What the Bible says about light and seed

The True Light "In him, (the Lord Jesus) was life, and that life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it. The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world,…the world didn’t recognize him." John 1:4,9.

The Good Seed and the Weeds “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seeds in his field. But while everyone was sleeping, his enemy came and sowed weeds among the wheat and went away. Matthew 13:24,25.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Audiology Of Your Church

Audiology Of Your ChurchLet Us Go Into The Next Towns
Reblogged from Serve Him in the Waiting.
Ron Maggard’s Baptist Evangelism news, views, commentary and mini-epistles.

 
Audiology is the branch of science that studies hearing, balance, and related disorders. Its practitioners, who treat those with hearing loss and proactively prevent related damage are called audiologists.
 
I am convinced that every church “i.e.” the members need to have an ear examination. Why do I say that? It is very evident that many are having difficulty hearing and therefore not doing that which the Lord has told them to do.
 
First of all, I think we need to establish the fact that “churches” have “ears”. Read Acts 11:22: “Then tidings of these things came unto the ears of the church which was in Jerusalem: and they sent forth Barnabas, that he should go as far as Antioch.” The persecuted believers driven from Jerusalem had traveled to Antioch. Upon their arrival they ardently preached and many believed. The report of these conversions and the success of their ministry reached the “EARS” of the church back in Jerusalem. Churches have ears.
 
We also read of the importance of having functioning ears in the book of the Revelation as Jesus writes to the churches in chapter 2 and 3. (Rev 2:7; 2:11; 2:17; 2:29; 3:6; 3:13; 3:22.) It is very obvious in this communication of Jesus to these churches that hearing is vital for churches. Jesus says as much to each of these churches in Asia Minor. “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.” It is repeated 7 times.
 
The audiology of our churches is important. As we consider this subject lets make some comparisons between our physical ears and hearing and our spiritual ears and hearing. Our physical hearing can be affected in several ways and I believe the hearing ability of our churches / members are affected in a similar way.

1. First consider hearing problems that are congenital. Physically we can inherit hearing problems. Many churches today have no ability to hear. Some churches don’t hear because the churches they came from them didn’t hear. Their hearing problems were passed on from their churches and seminaries and their hearing disability grows more profound with each successive generation of churches. Think of the mainline denominations. Once many of them could have been recognized to at least have the gospel. But today, after many generations they are completely devoid of truth. Their problem is congenital. Inherited deafness. Loss of hearing.

2. Secondly many have hearing problems because of illnesses or diseases. Illnesses like meningitis, measles, mumps and the like are known to cause deafness or serious hearing losses. In a similar manner churches can have spiritual illness which cause them deafness. Think of the many sins of all kinds that are rampant in our society and unfortunately entering into our churches that cause spiritual deafness. Immorality with it’s adultery, fornication, pornography and every degree of sin that once would not have been even named in our churches are now adversely affecting many of our churches and even our leadership. These sins and many more are growing and therefore hindering the hearing of our churches.

Third, it can be noted that injuries can affect our hearing. When I was a boy you couldn’t keep me out of the water. I loved to swim. The problem was that from swimming I nearly always got “swimmers ears” or infections. Unchecked, these infections and those like them can affect the hearing as can a build up of wax. Those who have children also know that it is common for children to put things into their ears that could obstruct and do damage to the hearing. Sometimes things like these happen to churches too. Many suffer from a build up of poor or really bad doctrine. Other worldly junk can find it’s way into the ears of our churches and cause hearing loss.
 
Fourthly, we understand how that loud noises can harm our hearing. Those who work around loud machinery or listen to loud music are warned to cover their ears. The same happens in our churches. The devil started out filling the ears of our first parents with his lies and garbage. It worked then, and he is still doing this today. He and the world makes a lot of ruckus. The devil’s goal is to drown out the good word of God and fill our hearing world with the worlds trash. It can damage our ears.
 
Fifth, audiologists tell us that the most common ear ailment is otitus media. Some of the common symptoms of this ear infection are:
Inattentiveness, misunderstanding directions, listlessness, unexplained irritability and pulling and scratching of the ears. Let’s look at each of these symptoms and how they are applicable to the audiology of our churches.
 
*Inattentiveness: I wonder if there has ever been a time when people give less attention to the word of God as we see it happening now. Many churches have gone to “express worship” because they can’t keep people interested. One of the greatest problems that prolongs deputation of our missionaries these days is that churches, due to inattentiveness, have discontinued some of the regular services of their churches. Few have evening services anymore. Why? People are not interested.

*Misunderstanding directions: In many churches you would be hard pressed to even be able to hear a clear presentation of the Gospel. When it is preached and when the word of God is faithfully taught, few decisions are made. Very little dedication can be found. There is always only a small percentage who seem to grasp the need to serve and participate. It is as if our members don’t understand.

*Listlessness: When my children were small and suffered from otitus media we would notice that they were not as active, they did not have a good appetite and they did not want to play or do anything on their own. They wanted to be held and coddled. They needed a lot of extra attention. Isn’t it amazing how many of our church members have these same symptoms.

*Unexplained irritability: I got a phone call this past week and the caller left me a message. He wondered why I had not answered. (I was in a meeting when he called.) He wondered what had he done to me so that I would not answer his phone call. He couldn’t believe I didn’t care to talk to him an he went on and on. I was amazed. But I hear of these things all the time in our churches. So and so is angry. This one is changing churches. This one is angry and pouting.

*Pulling on or scratching the ears: Isn’t it amazing how many of these symptoms from physical hearing problems can be applied to our churches. Think about what 2 Tim 4:3-4 “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.” We are definitely in this time! So MANY in our churches today seem to have this – itching ears.

 
Now why is all this important? And why would I spend such time making these comparisons? Churches have EARS! Churches need to be able to HEAR! In Acts 13:1-3 we read these words: “Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. 2 As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.
If there was ever a time that churches need to hear, it is NOW, and it is when He is speaking to us about MISSIONS! This church in Antioch is our great example for world missions. What made them great? They had ears ready to hear when the Holy Spirit said to send out missionaries. Our churches need to hear the Holy Spirit. I believe that certainly ONE of the greatest problems in our churches today is that we do not hear. Consider Amos 8:11 – “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord.”
 
There IS a famine of HEARING the words of the Lord in our churches today! I believe that the Holy Spirit is speaking to our churches / members today as in days gone by and I believe probably even in a greater way. Think of the billions of souls. Think of the need for world missions. I believe He is speaking but I also believe we are not hearing, not answering.
 
What do we need to do? We need to go to the Great Audiologist, Jesus Christ! We need Jesus to do for us what He did for the deaf man in Mark 7:33 “And he took him aside from the multitude, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spit, and touched his tongue; 34 And looking up to heaven, he sighed, and saith unto him, Ephphatha, that is, Be opened. 35 And straightway his ears were opened…” We NEED the Great Audiologist to work on our ears. Right now, ask Jesus to touch your ears, to help your hearing.

“He that hath an ear, let him hear!”

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