The Closing Of A Mind…

Many times throughout His teaching ministry, Rabbi Yeshua said something like this:

He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.[1]

While this phrase has a literal, word for word translational quality about it, we must understand the need to interpret the intention behind the words.

What did the Lord mean? What was He trying to communicate? I submit to you Yeshua was making an appeal to all those in the audience whose minds were open to what He was saying.

We must not think in literal terms. Yeshua wasn’t saying “If you literally have ears on the sides of your head, hear what I have to say”. The phrasing of the text is quite symbolic. This speaks to matters of the heart, which, in Hebrew is the word leb, and it refers to, in context, the innermost being of a person, not just the actual vital organ behind one’s sternum. Yeshua was reaching for that place within each one of us, where the seat of our innermost being exists.

He was saying, if, there, in your innermost being, where the “true you” resides, if you, in that place, can really hear what I have to say, even what I am saying now, you will understand Me and My Message. It’s not just about the physical manifestation and vibration of sound waves across air molecules interpreted as human speech by one’s brain; it’s a spiritual hearing, accomplished in the soul.

Do you have ears to hear?

In John 10:1-18, Yeshua gives us a wonderful picture of Himself as a shepherd leading us out into pasture and back again to the sheepfold. It’s a parable, indicating that He will feed us, care for us, and in the end of all things, bring us home to our eternal home in the Kingdom of God.

But note what He says very carefully. He says His sheep know His voice (John 10:3). We have to be able to recognize and learn the voice of our Messiah. The sound of His speech has to become for us as familiar as the voice of a father, a son, a friend, a lover.[2]

In that innermost being of life, if we want the Good Shepherd to lead us out and bring us in, we need to be able to open our minds and hearts to what He is saying or trying to tell us.

We must never assume we’ve heard everything the Lord Yeshua is ever going to say! To make such an assumption is to close the mind off from His voice. It is at that point we find ourselves unable to go any further with Him into relationship. If all we are willing to receive from the Lord is the things we’ve already heard Him say, we can’t progress. There will be no new bread from heaven. We will stagnate, as the formerly fresh waters of spiritual revelation become muddied.

This isn’t to say that the Lord should never repeat Himself to us, or that we don’t ever need to have Him say the same things to us on occasion. But when we get to a point where we decide there’s nothing left for Him to say to us, we’re going to find ourselves eventually on the outside looking in at all the others who haven’t closed their minds to His voice.

Consider the following verses of Holy Scripture:

John 16:12-13,

12. I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.

13. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

Yeshua knew that His closest allies and disciples in the Kingdom of God had reached a point of saturation. They couldn’t receive anything else their Lord and Master might say to them. But He didn’t leave them without a promise. Yeshua knew that once the Holy Spirit of Truth was sent by the Father through Him, that Spirit of Truth would lead them the rest of the way into the next stages of their spiritual progression into truth. Yeshua was trusting in and depending upon the Holy Spirit to continue to do His work after He was gone. He knew the Holy Spirit would be the next relay point of contact for His students to receive enduring messages of God’s Word.

And yet, a question comes to mind. What if these holy men of old had distained the idea and decided that their point of saturation was all there was to know? What if they had decided that they didn’t want or need a new divine connection to Truth? What if after the crucifixion they just simply went home, and never heard the Lord’s voice again?

Perish the thought!

But do we do no less? Be honest with yourself. Can the Son of God say anything He wants to you, and you receive it? Can your Savior tell you something contrary to what you assume is reality?[3]

What if He, through the Holy Spirit of Truth, shows you something in the Holy Scriptures you didn’t see before? What if that new insight challenges all your preconceived notions? What if accepting and receiving what He shows you means a fundamental alteration of who and what you are, as a believer?

What if what Yeshua the Anointed One says to you, costs you something, like identity? Friendship? Fellowship?

What if the Lord tells you something that doesn’t have anything to do with His Word; rather, what He says has to do with you? For example, what if Yeshua tells you to walk away from a ministry? What if He tells you everything you’ve been dreaming about and planning and basing your life on, was never the will of God for you—that you dreamt, and planned, and based your life on a mistaken understanding of something He never said?

Can the Good Shepherd say such things to you? Or is your mind closed? Has the fresh waters of revelation frozen over in your heart?

Yeshua is our friend. His wounds are faithful (Proverbs 27:6). What if Yeshua tells you something about the local assembly to which you belong? What if Yeshua tells you to forgive someone you dislike?

Can He ever say anything to you at all, besides good?

Imagine a man of God, who for decades has preached and taught a certain doctrine only to have the Lord arrest him one day in prayer and say, “Not so. You’re wrong”.

Imagine a brother or sister who has for years felt ashamed and degraded over struggling with a besetting sin, only to hear Yeshua say, “Fear not. I love you and have made atonement for you. You are washed clean by My blood”.

I could go on with all sorts of different “what if” scenarios, but the point is made, which is this:

Yeshua longs to be intimate with His people. As much as His people love to spend time with Him, He loves to do so more. We are sacred to Him. And in any other relationship, the fact is, the people you love the most are the ones you want to spend the most time with, the ones you long to see and talk with, the ones with whom you desire to communicate and make yourself known.

Many saints pray often and fervently. But they don’t listen.[4] Their minds are closed. If we don’t know Yeshua any better that we did five, ten, or more years ago, how much did we every really know Him?

Don’t be afraid of what the Lord might say.

Psalm 85:8,

8. I will hear what God the LORD will speak: for he will speak peace unto his people, and to his saints…

John 14:10,

10. …the words that I speak unto you I speak not of myself…

God the LORD, that is to say, YHVH, is speaking to us everyday, in His Son (Hebrews 1:1-2).[5] Indeed, right now, God is speaking peace unto His people, and to His saints. Yeshua utters and makes known the words of the One who sent Him. The Holy Spirit of Truth makes known to us the words of Yeshua. The Church is supposed to relay those words to the world.

But not if we in the church have closed our minds.

One of the chief complaints of God through His holy prophets was the unwillingness of His covenanted people to listen.[6]

It is a most sorrowful thing indeed that the Lord and King of the Universe, having saved and restored His people to right relationship and fellowship with their Creator, is daily ignored by people who have closed their minds.

Dear Reader, I leave you with an exhortation to once again open your heart and mind to what the Holy Spirit of Truth, on behalf of the Lord Yeshua, is saying to the Church…


[1] Examples include Matthew 11:15 and Luke 8:8.

[2] Within the Biblical context, to “know” something or someone is not merely to have anecdotal evidence of the facts. It’s to have experiential knowledge through intimate connection and relationship.

[3] In a close study of the concept of truth, you will find that Biblically speaking, truth is always about reality, or, the way things actually are, from God’s point of view.

[4] As a personal example, I can testify that I learned long ago to talk less and listen more, when I pray. In fact, when I begin to pray, I listen first. Giving the Lord that place of honor, to be the first to speak, glorifies Him and from personal experience, He takes advantage of the opportunity to speak. Sometimes I pray without even speaking a word. Yeshua does all the talking and I do all the listening (what a role reversal for the average saint!).

[5]In His Son” is a better translation than “By His Son”, according to the Greek.

[6] See, for example, Isaiah 28:12, 30:9, 65:12, 66:4, Jeremiah 13:11, 17:23, 19:15, 22:21, 29:19, Zechariah 1:4, 7:11, 7:13, and Malachi 2:2.




~ by votivesoul on 09/26/2015.

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Mark Showalter's Blog

Always seeking to know God more

Theo-sophical Ruminations

A collage of theological and philosophical musings