Chapter 14

Be a light and be a listener
Mark 4:21-25 (NIV)

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21 He said to them, “Do you bring in a lamp to put it under a bowl or a bed? Instead, don’t you put it on its stand? 22 For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed, and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open. 23 If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.” 24 “Consider carefully what you hear,” he continued. “With the measure you use, it will be measured to you—and even more. 25 Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him.”

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Mark 4:21-23
Light

Jesus talks about buying a lamp and ensuring that everyone sees its light. He says you don’t hide a lamp in a bowl or under a bed, but you lift it high on a stand. The light from that lamp reveals whatever the darkness had concealed.

Light chases darkness away. Sin is pictured in the Bible as darkness. That’s why when the apostle Paul was converted to Christ, God promised to use him to turn sinners from darkness to light.[1] Jesus says twice, I am the Light of the world.[2] God’s word is also described as a lamp and as a light.[3]

Jesus is the Light of the world. When He enters our hearts He chases away sin’s darkness within us. That describes Christian conversion. As we read and obey the Bible each day, the ongoing light of God’s teaching continues that process. When walking in God’s light, we enjoy honest and open fellowship with other Christians, and experience the blessing of Christ’s blood cleansing us from our sin.[4]

But we also became lighthouses in a dark sin-sick world in danger of judgement for sin. Many ships were saved from shipwreck by lighthouse beams warning about rocks and marking the coastline. As God shines His light in our lives, we will warn others of their need of Christ.[5] We must witness to them by how we live and what we say. The Bible tells us to Live as children of light.[6]

Mark 4:23-25
Listen

Jesus then tells us to listen attentively to God. There is important encouragement here if you want to grow in Christ and understand the Bible better. Jesus says you can have as much blessing and understanding as you choose to take. His offer is unlimited. The more you listen to His word and act on it, the more understanding and blessing He gives. He says, With the measure you use, it will be measured to you—and even more. There is no excuse for ongoing ignorance of the Bible! Read it a lot (or hear it read if reading is a problem) and pray much about it. God will give you increased light from His word as you take in more and more. Spend time in God’s word! Don’t skimp your daily intake of it. Take every opportunity to hear the Bible preached and taught. Otherwise your understanding of it and blessing from it will diminish.

Jesus’ summary is this, Whoever has will be given more; whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken from him. Be ambitious for God. Ask Him to increase your love for His word and to help you to follow it. Hunger for God and thirst for His word. He will continue to give you more and more light and blessing from it!

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[1] . Acts 26:18.
[2] . John 8:12; John 9:5.
[3] . Psalm 119:105.
[4] . 1 John 1:7.
[5] . Matthew 5:16.
[6] . Ephesians 5:8.

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Questions on Chapter 14
Mark 4:21-25 Be a light and be a listener.

A. How does the concept of light help you to understand Jesus and the Bible? John 8:12 Psalm 119:105

B. How should light feature in the walk and witness of a committed Christian? Ephesians 5:8 1 John 1:7

C. Why does blessing come to those who humbly listen to God through the Bible being preached or taught, and through reading the Bible each day? 2 Timothy 3:16-17 Proverbs 30:5 Psalm 119:9-16