[b]Take Heed, Therefore, How Ye Hear[/b]
[i]by Phil Lapp[/i]
In Lukes account of the parable of the sower, the Lord Jesus gives us special instructions on how to hear. As you study this passage, you will notice Jesus tells us we are judged according to how we hear. See verse 18.
There are four methods of hearing in this parable. Every person in the world uses one of these four methods of hearing. So this truth becomes applicable to all people everywhere, anyone who has ears.
#1. The forgetful hearer
Some people forget what they hear almost as quickly as they hear. We ask someones name and 5 minutes later will have forgotten their name. We hear the Lord speaking to us, but it never sinks in. This type of listening is usually because we are very self-centered and are thinking something else as we listen. The devil has our mind filled with other things, that have our affection, so when we hear the Lord speaking, it really doesnt grab our attention, since other things are more important to us. Hence, we quickly lose what we hear and even what we seem to have.
#2. The Hardened hearer
This person hears and it enters their minds. We ponder what we hear, and receive it. We actually believe it and it gives us joy! However, life is hard, so though we think about the truth with our minds, our hearts are hard with the deceitfulness of sin. Our hard hearts, full of bitterness, unforgiveness, anger, lust, self-righteousness, judgment, and hypocrisy, hear the Word, but alas, it never changes our life. So, we lose what we heard, and even what we seem to have.
#3. The busy hearer
Have you ever spoken with someone who, while you were speaking with them, continually was looking around at other people or things, and it seemed you didnt have their attention?
This is one of the most frustrating conversations you can hold. You will soon just stop talking with this person and go on your way to someone who looks you in the eye and seems interested in what you have to say. The busy listener does hear the Holy Spirits voice. However, life is very, very busy and many other very important things grab their attention, so the Word never finds root and develops into action. Our lives are full of thorns, which are growing and take more and more time such as our jobs, families, our favorite food, sports teams, hobbies, etc. Time seems to go faster and faster so many things to do and many of the Words we hear the Spirit say to us, are easily forgotten, choked out with cares, riches, and pleasures of this life taking their place in our minds and hearts. So alas, very little of what we hear actually turns into actions in our lives, and ever so slowly, but surely, we lose what we have, and even what we seem to have.
#4. The good hearer
This person listens closely, because it is their intention to retain what they hear. We come with the intention to hear, learn and understand. This attitude can only come from a heart that is honest and humble, seeking first to hear correctly, and understand the one who is speaking. When we listen to the one who is speaking to us, in this manner, it develops a relationship between us. Any relationship is only as good as the hearing. Good hearing brings a good understanding, a good understanding creates trust, and trust develops into love. There can be no close relationship without these four ingredients. This man is not a forgetful hearer, and shall be blessed in his deed. Since our deeds now come out of obedience to the things we have heard, we now live a life of Faith, as obedient children. So, nothing we do can give us reason to boast, since we are simply obeying our Father voice.
This is why we now bear forth the fruit of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance. As we continue to obey, He comes and makes His abode with us, and, oh, our lives are filled with JOY!
SI Moderator - Greg Gordon