Luke 6:46-49 (ESV)

“Why do you call me ‘Lord, Lord,’ and not do what I tell you? [47] Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and does them, I will show you what he is like: [48] he is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid the foundation on the rock. And when a flood arose, the stream broke against that house and could not shake it, because it had been well built. [49] But the one who hears and does not do them is like a man who built a house on the ground without a foundation. When the stream broke against it, immediately it fell, and the ruin of that house was great.”

Obedience to Christ is good for you. In this text Jesus is contrasting the man who obeys him and the one who does not. The one who obeys is like a house built on the rock. When the storms come it stays standing. Disobedience is like a house built on sand. Because it has no foundation the storm will cause it to collapse.

There is no prosperity Gospel being taught here. Jesus is not saying that obedience will make you rich or healthy or comfortable. What He is saying is that when you do get sick, or have financial setbacks or persecuted for the faith or experience a host of other calamities, you will not collapse under the weight of them. This is because the one who obeys Christ is the one who trusts Christ.

Sometimes obedience does not seem like the best route for us to take, but because we believe it is always better to do what God says and not go our own way, we do what we know is right anyway. And we do it gladly. The faith that obeys even in the face of the difficulties obedience brings will grow stronger. It has already shown a willingness to do the right thing. When hardships come the faithful will not falter like those who have relied on their own wisdom and strength.

Those who disobey are those who think they know better than God what should be done in situations. Even though they know what the Word of God says, they do otherwise because they fail to see the good in obedience. They think hey know that obedience will result in bad things happening. The first love for these people is not God’s glory, or faithfulness. It is comfort or ease or prosperity. The threat of trouble is a greater incentive than the thought of drifting away from God. When difficulties come they will not stand, because they are out of resources. They have already demonstrated that they are not willing to trust God when times are easy. When times get rough they have only their own resources to tap into and they find them woefully inadequate. They collapse.

This could be seen as a type of prosperity teaching. The prosperity is not of money or health or fame or anything connected to the temporal. It is the prosperity of inner strength, character in the face of opposition, faithfulness when it seems that God is not hearing. Jesus does not say what the storms are that beat at these houses, and that means that it does not matter what they are. Whatever they are the obedient will have built up a strength that will sustain them in difficult days. Whatever he does prospers – not materially, but in a much better and more meaningful way – in the soul, in the mind, in the heart. Obedience to Christ is good for you.