Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Hearing Ears

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. (Revelation 2:29)
This phrase is repeated seven times in chapters two and three of the book of Revelation as an instruction to each of the seven churches. It is a summation of the thoughts that precede it. It is the Father's pleading. His strongest desire was for these people to hear His words.

Let's stop here for a moment and notice a couple things. First, here in these chapters, God is speaking to churches - to Christians. Second, He states to each what is right in that church and then what must be corrected.
I know your works, your labor, your patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and have found them liars; 3 and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My name’s sake and have not become weary." (Revelation 2:2-3)
In each case, He starts out by saying, "I know your works." In other words, "I know you have 'persevered'. I know you have been tried and found faithful. I know your love and patience. I know."

How precious is it to us when our children are found doing what we've asked of them, when they make a godly decision and turn aside from what "everyone else is doing". No matter what age they are, a parent is pleased to see their son or daughter choosing to live their life after God.

Well, we are told in Romans 8:15 that God is our spiritual Father. We are told later to imitate Him. (Ephesians 5:1) Just as we train our children to follow Christ and make godly choices, we ourselves are taught to do the same. God wants us as His children to follow the instructions He has laid out for us. After all, isn't that what the Bible really is? The Scriptures, written by the loving hand of our Father, are there to increase our knowledge, to give us wisdom, and to guide us into truth. They help us know what the "right thing" is.

I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father. (2 John 2:4)
Who will stand up an do what is right? This is the heart of God in Revelation 2 and 3. He wants to rejoice over us as we "walk in truth". He pleads, "Hear me. Hear my words. Do the right thing. I'm so proud of your faith, your love, and your patience. I proud of how you stood up for truth. Now fix the rest. Repent and do what is right."
Remember therefore how you have received and heard; hold fast and repent. (Revelation 3:3)
Hold fast and repent. What powerful instructions! Yet, there is another passage of scripture I think we should read.

For made gross was the heart of this people, and with the ears they heard heavily, and their eyes they did close, lest they might see with the eyes, and with the ears might hear, and with the heart understand, and turn back, and I might heal them. (Matthew 13:15)
It is possible to have "heavy ears". The King James Version uses the phrase "dull of hearing". But notice the effect of "dull hearing". It says, "Lest...they might hear...and understand." Without hearing, there is no understanding. Next read what follows, "...and turn back, and I might heal them."

Without hearing, there is no understanding. Without understanding,there is no repentance and as a result, no healing.

To him who overcomes... (Revelation 2:7,11,17,26;3:5,12,21)
But we don't have to live that way! God promises each church a powerful blessing if they will only hear and overcome. This means it was possible for them to overcome, no matter what the issue was.

God has made a way for us to overcome, and it is the path of His forgiveness. "As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us." (Psalm 103:12 NKJ) This is GREAT forgiveness. "'Come now, and let us reason together,' Says the Lord, 'Though your sins are like scarlet, They shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They shall be as wool.'" (Isaiah 1:18) This is COMPLETE forgiveness.

That is the message of God to the churches. It repeats over and over again in my heart. He says, "Hear Me. Hear Me."

And I reply, "Yes, Lord, I hear You!"

Can you?

Suzanne Williams Photography
Florida, USA

Suzanne Williams is a native Floridian, wife, and mother, with a penchant for spelling anything, who happens to love photography.

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