Do you want to hear from God?
More and more people are crying out to hear from God in the midst of growing chaos and turmoil.
Tradition, ego and our flesh have taught us to look for a sign or a thunderous voice, an out of body experience, some big neon sign that says "hey its me, God, and this is what I am saying" and more often than not even what the people "think" is being said is up to personal interpretation. Granted God can and will speak audibly and He does use many things to point to Himself or something He wants to convey to His people. But more often than not we are deceived. We are deceived on all fronts from seeing the image of a man (some say Jesus) burned on a piece of bread to the mother Mary formed in the clouds. Much greater deceptions have already come and even greater ones are yet to be. One of the greatest deceptions is the distractions the enemy causes that keeps us separated from God and from hearing His Voice. One is laziness.
Proverbs 14:23 In all toil there is profit, but mere talk tends only to poverty.
If we discover the things that are in the foods we buy on the shelves, with our hard earned money, are poisonous, how much more do you think the word of God has been polluted, twisted and turned (even through the mouths of good intentioned pastors and teachers)? The enemy seeks to hide the truth from you and will do it at all costs.
We think that going to church on sunday is 'relationship', when in reality its no different than going to a football game and other spectator sports. Thats right.. many are spectators looking from the outside in, on what should be a relationship for themselves. Many seek a relationship of surface value. Knowing about God, talking about God, singing and reading about God, but never being a participator of the relationship He freely offers - thats when things change. Thats when you really start speaking to Him directly, singing to Him directly and He becomes real in your lives. Here is a thought I have repeated over the years: You will never, ever, ever have a relationship with your mother or father through your brother or sister. Do you honestly think you will have one with God through your pastor, teacher, brother or sister, mother or father? Never.
What is relationship? Relationship requires communication from both directions. Communication that is directed to and received by, both parties. Its not a party line where you listen in on some else's conversation and you won't get into the door by just associating yourself with His name.
Matthew 7:21-23 Not everyone who says "Lord, Lord" will enter the kingdom of heaven. But the one who does the will of my Father, who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, "Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, did we not cast our demons in your name, and do mighty works in your name?" And then I will declare to them; "I never knew you, depart from me, you workers of lawlessness."
In order to receive what He is speaking to you, you must be able to hear His voice and hearing His voice requires that you are able to discern it amongst the millions of voices the enemy is sending your way.
We must have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
1 Corinthians 3:16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
1 Corinthians 6:19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, that you are not your own?
Ezekiel 36:27 "I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances".
2 Timothy 1:14 Guard, through the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, the treasure which has been entrusted to you.
Romans 8:11 But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you.
A word of warning, you will rarely hear clearly from God if you do not have His Word in your mind and written on your heart. Oh you may hear clearly, but be mindful and test the spirits to see whether or not they are from the One True Living God.
2 Peter 1:20-21 Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture comes from the prophet's own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever brought about through human initiative, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.
1 John 4:1-2 Beloved, do not believe every spirit. but test the spirits to see whether they are from God. For many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you will know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses Jesus Christ has come in the flesh, is from God.
When we start to seek the Voice of God, we must test the spirits and testing the spirits can only come from having the Word of God in our minds and the Holy Spirit within us. This means we must study the Word of God for ourselves and not depend on our pastors, teachers, friends or family members to tell us what the scriptures say. Every human is subject to err and the enemy twists our understanding, twists scripture and is more subtle than any beast of the field. Seducing spirits, familiar spirits, every weapon the enemy can use, he will. Remember a little leaven, leavens the whole lump.
When we turn our ears to hear, be assured many voices will come. But its the Voice of God who professes the testimony of Christ and will bare witness to the Spirit of the living God within you. You can't have one without the other and expect to discern the truth, remember we are blind, naked and poor, its the Spirit of the Living God that gives us sight, not our fleshly eyes, He is the one who opens deaf ears. He is the way the truth and the life and there is no other. No man or woman, no pastor, no teacher, no evangelist, no lay person, no prophet or apostle. Surely these people are used by God, but only His Spirit within us, can lead, guide, direct. Only His Spirit within us empowered by His Word, i.e. His voice can empower us, liberate us, sanctify us.
Jesus said in John 14:6-7 "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me". No one can teach us the whole truth, except the Spirit of God within us.
John 2:27 As for you, the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need for anyone to teach you; but as His anointing teaches you about all things, and is true and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you abide in Him.
John 16:13 "But when He, the Spirit of Truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come".
Picture yourself turning your ear toward a crowd of people speaking all at once. Do you recognize which one is speaking the Truth? Do you recognize the one who is speaking the Word of God? When you start to listen be sure you can hear and discern which voice is worthy of your attention. There is only One, and He speaks through many. Just as the enemy does. We give the Holy Spirit within us His voice, when we study His Word. Without His Word within us, we are in essence silencing the Holy Spirit. He is there, but the truth of His Word lacks any influence on our lives and that of others. We cannot know the truth and speak unless God through His Holy Spirit reveals it to us and He is willing and able to do so, just as you read in John 16:13.
1 Corinthians 2:9-11 Rather, as it is written: "No eye has seen, nor ear has heard, no heart has imagined, what God has prepared for those who love Him." But God has revealed it to us by the Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of man except his own spirit within him. So too, no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirt of God.
When we hear or see Truth, His Spirit within us will testify of the same and thats when His Word is written on our hearts. It becomes indelible. We will never forget it. But if we leave the well dry, i.e. do not fill it with rivers of living water, His Word and His life.. then the Holy Spirit within us has nothing to draw upon to teach us, to guide us, to help us discern. Surely He can still influence our lives and still lead us and guide us, but the true power of God, the true resurrection power of what was accomplished at Calvary will not be manifested in our own lives if we do not have His living Word within us.
Trust no man or woman, but only the Holy Spirit within you. What you hear may sound sweet, may "feel right" may line up with this or that, but unless it lines up with the Word of God and the Holy Spirit within you, the enemy can and will pervert what is being said, is must be proven. God's Word and His Spirit within you should be the only and final source for Truth. The Word of God should settle the matter among us and within us. What we speak must point others to the Truth.
Hearing from God, may seem difficult at first, but as we study and search the scriptures having received Christ as our Lord and Savior, confessing our sins and asking for forgiveness of our sins- as we pursue Him, as we pursue righteousness and obedience to His commands, His Voice becomes clear. Truth becomes evident and discerning whether a thing be true or whether it is a lie will become easier and easier. With Truth comes liberation and freedom from deception and the enemy and we become willing captives of our Lord and Savior's great love and affection for us! We need the Word of God in our lives today.
Amos 8:11-12 "Behold, days are coming' declares the Lord God; "When I will send a famine on the land, not a famine for bread or a thirst for water, but rather for hearing the words of the Lord. People will stagger from sea to sea, and from the north and even to east; they will go to and fro and seek the word of the Lord, but they will not find it..."