The Rock of Our Salvation

Matthew 7:21, 24-27
Isa 26: 1-6 / Psa 118

Every one who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock.
(Matthew 7:24)

Nothing to fear in evil’s wake,
God’s Word is our firm foundation;
No rains or flood, or winds can break
Our faith in His loving protection.

(Jesus said to His disciples,) “Not everyone who says to me, `Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father Who is in heaven….

“Everyone who hears these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rains fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house, but it did not collapse, because it had been set solidly on rock. And every one who hears these words of mine and does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand. The rains fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. And it collapsed, and was completely ruined.” (Matthew 7: 21, 24-27)

Reflection

Two of my favorite songs of praise in our Brotherhood are about the Rock of our life. One goes, “Ascribe greatness to our God, the Rock, His work is perfect, and all His ways are just…” The lyrics of this song were taken from the book of Deuteronomy, (32:4). Moses, who wrote these words, developed such an intimate relationship with Yahweh that his faith in God became as indestructible as solid rock against all their enemies. The other song is based on a psalm of David (Psa 61), and goes, “My soul finds rest in God alone, my salvation comes from Him; He alone is my Rock; He alone is my salvation. My soul finds rest in God alone, all my hope I place in Him; He alone is my fortress; He’s my deliverer, I’ll not be shaken. God alone is my Rock, and I’ll not be moved, I find shelter in His wings. He alone is my strength and shield, how my heart leaps for joy, I will ever give thanks unto Him. For you have been my refuge, Lord, a strong tow’r against the foe; my help in times of distress; my joy in times of affliction. For you have heard my cry, O God, listen to my supplication. From the ends of the earth I cry, lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.”

King David also wrote Psalm 18: “I love You, LORD, my strength, my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God, my rock of refuge; my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold…” This, after he escaped from the army of King Saul by hiding in the gorge of Maon (1Sam 23:28-29). The prophet Isaiah also described God as a solid rock: “Trust in the Lord forever! For the Lord is an eternal Rock.” (Isa.26:4) Clearly, the image of God as “Rock” in the Old Testament was because He was regarded as a fortress of protection against the enemy, a refuge against which no army could prevail.

In today’s parable, Jesus brought the analogy of ‘rock’ to a higher level. No other foundation than following the Word of God can guarantee perpetual security and stability. As He said before His passion, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away” (Lk.21:33). He was, of course, referring to Himself when He said, “Upon this rock I will build my church” (Mt.16:18). We, therefore, must continue to build up His Church by obedience to His Word, (God’s Will), and by spreading His Good News to others, as well as by practicing His values of justice, honesty and righteousness in our lives. Otherwise, when the floods of life’s trials come rushing at us, and we did not prepare, we shall certainly fall in the sands of despair.

Lord God, we praise and thank You for “transforming us by the renewing of our minds” (Rom. 12:2), through the words of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Your Word continues to give us hope and assurance, and it will always be the Rock in our life, against which no evil force can prevail. Amen.

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