I Hear You
I cried out to him with my mouth, his praise was on my tongue. Had I cherished evil thoughts, Adonai would not have listened.
But in fact, God did listen; he paid attention to my prayer.
Blessed be God, who did not reject my prayer
or turn his grace away from me.
In the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament), whenever someone heard the Voice of Adonai calling them, they would respond with, hineni, literally translated as I am ready. We read this in 1 Samuel 3. In John 10:16, Adonai Yeshua, the Lord Jesus, tells us, ‘I have other sheep which are not from this pen; I need to bring them, and they will hear My voice’. As I read these and other passages about hearing God’s Voice, I began to wonder what Scripture means by the verb to hear.
Perhaps one of the most powerful of commands, the Sh’Ma (Deuteronomy 6), begins with the phrase, Sh’Ma Yisrael, Hear O Israel. What does it mean to hear the Word of God? The Hebrew word Sh’Ma means to listen and obey. Again, the verb also contains an action component. When Samuel, as a child, responded to Adonai’s voice with hineni, he was saying ‘I am ready to do your bidding’. When Adonai Yeshua says, ‘they will hear My voice’, He is also saying, ‘they will come towards Me’. There is action in the biblical word ‘hear’. So what does this mean for us, today?
God’s Word, once read, requires action in response. Reading His Word is not a passive process, that is, we do not just read it and store the information in our heads for future reference. No, when we read His Word, we act upon what we have read. This is the essence of the biblical meaning of hearing. This is the essence of Adonai Yeshua’s Word to us, in John 14 – ‘If you love me, you will keep my commands’. But does the same apply, when Adonai hears us?
There are so many verses of Scripture which assure us He acts upon hearing our prayers. Let’s just look at three of the over 100 such passages. First, we go to 1 John 5:14 – ‘This is the confidence we have in his presence: if we ask anything that accords with his will, he hears us’. Then, in Psalm 66:17-19, the Psalmist shares with us: ‘I cried out to him with my mouth, his praise was on my tongue. Had I cherished evil thoughts, Adonai would not have listened. But in fact, God did listen; he paid attention to my prayer’. Finally, from the lips of Adonai Yeshua, the Lord Jesus, we hear: ‘We know that God doesn’t listen to sinners; but if anyone fears God and does his will, God does listen to him’. (John 9:31) Does Adonai follow the same principle of responding to what He has heard from us, as we from Him? Yes! The only difference lies in timing. Adonai, God, responds to us in His time frame, not in ours. That is why the psalmist advises us ‘If I hadn’t believed that I would see Adonai’s goodness in the land of the living, . . . Put your hope in Adonai, be strong, and let your heart take courage!’ Yes, put your hope in Adonai!’ (Psalm 27:13,14)
Yes, beloved, when we approach Adonai with a pure heart, sharing with Him in humility, He does hear us – He is ready to receive our prayers.
CONSIDER: Do you become frustrated and angry, when Adonai, the Lord God, doesn’t answer your prayers immediately or what you consider a timely manner? Does that say more about God’s character or yours? What might be the reasons for God’s timing to be different from yours? Find some Scripture to support you position.
ACTION: Formulate your prayers to Adonai very clearly, with specific and not vague needs; let Him know you will wait, with hope, for His answer, even if the answer may be ‘NO’.
PRAYER: Abba B’Shamayim, Father in Heaven, we rely upon You to answer our prayers. We know everything, including our needs, wants and desires, are in Your control and in Your will. Help us to formulate pour prayers as conversations with You, as a child would talk with His Beloved Father. In Your beloved and precious Name, we pray. Amen
May the GOD of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob bless you fully and richly.