2019-07-14-LIVE OAKS - If you get it, you get it
And if this is not like a like a like a like a Serial of sermons worry if you miss one week, you're hopelessly lost. We we come and go throughout the summer and understand the reality of that and I just thought we'd take a few weeks to I don't know sit in front of Jesus's feed and and have us an and have him tell us some stories. So these Parables of Jesus the stories of Jesus they're going to be in Matthew 13. So if you want to go ahead and turn to to Matthew 13, we're going to be in the parable of the sower this week. We had some ground that we need to cover almost even. In and before we really unpacked the parable of sower. We got some work that we need to do. In there, so pray with me real quickly. Then I'm going to read Matthew 13 1 through 9. Then we're going to have a little chat. So pray with me again. Got me. We never Tire of approaching your throne for your glory and for our joy with our requests. And right now we all of us in in one heart one mind were asking that you would speak and that we could hear may your scripture. May your truth be presented in this time. Not mine. Not ours, but yours may you speak we want to hear your voice. We got lots of sources of noise that we could entertain or attempt to be entertained by we don't want that. We want to hear from you. so speak Give us the ears to hear and your name. We pray. I'm in Matthew 13 beginning and verse 1. That same day. Jesus went out of the house and sat beside the sea and great crowds gathered about him so that he got into a boat and sat down and the whole crowd stood on the beach and he told them many things in Parables Saying A sower went out to sow and as he sowed some seeds fell along the path and the birds came and devoured them other seeds fell along the rocky ground where they did not have much soil and immediately they sprang up since they had no depth of soil. But when the sun rose they were scorched and since they had no root they withered away other seeds fell among thorns and the Thorns grew up and choked them other seeds fell on good soil and produced grain some a hundredfold some 60 some 30 He who has ears let him hear now, I grew up. Maybe you did as well being taught that the reason Jesus teaches in Parables is that he was going to take big complex truths about him and about the kingdom and he was going to put them in the form of a story that would that would be more accessible and more understandable to two dim-witted farmers. Right, cuz they're there their they're there a farmer folk, you know, they live rolling and if they knew stuff about crops and seeds and what not and you know wedding feast in things. So he's going to speak in a way that they can understand put it in the in the form of a little story.
You are not Farmers, but we surely can be dim-witted.
Okay. Alright, we hear this story about seeds and soil and I mean I get it you can I get it or can I get it? Okay. Alright good story Jesus. I think I understand it. I think I understand it. There's a problem though. It was best Illustrated to me in a short little quip from Pastor Francis Chan and he was teaching through this very comparable in the problem with the parable in the prom with our understanding of Parables. He is this this this last verse here in person 9 when Jesus says he who has ears let him hear and in Francis Chan put it this way and and he's just kind of doing a little bit of a casual Jesus impression. He goes, all right how everybody everybody have a seat. I want to tell you a story. There's a farmer Farmer went out just swing and seat everywhere and some seed fell in the path. And you know, it didn't fare very well and some feed some seed fell on the rocks and you know birds ate its thorns choked out some other seeds, but the seed that fell in the good soil it grew up in in it and it produced a lot. So, you know if you get it you get it.
That's an that's the end of the story if you give you get it you get it. So that really doesn't seem to line up with our definition or understanding a parable Jesus and if you get it you get it. He says he who has ears let him hear if you understand what I'm saying? Great. If not,
that doesn't really jive with our understanding of Parables will here we have this very helpful paragraph heading and you know, what the paragraph my Bible. Paragraph headings. First of all, we need to understand the paragraph headings aren't necessarily like inspired by the Holy Spirit. They're just like helpful little guides along the way to somebody's opinion of what the thing should be call Kate, but it's very helpful in this case because the right above verse 10 and chapter 13 of Matthew the paragraph heading that I read is the purpose of The Parables. Okay, this could help us, right. We understand The Parables to be little help. Or he's for us idiots to understand the deeper truths that Jesus is trying to convey purpose of The Parables. This should help us because he ended kind of odd when he said if you understand cool. If not, I don't know what to tell you. Okay, so Matthew 13 verse 10 then the disciples came and said to him. Why do you speak to them in Parables? If our definition was true about the purpose of The Parables then then this is kind of what did disciples meant when they approached Jesus. This is kind of what the disciples were really saying. Allow me a little while me a little creative license K it if if our understanding of Parables that their little pissy stories that you know for Jesus to help us understand. This is what the disciples were saying. Hey, Jesus. Why do you make these difficult hard to understand truths? So I don't know accessible and easy to understand. Why are you such a good clear teacher?
