Matthew 7:24
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:
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(24) Whosoever.—The Greek is more emphatically universal, every one whosoever.

These sayings of mine.—The reference to what has gone before tends, so far as it goes, to the conclusion that we have in these chapters a continuous discourse, and not a compilation of fragments. On the assumption that the Sermon on the Plain was different from that on the Mount, the recurrence of the same image there makes it probable that this or some similar parable was not an uncommon close to our Lord’s discourses.

I will liken him unto a wise man.—The surrounding scenery may, in this as in other instances, have suggested the illustration. As in all hilly countries, the streams of Galilee rush down the torrent-beds during the winter and early spring, sweep all before them, overflow their banks, and leave beds of alluvial deposit on either side. When summer comes their waters fail (comp. Jeremiah 15:18; Job 6:15), and what had seemed a goodly river is then a tract covered with debris of stones and sand. A stranger coming to build might be attracted by the ready-prepared level surface of the sand. It would be easier to build there instead of working upon the hard and rugged rock. But the people of the land would know and mock the folly of such a builder, and he would pass (our Lord’s words may possibly refer to something that had actually occurred) into a by-word of reproach. On such a house the winter torrent had swept down in its fury, and the storms had raged, and then the fair fabric, on which time and money had been expended, had given way, and fallen into a heap of ruins. Interpreting the parable in the connection in which our Lord has placed it, it is clear that the house is the general fabric of an outwardly religious life. “The rock” can be nothing else than the firm foundation of repentance and obedience, the assent of the will and affections as well as of the lips. The “sand” answers to the shifting, uncertain feelings which are with some men (the “foolish” ones of the parable) the only ground on which they act—love of praise, respect for custom, and the like. The “wind,” the “rain,” the “floods” hardly admit, unless by an unreal minuteness, of individual interpretation, but represent collectively the violence of persecution, of suffering, of temptations from without, beneath which all but the life which rests on the true foundation necessarily gives way.

Such is obviously the primary meaning of the parable here, but, like most other parables, it has other meanings, which, though secondary, are yet suggestive and instructive, and are not unsanctioned by the analogy of our Lord’s teaching. (1.) Already He had bestowed upon one of His disciples the name of Cephas, Peter, the Rock, and in so doing had at least indicated the type of character represented by the “rock” upon which the wise man built. When He afterwards said, “Upon this rock will I build my Church,” He was speaking in the character of a wise Master-builder who saw in fervent faith and unhesitating obedience the ground-work on which the Christian society, which He designated as His kingdom, was to rest. (2.) Personal experience and the teaching of the Spirit led men to the thought that there must be a yet deeper foundation, a rock below the rock even of obedience and holiness; and they found in Christ Himself that Rock and that Foundation (1Corinthians 3:10-11). Only in personal union with Him could they find the stability of will without which even their firmest purposes would be as the shifting sand.

