And he said to them, “Is a lamp brought in to be put under a basket, or under a bed, and not on a stand? For nothing is hidden except to be made manifest; nor is anything secret except to come to light. If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.” And he said to them, “Pay attention to what you hear: with the measure you use, it will be measured to you, and still more will be added to you. For to the one who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away.”
Understanding And Applying the Text
This parable is not given in isolation. It is in the context of the parable of the sower. It is in the context of why Jesus said He used parables. He used parables to obscure the truth of the Kingdom of God from those who are outside the Kingdom. (v10-11) He said it here again. “If anyone has ears to hear, let him hear.” (v23)
This parable answer the complaint, “That’s not fair!”
Jesus just said He spoke in parables to obscure the truth from those outside the kingdom. Here He talked about how light reveals everything. Is not that a contradiction? First Jesus said He spoke in parables so that hearing they may not hear. Now He said nothing that is secret is is hidden. What gives?
The truth is available to all. As a lamp lights a house. The Gospel illuminates the truth. But men refuse to see it. Seeing they do not see.
Jesus told His disciples to, “pay attention to what you hear.”
Some believe God gives the same amount of grace to everyone. That is not true. Evidence proves that false. But, we are responsible to respond to the grace God gives us.
There is such a thing as common grace. Common grace is the grace God gives to all. The fact we draw our next breath is due to God’s grace. The rains fall on the just and the unjust. We are to present the gospel to all men. What they do with it determines their destiny.
Jesus said with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. That is, God dispenses more grace to those who accept His grace. The more you accept His grace the more grace He gives. God will reveal the mystery of the kingdom in direct measure to one’s faithfulness to Him.
But with this promise, there is also a warning. If His grace is not accepted, what grace He has given, He removes.
A lamp is not put under a bushel or under a bed. A light is too light up the whole room. The apostles received the gospel. But they did not receive the gospel only for themselves. They received it for the benefit of others. Christ calls all who have received the gospel to ministry.
Christ thus instructed the disciples they were to instruct others. As candles are lit and give light to a room.