POLITICS
05/15/2009 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

Obama's Sermon On The Mount Reference

In his speech at Georgetown University Tuesday, President Obama used a Biblical reference to explain his comprehensive economic policy.

"We cannot rebuild this economy on the same pile of sand," he said, invoking Jesus' Sermon on the Mount. "We must build our house upon a rock. We must lay a new foundation for growth and prosperity a foundation that will move us from an era of borrow and spend to one where we save and invest, where we consume less at home and send more exports abroad."

In his sermon, Jesus admonished listeners, "Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand." (Matthew 7:24-26, New International Version)

It's not the first time Obama has invoked the Bible. In his inaugural speech, the president said, "We remain a young nation, but in the words of Scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things." It's a reference to Corinthians (King James version): "When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things."