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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Does God Speak to Us Today?

Is it presumptuous to think that God speaks to people today in this modern era? Some think so and believe that God speaks only though the Bible. While the Bible is the divinely inspired Word of God, it also points out that He does indeed speak to us. Perhaps God does not communicate with us in the same way as the Old and New Testament heroes of the faith like Moses, who spoke “face to face” with God (see Exodus 33:11), but He does speak to our hearts and spirit.
When Christ died He said He had to leave this earth so He could send us His Holy Spirit. He told the disciples to wait until the Spirit came, which He did. This is commonly referred to as Pentecost, when the disciples met in the upper room and the Holy Sprit appeared with tongues of fire and those gathered there spoke different languages so that everyone could understand their speaking in their own native tongue.
This same Holy Spirit gave power to the disciples to heal, perform miracles, preach the Word of God and hear from Him. The Book of Acts recounts many incidents attesting to this power and the ability to hear God speak though the Holy Spirit. God spoke audibly o Saul on the road to Damascus before he became an apostle. “‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?’ So I answered, ‘Who are You, Lord?’ And He said to me, ‘I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting.’” (Acts 22:7-8). But the question still remains; does God speak to us today?
Yes, God does speak to us. It may not be as dramatic or audible as in the case of Paul or Moses, but since we have the “spirit of God living in us” (1 Corinthians 3:16) we can hear His “still small voice” speaking to our hearts. He uses events in our lives, circumstances and impressions http://www.gotquestions.org/God-still-speak.html from the Holy Spirit to lead and guide us. The problem is many of us are too busy to listen. We are caught up in a world wind of activity and barraged by information. It is so important for us to stop the merry-go-round and spend time with God and allow both His Word and Holy Spirit to talk to us.
How can we know it is God? Since we are fallible and make mistakes we need to test what we think God is telling us. Foremost, does it line up with scripture https://www.christiancourier.com/articles/595-does-god-speak-directly-to-man-today or is it contrary to the Word of God? If so, then it’s not from God. But just because we can make a mistake, doesn’t mean we should not attempt hearing from God. If we have that attitude towards life, we will live in fear and not fulfill God’s purpose for us in our life. For it is important to hear the Spirit, for it is the Holy Spirit that calls us in the first place and we need to train our spiritual ears to hear more and more from Him.
Second, is what we hear born of pride that will put others down, or will it lead people to truth without condemnation. There are both Christians and preachers out there who would do well to listen to the Holy Spirit when they preach or witness. Having the spirit of humility when we speak to others comes from spending time not only in the Word, but with God in prayer, which leads us to the third point about God speaking to us.
Prayer is communication with God, and the creator of the Universe did not set up communication to be one-sided; this is contrary to His nature, for He created us to be His children and to be in fellowship with Him. So God expects us to listen. His answers may come (as I said before) through the Word, circumstances or a distinct impression of the Holy Spirit. This feeling, inkling or notion is one of the many ways the Spirit can lead those who listen. Of course, we must be careful on relying solely on feelings, but neither can we disregard them. God gave us emotions for a reason. Do you know that over 40% of Americans believe in love at first sight? Now that may be a problem in some cases, but it tells you that people get strong impressions that lead them to make important choices. God also gave us passion, but we often waste this on the wrong things. God gave the apostle Paul a passion to serve Him. What has God given you a passion for? If we are led by the Holy Spirit we will seek Him and find the answer. He will give us wisdom—one of the primary reasons to listen to God, besides cultivating a relationship with Him. So how do we get this wisdom?
Can we just listen to our emotions? No. God has placed us to live in communities, to be part of a body. Godly people are a wonderful resource to test whether something we hear is from God or not. We do need to be careful who we choose to confer with and be open to input, but that’s why we need others. God did not make us to be totally independent, but to be part of a church body. Sometimes, they may rub us the wrong way about what they say, but you can then apply the reverse and test their words by the Word of God, which should always be your guide.
In these turbulent and tumultuous times, we need to hear from God and listen more to His guidance. He will not leave us or desert us. He has given us His Word, the Holy Spirit, our intellect, emotions and other people to help lead us into all truth. If you are interested in learning more about this subject Henry Blackaby’s book Hearing God is a valuable resource http://www.christianbook.com/hearing-gods-voice-henry-blackaby/9780805424935/pd/24938?event=AFF&p=1011693&. If you would like to read more personal accounts of hearing God’s voice see http://www.amazon.com/When-God-Speaks-Anita-Estes/dp/0972727043/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1323653914&sr=8-1

2 comments:

  1. CAN MEN, TODAY, BE SAVED LIKE ENOCH?

    Did you ever notice that the hydrophobic believers in Jesus want to be saved like the thief on the cross? Their argument is the thief was not baptized in water, and was still saved. Thief proponents fail to mention that the thief was also saved without being born of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit of promise had not been given at that time. So the logical conclusion would be that men, today, can be saved without being born of water and the Spirit. (John 3:5 Jesus answered and said to him, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.")