But that's a dumbest question. Why do you make this so easy to understand Jesus? Why are you unlocking the mysteries of Eternity in and such easy to understand terminology? What the disciples are really saying is like what in the heaven was that?
What's that? I don't really get it you get it.
I don't understand. Why are you speaking to them? and reels why are you speaking to them in puzzles? Help us to understand that what's up this word Parable in the Greek. It's a compound of two different Greek words para which means close beside or with the close beside her with and below and forgive me. I am not a not a Greek goddess know the letters to write down. I don't know how to pronounce it. It means to cast SO2 compound word of cast into to be close beside or to be with SO2 to cast alongside of right to tell the lineup kind of along side of the line up parallel with usage of that same word outside of the Bible is used to describe ships in battle. Ships that come alongside each other in battle. So clearly there's more to this word Parable than we can kind of grass with like, you know, our our gutter language English. There's there's more truth that we're just kind of missing with our little word Parable. There's their yes, if there's a storytelling element this it's it's it's an analogy in a way but it's also kind of a riddle. It's also like there's that there's a tension and there's a conflict there. It doesn't mean that Jesus was trying to make complex Cruz more understandable and more acceptable.
In Matthew 13 verse 10. Okay, then the disciples came and said to him. Why do you speak to them in riddles Jesus? Why do you speak to them in Parables and Jesus answered them to you. It has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven but to them. It is not been given.
Why do you speak in riddles? Well disciples to you. It has been given to know the secrets to you. It's been given but not to them.
Jesus teaching in Parables. He's actually teaching the Mysteries the secrets.
The other people can't understand he's shrouding these screws intentionally. He's making these screws harder to understand not easier and that to me is a huge relief.
Cuz I got to tell you in and where to tackle one or two of them. Some of the parables are really difficult. And a dozen comments are he's in reading it again. And again, I'm still like I think I get it. and it's like a relief to me to know that Jesus is doing this intentionally, but like why? It's a really good question to ask. He says in verse 11. We are 11 through 15 here instead of them to you. It's been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not been given. And then this part is just bizarre. We usually to stop the we stopped at the parable and skip this part move to the next story. 4 to the one who has more will be given and he will have an abundance but from the one who has not even what he has will be taken away. This is why I speak to them in parables in mysteries in riddles and analogies because seeing they do not see and hearing they do not hear nor do they understand indeed in their case. The prophecy of Isaiah is is fulfilled that says you will indeed here but never understand you will indeed see but never perceive for this people's heart has grown dull and with their ears they can barely hear and their eyes they have closed lest. They should see what their eyes and hear what their ears and I'm staying with her heart and turn and I would heal them.
To you. It's been given but not to them. Can we got some good work to do here? But let's focus on that first idea first to you. It's been given. Do you it's been given this secret hidden knowledge. So this knowledge. Is a gift. This vision is a gift to to hear the truth to see the truth to begin to grasp and comprehend the truth. It's a gift the ears to hear as Jesus said he who has ears to hear Let Him hear those ears to hear are a gift from him. Did this is not new turn to Deuteronomy?
