“This is why I speak to them in parables:
“Though seeing, they do not see;
though hearing, they do not hear or understand.
In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah:
“‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding;
you will be ever seeing but never perceiving.
For this people’s heart has become calloused;
they hardly hear with their ears,
and they have closed their eyes.
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
hear with their ears,
understand with their hearts
and turn, and I would heal them.’
But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.”
I think Jesus often felt like the old cowboy who led his thirsty horse to water but then couldn’t make her drink. In a lot of ways, that’s the story of Old Testament prophecy too. Over and over, God showed his people the right way to live and called them to trust in his power and mercy, only to have them ignore his words and go their own way. Then, Jesus came offering salvation and telling stories about the grace of God, but many people heard without understanding and saw without perceiving. If they would only turn to me, God said, I would heal them.
The other side of this coin is that those who do understand, who do see and hear and believe Jesus, get to taste what even the most faithful prophets of the Old Testament never could. We get to experience the glory and grace of God, through friendship with Jesus Christ, in the power of the Holy Spirit. What a wonderful blessing to have eyes that see and ears that hear the Good News.
For those who haven’t yet tasted the goodness of God, there is still hope. God’s mercy is not a limited time offer, at least not in this life. People who don’t yet know Jesus as their Savior are still being invited to “see with their eyes, hear with their ears, understand with their hearts and turn” to God in faith. God is still waiting for them with open arms, ready to heal and save.
Gracious Lord, I have hope and joy in my heart because of the mercy You show me through Jesus. Thank You for saving me and blessing me. Help me to show others the way to Jesus, so they can turn to You, through Jesus the Savior. Amen.
Pastor Mike Mirakian