Hearing and Doing

Look for repeated words as you read the Bible.  Sometimes you will be rewarded with new insight  I learned that again as I read Jesus’ parable that begins in Luke 8:4 about the farmer who sowed seed. 

As Jesus explains the meaning of the parable, He uses the word, hear, repeatedly.  Those alongside the road who hear the Word of God have it snatched away by the devil and fail to believe.  Those who hear the Word and receive it in a superficial, emotional way soon fall away. Those who hear but are then consumed by riches and worries do not produce any fruit from it.  But those who hear with a good heart and hold it fast keep on bearing good fruit.

But wait; there’s more!  In what seems like an abrupt change of subject, Jesus talks about the futility of covering a lamp so it cannot be seen.  And then he says this:

Take care then how you hear, for to the one who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he thinks that he has will be taken away.”   (Luke 8:18)

Hmmm….   And then Jesus’ mother and brothers show up but can’t get to Him.  When Jesus hears about it, He says this:

“My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it.”  (Luke 8:21)

If you read through that whole section from verse 4 you will see several more times in which the word “hear” or “listen” (same original word) is used.  Apparently, it is all connected by what it means to truly “hear.” Hearing the Word of God makes no difference except for those who understand it, put it into practice, and spread it around.

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