Point 1. THE SHINING GODLINESS OF SAINTS FROM THE HEARTS
Mark 4:21-25; Matthew 5:14-16; Ephesians 5:8,11-14
“If any man have ears to hear, let him hear” (Mark 4:23). You have ears to hear, and the word of God you are hearing will do good in your life in Jesus’ Name. “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid” (Matthew 5:14). Here is another parable that a city on a hilltop cannot be hidden; everybody passing along will see that city. Your light will shine; godliness and the goodness of God will shine through you, but you must make an effort, and ensure that what you are learning is coming out in practical godliness that other people will see, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16). Don’t hide your salvation, let the result and outcome – repentance, conversion and discipleship, shine before men that they may glorify God the Father. “For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light” (Ephesians 5:8). Things are different now as Christ, the Light came into your life, and you are no more in darkness. The things you used to do, you do them no more; the places you used to go, you go there no more; the things you used to drink, you drink them no more; and the worldly dresses you used to wear, you wear them no more. And Christ will give you more light (Ephesians 5:8,11-14).
Mark chapter 4, verse 22 – Nothing hidden. Verse 24 – Necessary and Noble hearing. Verse 25 – New height, gaining new heights every day and walking in the path that takes you higher and higher.
(i) Nothing hidden – Mark 4:22-23; Matthew 10:26-27; Ecclesiastes 12:14
“For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was any thing kept secret, but that it should come abroad. If any man have ears to hear, let him hear” (Mark 4:22-23). With the eyes of God watching the whole earth and the record of everything in heaven, there is nothing hidden, not even a whisper. And on the final day, everything is going to be revealed. So, live your life as if all your dealings will eventually come to light; as if every counsel you give, agreement you make with anybody and every discussion will one day come to the open, for nothing is hidden. “Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known” (Matthew 10:26). Don’t fear those who want to compel you to do evil. The thoughts in your heart that make you to be afraid of men than God will come to the open, and what shame it will be on that Judgement Day. “What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops” (Matthew 10:27). Can you say that what you tell, do and agree with anyone in secret, he or she can say it anywhere in the public? If you can, you will live a righteous and transparent life.
(ii) Needful, Necessary and Noble hearing – Mark 4:24; Luke 8:18; 1 Thessalonians 2:13. “And he said unto them, Take heed what ye hear” (Mark 4:24). This implies that you hear and meditate, ponder and apply them to your life. Hear and examine yourself, repent from your past sinful life. Hear and take heed, hear and obey the word of God. You hear and pray in the word of God to have spiritual strength and grace to do what you are hearing. You hear and internalize, and don’t allow it to fall on the stony or wayside ground. You hear and be transformed. Take heed to the content, subject, context, conception of what you hear. “Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have.” (Luke 8:18). In Mark, it is what you hear; but in Luke, it is how you hear, the posture while hearing the word of God, your attitude and facial expression. You must pay attention and allow the word of God to penetrate your heart. It is how you hear that will tell how it will work in your heart. When a child moves from primary to secondary school, the knowledge he had from the primary education will be built upon as he comes with interest to learn. But for an uninterested child, nothing is gained, and even what he had from the primary will be lost. In the Christian life, we had conviction as the word of God penetrated our hearts, and we are converted. Then we realize that having confessed our sins to God, we must make restitution. As we hear more of the word of God new knowledge comes, then we are sanctified. Then we continue to hear the word of God, and our Christian experiences are kept intact; we are growing. There is another kind of hearer who in the past had tender heart and was converted, but over time he became careless, not taking heed to what he learnt from the word of God. Build on the Word you hear and let not be lost. Take heed what you hear and how you hear the word of God. You don’t count the word as the opinions of men but as from God.
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