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Growing thru Receiving Word_part 2 - Between Sermons – A

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									                             “GROWING & RECEIVING the WORD”
11 Aboutthis we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing.
Heb 5:11 ESV

   They were limited in receiving, because they had become dull in hearing Word.

   NOTE: ‘become’ dull > only place in NT this word is so used; connotation: lazy
    (They had gradually gotten lazy in hearing the Word!)
22 And Samuel said, “Has the LORD as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the
voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to listen than the fat of rams. 23 For
rebellion is as the sin of divination, and presumption is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have
rejected the word of the LORD, he has also rejected you from being king.” 1Sam 15:22-23 ESV

Then Samuel said, Do you think all GOD wants are sacrifices—empty rituals just for show? He wants
you to listen to him! Plain listening is the thing, not staging a lavish religious production. Not
doing what GOD tells you is far worse than fooling around in the occult. Getting self-important around
GOD is far worse than making deals with your dead ancestors. Because you said No to GOD’s
command, he says No to your kingship. 1Sam 15:22-23 MSG

   I know listening here is speaking of obedience, but it does start with listening!

1. Receiving the Word effectively begins with my attitude!
    I was glad when they said to me, “Let us go to the house of the Lord.” Psa 122:1 NLT

          Attitude follows appetite
           2 Likenewborn babies, you must crave pure spiritual milk so that you will grow into a full
           experience of salvation. Cry out for this nourishment, 3 now that you have had a taste of the
           Lord’s kindness. 1 Peter 2:2-3 NLT

          Attitude affects results
           Therefore, we never stop thanking God that when you received his message from us, you
           didn’t think of our words as mere human ideas. You accepted what we said as the very
           word of God—which, of course, it is. And this word continues to work in you who believe.
           1Thess 2:13 NLT

           ‘work’ = same GR (“energy”) as Hebrews 4:12, “powerful”
           For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword,
           cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost
           thoughts and desires. Heb 4:12 NLT


2. Receiving the Word effectively requires specific effort:
    Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. 2 And a
    man lame from birth was being carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple that is
    called the Beautiful Gate to ask alms of those entering the temple. 3 Seeing Peter and John about
    to go into the temple, he asked to receive alms. 4 And Peter directed his gaze at him, as did John,
    and said, “Look at us.” 5 And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something
    from them. Acts 3:1-5 ESV


                                                                                                          1
          Outward, physical effort: fixed attention

          Inner, spiritual effort: expecting to receive from them

3. How I receive the Word is best predictor of my ultimate fruitfulness:
    3 He told many stories in the form of parables, such as this one: “Listen! A farmer went out to
    plant some seeds. 4 As he scattered them across his field, some seeds fell on a footpath, and the
    birds came and ate them. 5 Other seeds fell on shallow soil with underlying rock. The seeds
    sprouted quickly because the soil was shallow. 6 But the plants soon wilted under the hot sun,
    and since they didn’t have deep roots, they died. 7 Other seeds fell among thorns that grew up
    and choked out the tender plants. 8 Still other seeds fell on fertile soil, and they produced a crop
    that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted! 9 Anyone with ears
    to hear should listen and understand.” Matt 13:3-9 NLT

    10 Hisdisciples came and asked him, “Why do you use parables when you talk to the people?”
    11 Hereplied, “You are permitted to understand the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven, but others
    are not. 12 To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given, and they will
    have an abundance of knowledge. But for those who are not listening, even what little
    understanding they have will be taken away from them. 13 That is why I use these parables,
    For they look, but they don’t really see. They hear, but they don’t really listen or understand.
    14 Thisfulfills the prophecy of Isaiah that says, ‘When you hear what I say, you will not
    understand. When you see what I do, you will not comprehend. 15 For the hearts of these people
    are hardened, and their ears cannot hear, and they have closed their eyes— so their eyes cannot
    see, and their ears cannot hear, and their hearts cannot understand, and they cannot turn to me
    and let me heal them.’ 16 “But blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because
    they hear. 17 I tell you the truth, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see,
    but they didn’t see it. And they longed to hear what you hear, but they didn’t hear it.
    Matt 13:10-17 NLT
    18 “Now  listen to the explanation of the parable about the farmer planting seeds: 19 The seed that
    fell on the footpath represents those who hear the message about the Kingdom and don’t
    understand it. Then the evil one comes and snatches away the seed that was planted in their
    hearts. 20 The seed on the rocky soil represents those who hear the message and immediately
    receive it with joy. 21 But since they don’t have deep roots, they don’t last long. They fall away
    as soon as they have problems or are persecuted for believing God’s word. 22 The seed that fell
    among the thorns represents those who hear God’s word, but all too quickly the message is
    crowded out by the worries of this life and the lure of wealth, so no fruit is produced. 23 The
    seed that fell on good soil represents those who truly hear and understand God’s word and
    produce a harvest of thirty, sixty, or even a hundred times as much as had been planted!”
    Matt 13:18-23 NLT

    Then Jesus said to them, “If you can’t understand the meaning of this parable, how will you
    understand all the other parables? Mark 4:13 NLT

   This is unquestionably the most important of all Jesus’ parables!

   Why? Because it’s a universal parable (you fit somewhere in this story; so does
    everyone else on the planet)

   In fact, I’m convinced that you fit into this parable each time you receive God’s
    Word – i.e., sometimes you can be good soil & at other times footpath, etc-



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