Matthew 7:24-27. Therefore, whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, &c. — In these words our Lord attests, in the most solemn manner, the certain truth and infinite importance of all he had delivered in the foregoing sermon, and applies it to the consciences of his hearers. Whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them — Whosoever he be that hears, considers, understands, believes, and obeys the doctrine which I have now taught you; I will liken him unto a wise man which built his house upon a rock — Whatever his former conduct may have been, being now brought to repentance and amendment of life, and becoming a new creature, he lays a solid foundation for present comfort and everlasting security and joy. Observe well, reader, although other foundation for confidence toward God, and a hope of eternal life, can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ, 1 Corinthians 3:11; yet we pretend in vain to build on him, if we do not obey his doctrine, and make it the rule of our whole conduct. Therefore there is no inconsistency between the doctrine here advanced by our Lord, and that of the apostle in the passage just quoted; nor between the same apostle’s declaring, 1 Corinthians 7:19, Circumcision is nothing, &c., but the keeping of the commandments of God; and his asserting to the Galatians, chap. Matthew 5:6, That nothing availeth but faith which worketh by love. For the faith he speaks of is always followed by obedience to the commandments of God, of which it is the root and principle. And the rain descended, and the floods came, and beat upon that house — These words of our Lord imply that every man’s religion, with the confidence and hope which he builds thereon, must, sooner or later, be severely tried; and it fell not, for it was founded on a rock — Thus the religion of the true, practical Christian, with all his present comforts and future hopes, remains firm and unshaken, how severely and violently soever it may be assaulted. And every one that heareth these sayings, and doeth them not — Who is a mere hearer of the word, and not a doer of it, how constantly soever he may attend to hear it, and whatever zeal he may profess for the doctrine he hears; shall be likened unto a foolish man, &c. — A man possessed of neither foresight nor consideration; who built his house upon the sand — Without taking any care to find or lay a firm foundation for it, as if he were sure that no wintry storm or tempest would ever assail it. And the rain descended, &c. and beat upon that house, and it fell — For the foundation being bad, neither the height of the structure, nor its wide dimensions, could be any security to it: and great was the fall of it — Even as great as the building had been. “A lively emblem,” says Doddridge, “of the ruin which will another day overwhelm the unhappy man who trusts to an outward profession and form of godliness, when he does not sincerely and practically regard it.”7:21-29 Christ here shows that it will not be enough to own him for our Master, only in word and tongue. It is necessary to our happiness that we believe in Christ, that we repent of sin, that we live a holy life, that we love one another. This is his will, even our sanctification. Let us take heed of resting in outward privileges and doings, lest we deceive ourselves, and perish eternally, as multitudes do, with a lie in our right hand. Let every one that names the name of Christ, depart from all sin. There are others, whose religion rests in bare hearing, and it goes no further; their heads are filled with empty notions. These two sorts of hearers are represented as two builders. This parable teaches us to hear and do the sayings of the Lord Jesus: some may seem hard to flesh and blood, but they must be done. Christ is laid for a foundation, and every thing besides Christ is sand. Some build their hopes upon worldly prosperity; others upon an outward profession of religion. Upon these they venture; but they are all sand, too weak to bear such a fabric as our hopes of heaven. There is a storm coming that will try every man's work. When God takes away the soul, where is the hope of the hypocrite? The house fell in the storm, when the builder had most need of it, and expected it would be a shelter to him. It fell when it was too late to build another. May the Lord make us wise builders for eternity. Then nothing shall separate us from the love of Christ Jesus. The multitudes were astonished at the wisdom and power of Christ's doctrine. And this sermon, ever so often read over, is always new. Every word proves its Author to be Divine. Let us be more and more decided and earnest, making some one or other of these blessednesses and Christian graces the main subject of our thoughts, even for weeks together. Let us not rest in general and confused desires after them, whereby we grasp at all, but catch nothing.Jesus closes the sermon on the mount by a beautiful comparison, illustrating the benefit of attending to his words. It was not sufficient to "hear" them; they must be "obeyed." He compares the man who should hear and obey him to a man who built his house on a rock. Palestine was to a considerable extent a land of hills and mountains. Like other countries of that description, it was subject to sudden and violent rains. The Jordan, the principal stream, was annually swollen to a great extent, and became rapid and furious in its course. The streams which ran among the hills, whose channels might have been dry during some months of the year, became suddenly swollen with the rain, and would pour down impetuously into the plains below. Everything in the way of these torrents would be swept off. Even houses, erected within the reach of these sudden inundations, and especially if founded on sand or on any unsolid basis, would not stand before them. The rising, bursting stream would shake it to its foundation; the rapid torrent would gradually wash away its base; it would totter and fall. Rocks in that country were common, and it was easy to secure for their houses a solid foundation. No comparison could, to a Jew, have been more striking. So tempests, and storms of affliction and persecution, beat around the soul. Suddenly, when we think we are in safety, the heavens may be overcast, the storm may lower, and calamity may beat upon us. In a moment, health, friends, comforts may be gone. How desirable, then, to be possessed of something that the tempest cannot reach! Such is an interest in Christ, reliance on his promises, confidence in his protection, and a hope of heaven through his blood. Earthly calamities do not reach these; and, possessed of religion, all the storms and tempests of life may beat harmlessly around us.

