build on sand

Idioms & Phrases

build on sand

Use an unstable foundation, as in If you buy nothing but high-risk stocks, your portfolio will be built on sand. This metaphor appears in the New Testament, where Jesus likens those who do not heed his sayings to a foolish man who builds his house on sand, which then is washed away by rain, flood, and wind (Matthew 7:24-27). [c. 1600]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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