Day 86: Undercover

Luke 8:16-18 :

“No one, when he has lit a lamp, covers it with a container, or puts it under a bed; but puts it on a stand, that those who enter in may see the light. For nothing is hidden, that will not be revealed; nor anything secret, that will not be known and come to light. Be careful therefore how you hear. For whoever has, to him will be given; and whoever doesn’t have, from him will be taken away even that which he thinks he has.”

It would be very strange if you witnessed a person turn on a light in a room and then try to cover it up to keep it from shining. That must have been what people looked like to Jesus. It appears that Jesus is talking, again, about the difference between a person’s words and his behavior in these symbolic illustrations.

If you really turned on the light in order to see (which is the most obvious purpose for turning on a light) then you would act like it and not be afraid to let it shine. If, however, you turn on the light without appropriate motives, you might act strangely, even attempting to cover the light up. If God’s Word is a light, then when we “turn it on” by listening to it or reading it, you would think that we would be trying to see things more clearly, wouldn’t you? But if all we do is try to avoid the light of the Bible after we hear it, then that brings into question why we were listening to it? There must be some wrong motive there.

I think that throughout these verses we have been reading, Jesus has been expressing His pain of seeing people listening and knowing that they were not doing it for the appropriate reasons. Perhaps some just wanted physical healings or to see “magic.” Some may have wanted to be with everyone else, but the only appropriate reason to listen to the Rabbi would be to learn and change.

In that light it makes sense that Jesus would say: “Be careful therefore how you hear.” I believe Jesus is saying that the light will eventually reveal everyone’s secrets. You can’t use the Bible as a religious covering for your bad behavior. Eventually that Bible will expose us all. We should start to get used to it right now and get things out into the open so that we can be healed before we are exposed when it is too late.

All ability to be good and do what is right comes only from God. Those who believe this and have accepted God’s righteousness have already been blessed with the will and ability to believe otherwise they wouldn’t have been able to believe. Because they believe, they can receive even more from God. Those who don’t really believe but try to act like they do, will never be able to succeed because God will eventually take away their appearance of righteousness.