We really hear if we think something is important. Now, let me ask you then, beloved, how important is God’s Word to you?
Alright thank you very much, and hello again dear radio friends. How in the world are you? Doing all right today? Well, this is your friend Dr. Cook and I’m glad to be back with you to share from the word of God. We’re looking in the gospel of Mark, and I trust that there’s been some blessing there for you. The last time we got together, we talked about monitoring the intake into your life. You don’t have to listen to everything. Number one; you can pull down the shades of your mind as the military man said, and get along with your Lord, anytime you want to. That’s one thing. Another thing is that knob on the radio or TV does turn off, believe it or not, and you don’t have to look at everything, and listen to everything that is dished out in our world. You can be selective to the glory of God. Number three; when you do have a barrage of unwanted audio input into your ears and your mind, it’s possible to turn that over to the Lord Jesus Christ, and He Himself through the indwelling Holy Spirit, screens it out, you bring every thought into captivity, to the obedience of Christ. What a gracious, wonderful Lord we have. Have you learned to relax with Jesus and turn things over to Him? Oh, what a precious experience that is. That’s what we call abiding in Christ. He said, “If ye abide in Me and My words abide in you”. See, it’s not a religious profession. It is a position that you maintain vis-à-vis your Savior. You turn the control of your life over to Him in the details of life. It’s not just that you went forward sometime in a meeting or signed a card or lifted a hand or lit handler cast a fag on a campfire. These are good actions, but what really counts is, do you turn things over to Jesus at 10 o’clock of a Thursday night, or 10 o’clock of a Tuesday morning, or whatever it may be. The details of life under His control there is where it counts.
Well, the last time we got together talked about the verse that said, “Take heed what you hear”. You can monitor and control the audio input into your life. Now back to Mark 4 he says, “Take heed how?”, in Luke I should say, 8:18 says, “Take heed how you hear”, take heed how you hear. Now, the result is the same in both passages. If you don’t hear properly, whoever has somebody will get more and who doesn’t have will lose what he seems to have, that’s in both of the Mark and Luke passages, but the verb is different, the expression is different. When it says, “Take heed what”, and Luke 8:18 says, “Take heed how”. Now you want to talk about that for a moment? Is any difference in how you hear something? Oh, of course. Have you ever come across a person who was prepared to be offended and you said something nice, and immediately the person bristled and said, what do you mean by that? Attitude makes a lot of difference, isn’t it true? Oh, yes, especially people who are in the academic world learn to ask questions. The thing that shook me up back in the early 1960s, when I first came to the college, was to discover that when I made a flat out statement, which was patently sincere so far as I was concerned, people would say, “Now what you mean by that”? Well, I meant what I said. See, if you’re trained professionally to ask questions about everything, well then you do as questions about everything. You can’t blame the person who does that, because that’s a lifestyle with him or her, but he’s says, “Take heed how you hear”. The attitude with which you approach, number one; God’s word, number two; the promptings of the Holy Spirit, and number three; the sounds that come to you from all around the world, that pile into your own consciousness. The attitude with which you approach all of this means a great deal and makes a great deal of difference. Want to think about that with me for a moment? How are you hearing? Number one; God’s voice. How are you hearing God’s voice? The great complaint of God through the centuries has been, “This people honors me with their lives with their heart is far from”. Many a person doesn’t really take to heart what God is saying here. He or she listens, but nothing happens, because it doesn’t really make an impact. Well, we’re all like naughty children. All of you who are parents and grandparents have had the experience of calling Junior, say Junior, come here, nothing happens, and you raise your voice just a little bit, you say, Junior, come here, and nothing happens. Well, then you put a little gravel in the tone and say, I said, come here, and then if nothing happens, you take him by the ear and you lead him to where you want him to be. That happened to me many a time, when I was a boy, I know. One ear is still longer than the other as result, I think. Well, attitude in listening means ever so much, when you’re dealing with God, “He that hath ears to hear, let him really hear”, Jesus said. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear, that means really hear, really pay attention, and really do something about it. Well of course, everything depends on whether you think the statement is important.
