Saturday, July 21, 2018

Are You Listening?

Luke 9:43-45

"And they were all amazed at the majesty of God. But while everyone marveled at all the things which Jesus did, He said to His disciples, “Let these words sink down into your ears, for the Son of Man is about to be betrayed into the hands of men.” But they did not understand this saying, and it was hidden from them so that they did not perceive it; and they were afraid to ask Him about this saying."

God chose the foolishness of preaching to save those who believe, amazing isn't it? The simple spoken word by an anointed man or woman of God has the power to break strongholds and set the captives free. 

But the key to eternity with the Lord lies with your ability to listen first and then apply what you've heard to your life. 
Jesus said that whoever hears His sayings and puts His words into practice are wise.

Matthew 7:24-27

"Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.”
For those who hear, but don't put the words of Jesus into practice are foolish (lacks judgement or prudence).

When Stephen inspired by the Holy Spirit, spoke to those who opposed him, they could not resist the wisdom or the Spirit by which he spoke! But unfortunately they did not listen to the word from Heaven through Stephen, they became angry and gnashed their teeth at him, and eventually stoned him to death, even though his face was as the face of an angel!

Acts 6:8-10, 15, 54-58

"And Stephen, full of faith and power, did great wonders and signs among the people. Then there arose some from what is called the Synagogue of the Freedmen (Cyrenians, Alexandrians, and those from Cilicia and Asia), disputing with Stephen. And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the Spirit by which he spoke. And all who sat in the council, looking steadfastly at him, saw his face as the face of an angel."

"When they heard these things they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed at him with their teeth.  But he, being full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God, and said, “Look! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!”

Then they cried out with a loud voice, stopped their ears, and ran at him with one accord; and they cast him out of the city and stoned him. And the witnesses laid down their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit."

When the anointed spoken word cuts the heart of the hearer there can be two responses; Receive the word, believe and repent, or become angry and hardened to the grace of God.

But if you will listen, God has many promises!

Proverbs 1:33, 4:10, 20-22

"But whoever listens to me will dwell safely,
And will be secure, without fear of evil.”

"Hear, my son, and receive my sayings,
And the years of your life will be many."

"My son, give attention to my words;
Incline your ear to my sayings. Do not let them depart from your eyes; Keep them in the midst of your heart; 
For they are life to those who find them,
And health to all their flesh."

John 6:63

"It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I speak to you are spirit, and they are life."

James 1:21-25

"Therefore lay aside all filthiness and overflow of wickedness, and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls. But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. 

For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man observing his natural face in a mirror; for he observes himself, goes away, and immediately forgets what kind of man he was. But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does."

Are you listening?

In Jesus,