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In Understand The Sermon On The Mount D, we learn how to found our life on Jesus. We approach His teachings with common sense, trying to discover what He wants for us, today. 

Understand The Sermon On The Mount D1

Harmony Of The Gospels Series 14, Mt 7

For more information about Jesus see these books on the History of Jesus Christ.

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Jim and Joy were just getting started in life. They were both taught about saving, so when they got married, they each had a nice nest-egg. Wanting to build their own house, they bought some beach-front property and began to build in January. They didn't know much about construction, but they'd seen houses all their lives and figured, how hard could it be to build one? By October, they were done. Of course, there were little defects like leaky pipes, lights that blink on and off and wall-boards that didn't quite match up. In fact, if you looked at the house from across the street, it seemed to be tilted, slightly. They remembered that the houses they grew up in had defects, too, and immediately moved in. Within a month, a huge winter storm moved in. The rain poured by the house like a small river as the winds grew stronger and stronger. Within a couple hours, the walls seemed to shake in the wind, and by nightfall one wall was dislodged and being washed away. They got out just in time to see the whole thing come down. The insurance company wouldn't pay their claim because the disaster was not caused by the weather, but poor construction. Jim & Joy didn't know the most important things about building a house were not obvious; that it was invisible things that would hold it up under the stresses of time and weather.

Each of our lives is like their house. The work that enables us to stand under pressure isn't obvious. The obvious things are education, good career, benefits, finding a spouse and having children. We think once all that's in progress, we've arrived, but that's just the obvious part of our lives. The real life is what's underneath all that, holding it up, or not. When the stresses and strains of life come, the strengths and weaknesses of our construction begin to show. Sometimes we fall under stress, like relationship issues, chronic illness, loss of job. Unlike Jim & Joy, sometimes we fall during good weather, when the pride of having done well makes us feel like we can do no wrong…so we do. One thing is for sure, if we ignore the invisible, structural parts of our lives we will fall.

That's what Jesus was talking about by telling His followers everyone who practices His teaching will have a solid foundation, but those who don't will fall (Mt 6:24-27). With these words Jesus sums up His sermon and our 4-week series on His Vision for His followers. As we've learned from Him over the last 3 weeks, for our lives to have a strong foundation, we must:

a. let Him shine in us, on us and through us to bless us and reach other people with His love.

b. understand that only through Jesus can we measure up to His standards.

c. put God in first place, over people, money and our cares and worries.

This week, we'll cover the last four elements of our foundation with Jesus' conclusion that…

A life that's founded on the Rock will weather any storm.

To withstand the storms and stresses, our life (like a building) must be square, strong, level and plumb.

Jesus-Judge Not:

1. Squaring Yourself: vs 3-5 "Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ and behold, the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye." Before we lay the foundation of a building, we must make sure the corners are square. I didn't do this with the deck I built in my back yard. While I was installing the decking, I noticed none of the boards matched up right, but I was so far along, I just had to finish by making all the boards uneven and cutting them out of square, making the whole project look sloppy because nothing quite 'matched up'. It's much more serious in life. When our life is out of square, everyone who is added to it must be taken out of square to try to 'match up'. It's interesting to note that, though we're out of square, our natural tendency is to try to square-up everyone else. Jesus told His followers to square themselves, not other people.

Continued at Understand Sermon On The Mount-D2

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