God has given us open ears so that we can listen to God and pay attention.

Listening attentively for Isaiah can lead us to hearing things that may be painful, of recognising that in ourselves we may have achieved nothing. Some of the things we hear need to be put away for later use. Some assure us that despite our failures God has been with us from our beginnings and that God is the strength that encourages us to be a light to the nations. (…which is no light thing…Is this a pun in the English translation?)

Having an open ear for the psalmist again enables remembrance of a past away from God likened to a desolate pit or a miry bog. For the Psalmist the hidden things are brought into the light in a new song/a new speech from a new confidence on the security of solid ground, being present within the steadfast love of God. I am here.

Paul listens closely enough to the Corinthians to know, that despite the many issues he will elaborate on, he can note that they have been enriched in Christ in many ways including speech and knowledge. These disrupted people are not lacking in spiritual gifts and still stand within the faithfulness of God and the fellowship of God’s Son. We all wait for the revealing of the hidden (?) Lord Jesus Christ.

John the Baptist has been listening closely to God and those around him. This John has a more confident and developed theological understanding of Jesus and a closer connection to Jesus’ disciples than the John the Baptist of the synoptic gospels, and even though there is no explicit mention of a baptism of Jesus by John there is still the image of the Spirit descending like a dove on Jesus.

Let those who have ears to hear…
Let those who have mouths to speak…

Graham Booth

Lay Preacher