BUILDING THE HOUSE
BY: MARGIT H. ROACH
“In My Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto Myself; that where I am, there ye may be also” (Jn. 14:2-3)
Jesus is building His house together with you and with me. He is preparing an abiding place. This house is for Himself and for us too, for where He is so are we. This abode must be built, because “…the Son of Man has no place to lay His head” (Luke 9:58). “Even unto this present hour,” as Paul wrote, “we both hunger and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwelling place” (1 Cor. 4:11) This is so we can always abide together with Him in perfect peace.
King Solomon wrote in Proverbs 24:3-4 something of this House, or dwelling place of God that He prepares for Himself. “Through wisdom is a house builded, and by understanding it is established: And by knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches.”
We as individuals also take part in building the house, and we know that we are this house of the Lord. In 1 Corinthians 3:9-16 we read “For we are labourers together with God: ye are God’s husbandry (meaning: a field, a farm, cultivatable farmland) ye are God’s building. According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ. Now, if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is. If any man’s work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. If any man’s work shall be burned, he shall suffer loss: but he himself shall be saved; yet so as by (through) fire. Know ye not that ye are the temple (house) of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?”
Notice – ye are the temple, the house of God. If we build with gold, silver and precious stones our houses will stand, this we know; but if we build with wood, hay and stubble, it shall surely burn. It is no wonder that Paul told us to let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon. In order for a house to be built with the precious things of God, and for it to stand, we should not take it lightly. WE HAVE TO TAKE HEED, dear brethren — to notice carefully, pay attention, be full of caution, and for ever watchful. So let us take special notice of spiritual matters. We have to pay careful attention to the weightier matters of life. It is also vital to be cautious of carnal distractions as we watch over those things we have built into the house.
It is clear that we must have Christ Jesus as the foundation of our house, which we know is the beginning of our salvation, and it is our deliverance from the corruption of the flesh. We also know it was He Himself who laid that foundation. (1 Cor.3:10-11) The scriptures, however speak of two foundations (Matt. 7:24-27) The first one is: “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 (Christ Jesus): And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a Rock.”
That Rock, of course, we know is Jesus Christ: “And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ” (1 Cor.10:4) The second foundation is unlike the first one. It is of man, and not of Christ: “And every one that heareth these sayings of Mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.” We need to hear what Jesus is saying, and do them, in order to have the abundance of eternal life, our house must be built upon that Rock. The fact is, if we are not hearing what Jesus is saying, we are building our house on the man’s religious sand – and it will fall.
They who build their houses upon the sand follow man, not Christ. Men who follow men have no discernment, and it is sad. Discernment is very important. As Elwin and I travel the country, we see it is lacking in so many of the brethren. If we don’t have discernment, how will we know the truth from the false. And please, please ask for it, if you do not have it. For without it you surely will follow man. It is beyond their comprehension that the Spirit gives life, not the foundation laid by man. Remember when the angel spoke to Abraham? He said, “That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies. And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed My voice” (Gen. 22:17-18) And again, we read in Hosea 1:10 “Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered….” Joshua 11:4 says this, “And they went out, they and all their hosts with them, much people, even as the sand that is upon the sea shore in multitude, with horses and chariots very many.” In Gen. 32:12 we read, “And thou saidst, I will surely do thee good, and make thy seed as the sand of the sea, which can not be numbered for multitude.”
God referred to Abraham’s seed as sand, as well as in other verses. What was his seed? It was Isaac — the physical man of promise. Remember, Jesus said not to build your house upon the sand (man). Because it shall surely fall. It can not stand, for there is no life in man to support himself. Only by the anointed Word can man live.
Knowing now that sand speaks of men, let us not follow after them, as some do, merely because they can speak better, sing better, write better, look better, or perhaps we have known them longer. Dear ones, it is a shame that some of the brethren are following men, rather than Christ. “Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” (1 Cor.1:10) There should be no divisions among ourselves. We should love and esteem all man the same, for we are all the children of God (Gal.3:26). We all came out of Him, go through him and back into Him. (Rom.11:36) Let us listen and hear by the Spirit. Are we led and fed by this man or that man? Is he speaking by the Spirit of God, or is he only babbling.
I am not saying we can never listen to man, because, you see, there is a scripture that also says, there are treasures hidden in the sand. “They shall call the people unto the mountain; there they shall offer sacrifices of righteousness: for they shall suck of the abundance of the seas and of the treasures hid in the sand.“ (Deut. 33:19) We see here that there are treasures hidden in the sand (man) that we can partake of. When we as men of sand, dust and clay are walking with God, and are filled with His Holy Spirit, then there are treasures hidden within us. These precious treasures need to come forth. The river of living water must flow out of our bellies for others to drink from. For every one of us adds to the building of the body of Christ, the house. Paul said it this way: “From whom the whole body fitly joined and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body (house) unto the edifying of itself in love.“ (Eph. 4:16) So let us listen to the Christ in men, that we may all grow together, but not worship those sandy vessels of clay. Do not make them gods.
In Proverbs 24:3-4 we find some steps on how to build the Lord’s house. First, there is wisdom, then there is understanding, and afterwards comes knowledge. These are very important steps, so let us look at them one at a time.
Wisdom: “Through wisdom is an house builded….” Wisdom means – discernment, the state of being wise, and rightly dividing the truth from the false. How do we receive this wisdom? One way is having communion with God the Father, as well as by the renewing of your mind (Rom 12:1-2). And by hearing His sayings we will learn as He teaches us all things. He will teach us all things. Another is to fear Him. Do we fear Him? I hope so, for this fear is necessary; but it is not a fear of torment. This fear is a reverential fear. Proverbs 9:10 says: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom….”
Understanding: “…By understanding the house is established…” Understanding means – to know by experience, it also means discernment. And established means – to bring into being, like a house or a church (the true church). Proverbs 9:10 says, “…And the knowledge of the Holy is understanding.” By doing what God tells us to do, we learn from it and get understanding. This often comes by experience.
Knowledge: “By knowledge shall the chambers be filled with all precious and pleasant riches” (Prov. 24:4) Knowledge means – to know a truth or fact by learning or experience. This living experience can be seen in the tabernacle, which are shadows that speak of spiritual realities. What then do we have in this house, the house of the Lord, that maps out our journey of learning through experience?
Within it is found the Ark of the Covenant, the candle sticks, the table of shew bread, the alter of incense, the cherubim, and the glory of God. All this furniture helps us to come to the fullness of eternal life. Wisdom, understanding and knowledge are also found in this house, and they are so closely knit together, you can not separate them. They are all interrelated and serve the same cause, yet in a different, progressive way. When you have wisdom, you get understanding, and these two bring knowledge. All three manifestations are given by the Spirit. (1 Cor.12:8) They work for good to them that love God. When we know God as He is, then this house that we are will be complete, full-grown, and mature. Nothing can enter nor come out to defile this house. And dear brethren, we are being built – PRAISE GOD! 1 Peter 2:5 says it very clear, “Ye also as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by (through) Jesus Christ.”
In conclusion, let us all now sing this beautiful song that was written by our dear friends, Bob and Charlotte Torango:
God is building a house. In which creation shall dwell,
These rooms are Gods mansions He’s delivered from hell,
Prepared for the ages His purpose to be;
God is building a house with you and with me.
BUILDING THE HOUSE [Margit H. Roach] 1