Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
Education Based on Divine GraceMatthew 7:24-29
“Therefore, everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (Vs.24)
Sermon on the mount gives thoughts of par excellence where Jesus embodied himself as a great teacher. And the given text is from the sermon on the mount (Matt. 7:24-29). Based on this text we are focusing on the main theme of education which is based on divine grace. Jesus begins the unit in Matt.7:24 with, “therefore,” and that tells us that this parable is the conclusion of what He has been saying and teaching. Everything that Jesus has said from Matthew five to this point comes to this conclusion.
Education with divine grace is a call to build a life wisely
In this passage, Jesus challenges His listeners to make wise decisions regarding His words. Oswald Chambers opines that “The sermon on the mount is not a set of principles to obey. It is a statement of the life we will live when the Holy Spirit is getting his way with us.” The Christian life is a call to do a wise choice and it should be wisely built it is possible only through education that is based on divine grace. Mahatma Gandhi said “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” Jesus said (vs.7:26) “Everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand.” Jesus demands a wise move from listening to the spirituality of doing. Merely hearing God’s word isn’t enough to provide a secure foundation for our life. It is necessary that we are also doers of His word which is known as life as a process of wise construction. However, Jesus challenges the idea that He is merely a good teacher. Jesus wants us to put into action what He has said.
Education with divine grace determines the strength of our life
The difference between the wise man and the foolish man is what they do in response to what Jesus says in this sermon. The result of the wise man’s response is a strong house that withstands the storms of life. He worked hard digging deep until he found the rock, he never opted for an easy life. I remember reading a book about the Chinese Bamboo tree after the seed for this wonderful tree is planted, you see absolutely nothing, for four years except for a tiny shoot coming out of a bulb. During those four years, all the growth is underground in a massive, fibrous root structure that spreads deep and wide in the earth. But then in the fifth year, the Chinese bamboo tree grows up to eighty feet! Growth in depth determines the stability of our life and helps us to stand strong in the midst of life-threatening challenges. Education, which is based on divine grace helps us to work hard and invest time and effort, and you do everything you can possibly do to nurture growth, sometimes you don’t see anything for days, weeks, months, or even years. But if you’re patient and keep working hard, learning, and nurturing, that “fifth year” will come, and you will be astonished at the growth and change you see taking place.
A wise man’s patience is faith in action. Patience is emotional diligence. It's the willingness to suffer inside so that others can grow. Time and the storms of life will prove the strength of one’s foundation which is based on the divine grace of God, even when it is hidden. It is better that we test the foundation of our life now rather than later, at our judgment before God when it is too late to change our destiny.
O Lord, help us to build our life wisely by relying on your grace. Amen
Rev. Renny Varghese
Virginia Immanuel Mar Thoma Church