Deuteronomy chapter 29
verses 2 through 4 and Moses summoned all Israel and said to them you have seen all that the Lord did before your eyes in the land of Egypt to Faroe and to all his servants and all his land the great trials that your eyes saw the signs and those great wonders but to this day the Lord has not given you a heart to understand or eyes to see or ears to hear. We got a saying there. Is that they were given eyes that like physically Tangela potentially? Would you just say? Tangibly. Thank you the power of what one letter.
like a name for a dog
We're not ever going to have a dog so you can steal if you like. There are eyes function.
kind of they can see you light, you know going through them your brain interprets that they saw the events transpire in front of them. They saw the events unfold. But they weren't given the vision. They they heard Moses they heard from God, but they didn't listen. Like a conversation with somebody you can you tell them their ears probably still work, but they're not really listening. I don't know ladies. Anyway, you have a husband. I don't know probably has happened once or twice.
They were not given the ears to hear given the eyes to see or looking Matthew chapter 16.
Matthew 16 starting in verse 13 Knowing Jesus came into the District of Cesery of Philip why he asked his disciples who do people say the son of man is and they said some say John the Baptist others say Elijah in others Jeremiah or one of the prophets. He said to them but who do you say that? I am Show me Peter replied you are the Christ. son of the Living God And Jesus answered him blessed blessed are you Simon? For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you. So just like the Israelites they had flesh-and-blood eyes.
Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my father who is in heaven.
Sir, Peter's ability to see Jesus for who he truly is. Was not a function of his eyes and his intellect. It was a function of the Holy Spirit revealing the truth. The holy spirit that that told his eyes you're looking at God himself.
That's not something that just are pure Earthly eyes could see and comprehend. Otherwise, everyone would have fallen At His Feet worshipping. The ears to hear the eyes to see are given. She should watch. Oh God, just like all higgledy-piggledy. Did you know randomly tosses out ears to hear and eyes to see and he's a little stingy with the ears because obviously how you been praying Faithfully for someone for what one two, three decades and they still don't get it. They still don't see it. I still don't hear it. Why is God so stingy with the ears to hear the eyes to see it's and it's not it's not that easy. And is Ezekiel 12 verse 2
That's his son of man. You dwell in the midst of a rebellious house. Who have eyes to see? But Cena who have ears to hear but here not for they are a rebellious house. So Rebellion blinds eyes Rebellion blocks ears.
And in the ice in the ears to hear obviously got his is it speaking poetically Jesus is speaking poetically in in in terms of it and even actual blindness an actual deafness that Jesus healed tangibly. Those were just sermons about this greater truth. What would got to sing as is just because you have eyes doesn't mean that you have site. You have ears but not hearing it belongs, but you're suffocating you have legs, but you're lame you have arms, but you can't truly embraced you have hands, but you can't really grasp you have blood in your veins, but you have not life. Because your rebellious.
Blindness and deafness even breathing in and out there all they're all just sermons. Everything is a sermon so so lookin and seat here. I pray understand I pray. We have Choice with with two choices when given a command by a sovereign God when given a command by Sovereign King, we have two choices if we disobey it's two possibilities.
Okay, we didn't hear it. Means we're dead. Or we did hear it. And we scoffed.
Treasonous and we were Bell and we deserve death.
Either way death is the outcome. It's okay. It's alright. Alright, okay, I think I got it, Don't try to bottom light for Subaru quick. Okay. So this means that if we are rebellious we have ears to hear. But no backwards at the right bottom on that be better. if we are Rebellious. We don't have ears to hear if we're obedient. We do have ears to hear. If we're rebellious were blind.
If we obey we have sight, okay, so let's just, you know, let's just be obedient. And then let's go get some food.
