Hearing But Not Understanding
They still did not understand from Scripture that Jesus had to rise from the dead. John 20:9
Hearing has never been a problem for me. Understanding has. For example, as a child, I heard that Jesus loved me but I did not understand the ramifications of that until midlife. I heard that Jesus was powerful enough to perform miracles, leaving his spectators openmouthed, yet I didn’t understand that he might perform one for me. I heard that Jesus was forgiving but I believed a few of my sins disqualified me. These truths weren’t mine. I didn’t claim them as mine.
I have since concluded that my greatest need is to take the truth and make it mine, personally. I know too much. I experience too little. I can be saturated with information, while my heart shrivels from lack of application.
Jesus told his disciples repeatedly that he would die and three days later rise again. Yet when Peter and John found the empty grave, they were stunned. Why? Hadn’t they been told? John relates the reason: “They did not understand.” They had heard the words but had failed to internalize them into their experience.
What keeps my faith purely intellectual? Maybe I’m afraid to believe good news. That I’m valuable to God. That He longs for a relationship with me. That fairy-tale love really does exist. That I matter. That I was created to house the glory of God. What if I’m wrong? Won’t the despair be overwhelming?
What truth have you heard but still don’t understand? What hasn’t penetrated your heart yet? Can you find one today – just one – on this Good Friday? Jesus’ sacrifice was meant to completely sanctify us to such an extent that our entire belief system would be saturated with the good news of the Gospel. It takes guts to believe – but God is up to the task of giving us faith beyond ourselves.
Expose any pockets of unbelief and give me courage to make every Word of Yours my own. In Jesus name, Amen