Be still and rest in the Lord.
John 12:34-50 (NRSV)
The crowd answered him, “We have heard from the law that the Messiah remains forever. How can you say that the Son of Man must be lifted up? Who is this Son of Man?” Jesus said to them, “The light is with you for a little longer. Walk while you have the light, so that the darkness may not overtake you. If you walk in the darkness, you do not know where you are going. While you have the light, believe in the light, so that you may become children of light.”
After Jesus had said this, he departed and hid from them. Although he had performed so many signs in their presence, they did not believe in him. This was to fulfill the word spoken by the prophet Isaiah:
“Lord, who has believed our message,
and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”
And so they could not believe, because Isaiah also said,
“He has blinded their eyes
and hardened their heart,
so that they might not look with their eyes,
and understand with their heart and turn—
and I would heal them.”
Isaiah said this because he saw his glory and spoke about him. Nevertheless many, even of the authorities, believed in him. But because of the Pharisees they did not confess it, for fear that they would be put out of the synagogue; for they loved human glory more than the glory that comes from God.
Then Jesus cried aloud: “Whoever believes in me believes not in me but in him who sent me. And whoever sees me sees him who sent me. I have come as light into the world, so that everyone who believes in me should not remain in the darkness. I do not judge anyone who hears my words and does not keep them, for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. The one who rejects me and does not receive my word has a judge; on the last day the word that I have spoken will serve as judge, for I have not spoken on my own, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment about what to say and what to speak. And I know that his commandment is eternal life. What I speak, therefore, I speak just as the Father has told me.”
While reading this scripture, I noticed a sub heading in my Bible that said “blind eyes, hard hearts” For some reason, I could not get those words out of mind. However, after reading the passage in its entirety, I would have written that sub-heading as blind eyes and hard hearts, but what about open ears.”
I have always been sensitive to comments made about my eyes since I was born cross eyed. Yet comments about heart and ears have never upset me. Maybe that’s because I have never thought of myself as being hard-hearted or having big ears. God seems to have blessed me with exceptional hearing.
Jesus makes it clear in our scripture how important hearing is to our belief and understanding of faith in God. In Romans 10:17 we read, “Faith comes from what is heard, and what is heard comes through the word of Christ.” God sent Jesus to proclaim God’s will for the people. Those who truly heard and understood became not just hearers, but doers.
During the season of Lent, let us remember how Jesus’ life and ministry truly reflected hearing and doing the will of God.
God, help us not only to be hearers of your word, but doers. Amen.
Go with God.