That Which Is Hidden Will Be Made Manifest

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“For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested; neither was anything kept secret, but that it should come abroad. If any man have ears to hear, let him hear. And he said unto them, Take head what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given. For he that hath, to him shall be given: and he that hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he hath” (Mark 4:22-25).

“For there is nothing hid, which shall not be manifested”

The parable that Jesus tells in Mark 4:21-25 is used in reference to the Gospel message which Jesus had been teaching the disciples. Take note of what comes prior to Mark 4:21-25, and you will see that Jesus just taught the disciples about the parable of the sower. In the parable of the sower, the seed is the Gospel message.

Mark 4:21 is a portion of Scripture that speaks of a lamp which was not intended to be hidden but rather put on a stand for all to see. In verse 22, we encounter Jesus making a statement concerning a real-life circumstance. He does this in two separate ways, and He builds upon His illustration of a lamp in the process. The first way in which Jesus teaches the disciples through a real-life circumstance is by highlighting the way that people hide things in order to reveal them later. He basically says, “That which is hidden is meant to be manifested.”

“neither was anything kept secret, but that it should come abroad”

After Jesus’ first simple statement, He moves on to another. Jesus tells of the way that a secret is intended to come abroad. In other words, a secret is meant to be brought out to the light. It is important to note that every illustration falls apart at some points, and there is never a perfect parallel, but the point is clear. Jesus used the way in which people hide matters of life or material things in order to reveal them at a later date.

Jesus was primarily instructing His disciples with the truth that the Gospel was not intended for the disciples only, but it was also to be revealed to the world.

“If any man have ears to hear, let him hear”

Here, we see an element of the Bible that must never be overlooked. While the unconverted can read the Bible and repeat what the Bible says, there is a way in which spiritual understanding is only for those who have ears to hear. It should also be noted that it is God who opens deaf ears. Man, whether he realizes it or not, is absolutely dependent upon God to move and act in his life.

Jesus can be seen throughout the Gospels as opening the eyes of the blind, opening the ears of the deaf, opening the mouth of the mute, and so on. The stories that depict Christ in this manner are not meant to simply display Christ’s miraculous powers; there is also a spiritual bent of which the Christian would be wise to take note. It is Christ who gives the Christian spiritual eyes and spiritual ears, as well as a mouth to truly declare the glories of God.

“And he said unto them”

It must be noted that it was Christ Who taught the disciples. It was Christ Who told them the truths of the kingdom. It was Christ Who prepared the disciples for ministry, and it was Christ Who instructed them as students.

While it is true that the whole Bible is the Word of God, it must not be assumed that every portion of the Bible is as valuable as the next. The Gospels reveal Christ in the greatest display throughout the whole of the Bible. The Gospels surely top the list of books that the Christian should prioritize in his Bible reading. When someone comes to know Christ, he has come to know his reason for living.

“Take head what ye hear”

Jesus gives a strong command that His disciples are to take heed of what they hear. Hearing the words of Christ is a nonnegotiable for spiritual growth. When Christ speaks of hearing His words, He is not merely concerned with the disciples’ being able to repeat back to Him what He had said.

In the Bible, hearing is often equated with understanding. Understanding is a spiritual reality that is only true for the Christian. Understanding is not simply being able to explain or teach upon a text. Understanding is only for the spiritually enlightened – and thus only for those who have the Holy Spirit.

Prior to the parable of the lamp, Jesus told the parable of the sower. At the end of the parable of the sower, Jesus explained that the seed that fell upon good soil are the ones that “…hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit, some thirtyfold, some sixty, and some an hundred” (Mark 4:20) . Here, we can see that Jesus was highly concerned with people hearing the word and receiving it, which is a crucial element of understanding the Word.

It is important for the reader to connect the parable of the sower with the parable of the lamp in order to understand the content of the parable of the lamp.

“with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you”

In this next comment within the parable of the lamp, Jesus further illustrates the importance of hearing the Gospel and understanding it. He tells us that the degree to which a Christian hears the Gospel and understands it is the degree to which that same Christian will grow in Christ. The same principle was highlighted in Mark 4:20. The Gospel is essential for the growth of a Christian. It is absolutely certain that the degree to which someone truly understands the work and the person of Christ is the same degree that he will mature as a Christian.

“and unto you that hear shall more be given”

Hearing the Gospel and understanding the Gospel is the beginning of the Christian’s journey. However, the journey has just begun. When someone hears and understands the Gospel, what will come is more hearing and more understanding. Jesus is not merely concerned with saving people from the penalty of sin; He is also highly concerned with saving people from the power of sin. This means that Christ desires for people to be like Him. One of the primary ways in which Christlikeness is developed in a Christian’s life is through hearing the Word and understanding what is being said.

“For he that hath, to him shall be given”

Here we see another Christian reality being depicted. Those who are in Christ are in a state of blessing. The Christian is not blessed because he is a good person. While there may be some good things that occur due to someone’s obedience, it must never be assumed that blessing comes by way of works. Christian blessing flows through the cross.

The book of Galatians tells us that Christ became a curse for the Christian. Thus, the Christian is spared from the curse, and instead, he is blessed as a result of the work of Christ.

“and he that hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he hath”

Again, an understanding of the parable of the sower is necessary in understanding Jesus’ current statement. In the previous parable, Jesus tells of seeds which were scattered along the path, among thorns, and on rocky ground. These depict scenarios in which people hear the Gospel, but the message is not heard and understood. In one of the scenarios, Satan comes and snatches away the seed. In another scenario, the thorns choke the growth of the plant. In another, the sun withers the plant. Simply put, in many different ways, people will hear the Word of God, but the message will not remain. The crucial matter is this: Will the one who is being called by God have ears to hear and a heart to understand?

Final prayer

Father, I thank You for Your Word. I pray that You would give me ears to hear Your Word and a heart to understand this day. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

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