. The reasoning behind this question is that if these people were not genuine, then they should not have been able to do these works.
However that question exposes the flaw in this line of logic… it is precisely because these people are focusing on their works that makes them frauds! Let’s look at this from another angle… the perspective of God’s love for people.
You see, all of those miracles, prophesying and casting out devils, are all done because God cares for and loves people. They really have very little to do with the person “performing” them and everything to do with God’s love for all who come to Him and by His power; not man’s power.
To understand this idea a bit more, we need to have a clear knowledge of a related teaching of Jesus from Matthew 7:15-20:
“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
You shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
Even so every good tree brings forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree brings forth evil fruit.
A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
Every tree that brings not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
Why by their fruits you shall know them.”
These are the verses leading up to the initial verses that we read at the beginning. Now on the face of it, it almost seems to contradict the other verses, but then we must remember that miracles are not really works of men, they are signs from heaven because God loves people.
My friends, what I am about to say will probably shock you, but it is entirely possible to be familiar with Jesus and believe in Him without ever letting Him save you by believing on Him. It is possible to know of Jesus without truly knowing Him – just as it is possible to know of a celebrity without actually knowing them.
Every good work that these false prophets did, they did because they knew of Jesus, but they did not really know Him on a personal and intimate level.
In Mark 16:17 we learn that miraculous signs follow those that believe. But we can see plainly in the verses we have read that these false prophets are actually following after signs and using those signs to justify their acceptance instead of the finished work of Jesus Christ. It is always a mistake and gravely erroneous to try and build on a foundation of works, signs or feelings. All three of those things are based on our own human senses and strength and it will never work out.
Go back to our first block of verses in Matthew 7, and in verse 24 you will see Jesus showing us the criteria for building on the solid rock:
“Therefore whoever hears these sayings of mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man, which built his house on a rock:”
Now this is much broader then simply obeying commands. The word “does” here actually carries a very broad meaning in the original language which means among other things to make a part of you.
So we can see here that Jesus is saying that we should hear His words – be receptive to them and let them become a part of us.
As we close today’s study, I want to show you the very foundation of Christ Jesus, that can only come by revelation from God Himself. If your entire life is not based on this, then it is safe to say that you still do not know Jesus as you should, because this is the foundation. Matthew 16:15-18:
“He said to them, But whom say you that I am?
And Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.
And Jesus answered and said to him, Blessed are you, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood has not revealed it to you, but my Father which is in heaven.
And I say also to you, That you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
My friends, if you are not absolutely certain that Jesus is the Christ, then you do not know Him yet. You may know of Him, you may believe in Him (like any historical figure) but you do not know Him personally. If you still feel as though you need to “help Jesus along” in your life, as though it’s 50% Him and 50% you getting the job done, then you do not know Him or how magnificent and all-sufficient He is.
I would encourage you today to make yourself available to Him, spend time getting to know Him. He is not an imaginary friend or just a good feeling. He is not merely a good teacher, or a noteworthy character from history. He is God, and He is the Christ, the Savior who loves you.
Build on His solid rock, and the enemy will never prevail in your life, your foundation will never be moved.