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Check the best hearing aid, your heart

A Commentary by Constance Vanides

"My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall bring understanding." (Psalm 49:3)

"He who has ears to hear, let him hear!" Jesus repeats these words over and over again. (Matthew 11:15; 13:9; Mark 4:9; Luke 8:8) Later, in the Book of Revelation, Jesus speaks a similar version seven times to the churches, "He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches."   (Revelation 2:7, 11, 17, 29; 3:6, 13, 22) What is Jesus saying about "hearing"?

The Lord had saved me from a life-threatening illness. Although in recovery, I currently sustain a significant hearing loss. It has led me into uncovering this mystery of hearing with ears, yet still not hearing. Jesus quotes from the prophet, Isaiah:

"Hearing you will hear and shall not understand, and seeing you will see, and not perceive; for the heart of this people has grown dull. Their ears are hard of hearing, and their eyes they have closed, lest they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, lest they should understand with their heart and turn, so that I should heal them." (Matthew 13:14,15; Mark 4:12; Isaiah 6:9,10; Jeremiah 5:21)

The most dramatic illustration of this is Stephen at his stoning. (Acts, Chapters 6 and 7). Stephen, one of seven disciples chosen to meet the needs of the Greek-speaking Jews, addressed the council at Jerusalem with the historical truth about Jesus; truths no one wanted to hear.

He called them, "...stiff-necked and uncircumcised in heart and ears! You always resist the Holy Spirit; as your fathers did, so do you." (Acts 7:51) The Israelites were rebellious, still not listening to God. (Ezekiel 12:2) Their stubborn ways resulted in hardened hearts, (Acts 28:25-27) disobedience and finally, murder!

Furious with Stephen's "blasphemy" and unacceptable words of truth, and determined to hear no more, "They cried out with a loud voice, stopped their ears, and ran at him with one accord..." (Acts 7:57) stoning Stephen to death.

Time to check your own heart. Is it resisting the Holy Spirit or softened and receptive enough to hear what Jesus is saying?

Do you have eyes that truly see,
ears that hear?
I have given these
that you might see and hear,
to know and accept the truth.
I have also given
My heart of understanding
for you to know Me,
the only truth.

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© Constance Vanides