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Destroyed Foundations

Scripture: Psalm 11:1-7; Text: "If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?" (Psalm 11:3).

The question before us is one which should have great impact upon our lives. It is a tremendous question which we should all ask ourselves today. What answer can you give to the question or what solutions will you present. Foundations are being destroyed, what can we do?

The meaning of the word "foundation" as it is generally used in the Bible would signify anything laid. Paul wrote, "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" (1 Corinthians 3:10). God is also said to have "laid the foundation of the earth" (Psalm 102:25). In both of these scriptures we see the singular idea of a foundation, upon which something was built.

However, in the text, the word is foundations in the plural. The specific meaning of the word here is columns. Such foundations can be seen under some older buildings. Many old houses were built high off the ground and were supported by foundations or columns made from brick or wood blocks. This is the picture that is painted for our minds by the use of the word foundations. Now if part of those foundations were destroyed, what happened to the building? It would sag, warp, lean or sometimes even fall. Spiritual foundations can also be destroyed and we are now feeling the effects of such destruction.

The Prophet Ezekiel wrote of God destroying Egypt saying, "her foundations shall be broken down" (Ezekiel 30:4). But my friends, God is not destroying our foundations. The foundations of our nation, churches and homes are being destroyed by SIN. The foundations are being eroded and dissolved away because of wickedness in the land. Even now the foundations are slowly being destroyed.

To aid us in the study of this text I ask you to form a mental picture. We picture ourselves on a street with three buildings side by side, These buildings stand supported by a column foundation at each of the four corners. Now keep that picture clear in your minds.

The first building we approach is the smallest of the three, it is the family. There are four foundations upon which the family stands. At one corner is the role of the woman in relation to her husband. God said, "Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord" (Ephesians 5:22). Women who are submissive to their husbands are said also to be submissive to the Lord Jesus. This submission does not imply inferiority to the man. However, the home must have some regulation of authority. There is chaos in the home and in the minds of children where it is never known who will set the standard. For the home to be what God intended, it is essential for the woman to fill her God given role with faithfulness and devotion.

The next foundation is the role of the husband. The responsibility of the husband is stated in relation to his wife. God said, "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body" (Ephesians 5:23). The husband is head of the wife and head of the home. Because God made man the head of the wife does not mean that he is superior to her. Rather it is an extra responsibility which God has laid upon the man. God further regulates the husband by saying, "Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it" (Ephesians 5:25), Husbands then are not to be lording, but loving. The husband who obeys God in loving his wife as God ordained, will not abuse or mistreat her. All of his decisions will be made for her well being. Thus an obedient husband makes it easy for the wife also to be obedient to God in her duty. If husbands fail in their duty, they must answer to God for their disobedience.

Still another corner foundation is the role of children towards their parents. God gave parents the duty and responsibility of providing for the needs of their children. However, God also gave children the obligation of obedience to their parents. The Bible commands, "Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right. Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise; That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth" (Ephesians 6:1-3). Children are to honour and obey their parents. The expression "in the Lord," simply means that children are not obligated to obey parents who command them to sin or commit some crime. However, when parents make decisions that do not violate the laws of God, they are to be obeyed. If parental decisions are wrong, the parents are accountable to God. On the other hand, children are obligated by God to obey their parents and this is to be done without arguments, tantrums or disrespect. If children fail in their duty, the foundation is destroyed.

The last of the four corner columns is again the duty of the man. This time not as the husband, but rather as the father. Fathers are duty bound to be spiritual leaders and guides for their children. God did not delegate this duty to mothers, though many have done so out of necessity and because of the failures of fathers. God taught, "And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord" (Ephesians 6:4). Fathers, take your God given responsibility seriously! Don't send your children to church, go with them. Lead your family in service to God. Ask God in prayer to help you maintain this corner foundation of the family unit. Many have neglected this foundation and the building of their family is all out of shape.

Having now completed our examination of the first building, let us move on to look at the second. This building is called the church. Like the family it also has foundations or columns upon which it stands. At this point we have a building with more than four foundations. However for simplicities sake, I will explore only four. We may differ in our designation of the foundations, but these four are important to me.

The first corner is supported by the doctrines of the church. Some do not view church doctrines as important. Some have even thought that they are divisive. However, in my opinion it is people, not doctrines, which divide. Doctrines are simply the teachings of the Bible and the beliefs of the church. It is by the declarations of truth that people have been bound together in their beliefs. "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness" (2 Timothy 3:16). The doctrines teach both what God has done for us and what He commands us to do. Whether they concern grace, election, predestination, glorification, baptism or good works; all are for God's glory and the good of the church which stands upon them.

The second corner foundation is church practice. This involves what we do, more than what we believe. It is needful to believe what the Bible teaches, but it is profitable to do what God commands. "This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men" (Titus 3:8). Notice that belief is to be accompanied by what the people are doing about their beliefs. Therefore James said, "But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves" (James 1:22). The Bible then is our darkened glass by which we see God, (1 Corinthians 13:12) but also our mirror in which we see the reflection of ourselves. (James 1:23-24).

