Hear the TruthBro. David Chancellor
8/7/2005 6:00 PM
And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables? He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given. For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath. Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed: lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.
The disciples wondered why Jesus didn’t speak to the people bluntly. The people weren’t taking it in as it was delivered. We need to pay attention to what God is trying to get across to us. Those that try to understand will get something from it. Jesus said that those that had would receive more, and those that didn’t have would have less than nothing. We need to want more of God. Many start with less than nothing because they have things to let go of. There is no point along the way where we can stand still and still succeed spiritually.
"For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them." People get this way when they refuse to hear, see, and understand. When we start picking and choosing what we like to hear from God’s word, we’re in trouble. Things may get close sometimes, but we need to pay attention anyhow. If you pay attention, you’ll hear and see things that other people would have liked to have seen and heard, but didn’t. People who find good things in the Bible don’t leave it sitting on the shelf; they read and consider it. Questions aren’t a problem because they mean you are trying to see and know and understand. Keep seeking to see what you can discover.
Then came the officers to the chief priests and Pharisees; and they said unto them, Why have ye not brought him? The officers answered, Never man spake like this man. Then answered them the Pharisees, Are ye also deceived? Have any of the rulers or of the Pharisees believed on him? But this people who knoweth not the law are cursed. Nicodemus saith unto them, (he that came to Jesus by night, being one of them,) Doth our law judge any man, before it hear him, and know what he doeth? They answered and said unto him, Art thou also of Galilee? Search, and look; for out of Galilee ariseth no prophet. And every man went unto his own house.
The opposition of others sometimes prevents people from knowing and understanding. The group tries to persuade to conventional wisdom. The men that were sent were ridiculed because they bothered to hear. The truth will stand. These were impressed by what they heard.
When you hear, "everybody else is doing it," stop and question who "everybody" is. The devil uses this phrase to work on people. If it is in the word of God, it’s there whether everyone else can find it or not.
Nicodemus asked if they would pass judgment without hearing him. These hadn’t looked further into his history before stopping their ears and closing their eyes. Jesus wasn’t a prophet; he was the Son of God. All these left without a change of position.
If someone comes to you and tells you to take a position because everyone else does, stop and search it out first. Only do it if it is Biblical.
Then many of the Jews which came to Mary, and had seen the things which Jesus did, believed on him. But some of them went their ways to the Pharisees, and told them what things Jesus had done.
Then gathered the chief priests and the Pharisees a council, and said, What do we? for this man doeth many miracles. If we let him thus alone, all men will believe on him: and the Romans shall come and take away both our place and nation. And one of them, named Caiaphas, being the high priest that same year, said unto them, Ye know nothing at all. Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not. And this spake he not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus should die for that nation; And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of God that were scattered abroad. Then from that day forth they took counsel together for to put him to death. Jesus therefore walked no more openly among the Jews; but went thence unto a country near to the wilderness, into a city called Ephraim, and there continued with his disciples.
Jesus had raised Lazarus from the dead… several days later. It was a notable miracle. Some people went and told the Pharisees what Jesus did. This got the Pharisees all stirred up.
We need to rein in our fears. People are shut out from truth and right by their fears. If we are faithful to the truth, he has promised to never leave us or forsake us. When it comes to truth and right, it isn’t about winning or losing. If you are arguing against truth, it will be the best argument you ever lost. We can’t let "fear of losing" keep us from searching for the truth. If you are holding onto something you really can’t support, the fear of loss is there. We shouldn’t focus on winning or losing, but on what is right and what is wrong. A misinterpretation of scripture isn’t a very strong argument. We want a solid place to stand, and that is on the truth. When we’re grounded on the truth, we can listen to others with confidence. If we have it wrong, we win because we find out what is right. If we have it right, it will stand. Either way, we win. We don’t want to get to the place where we’re so afraid of losing that we turn away from what is right.
Now when they were going, behold, some of the watch came into the city, and shewed unto the chief priests all the things that were done. And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave large money unto the soldiers. Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept. And if this come to the governor’s ears, we will persuade him, and secure you. So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day.
These still had their eyes closed. The watch had seen enough that they weren’t willing to make up a story. They were responsible to see that nothing happened. The Pharisees paid them off to tell a lie. There comes a point where silence isn’t enough. You will have to take a position. The devil would try to get you to tell a story that isn’t true.
Each time these were confronted with something, they stopped their ears - whether it was miracles or Jesus rising from the dead. This is a sad tale. The truth brings people together that aren’t God’s people. It unites those that accept it and those that reject it. Pilate and Herod became friends in their opposition to Christ. Even if people are united against truth, go with truth because it will unite you with those that love truth. Go with truth even if it seems that you will lose what is dear to you. These people got in trouble because they shut out the truth. They lost what they did have of truth in the process.
And when we came to Rome, the centurion delivered the prisoners to the captain of the guard: but Paul was suffered to dwell by himself with a soldier that kept him. And it came to pass, that after three days Paul called the chief of the Jews together: and when they were come together, he said unto them, Men and brethren, though I have committed nothing against the people, or customs of our fathers, yet was I delivered prisoner from Jerusalem into the hands of the Romans. Who, when they had examined me, would have let me go, because there was no cause of death in me. But when the Jews spake against it, I was constrained to appeal unto Caesar; not that I had ought to accuse my nation of. For this cause therefore have I called for you, to see you, and to speak with you: because that for the hope of Israel I am bound with this chain. And they said unto him, We neither received letters out of Judea concerning thee, neither any of the brethren that came shewed or spake any harm of thee. But we desire to hear of thee what thou thinkest: for as concerning this sect, we know that every where it is spoken against. And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till evening. And some believed the things which were spoken, and some believed not. And when they agreed not among themselves, they departed, after that Paul had spoken one word, Well spake the Holy Ghost by Esaias the prophet unto our fathers, saying, Go unto this people, and say, Hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and not perceive: for the heart of this people is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. Be it known therefore unto you, that the salvation of God is sent unto the Gentiles, and that they will hear it. And when he had said these words, the Jews departed, and had great reasoning among themselves.
These were still having trouble hearing and seeing. Paul went to great lengths to explain and to care for the Jews. Paul explained that he was wearing the chains because some people didn’t want to see or hear. He explained to these about Jesus from the Old Testament scriptures. Some believed, and some didn’t. This isn’t about opinions, winning, or losing. It is about what God has to say. The church of God is built by the word of God. We should want to know what the word of God says. Be willing to read, study and understand the word of God. If we don’t, our ears will be stopped, our eyes will be closed, and we will cease to understand. We have to go forward with truth, or we will lose what we do understand. Truth won’t destroy truth. If you move forward, you will enjoy things that others weren’t able to get. Be ready to take in all that God shows you.