Posted By Nan

John 10:22-42
This is a good tale of the perils of the unbeliever. Here were the “Jews”, presumably the Pharisees and other Jewish leaders, who placed rigid observance of the law as of greater importance than God. These leaders did not belong to God because they did not acknowledge Him, or seek to follow Him. As Jesus said to them in verse 26, they did not belong to Him. He was not their shepherd. The sheep that belong to Jesus hear and listen to Jesus’ voice. They are known by Jesus. And they follow Jesus. The sheep that truly belong to Jesus can never be wrested out of His hand because God is the most powerful and nothing, not even evil, can remove them from His hand. And those people are gods. This is taken from Psalm 82. Jesus used this psalm to highlight to the people God’s word stating that all who believed in Him are His children.
So we follow Jesus because we hear and listen to God and because of this we are His children. The religious leaders of Jesus day were so caught up in the legalism of their faith, they did not pay attention to God’s word. They did not listen.
As a counselling student, I was taught about the act of hearing and listening. Someone can talk to us, but we do not necessarily hear them. If we are distracted their words will be lost to our hearing. But hearing is only part of communication. We can hear but still not listen to what is being said. We need to hear and we need to pay attention to what is being said. That is listening. Most communication fails because listening does not happen. People are often too busy thinking about what they will say next, or about things unrelated to the current conversation, to hear what is being said.
We do the same with God. We fail to hear Him and we fail to listen to Him.
In these verses, the people did not hear because they did not belong to God. So that suggests that if we belong to God we can hear. Because they didn’t hear, they couldn’t listen. We who belong to God, can hear but may not listen because of distractions in our lives. We need to learn to put all that aside and listen. We don’t need to get caught up in the legalist’s view of how we listen. We just need to let go of all the thinking and busyness and pay attention. This is mindfulness. It is not just about some new age meditation. This is about being mindful, connecting to your spirit, and allowing yourself to hear the Holy Spirit talking to you. You won’t hear God if you don’t listen. You won’t hear Him if you don’t let go of legalism that tells you to mistrust any form of meditation. So you throw out God’s gift of stillness in the name of legalism. Walk away from legalism. You need to hear your Shepherd because you belong to Him. And when you hear Him, you can listen to Him, and then you can follow Him.

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