It's not it's not that simple. cuz what we have to understand is we're all rebellious. All of us are rebellious. And in our Rebellion blind or deaf, and we're laying. In our Rebellion we are dead all of us in Romans chapter 3. so clearly
Romans chapter 3 verses 9 through 18 Paul what then are we Jews any better off? No not at all for we have already charged that both Jews and Greeks or under sin as it is written. None is righteous. No, not one. No one understands. No one seeks for God all have turned aside together. They have become worthless. No one does good. Not even one their throat is an open grave that use their tongues to deceive. The Venom of asps is under their lips. Their mouth is full of curses and bitterness their feet are Swift to shed blood in their paws are ruin in misery and the way of peace they have not known there is no fear of God before their eyes. none of us have ears to hear or eyes to see unless they are given by God. What that means is if right now this morning you hear and you obey the voice of God that is reason to praise him for Grace not a reason to be prideful and look down on the Blind and the deaf.
There's not a one of us that was born with the eyes to see or the ears to hear.
Soar open eyes and are open ears that they're not a result of our righteousness. If we are righteous. It's a result of God opening our eyes and our ears. Praise God, he gives open eyes and open ears. Praise God he removes. Daffin gives us life. Looking Ezekiel 11:19 beautiful Prophecy of the the Jewish people coming to faith in Christ. Finding wholeness and Restoration in Ezekiel 11 starting in verse 19. And I will give them one heart and a new spirit. I will put within them within them. I will remove the Heart of Stone from their flesh and give them a heart of Flesh. That they may walk in my statutes and keep my rules and Obey them and they shall be my people and I will be their God.
eyes and ears
Just a sermon about the heart sermon about the life sermon about salvation sermon about restoration that God bring sermon about Jesus making all things new.
So if you have ears to hear this morning, and I pray that you do it is a result of the good grace and mercy of God like a disciple. Who knows just enough to say Jesus help me to understand more. Let's let's watch God's beautiful Sovereign plan kind of unfold here. And and you may disagree with the plan, but that's not really our place. Right? Cuz we're not the maker of it's God's what's listen to what Jesus further tells his disciples. impact a little bit Let me read 11 to 15 again. Do you have been given to know the secrets they were given eyes to see the ears to hear been given of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given for to the one who has More will be given.
disciples coming to Jesus going
help me hear.
I think I know think I know what you're saying. Tell me more. Jesus says to the one who has more will be given he will have an abundance.
For the one who has not even what he has will be taken away. This is why I speak to them in Parables because seeing that you not see hearing they do not hear your they understand and deed in their case. The prophecy of Isaiah is filled. It says you will indeed here but never understand you will indeed see but never perceive for this people's heart has grown dull and with their ears they can hardly hear with their eyes. They have closed less. They should see with their eyes. That's the that's the tricky part isn't it lest? They should see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand what their heart and turn and I would heal them and why is the less cuz that seems like a really good idea.
The crowd to leave it in another in another case of difficult teaching that we've talked about before and John went when Jesus feeds the people miraculously and they love him and he's breadman and he could do no wrong at 11,000 people and then Jesus gets in this very difficult teaching their life terrible, and they all leave except for 11 disciples or 12, but we don't count Judas from 11000 to 11. They didn't hear they didn't see and they left. They abandon Jesus except for the disciples who stayed asking show us more tell us more teachers more. So so this is God's plan. k Jesus comes the hard-hearted Jewish people and they rebelliously reject Christ. So God Harden some further. So that salvation would be preached to all. So that didn't the Jews would be made jealous so that their jealousy. Would be used to soften their own Hearts towards Christ so that the gospel would take root in the Jewish people so that they would be restored along with the rest of the adopted Sons and Daughters of God.
together so that salvation would be based solely on Grace. Not good sense not good works not good genes, but God's goodness towards all men. That was a promise from the beginning to Abram. I'm going to make from you a mighty nation.
To bless all the nations so that all people would come to know who he is.
that Grace in that favor back in Matthew 13 16 and 17 here. He closes this Parable or the explanation of the parable. He says but blessed are your eyes for they see and your ears for the here for truly. I say to you many prophets and righteous people long to see what you see and did not see it and hear what you hear and did not hear it.
