Through the Ears. Trinity 12. Nursing Home Sermon
Sunny Hill Nursing Home
St. Mark 7:31-37
September 5, 2014 (reworked from sermon from 2012)
“Through the Ears”
How did death enter our lives? Through the ears.
From the serpent’s lying tongue came syllables which entered the ear canals of the woman. Words formed in her mind. Then her soul received the words. Ate them.
When you entertain lying words that deny the words of God, you are not on neutral ground. There are only 2 possible stances toward God’s word—to accept it as the truth, believe it, cling to it, and reject everything that opposes it; or to debate it, critically examine it, think about whether it pleases you or not. To do anything other than acknowledge God’s word as the eternal truth is to disobey it.
So when Eve did not reject the lies when the sounds entered her ears and the ideas formed in her mind, her soul became pregnant with sin. Sin captured her eyes, so that she saw the forbidden fruit as attractive. Sin captured her will and her body, so that she disobeyd God’s command and warning and took and ate. Finally, sin, not content with destroying her, took control of her tongue, which it now used as Satan had used the serpent’s tongue—to lie and murder. She enticed her husband to abandon fellowship with God and to join in fellowship with her in death and the rejection of the truth.
Our physical ears and tongues are more closely tied to our souls than we normally realize. It was by means of our physical ears that sin was first conceived in human beings. It was by means of the tongue that sin began to spread.
But now the sin and Satan don’t need to approach us from outside anymore. It lives within us, and begins to stir up the desires of sin and death from inside.
Now life enters us from the outside.
- Jesus opens our ears. The law—we are dead. He proclaims the forgiveness of sins and our ears become open to God’s Word.
- Jesus opens the new creation to us. He stands in our place between the wrath of God and us. He takes our groans, pain, and death in Himself before the Father. Dying and rising again, He brings to us the Father’s word that unlocks healing and the new creation.
We join with Jesus in praying for others, mediating for them, serving them. This is the beginning of the new creation, of everlasting life.