Introduction to Eternal Rewards (1 of 12)

Mike Connell

Notice He says then: the storms come upon the wise man, and the foolish man - so no one is exempt from the storms. He said: the rain descended, the floods came, the winds blew and beat on the house. Rain refers to divinely initiated storms. Rain comes from heaven. The rain that comes means that God initiates a storm, that uncovers what's going on in your life. Some storms come from God, and they expose what our life is like.

Now He says: floods came. Floods often refer to the actions of ungodly people. Some things that come against us - unkind, unloving, and often very hurtful mistreatment by people - they're the floods.

The winds refer to spirits - the pressure of demonic spirits. We can have storms come into our life that can come from God. They can come from people's behaviour towards us, bad treatment of us; or they can come from demonic spirits directly. But the storms will reveal what the foundation of your life is like, what you're built on.

Storms will come now, currently in life, and they're to grow you. But at the end, every storm is to expose the condition of your heart, to give you opportunity to change. At the end, He's saying that in the coming of the Lord, God's going to uncover the whole deal - what you really built.

Who is the wise man? The wise man built his house on the rock; but the foolish man built his house on the sand - what does that mean? Fortunately, Jesus explained exactly what it means to build your house on the rock. Now the Bible tells us in more than one place, that God is a rock.

Psalm 18:31 - “Who is a God, except the Lord? Who is a rock, except our God?”

In 1 Corinthians 10:4, it says: “the rock is Christ”.

When it's using rock - it's something that's stable, that can stand up to storms, because it's eternal in value. But Jesus in the passage says exactly what it means.

“Therefore, whoever hears these sayings of Mine and does them, I'll liken them to the wise man who built his house on the rock.”

We're not talking about everything Jesus is saying, although it can apply to that. He's saying: whoever hears these sayings of Mine. He's just concluding His Sermon on the Mount, so when He says: “these sayings of Mine”, it's referring to what He's just taught, which is about the heart values of the kingdom.

He said: whoever hears these heart values of the kingdom - what I require, to establish and build My kingdom - whoever hears, and puts those into his life, and applies them - that man is the stable man. That's the man who'll stand the test of storms.

The teaching He's referring to are the core heart values of the kingdom. In other words, there is a need for a transformed heart.

“Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.”

If you want to receive from God expansion to your life, and your influence, develop the quality of meekness. Put focus on developing a meek heart. If you want to be lifted, and given greater promotion, God says: develop a humble heart - humble yourself, and He will lift you up.

There's all kinds of things through the teachings there, that are heart issues; so in other words, in the teaching on the Sermon on the Mount, you find constant reference to the motivation; not just What people did, but the Why they did it.

Matthew 5:46 - “If you love those who love you, what reward have you? Even the sinners will do that.”

Notice he said: if you love those who love you; so basically, you're doing a payback. They gave to you, and you don't want to be indebted to them, so you're paying them back. He said: if that's all you do, there's no reward! There's no eternal reward in that.

In Luke 6:35, he says the same thing. He said: “if you love your enemies, and do good, and lend, and hope for nothing in return, your reward will be great.” Your reward will be great! In other words, he's saying that giving, and kindness, that has no personal agenda will be rewarded by God, because it carries the heart of the kingdom. It carries the heart of the King! It represents the King!