Be Careful How We Hear

Posted by on Feb 12, 2021 in Articles | 0 comments

“Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.” (James 1:19-20)  

As the above scripture indicates, it is very important to be careful in how we hear. Being a good listener will often aid in not only a growth in knowledge (Rom. 10:17), but often will help in keeping one from speaking foolishly or becoming angry.

A good listener will be willing to hear what is said and will realize the need for even the simplest instruction. I will sometimes, in a joking way, tell someone “explain this to me like I was a child”. However, in reality, I should accept that I may be missing something very basic in the matter at hand, and therefore need the most basic of instructions. Certainly we learn this from the Ethopian eunuch who invited Phillip to assist in his own study (Acts 8:31,34).

Does hearing make me active? Hearing by nature promotes activity. We hear our dogs become upset and we go out and see what the matter is. Someone tells us about a good restaurant and then we plan to dine there at our next opportunity. Hearing the Word of God should have no less impact on us. It should help us and motivate us to the proper actions and just as importantly our reactions to all things we deal with in life. James 1:22 says “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves”.

In Matthew 7:21-25, Jesus illustrates that hearing his teachings and building on them was truly the only secure action and really the only way the Word can impact our lives. Sadly, many times we’ll hear but never allow the knowledge and wisdom imparted to us to take hold or have an effect in our lives, simply because we didn’t do what we had been taught.  

Hearing should lead to investigation (Acts 17:11-12). Simply put, not everything we hear is true and we owe it to ourselves to make certain what we believe is actually correct. 1 Thessalonians 5:21 says “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good”.

Lastly, hearing rightly can make me happy. We all desire happiness in life and being a good listener will certainly bring that about. In Acts 13:48 and 8:39, having heard the Word and coming to a knowledge of God’s will in their lives, brought great happiness and it will do the same for you and I.

Jason Barger