The third foundation which must be considered is love. Specifically, I have reference now to our love for God. The church stands not just in the beliefs that are in our heads, nor the service of our hands, but also the feelings of our hearts. Religion without heart is no good to the church. We are told how to love God when Jesus said, "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind" (Matthew 22:37). A proper love for God creates proper devotion to God. To love God above everything, makes us willing to give anything for Him. In our day, there are so many who can be described as "lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God" (2 Timothy 3:4). It will be good for us to follow the admonition of the Apostle Paul and prove the sincerity of our love for God (2 Corinthians 8:8). Our love for God is so important because it is inseparably connected to our practices previously considered. Remember the words Jesus spoke to Peter, "Simon, son of James, lovest thou me more than these? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my lambs" (John. 21:15). If we love God as we ought, we will want to obey Him. The church depends then upon our love for God, as one of its foundations.

The last foundation of the church is closely related to the previous one. It has to do with our love for one another. Jesus said, "This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you" (John 15:12). How can we possess a proper love for God, unless we also love our brother (1 John 4:20). The greatest command is-to love God, "And the second is like unto it-Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself" (Matthew 22:39). More love is needed in this world and most certainly in the church. What church body can survive without this foundation of love. Therefore, "Let brotherly love continue" (Hebrews 13:1).

Finally we continue down the street of our minds until we come to the third and largest of the three structures. This building is our nation and like those previously mentioned, it also has foundations. As before I shall limit my statements to the four primary foundations of our nation. Our nation has been and still is the greatest nation in the world. However, I think we all agree that it does not stand as high as it once did. The reason is simple, like the family and church, some of the foundations of our nation are being destroyed.

One foundation upon which our nation was built is religious liberty. Put differently, our nation was founded upon the freedom to worship God. That foundation has been drastically weakened, for now many people have turned from God. Can we accurately be described as a Christian nation any longer? As we slowly turn from God, we have turned from the standards of His word. Once our laws reflected the laws of God. However, now our nation has become wise in its own conceit (Romans 11:25), and has chosen to forsake many of God's ways. No wonder we do not now occupy that lofty place we once held among nations of the world. As a nation, we have exchanged the higher ways of God (Isaiah 55:9) for the baser ways of men. We can achieve our former greatness only by returning to God and His word.

Another foundation upon which our nation once stood, was great leadership. Men who governed our people were men of conviction and strength, not mere politicians. Many leaders are no longer guided by honesty and integrity, but rather by greed. David said, "He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God" (2 Samuel 23:3). How many such men and women are there in our government today? We need more leaders who still pray as did Solomon, saying, "Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad" (1 Kings 3:9). Without such leadership, the foundation crumbles and our entire nation is affected.

Justice is the third foundation upon which our nation must stand, We need the companions of truth and justice to return and live in our nation once again. So many current laws and court decisions seem to reflect little concern for the common citizen. Some appear completely in favor of the criminal element of our society. At times we feel certain that we live in the day of which Isaiah prophesied, saying, "And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter" (Isaiah 59:14). Our nation cannot survive without this vital foundation of justice.

Trusting God is the fourth and final foundation of our nation. Our money still bears the words, "In God we trust." Such trust has faded from the hearts of many Americans. The Bible says, "It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes" (Psalm 118:8-9). However, our people are insistent upon trusting the inventions of men. Our nation shall survive only as long as God blesses America. We must continue to trust God for needed blessings. Failure to trust Him is not only foolish, but it destroys the very foundation upon which our nation has stood.

If the foundations be destroyed what can the righteous do? Our foundations are being destroyed and it is now time to recognize that fact. We must search for the solutions that lie before us. What can we do? Thank God, there is something the righteous can do about the situation. If we wait upon the wicked and ungodly, the foundations will never be restored. Much of the decay and destruction of these foundations are their doing. Even if we did not help destroy the foundations, most of us stood silently by and watched. Now we must undo what has already been done. It will not be an easy task, but with the help of God it can be accomplished.

If the problem is to be solved, it is essential that we build back those foundations which have been weakened or destroyed. The reconstruction must be accomplished by the efforts of God's people. God said, "If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land" (2 Chronicles 7:14). It will require genuine concern by the people of God of our nation. It will demand of us, obedience to Jesus and His teachings. Mary, the mother of Jesus spoke these words, "Whatsoever he (Jesus) saith unto you, do it" (John 2:5). Are you willing to follow Him?

We must take God and His word seriously. Wives and husbands must strive to become the companions God commands. Parents and children must work for the relationship which God outlines. Church members must become more faithful and increase their devotion to God and their church. The citizens of our nation must take a stand for godly leadership rather than programs of personal benefit. We must get out the tools, put ourselves into the work and take seriously the task of rebuilding the foundations which have been destroyed. God help us as we do all we can to rebuild the foundations of our nation, our churches and our homes!

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This page last updated on June 7, 2014