“He [Jesus] said to them, ‘Do you bring in a lamp to put it under a bowl or a bed? Instead, don’t you put it on its stand? For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed, and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open. If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear. Consider carefully what you hear,’ he continued. ‘With the measure you use, it will be measured to you—and even more. Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.’ Mark 4:21-25 NASB
Now let’s look at the same passage in the Passion Translation:
He also gave them this parable: ‘No one lights a lamp only to place it under a basket or under the bed. It is meant to be placed on a lampstand. For there is nothing hidden that won’t be disclosed, and there is no secret that won’t be brought out into the light. If you understand what I’m saying, then you need to respond!’ Then He said to them, ‘Be diligent to understand the meaning behind everything you hear, for as you do, more understanding will be given to you. And according to the depth of your longing to understand, much more will be added to you. For those who listen with open hearts will receive more revelation. But those who don’t listen with open hearts will lose what little they think they have.’
In the Bible, light and truth are two sides of the same coin. They always go together. Our daily prayer should be Psalm 43:3 which says, ‘Pour into me the brightness of your daybreak! Pour into me your rays of revelation-truth! Let them comfort and gently lead me onto the shining path, showing the way into your burning presence, into your many sanctuaries of holiness.’ TPT
I’ve talked with venerable saints in their 80’s and 90’s and they all testify that the more of God’s Word they learn, the more they are convinced that they will continue learning for all eternity. God’s Word is like an onion. As you peel back layer after layer, there is always more to uncover of His revelation truth. We will always be students of the Word of God. He keeps giving us more light and more truth.
We all know it’s vital that we learn God’s Word, but why?
Proverbs 20:27 answers that question: ‘The spirit of man is the lamp of the LORD,
searching all the innermost parts of his being.’
The Spirit of God indwells your spirit and from within you, therefore, the Word of God searches or impacts your soul – your mind, your will, your emotions. This is how the process of maturing in Christ takes place. As the Word of God changes your attitudes, your perceptions and your way of living, you are being transformed into the image and likeness of Jesus.
The result is that, as a disciple of Jesus, you are His lamp – a vessel of His light that’s meant to shine His truth to everyone around you by the way you speak and behave.
For a lamp to be of any use, it has to be connected to an electrical source and turned on. Otherwise it is just a pretty ornament in the corner of the room!
The Lord is not looking for pretty ornaments, but for ‘lamps’ that light up the atmosphere. You were ‘plugged in’ and ‘turned on’ when you gave your life to Jesus. He, who IS Light, dwells in you and the more of His Word that you learn and apply in your life, the brighter you shine!
In keeping with His exhortation, we are to ‘Be diligent to understand the meaning behind everything you hear, for as you do, more understanding will be given to you. And according to the depth of your longing to understand, much more will be added to you.’
Listening to wonderful men and women of God teach His Word, I have often marveled at their insight and understanding into portions of the Word that were not clear to me. When that happens, it testifies to me that they have invested an abundance of time in the Word, meditating and studying to receive from the Holy Spirit treasures hidden away in the verses at hand. For those who listen with open hearts will receive more revelation. But those who don’t listen with open hearts will lose what little they think they have.’
Studying the Word of God is much more than an intellectual exercise. It is first and foremost a conversation with the Spirit of God Who inspired the Book. To study the Word is much more than reading the words on the page; it is more a matter of listening while you read – listening not to an audible voice but to the still, small Voice within. For those who listen with open hearts will receive more revelation…
In these words to His disciples, the Lord Jesus taught them – and us – that studying and learning the Word of God is like no other realm of study. We invest time in His Word in order to be transformed into His image and likeness; we invest time in His Word in order to be challenged, pruned, corrected and re-directed. That is how we are able to retain what we learn – by studying His Word for the right reason and with the right purpose.
Paul wrote to the Corinthians: ‘Knowledge puffs up but love edifies.’ I Cor. 8:1b It is the spirit of the Pharisee that flaunts knowledge above virtue.
May we never be found in that company but rather, may we ‘study to show ourselves approved’ and diligently apply to our daily lives every truth we learn from God’s precious Word so that we may be part of the company who continually receive increasing revelation and insight and thereby live in a manner that delights the heart of Our Heavenly Father.