Listen to Him
See on YouTube
Listen to Him
2 Kings 2:1-12
2 Corinthians 4:3-6
In our world of technology in our current times there are many arts that have either lost their prevalence or have adapted and changed along with our technology. One of those arts is communication through listening or reading. If we want to know something, we just ask Siri, Alexa, Google, or Cortana, and we listen to what they have to say. Very rarely do we listen or read for pleasure or just to learn something new. Rarely do average people read a book for we are too busy to do such a thing. We are too busy lost in our world of technology and input from social media or online games. I am just as guilty at times as I think we all are. While we have great entertainment all around us, I think it is easy to miss one of the most important messages of all. We will become blind to this message and to its importance. This message is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Elijah spent his career as the Lord’s prophet running and hiding in the wilderness because he was so zealous for the Lord. He listened to the Lord did as was commanded of him. The Lord provided him an apprentice to accompany him in his loneliness and towards the end Elijah tries to separate himself from Elisha because he knows that his time on earth is ending. However, Elisha will not let him go. He says where you go, I go. Just before Elijah is taken up, he asks Elisha what it is that he can do for him before he is taken away. Elisha requests a double portion of his spirit. This is a difficult task because it is only something that can be given by the Lord. If Elisha is able to see the light and see Elijah through this light as he is taken then his request will be granted to him. Elisha sees the horseman and chariots from heaven coming down as a whirlwind. He tears his clothing and tears it in two and then takes up the cloak of Elijah. The cloak now rests upon him and he is given the power and spirit of Elijah. Elisha is almost transfigured by the spirit and the others who were watching at a distance can see that there is something different about him. They saw what had happened and they now see Elisha returning differently than before yet they do not really see with understanding. They ask to go look for Elijah but do not listen to him when he tells them not to bother because he knows that they will find nothing. They are too busy in their own world and desires that they are blinded from seeing Elisha now has the new authority from the Lord.
In Mark chapter 9, Jesus takes Peter, James, and John with him up a high mountain and there before them Jesus is changed. His clothes are in dazzling white for the Spirit is there. Not only that but Elijah and Moses are present as well. Peter is unsure of what should be the proper protocol here and therefore suggests that 3 shelters should be made there. The voice of the Lord comes upon them though and tells them what it is that they are supposed to do. He says, “this is my son whom I love. Listen to him!” The Lord tells them that they better pay attention to what he says because his words are the words of authority of the Father. Jesus speaks the will of the Father as they are together the same.
The phrase “listen to him” stands out to me so much from this passage because not everyone would listen to Jesus. Even to this day not everyone listens to Jesus. Paul even talks about this in 2 Corinthians 4. He talks about how from some people the gospel message is hidden from them. For “the god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers.” Not God with a big “G” but the little “g.” The god that Paul is talking about is the god that the world looks to follow. The god of entertainment and pleasure. The god of greed and envy. The eyes of the world are closed off from the transfigured Lord and unfortunately, they are perishing because they will not listen to His message. They will not listen to the good news that someone loved them so much that they died to take their place and punishment for when judgment falls upon them at the end of their days. As Paul had said the message that we preach in the church is not the message about ourselves but about the message of Christ the Lord. I myself am just a servant for Jesus’ sake. God has said “Let light shine out of darkness.” When Jesus was transfigured on that mountain “the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.” We are therefore called to do one thing and one thing only. We are to “listen to him.”
How often it is difficult for the world to listen to Jesus. Excuses are made all the time for why people cannot listen to Jesus. So many times, we let emotions cloud our vision and then therefore we plug our ears and our hearts from the truth. Sadly, there are and will be people at the end of their lives and at the end of days who will not listen to Jesus. The darkness has distracted and covered their minds and ears and the are unable to listen to him. When I read this passage from 2 Corinthians 4 my heart cannot help but break for these people. There are people all around me who I know are perishing. My emotions tell me that this is not fair and why would God let these people perish. The truth though is that I need to listen to him and not be angry about the fate that these people whom I love are choosing because God loves them more than I love them and is even more heartbroken by their choice to ignore the light. If only they would listen to him then they would see the light. Our job is simple. We must ask them to listen to him and then pray that they do. It is unfortunate that there are many in this world who are perishing because they are blinded from the light and cannot see with eyes like that of Elisha and with eyes like that of the apostles. They have instead followed their god the devil who is the father of lies and darkness. If they continue to listen to their god they will remain with their god for all eternity. However, as for me I prefer to listen to the one who was transfigured on the mountain. I prefer to listen to the one whose word has authority. There are those even in the church who listen to a different voice. They listen to a voice that points to man’s desires instead of God’s desires. Such people are also perishing if they do not listen to him who speaks the truth and speaks with authority. I ask you today church, will you step in the light of the Lord or will you let the gospel to continue being hidden from you and your loved ones? We all have a decision to make.