Matt. 7:24–27 The house represents a religious life; the rain represents divine judgment. Only the house built on the foundation of obedience to God’s word stands, which calls for repentance, rejection of salvation by works, and trust in God’s grace to save through his merciful provision.Commentary by John MacArthur
“Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.” (Matthew 7:24)
Two foundations. Verse 24, Everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them,” – does them – “may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock.” Then in verse 26, “Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them,” – does not do them – “will be like the foolish man who built his house on the sand.”
You have two foundations: rock and sand. Both build a religious house. Both have some kind of religious structure. Both hear, and at least outwardly affirm, the truth. In fact, you can’t tell the difference. We can’t see the foundation. And that’s the point of the analogy. It’s sort of like Matthew 13 where you have the wheat and the tares growing together, and we are warned not to try to pull the tares out, because we lack the ability to distinguish them so often.
Both build a house. Both build a house in the same place, because the same storm hits both. Both build essentially in the same way; and from somebody standing there and looking, they look like equally impressive religious structures. But there’s a massive difference, and that is one house is built on the rock of sound doctrine, true repentance, and faith in Jesus Christ, salvation by grace alone. The other is built on the sand of hypocrisy, false religion, human works, and religion.
Excerpts from John MacArthur sermon “Finding the NarrowWay to Heaven”