How we receive the Word of God determines how productive it would be in our lives. The scriptures show us how we are to receive the Word of God.
First, we must acknowledge the validity of the Word and then we must listen as though no one else is around us.
We looked extensively at these keys in part one of this series.
Continuing from where we left off, we would be looking at two more steps to effectively receiving the Word of God.
3. Acknowledge that the Word is for the present/now
“The Lord our God made a contract with you at Mount Horeb—not with your ancestors, but with you who are here alive today.
Deuteronomy 5: 3 TLB
After God got the Israelites out of Egypt, they were rebellious and would not follow the commands given to them. This lead to forty years of wandering in the wilderness and the death of that generation. Moses had to remind the new generation of the commandment and their covenant with God. Unto a generation that was not yet born when God gave the commandments on Mount Horeb, he said God made a covenant with you and not your ancestors. Why? The Word is always for the present.
Every revelation that comes to us is so we can do something with it in the present. The moment we think to ourselves, 'I would start applying this someday, or when my circumstances change', we render that revelation unfruitful.
Sometimes, we may hear some revelations that are impossible for us to practice at the moment of hearing it. A good example is when a single person hears instructions on how to behave in marriage. In such cases, we are to make an immediate decision to act in line with the Word when we get to that point. If it is feasible, we are to start making plans to facilitate doing as instructed.
Secondly, when we hear the Word, we must see beyond the individuals in the story to ourselves. For example, we read the story of Saul and his acts of disobedience, and we may be tempted to either judge or feel sorry for Saul. But the tale is not about Saul. It is about us. Are we making the same mistakes that Saul made? How can we apply the lessons from his life to improve our lives?
4. Listen First, Question Later
Now these [Jews] were better disposed and more noble than those in Thessalonica, for they were entirely ready and accepted and welcomed the message [concerning the attainment through Christ of eternal salvation in the kingdom of God] with inclination of mind and eagerness, searching and examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. Many of them therefore became believers, together with not a few prominent Greeks, women as well as men.
Acts 17: 11 -12 AMPC
When we listen to teachings, we may hear things that are contrary to what we believe. We may start countering what we hear in our minds. However, we see the right response to such a situation in the above scripture.
We are to listen first and then we are to search the scriptures later to confirm if what was said is so. Our disposition during hearing the Word must be to try to understand what the speaker is communicating. We must focus on what conclusions he/she makes. The moment we start questioning what we are hearing, we cannot receive what we hear.
I recall an experience I once had listening to Benny Hinn. During the teaching, he said some things with which I disagreed. For a few minutes, I compared his statement with what I already knew before continuing listening to him. I realised that after that few minutes of debating what he taught, the rest of the teaching had no impact on me. I had to repent, recondition my mind and restart the video before I could reconnect with the flow of the Spirit (in the Word). Guess what? A few weeks later, in my private study, I discovered from scriptures that he was right after all.
Learn from my mistake! Listen first and then compare it to the scriptures later.
More to follow.
If you have any questions, drop them as a comment.