what do you hear?
By now you have probably learned of the hearing test that has gone viral over the internet, perplexing many. It is the auditory recording asking whether one hears "Yanny" or "Laurel". While the science behind it explains why one hears what one hears (it has to do with pitch, frequency and the age of your ears...google it!), the experiment caused me to think of the phrase, "He that hath an ear, let Him hear". Jesus used this expression at least three times in the New Testament and it is used in Revelation chapters 2 & 3 about 7 times.
Jesus used this phrase in Matt. 11:15 after discussing the merits of John the Baptist; in Mark 4:9 and the parallel passage, in Luke 8:8, after the parable of the Sower and the Soils. It is used again in Luke 14:35 in the context of salt having lost its savor. "He that hath ears to hear, let him hear" is a proverbial expression frequently used to imply that the highest attention be given to what was spoken. Perhaps you have heard similar phrases such as "Do you smell what I am cooking?" or "Are you picking up what I am laying down?" Admittedly, not as eloquent, but you get the point.
When John the Revelator was on the island of Patmos, he recorded that he was "... in the Spirit on the Lord's day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet," Rev. 1:10 KJV. Note first that what John heard was not a trumpet, but a voice like a trumpet, meaning that it was a clear, distinctive, recognizable and understandable voice, like a trumpet sound is clear, distinctive, recognizable...you know a trumpet when you hear it; so John heard a voice. You will also note that John indicates that he was "in the Spirit", i.e., "in tune" with what God was saying (See Job 32:8; 1Cor.2:12-16).
A contrast is made in Galatians 5:16,25 between walking in the Spirit as opposed to walking in the flesh. Where we are walking (living our lives) has an effect on what we are hearing. This explains why two people can sit in the same pew, hear the same sermon and go away with one saying "God spoke to me" and the other may say, "Boring! I got 'nuttin honey!". What you hear depends on whether you are 'tuned in" or not.
The prophet Elijah (1Kings 19) did not hear God speak in the wind, earthquake or the fire, but did hear His 'still small voice' when He spoke quietly.
At Christmas we sing the carol "Do You Hear What I Hear?", written in October 1962, with lyrics by Noël Regney and music by Gloria Shayne Baker.It was written as a plea for peace during the Cuban Missile Crisis and is a plea for peace.
Amidst all the clamor and noise of our society which demands our attention, what do you hear?
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