There is another point in this comparison. The house built upon the sand is beat upon by the floods and rains; its foundation gradually is worn away; it falls, and is borne down the stream and is destroyed. So falls the sinner. The floods are wearing away his sandy foundation; and soon one tremendous storm shall beat upon him, and he and his hopes shall fall, for ever fall. Out of Christ; perhaps having "heard" his words from very childhood; perhaps having taught them to others in the Sunday school; perhaps having been the means of laying the foundation on which others shall build for heaven, he has laid for himself no foundation, and soon an eternal tempest shall beat around his naked soul. How great will be that fall! What will be his emotions when sinking forever in the flood, and when he realizes that he is destined forever to live and writhe in the peltings of that ceaseless storm that shall beat when "God shall rain snares, fire, and a horrible tempest" upon the wicked!

24. Therefore—to bring this discourse to a close.

whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them—see Jas 1:22, which seems a plain allusion to these words; also Lu 11:28; Ro 2:13; 1Jo 3:7.

I will liken him unto a wise man—a shrewd, prudent, provident man.

which built his house upon a rock—the rock of true discipleship, or genuine subjection to Christ.

Ver. 23,24. See Poole on "Matthew 7:25". Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine,.... The comparison in this, and the following verses, is the concluding part of our Lord's discourses upon the mount, which are meant by these sayings, or doctrines, he here speaks of; and as he had in some foregoing verses chiefly respect to preachers, so here, to hearers, his disciples and followers in general. The subject of this comparison, in Luke 6:47 is, "whosoever cometh unto me"; as all that are given to Christ by the Father will do, sooner or later: such whom he encourages to come to him, are they that labour and are heavy laden; and they that come aright, come as poor perishing sinners; they believe in him, give up themselves to him, to be saved by him with an everlasting salvation; all which is owing to efficacious grace. These hear his sayings, as doctrines, not merely externally, but internally, having ears to hear given unto them, so as to understand them, love them, believe them, feel the power, taste the sweetness, and have a delightful relish of them; and such an one hears them,

and doth them: he is not only an hearer, but a doer of the word of the Gospel; the doctrines of it he receives in the love of them, and exercises faith on them; upon Christ, his grace and righteousness held forth in them, which is the great work and business of a Christian, he is to do, and does do in this life: the ordinances of it he cheerfully obeys; and all the duties of religion he performs from love to Christ, without any view to obtain eternal life hereby, which he only expects from Christ, as his sayings and doctrines direct him. The comparison follows,

I will liken him to a wise man, which built his house upon a rock. Luke says, "he is like a man which built an house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation a rock". Every believer is a builder; the house he builds, is his own soul, and the salvation of it; in order to which he digs deep, till he comes to a rock, to a good foundation; he searches diligently into the Scriptures of truth; he constantly attends the ministry of the word; he inquires of Gospel preachers, and other saints, the way of salvation; which having found, he lays the whole stress of his salvation on the rock of ages, which rock is Christ: he makes him the foundation of all his hopes of eternal life and happiness; which is the foundation God has laid in Zion; and which has been laid ministerially by the prophets of the Old, and the apostles of the New Testament; and by believers themselves, when they build their faith and hope upon it. This foundation, the person, blood, and righteousness of Christ, is as a rock, firm and strong, will bear the whole weight that is laid upon it; it is sure and certain, it will never give way; it is immoveable and everlasting; the house built upon it stands safe and sure.

{8} Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:

(8) True godliness rests only upon Christ, and therefore always remains invincible.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Matthew 7:24-27. Conclusion of the whole sermon, but, as appears from οὖν, taking the form of an inference from what is said immediately before, where admission into the Messianic kingdom is made to depend on moral obedience.

πᾶς οὖν ὅστις, κ.τ.λ.] The nominative with rhetorical emphasis placed anacolouthologically at the beginning in Matthew 10:14, Matthew 13:12, Matthew 23:16. See Kühner, II. 1, p. 42; Winer, p. 534 f. [E. T. 718].

ὁμοιώσω] This future, as well as ὁμοιωθήσεται, Matthew 7:26, is not to be taken as referring to the comparison immediately following (which is the common view), which is not warranted by the interrogatory passages, Matthew 11:16, Mark 4:30, Luke 7:31; Luke 13:18; Luke 13:20, but to be understood (like ὁμολογήσω in Matthew 7:23) of the day of judgment (Tholuck), when Christ will make him who yields obedience to those sayings of His, like (i.e. demonstrate as matter of fact that he is like) a wise man, and so on. Ὁμοιόω therefore does not here denote comparare, but the actual making him like to (Plat. Rep. p. 393 C; Matthew 6:8; Matthew 25:1; Matthew 13:24; Romans 9:29). See the scholion of Photius in Matthaei, ad Euth. Zig. p. 290. De Wette is at one with Fritzsche as regards ὁμοιώσω, but differs from him, however, in his view of ὁμοιωθήσεται as referring to the future result that is developing itself.