He sang You Are So favored and so blessed because you understand the understanding itself is a gift. So now we see it's backwards. It's backwards because in the very next verse and verse 18 He says here then the parable of the sower. Just here now the parable in plain language.
Everyone else is like God. This is craziness. I don't get it. I don't understand it. Only the disciples who who drew closer to Jesus saying I get it. I think I get it. Could you tell me more about your speaking in riddles? Could you tell me more and now he speaks plainly like at the purpose of The Parables was to make difficult things playing to understand Jesus would have started here in verse 18 years in the parable of the sower when anyone hears the word of the Kingdom in does not understand at the evil one comes and snatches away what has been sown in his heart. This is what was so along the path as for what was sewn on Rocky ground. This is the one who hears the word and immediately receives it with joy yet. He has no root in himself but indoors for a while and when tribulation a persecution arises on account of the word immediately, he falls away. As for what was sown among Thorns, this is the one who hears the word but the cares of the world and that is in the deceitfulness of riches choke the word and it proves unfruitful as for what was shown on good soil. This is the one who hears the word and understands that he indeed bears fruit and yields and one case a hundredfold and another 60 and another 30.
Amen brother. Amen. Praise be to God. So here's here's our question. Here's a final question here.
To whom does Jesus speak plainly?
Does he speak plainly to the people who are aloof? They left. Does Jesus? Does Jesus speak to the the people already understand perfectly because they don't exist.
He explained and spoke plainly. To those who were confused but desired to know more.
Is that you? Maybe even this morning are you confused but want to know more?
listen I'm married my wife not because I knew everything about her but because I wanted to
we draw near to Jesus. Because in his infinite goodness and Grace the scales of our eyes felt in the wax came out of our ears and we heard something that took a hole in a caused us to draw closer to him and we see Jesus, please teach me more. Show me more allow me to hear more got to know more.
He speaks plainly patiently gently, beautifully. To those who are given a soft heart open eyes and open ears kind of like, I don't know. a farmer planting a seed and soft soil
now you ask
How do I know how do I know that? I'm the soft soil? Do you want to be?
Answered as only soft soil wood.
Just desire him.
Just as I am.
We're going to be glad and worship. One more song Team come on up.
But I want to I want to give an opportunity. for a couple reasons
You might not know what it means right now in this moment, but you know you want to know more.
You want to declare that your soft soil? You can come forward and you can pray with me one of the elders. Brother Cornelius. I know that you would be more you would you would you would pray with someone would you. If you want to come for dinner and pray, it's like I want to be soft soil. I want to be soft soil. I want to know more. Google is so a seed of Truth has been planted in my heart and I want to see what grows from it come for it go see brother Cornelius one of the elders pray.
Or maybe you want to repent of your heart heart.
Are you want to repent of your heart heart? Maybe maybe maybe you felt your heart hardening?
You want to Farmers able to do?
You can tell it. You can fertilize it in water it. Never too late. Never too late. So as the band plays and we worship come forward go towards the back, but but don't allow a moment if if given by the Holy Spirit don't allow that moment to pass. You don't have to know everything. You just have to know you want to know more. Let's pray.
Got to a sermon song that a notochord a lyric service of none of these things have the power to open a heart that to resurrect a hard to open an ear to open it and I None of these things have the power to do those. We we can't we can't craft this we can't manipulate it. There's no magic formula. It is just your grace. And so I'm asking for your grace this morning graciously move in and amongst and through us and call.
In your kingdom, there's no such thing as hopelessly confused. Hopefully confused as what I am. I am confused by so much, but I have hope that in time even in the course of Eternity. Those truce will be rolled out for me to understanding glory and how good are you got everything I have learned of you so far.
Your goodness never ends. I want to know more.
I Tommy Shelton I I have I have rebelled
I have chased after other things that robbed me of my affections for you. I Repent right now. God Till the soil of my own heart fertilized it water it prepare it.
moving this time Moving this time I ask humbly confidently I am.