What Is the Foundation of Your Life? 

If it is anything other than Jesus Christ, your foundation will crumble

First Corinthians 3.11

Don Ruhl • Savage Street, Grants Pass, Oregon • May 31, In the year of our Lord, 2015


  1. Did you know 
    1. that typically a bank will not loan you money
    2. for a home without a foundation?
      1. Why not?
      2. They know that the structure will not last
        1. nearly as long as one with a foundation.
        2. Why is a foundation so important?
          1. It makes a solid connection or bond between
          2. the earth and the structure.
            1. The structure has to be tied to something
            2. stronger than itself, or
              1. the ravages of the Earth
              2. will destroy the structure.
  2. That is precisely why we need a foundation to our lives. 
    1. We need to be tied to something
    2. that is stronger than we are,
      1. otherwise, the ravages of the Earth, of the world,
      2. will tear us apart.
        1. The storms of life will blow us all over the place.
        2. Political earthquakes will fill us with fears.
  3. You have seen people with a foundation. 
    1. They are stable.
    2. They can endure whatever life throws at them.
      1. We can lay many foundations, but
      2. I want to show you that we should lay down only one foundation.


  1. Psalm 11.3 – How would you function without a foundation?

    3 If the foundations are destroyed,
    What can the righteous do?
    (Psa 11.3)

    1. In the opening verses, the psalmist revealed
      1. that he put his trust in the Lord, but
      2. someone told him to flee as a bird, and
        1. whoever gave that encouragement
        2. reasoned that the wicked prepared themselves
          1. to shoot at the upright in heart.
          2. If they succeeded,
            1. then the foundations would be destroyed, and
            2. what would the righteous do in that case?
    2. However, David the psalmist, argued
      1. that he trusted in the Lord, and
      2. that He cannot be moved,
        1. implying that the true foundations would never be destroyed.
        2. Therefore, how could his advisers think of telling David to flee?
    3. The Lord is in His holy temple (v. 4),
      1. He sits on His throne in heaven, and
      2. from there He observes what people do (vv. 4–5).
        1. He then rains fire and brimstone on the wicked, but
        2. He beholds the upright (vv. 6–7).
    4. What then serves as the foundation for the righteous?
  2. Luke 6.46–49 – How to have the right foundation

    46 “But why do you call Me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do the things which I say? 47 Whoever comes to Me, and hears My sayings and does them, I will show you whom he is like: 48 He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when the flood arose, the stream beat vehemently against that house, and could not shake it, for it was founded on the rock. 49 But he who heard and did nothing is like a man who built a house on the earth without a foundation, against which the stream beat vehemently; and immediately it fell. And the ruin of that house was great” (Luke 6.46–49).

    1. Calling Jesus, Lord, does not automatically lay down the proper foundation.
      1. Should we call Him Lord? Yes, we should.
      2. Should we confess His Lordship? Yes, we should.
    2. We have to do what He says.
      1. We backup our confession by our actions.
      2. Think of what Jesus questioned.
        1. He did not question merely why we say His name.
        2. He questioned why people called Him by a certain address,
          1. that of Lord, but
          2. that must mean something.
            1. We can say that Jesus was a carpenter.
              1. What does that mean for us?
              2. That title, if we could imagine it as a title for a moment,
                1. does not hold anything over us.
                2. Jesus was a carpenter.
                  1. How does that change our lives?
                  2. If we deny it, what does that do?
            2. However, calling Him Lord constitutes a different matter.
              1. What is a lord of any kind?
              2. A lord has authority.
            3. If we call Jesus Lord,
              1. we mean He has authority, but
              2. in this case, His authority is far more
                1. than what any lordship a man on Earth has.
                2. If Jesus is Lord,
                  1. He rules over everything.
                  2. He rules my life.
                3. How then can I acknowledge His Lordship, but
                  1. fail to do what He says?
                  2. My lack of action denies my profession,