φρονίμῳ] as in Matthew 25:2.

ἐπὶ τὴν πέτραν] upon the rock. No particular rock is intended, but the category, as in Matthew 7:26 : upon the sand.

Observe the emphatic, nay solemn, polysyndeta, and (instead of ὅτε or ἐπεί, followed by a statement of the consequence; Krüger, Xen. Anab. p. 404; Kühner, II. 2, p. 782 f.) the paratactic mode of representation in Matthew 7:25; Matthew 7:27, as also the important verbal repetition in Matthew 7:27, where, in the last of the assaults, προσέκοψαν (they assailed it) is only a more concrete way of describing the thing than the corresponding προσέπεσον of Matthew 7:25. The three points in the picture are the roof, the foundation, and the sides of the house.

On the pluperfect τεθεμελίωτο without the augment, see Winer, p. 70 [E. T. 85].

μεγάλη] “magna, sane totalis,” Bengel.

The meaning of this simple but grand similitude, harmonizing in some of its features with Ezekiel 13:11 ff., is this: Whoever conforms to the teaching just inculcated is certain to obtain salvation in my kingdom, though trying times may await him; but he who is disobedient will lose the expected felicity, and the dire catastrophe that is to precede the advent of the Messiah will overwhelm him with ἀπώλεια (inasmuch as the Messiah, at His coming, will consign him to eternal death).

With regard to the Sermon generally, the following points may be noted:—

(1.) It is the same discourse which, though according to a different tradition and redaction, is found in Luke 6:20-49. For although it is there represented as occurring at a later date and in another locality (Matthew 7:17), and although, in respect of its contents, style, and arrangement it differs widely from that in Matthew, yet, judging from its characteristic introduction and close, its manifold and essential identity as regards the subject-matter, as well as from its mentioning the circumstance that, immediately after, Jesus cured the sick servant in Capernaum (Luke 7:1 ff.), it is clear that Matthew and Luke do not record two different discourses (Augustine, Erasmus, Andr. Osiander, Molinaeus, Jansen, Büsching, Hess, Storr, Gratz, Krafft), but different versions of one and the same (Origen, Chrysostom, Bucer, Calvin, Chemnitz, Calovius, Bengel, and most modern commentators).

(2.) The preference as regards originality of tradition is not to be accorded to Luke (Schneckenburger, Olshausen, Wilke, B. Bauer, Schenkel, and, in the main, Bleek and Holtzmann), but to Matthew (Schleiermacher, Kern, Tholuck, de Wette, Weiss, Weizsäcker, Keim), because, as compared with Matthew, Luke’s version is so incomplete in its character, that one sees in it merely the disjointed fragments of what had once been a much more copious discourse. In Matthew, on the other hand, there is that combination of full detail, and sententious brevity, and disregard of connection, which is so natural in the case of a lengthened extemporaneous and spirited address actually delivered, but not suited to the purpose of a mere compiler of traditions, to whose art Ewald (Jahrb. I. p. 131) ascribes the structure of the discourse. The Sermon on the Mount is omitted in Mark. But the view that this evangelist originally borrowed it, though in an abridged form, from Matthew’s collection of our Lord’s sayings, and that the place where it stood in Mark 3:19, just before καὶ ἔρχ. εἰς οἶκον, may still be traced (Ewald, Holtzmann), rests on the utterly unwarrantable supposition (Introduction, sec. 4) that the second Gospel has not come down to us in its original shape. On the other hand, see especially Weiss. Besides, there is no apparent reason why so important a passage should have been entirely struck out by Mark, if it had been originally there.

