He said to them, “Do you bring in a lamp to put it under a bowl or a bed? Instead, don’t you put it on its stand? For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed, and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open. If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.”
“Consider carefully what you hear,” he continued. “With the measure you use, it will be measured to you– and even more. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.”
1. Have we deceived ourselves that the kingdom of God is all love and peace? Freedom for the chained? Justice for the oppressed? How beautiful God’s kingdom is that it does bring freedom and justice, love and peace. But it brings those things because sin is dealt with. And how is sin dealt with? Through judgement. Through the satisfaction of God’s wrath as it is poured out on Jesus on the cross.
This passage is not about letting your witness shine, as we might want to pretend it is. The judgment of God is real–holy wrath worked out against sin. God’s kingdom shines the light of truth to reveal sin’s hidden, deceptive ways. God’s kingdom brings into the light that which is broken and ugly. That which must be dealt with.
Which is why Jesus said, “If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.” Because Jesus came to seek and save the lost, and he wants us to hear. He wants us to come into the light, have our sins revealed before the cross and dealt with. Better now than later.
2. So do we hear? Can we hear? Satan doesn’t want us to hear. Sometimes our ears are filled with good sounding things that culture tells us is truth. Our ears are full of the mundane. Daily tasks yell at us. Whining children distract us. Silly things amuse us. And we don’t hear.
Lord, strip away the lies from our ears. Give us ears to hear.
We don’t have ears to hear–not on our own.
3. What measure are you using? Are we letting God reveal and deal with our sin through the judgment and wrath Christ bears? Or are we placating ourselves and others by false ideas of grace–that truth is relevant and our actions will not truly be judged as sin? When we use God’s kingdom measure–a measure that finds wrath satisfied in the sacrifice of Christ–we also receive that measure of grace. When we use the measure of relevance–a measure that excuses sin and its penalties–we receive the fruit of that measure, a measure that has no power to save or justify. So let us hold up the standard of truth as expressed in scripture. Let us take cover in the justification of Jesus’ blood, and thus receive true grace, the withholding of God’s wrath.