by Henry Morris, Ph.D.
"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches." (Revelation 3:22)
This is the final exhortation in Christ's letters to His seven representative churches. It is the seventh such exhortation, one addressed to each church, so must be unusually important. The emphasis, obviously, is not merely hearing with the physical ear, but hearing with an obedient heart.
Such hearing is necessary first of all for saving faith, for "faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Romans 10:17). Jesus said: "He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life" (John 5:24).
In our day, however, probably more than in any previous age, there is a cacophony of voices of all kinds that are seeking listeners. In fact, Jesus Himself cautioned: "Take heed what ye hear" (Mark 4:24). There are multitudes of false teachers today--evolutionary humanists, religious liberals, "New Age" mystics, and others--all very articulate and often winsome, but speaking false doctrine. "To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them" (Isaiah 8:20).
It is important not only to hear the right words, but also to hear the right way. "Take heed therefore how ye hear," also said Jesus (Luke 8:18). Even if we hear the pure Word of God, it will accomplish nothing of value in our lives unless we hear with due reverence. "To this man will I look, even to him that . . . trembleth at my word" (Isaiah 66:2). And we must also hear with faith. "For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it" (Hebrews 4:2). He that hath an ear, therefore, let him hear with reverent faith the true Word of God. HMM