(3.) Since the original production of Matthew the apostle consisted of the λόγια τοῦ κυρίου (Introduction, sec. 2), it may be assumed that the Sermon on the Mount, as given in the present Gospel of Matthew, was in all essential respects one of the principal elements in that original. However, it is impossible to maintain that it was delivered (and reproduced from memory), in the precise form in which it has been preserved in Matthew. This follows at once from the length of the discourse and the variety of its contents, and is further confirmed by the circumstance that Matthew himself, according to Matthew 9:9, did not as yet belong to the number of those to whom it had been addressed. By way of showing that the Sermon on the Mount cannot have been delivered (Luke 6:20) till after the choice of the Twelve (Wieseler, Tholuck, Hilgenfeld, Ebrard, Bleek, Holtzmann, Keim), reasons of this sort have been alleged, that, at so early a stage, Jesus could not have indulged in such a polemical style of address toward the Pharisees. This, however, is unsatisfactory, since even a later period would still be open to a similar objection. On the other hand, it is to be observed further, that so important a historical connection (viz. with the choice of the Twelve) could not fail to have been preserved among the ancient traditions recorded by Matthew if such connection had actually existed, while again it is in accordance with the natural development of tradition, to suppose that the presence of the μαθηταί (Matthew 5:1), which is historically certain, as well as the numerous important references to the calling of the disciples, may have led to the adoption of a later date in the subsequent traditions. Those who represent the evangelist as introducing the Sermon at an earlier stage than that to which it strictly belongs, are therefore charging him with gross confusion in his determination of the place in which it ought to stand. But although Matthew was not present himself at the Sermon on the Mount, but only reports what he learned indirectly through those who were so, still his report so preserves that happy combination of thoughtful purpose with the freedom of extemporaneous speech which distinguished the discourse, that one cannot fail clearly enough to recognise its substantial originality. This, however, can only be regarded as a relative originality, such as makes it impossible to say not only to what extent the form and arrangement of the discourse have been influenced by new versions of the λόγια on the one hand, and new modifications of the Gospel on the other, but also how much of what our Lord altered on some other occasion has been, either unconsciously or intentionally, interwoven with kindred elements in the address. But, in seeking to eliminate such foreign matters, critics have started with subjective assumptions and uncertain views, and so have each arrived at very conflicting results. Utterly inadmissible is the view of Calvin and Semler, which has obtained currency above all through Pott (de natura atque indole orat. mont. 1788) and Kuinoel, that the Sermon on the Mount is a conglomerate, consisting of a great many detached sentences uttered by Jesus on different occasions,[428] and in proof of which we are referred especially to the numerous fragments that are to be found scattered throughout Luke. No doubt, in the case of the Lord’s Prayer, Matthew 6:9 ff., the claim of originality must be decided in favour of Luke’s account. Otherwise, however, the historical connection of Luke’s parallel passages is such as, in no single instance, to justify their claim to the originality in question. In fact, the connection in which most of them stand is less appropriate than that of Matthew (Luke 11:34-36 compared with Matthew 6:22 f.; Luke 16:17 compared with Matthew 5:18; Luke 12:58 ff. compared with Matthew 5:24 ff.; Luke 16:18 compared with Matthew 5:32), while others leave room for supposing that Jesus has used the same expression twice (Luke 12:33 f. comp. Matthew 6:19-21; Luke 13:24Matthew 7:24-27. Epilogue (Luke 6:47-49, which see for comparative exegesis). οὖν, Matthew 7:24, may be taken as referring to the whole discourse, not merely to Matthew 7:21-23 (Tholuck and Achelis). Such a sublime utterance could only be the grand finale of a considerable discourse, or series of discourses. It is a fit ending of a body of teaching of unparalleled weight, dignity, and beauty. The τούτους after λόγους (Matthew 7:24), though omitted in [51], therefore bracketed in W. H[52], is thoroughly appropriate. It may have fallen out through similar ending of three successive words, or have been omitted intentionally to make the statement following applicable to the whole of Christ’s teaching. Its omission weakens the oratorical power of the passage. It occurs in Matthew 7:26.

[51] Codex Vaticanus (sæc. iv.), published in photographic facsimile in 1889 under the care of the Abbate Cozza-Luzi.

[52] Westcott and Hort.24. whosoever heareth] Cp. Matthew 7:26, every one that heareth. Both classes of men hear the word. So far they are alike. In like manner the two houses have externally the same appearance. The great day of trial shews the difference. The imagery is from a mountain country where the torrent-beds, sometimes more than half a mile in width in the plain below the mountain, are dry in summer, and present a level waste of sand and stones. We may picture the foolish man building on this sandy bottom, while the wise or prudent man builds on a rock planted on the shore, or rising out of the river bed, too high to be affected by the rush of waters. In the autumn the torrents stream down filling the sandy channel and carrying all before them. For the spiritual sense of the parable see 1 Corinthians 3:10 foll.

