Jesus knew these words might sound strange to non-spiritual ears, so he preceded his message by saying, “If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear”(Mark 4:23). Jesus was telling us, “If your heart is open to God’s Spirit, you’ll understand.”
What exactly is Jesus saying in this passage? He’s speaking of how the Lord measures out his glorious presence in various amounts, whether to churches or to individuals. Some don’t receive any of his glory. Others receive an ever-increasing measure, emanating from their lives and churches.
God has promised to pour out his Spirit on his people in these last days. Indeed, all of scripture points to a triumphant, glory-filled church at the close of time. Jesus himself said the gates of hell will not prevail against his church. We won’t be limping into heaven. No. Our Lord is going to bring greater power to his church. This power won’t be manifested merely in signs and wonders. It will be revealed in his people and in the glorious transformation of hearts touched by God’s Spirit.
How can we obtain an ever-increasing measure of Christ’s glory? The Lord told us very clearly in Mark 4:24. Jesus was saying, “According to the portion of yourself you allot to me, I’ll give back to you in like portion. I’ll deal with you in the manner you deal with me.”
If you measure out to God sloth and laziness, taking for granted his great work, you’ll be dealt a spirit of slumber. “Laziness casts one into a deep sleep, and an idle person will suffer hunger” (Proverbs 19:15). As a result, your soul will go hungry.
God’s love, mercy and grace toward us are boundless. The issue here isn’t obtaining his love, mercy or grace; but having the blessing of his glory in our lives.
Jesus states plainly that he measures out different amounts of his glory to us, according to how we measure out our hearts to him. Our part is simply to move ever closer to him in our worship, obedience and diligence.