Matthew 7:24-8:1 (The Wise and Foolish Builders)

Mat 7:24-27 What words that people hear is Jesus referring to in Mat 7:24 and 26?  Hint: if you have a red letter edition of the Bible, where do the red letters start? What does the word “therefore” in Mat 7:24 imply about the relationship between Jesus’ teaching that follows about the wise and foolish builders, and all He has just taught in the Sermon on the Mount?  What does this teach us about the common notion that the higher law presented by Jesus here in the Sermon on the Mount does not apply now but to some future age?  Is it just hearing the words of Jesus that makes one wise?  Cf. Joh 8:31-32, Psa 111:10.  What do these verses teach us about what it means practically to build upon a solid spiritual foundation?  When building a building, what is first necessary in order to lay a foundation upon solid rock?  See the parallel passage in Luk 6:48 and the literal rendering in the margin, “dug and went deep”.  How do we “dig and go deep” in a spiritual sense?  Cf. Mat 13:44-46.  What does it mean to “dig and go deep” in regard to our sin?  See Luk 13:1-5, Psa 139:23-24, Heb 4:12.  In regard to our seeking truth?  Contrast 2Th 2:10-12, 2Ti 4:3-4.  Again, is it a given that we will automatically know the truth, or must we be willing to “dig and go deep”?  What if a person is simply too busy with work and play and all the cares and concerns of life so that he doesn’t have the time to “dig and go deep”?  See Luk 14:16-24, Mat 13:22.  What road are those following who do not act upon Jesus’ words?  See Mat 7:13.  Upon what sort of foundation does Jesus liken them to build?  Who is it that misleads the many on the broad road to destruction that it is safe to build upon sand?  See Mat 7:15.  How is it that so many can be so foolish as to do so?  See 2Pe 3:3-4 and consider: when there are no heavy rains or floods or winds, will their structure appear to be stable?  Did Jesus teach that those who build their lives upon the solid rock of obedience to His word would not experience heavy rains and even floods?  What do the heavy rains and floods and winds represent in our lives?  When they do come, what is the result to him who built his life upon the sand, and how does that contrast with him who built his house upon the Rock?  Cf. Psa 32:6, 69:1-2,13-15, 124:2-5.  In what way are the wise and foolish builders in this parable similar to the wise and foolish virgins in Mat 25:1-12?  What does this parable teach us about what it means practically to have lamps that are full of oil?  What does that parable teach us about the necessity of being filled with the oil of God’s Holy Spirit in order to fulfill the higher law of Christ?

Mat 7:28-29          What does Matthew say was the result of Jesus’ first major discourse to the people?  See Mat 7:28.  Why were the multitudes so amazed at His teaching?  See Mat 7:29.  How may a man of God today teach with the same authority Jesus taught?  See Mat 28:18-20.  How and what did the Jewish scribes teach that was in such contrast to the authority with which Jesus taught?  See Mat 15:1-3,8-9, Col 2:8.  In what ways is this similar to how and what so many pastors teach today?  Think: do most pastors today truly preach from the authority of Scripture that fills and overflows their hearts and minds, or from the theological traditions handed down to them in their commentaries and Bible schools?

Mat 8:1                   What was the response of people to Jesus’ teaching in the Sermon On the Mount?  Did Jesus consider His ministry a success because “great multitudes followed Him”?  See Mat 10:22, 13:5-6,20-21, Joh 2:23-25.  Knowing what is in man, should we consider the measure of a ministry’s success that it attracts great multitudes?  See again Mat 7:13.

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