You’re driving along a certain street, and you see a column of smoke there in the distance, and you say to your companion, “I think there must be a fire there”. You drive a little closer you say, “’Well, that’s in a residential neighborhood, must be a home that’s on fire”. You come a little closer and you say, “Why, that’s on our street”, and you drive little closer and you say, “That’s our house and you dash up and immediately do all you can to save whatever is left of the household and so on. Now, at what point, this is an awful illustration isn’t it? It shakes you up even to think about it, at what point did you get concerned? When it became of the personal, personal importance to you. See the reason that we don’t do much about what God says to us, often times, is because we don’t consider it important. I asked a man one, time years ago, I ask him, “Why don’t you tithe your income? You know that that you owe to God, 10% of what you make”. He was an old resident of the town where I lived, was pastor. They called him, Pop. Not my Pop, but this is old man. Well, he thought a minute and he says, “No, I know I owe it to God”, but He said, “He isn’t after as much as my other creditors”. He laughed and went away. A lot of people feel that way. I know that’s what God says, but there are other things that are more important, which is really an insult to Almighty God, isn’t it? He’s the one that made the world, and that keeps you breathing. All He has to do to ruin you is look away from you, but you say that other things are more important. Well, that’s the first thing. We really hear if we think something is important.
Now, let me ask you then beloved, how important is God’s Word to you? I have to say this for some of you got a dozen Bibles around the house, but every one of themhas dust under the inside of the of the cover. You haven’t opened it for a long time. It’s there, it’s in evidence, but you don’t feed on it, you don’t listen to what God has to say to you.You don’t have any precious, portion of the Word of God, that you can share with somebody else, that you got that very day, do you? I’m not criticizing. I know you’re busy and I know other things come in. some you’re busy homemakers. You haven’t got a minute to yourself all day long, from dawn till dark. Busy business people and all that, and students of course are very busy, I know that, but it does come down to this, what do I, what do I consider really important? Because we do the things we think are important, don’t we? Yes we do. So he says, “Take heed how you hear”. What’s your attitude toward the word of God? What’s your attitude toward the promptings of the Holy Spirit? You know, if you’re a believer, the Holy Spirit of God dwells within you, and Jesus said, “When He the spirit of truth has come, He shall guide you into all truth and bring all things to your remembrance whatsoever I’ve said unto you”. So, the blessed spirit of God who in dwells the believer wants to guide you and you could, if you listen, you can hear His promptings, you can hear His suggestions, and if you can obey. How you hear will make a deal of difference in what happens in your life, and then of course there’s the attitude toward unwanted audio input into your life, but you do about that? “Take heed:, he said, “how you hear”.
Well, I told you the last time we got together, about the man who said, “I just pull down the shades of my mind and get alone with my Lord”. It is possible, isn’t it, to be all alone with your Lord in the midst of a very crowded or demanding or stress filled situation. It’s true you can do it, but there are many times when you don’t have time to call a little personal prayer meeting and the sound hits you, the word hits you, the expression hits you, the story it’s you, the gossip hits you, there it is and what are you going to do with it. Well, the only answer I know beloved is not to fight it and not to nurse it, but to yield to your blessed Lord Jesus Christ, “As you have yielded the members of your body servants to unrighteousness and the result was more iniquity, even so now”, Paul says, “yield the members of your body, servants to righteousness and the rest result will be holiness”. The keyword of course is yield, surrender. God has built surrender your bones. You’re going to give up to something inevitably. Whether it be yourself and your sin and the impact of the world around you on one hand, or the blessed Holy Spirit of God and the word of God and the will of God on the other. He says, “Surrender”, give up, and oh what a blessing it is my dear friend, to give yourself over to Jesus. Have you learned this? Oh, I think back in times when I felt the pressure of the world around me, and my own poor, miserable, sinful heart and adding to the chaos, and then just to say, Lord Jesus I’m your boy. Take control, take control of my mind, take control of my feelings, take control of what I am listening to and remembering, take control the whole business, and as you surrender to Him by faith, He takes care of monitoring the input. Praise the Lord for that.
You know, there’s a process, they tell me, by which if there is a noisy recording on tape, they can take out the background noise. I don’t know how they do it, I’m not smart enough to know these things, all I know is to press the button and start the recorder, but they tell me that there’s a process where there’s background noise that they can filter it out when they process the recording. Well, that’s wonderful, but you know God has been doing that for all the centuries with which He’s been dealing with man. He graciously by His Holy Spirit filters out all the junk and background noise of the world. You can hear His voice, “My sheep hear My voice”. There is an acute hearing that God gives to His furry creatures, we have a Doberman that thinks he’s people, and there can be all sorts of sounds and noises in an ordinary household day, but if I speak his name in a soft tone, wherever he is, he hears and he comes. You know, God would train you and me to listen for His voice, “Take heed how you hear”. Ask God to tune your spiritual hearing to heavens wavelength, so that you hear from God and then obey Him. Good idea? Yes, a very good idea.
Dear Father today, oh will Thou take control of how we hear the world around us, as well most importantly as Thy voice, in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Till I meet you once again by way of radio, walk with the King today and be a blessing!
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