The Wise Person
August 22, 2020
Everyone then who hears these words of Mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock (Matthew 7:24-25).
In the many years I spent in academia, I’ve encountered, and even studied under individuals I call ‘intellectual idiots’. They were highly intelligent, but lacked wisdom - they didn’t know what to do with the knowledge they had except to parrot it to others in a classroom setting.
There are several words in the New Testament Greek translated ‘wisdom’ or ‘wise’ in English. One is sophia, which refers to insight into the true nature of things. Magos refers to a magician (Magi) or a sacred caste of Persians. Suniaymee means to perceive or understand; understanding intelligence. The word Jesus used here is phronaysis, the ability to discern methods of action with a view to their results.
Wisdom in this text is defined as, “knowledge of what is true or right coupled with just judgment as to action.” That’s the point of this parable Jesus taught at the close of the Sermon on the Mount. All that Jesus taught is of no value unless it is put to good use. We would do well to bear that in mind today.
In this parable we must define the ‘players’, what the symbols mean. The ‘house’ represents a person’s life. The rock represents God’s truth. The ‘rain’, ‘floods’, and ‘winds’ represent the various storms of life. To ‘beat on that house’ means to ‘come up against’, to afflict or press against the life.
The point Jesus stressed is that those who hear and understand His teachings, and build their lives on His truth (who apply His truth into their lives), will be able to weather the storms of life safely and soundly. Furthermore, the life built on God’s truth is a life built on a proper relationship with Jesus Christ (Matthew 16:13-18; 1 Peter 2:1-8). That life will stand the test of time, trials, and temptations.
“Father, Your Word is truth and is life and strength to all who hear and obey it. Remind me, Lord, that the wisdom of this world is foolishness and passes away, but Your truth abides forever. And because Your truth lives in all true Christians, they will live forever in the Kingdom You have prepared for us. To Your praise and glory I thank You in Jesus Christ, Amen.”