(e) A description of the true subjects of the Kingdom as opposed to the false. The wise and foolish builders, 24–27

Luke 6:47-49, where the phraseology differs a good deal from St Matthew. St Matthew, who living near the lake had often witnessed such sudden floods as are described, uses more vigorous language and draws the picture more vividly. St Luke marks the connection with the insincere “Lord, Lord,” more distinctly, but omits the reference to the last day and to the future of the Church.Matthew 7:24. Ὁμοιώσω, I will liken) In Matthew 7:26 it is, he shall he likened. God refers salutary things[348] to Himself; He removes evil things[349] from Himself; cf. ch. Matthew 25:34; Matthew 25:41.—φρονίμῳ, prudent) True prudence spontaneously accompanies true righteousness; cf. ch. Matthew 25:2.

[348] i.e. things connected with salvation, as ex. gr. the building on the rock.—ED.

[349] As ex. gr. the building on the sand; therefore it is here, “he shall be likened,” not “I will liken.”—ED.Verses 24-27. - Parallel passage: Luke 6:47-49 (cf. also Ezekiel 13:10-16). A solemn close to the sermon. By the similitude of two builders our Lord warns his followers that to have heard his words will have been useless unless they put them into practice. Observe that although the word "hear in these verses cannot indicate that full "hearing" which it sometimes connotes (Matthew 10:14), yet it seems to mean more than merely listening, and to imply both a grasp of what is intended by the statements made and at least some acquiescence in their truth (Acts 2:22; Revelation 1:3; John 5:24). According to the above explanation, it will be seen that in the imagery the rock represents practice; the sand, mere sentiment. There is thus a partial correspondence with the works insisted on by St. James in contrast to a bare orthodox faith (James 2:24). Assent is insufficient; there must be action. Not uncommonly, indeed, the rock is considered to refer to the Lord himself, and the sand to human effort. Cf. Ford: "The parallel passage (Luke 6:48), where the words, 'cometh unto Me,' are inserted, indicates clearly the foundation of faith, the receiving the Lord Jesus as our Prophet, Priest, and King, which is the only basis on which good works can be built" (cf. even Allord). This, however, is hardly exegesis, but application, for the "coming to Christ" is in Luke only introductory to the hearing and doing, and is altogether omitted here. Although the statement is true in itself, it is only so far proper to this passage in that, apart from practice, there is (ver. 23) no heart-union with Christ. Verse 24. - Therefore whosoever hoareth; Revised Version, every one therefore which heareth (πᾶς οϋν ὅστις , Matthew 10:32). The relative used lays stress on the quality implied in the verb: every one who is of the kind that hears (contrast ver. 26). These sayings (Revised Version, words) of mine, and doeth them. Not the individual utterances (ῤήματα, John 6:63), nor the substance of my message considered as a whole (λόγον, Matthew 13:[19] 20), but the substance of its parts, the various truths that I announce (λόγους). I will liken him; Revised Version, shall be likened, with the manuscripts. Not shall, in fact, be made like, ch. 6:8 (Weiss), but shall be likened in figure and parable. Unto a wise man. Prudent, sensible (φρόνιμος). Which built his house upon a rock; Revised Version, the rock. Which in not a few cases may be found at no great distance from the surface. I will liken him, etc

The picture is not of two men deliberately selecting foundations, but it contrasts one who carefully chooses and prepares his foundation with one who builds at hap-hazard. This is more strongly brought out by Luke (Luke 6:48): "Who digged and went deep, and laid a foundation upon the rock" (Rev.). Kitto ("Pictorial Bible") says: "At this very day the mode of building in Christ's own town of Nazareth suggests the source of this image. Dr. Robinson was entertained in the house of a Greek Arab. The house had just been built, and was not yet finished. In order to lay the foundations he had dug down to the solid rock, as is usual throughout the country here, to the depth of thirty feet, and then built up arches." The abrupt style of Matthew 7:25 pictures the sudden coming of the storm which sweeps away the house on the sand: "Descended the rain, and came the floods, and blew the winds."

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