                    16 They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good work (Tts 1.16).
    3. Therefore, according to verse 47, Jesus wants three things from us:
      1. He wants us to go to Him,
      2. He wants us to hear what He says, and
      3. He wants us to do what He says.
        1. Are you not that way with your children?
        2. Are you not that way if you lead people,
          1. such as at work, or
          2. a sports team, or anything else?
    4. If we do all three of those things,
      1. He compares us to a man who builds a house,
      2. digging deep until he hits rock.
        1. On that rock, he lays his foundation.
        2. That provides such strength to the structure of the house
          1. that floods can arise, and
          2. streams can hit the house, but
            1. the water will not shake the house, because
            2. it had a foundation on the rock.
              1. In my backhoe operating days,
              2. the foundation guys would have me dig a ditch
                1. for a footing for a house at about 12 inches, but
                2. sometimes we had to go deeper to hit solid ground.
        3. If it was on a hillside,
          1. the contractor would have to hire a geologist,
          2. who in turn hired me, and
            1. I would dig deep holes,
            2. sometimes the full length of the hoe,
              1. which was 19 feet with my extension.
              2. He would go down into the ditch and analyze
                1. how deep the footings for the homes
                2. would have to be.
    5. Back to Luke 6, if we do the first two things,
      1. go to Jesus and
      2. hear His sayings, but
        1. we fail to do the third,
        2. which was doing what He teachings and commands tell us to do, then
          1. it is like building a house on the earth without a foundation, and
          2. the streams beat against that house and destroy it.
    6. Which man with which house are you?
  3. First Corinthians 3.5–15 – The only foundation for your life

    5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed, as the Lord gave to each one? 6 I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. 7 So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase. 8 Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor. 9 For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building. 10 According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it. 11 For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 Now if anyone builds on this foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, 13 each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. 14 If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss; but he himself will be saved, yet so as through fire (1Co 3.5–15).

    1. Who was Paul? Who was Apollos?
      1. If they were not anything,
      2. then our ancient brethren in Corinth
        1. could not name themselves after those men,
        2. nor make them the foundation of their lives.
          1. If the great apostle Paul could not be anyone’s foundation,
          2. then who on Earth can be?
      3. Ephesians 2 shows an exalted place for the apostles and prophets, but
        1. see the emphasis of this passage,

          19 Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord, 22 in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit (Eph 2.19–22).
    2. The Lord gave to Paul and Apollos their work and their skill.
      1. God gave the increase.
      2. Ministers are God’s fellow workers.
      3. You are God’s field.
      4. You are God’s building.
      5. According to the grace of God
        1. Paul laid the foundation and
        2. another built upon it.
    3. Then Paul revealed the foundation: Jesus Christ.
      1. Whatever we build upon that foundation shall go through testing.
        1. Some work built on that foundation will endure the testing.
        2. Some work built on that foundation will not endure the testing.
      2. However, what if we do not even lay the foundation of Jesus Christ?
        1. What if our foundation is our job?
        2. What if our foundation is our family?
        3. What if our foundation is the greatness of America?
        4. What if our foundation is a preacher?
        5. What if our foundation is our financial resources?
          1. If weak things built on the foundation of Christ
          2. will not last,
            1. what will happen to our lives,
            2. if we do not even have the foundation of Christ?

              3 If the foundations are destroyed,
              What can the righteous do?
              (Psa 11.3)


  1. In Matthew 16, the apostle shows Peter confessing Jesus,

    16 “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matt 16.16).

    1. Then listen to what Jesus said about Peter’s confession
    2. of the true identity of Jesus,

      17 Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this [that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God] to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock [that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God] I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it (Matt 16.17–18).
  2. Knowing 
    1. that Jesus is the Christ, the special Anointed One from God, and
    2. that Jesus is the Son of the living God,
      1. will put the right foundation in your life.
      2. Remember
        1. do not only confess it, but
        2. live it.