    The question is why do men, today, not petition to be saved like Enoch?

    Genesis 5:24 Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.

    1.Enoch did not believe Jesus was the Son of God. Was Enoch saved? YES.
    2. Enoch did not confess that God raised Jesus from the dead. Was Enoch saved? YES.
    3. Enoch was not baptized in water. He was not immersed for the forgiveness of sins. Was Enoch saved? YES.
    4. Enoch did not believe that Jesus shed His blood on the cross so he could have his sins washed away. Was Enoch saved? YES.
    5. Was Enoch born of the Spirit? No. The Holy Spirit of promise was not given until the Day of Pentecost. Was Enoch saved? YES.

    WAS ENOCH SAVED? YES.

    Can men, today, be saved like Enoch? ABSOLUTELY NOT.
    Men, today, can only be saved by meeting the terms for pardon under the New Covenant; also know as the New Testament, the New Will, the New Agreement, the New Promise.

    THE THIEF ON THE CROSS

    Luke 23:39-43...And He said to him, :Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise."

    1. The thief believed Jesus was the Christ. Was the thief saved?YES.
    2. The thief repented. (He turn from sin and turned toward God). Was the thief saved? YES.
    3. The thief did not confess that God had raised Jesus from the dead. Was the thief saved? YES.
    4. The thief was not immersed in water for the forgiveness of his sins. Was the thief saved? YES.
    5. The thief was not born of the Spirit? The thief did not receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Was the thief saved? YES.

    WAS THE THIEF SAVED? YES.

    Can men, today, be saved like the thief on the cross?ABSOLUTELY NOT. Men, today, can only be saved by meeting the terms of pardon under the New Covenant.

    The New Covenant came into effect after the death of Jesus, on the Day of Pentecost.

    Hebrews 9:16-17 For where a covenant is, there must of necessity be the death of the one who made it. 17 For a covenant is valid only when men are dead, for it is never in force while the one who made it lives.

    MEN,TODAY, CANNOT BE SAVED LIKE ENOCH NOR SAVED LIKE THE THIEF ON THE CROSS. ENOCH AND THE THIEF WERE NOT SAVED UNDER THE NEW COVENANT.

    Note: The book of Acts contains several conversions that took place under the New Covenant. There is no record of anyone saying.
    A. I do not have to believe that Jesus is the Son of God.
    B. I do not have to be born of water and the Spirit.
    C. I do not have to confess that Jesus was resurrected from the grave by God in order to be saved.
    D. I do not have to be immersed in water in order to be saved.
    E. I do not have to repent, (Turn from sin and turn to God), in order to be saved.

    IN ORDER TO BE SAVED UNDER THE NEW COVENANT; WHICH STARTED ON THE DAY OF PENTECOST. YOU NEED TO MEET THE TERMS FOR PARDON.

    FAITH: John 3:16
    REPENTANCE: Acts 2:38
    CONFESSION: Romans 10:9-10
    BAPTISM: Acts 2:38, 1 Peter 3:21, Mark 16:16

    YOU CANNOT BE SAVED LIKE ENOCH!


    (All Scripture quotes from:NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE)

    YOU ARE INVITED TO FOLLOW MY BLOG. http://steve-finnell.blogspot.com

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  2. Interesting comment on an older post. I'm sure you are aware that Enoch was under the Old Covenant and that Christ had not yet been revealed in His incarnate state, though He was a divine being from the beginning (see Genesis1). During the time of Enoch, god spoke spoke though Moses through the law of the Old covenant and the Prophets pointed the way to Redemption and Jesus. Read Isaiah and see how many prophecies were centered and fulfilled in the Christ. Then God replaced the Old covenant with a better one, which He achieved though His son, Jesus Christ. Under the law a person never was freed from the power of sin and an elaborate system of sacrifices were needed for forgiveness of sin. Under the new and better covenant, Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice who was the substitute for the many sacrifices the priests had to make. We are now forgiven of our sins when we accept what Jesus did for us. We are freed from the hold of sin in our life and need only confess our everyday sins to God or Jesus. You don't have to accept Jesus if you don't want. God gave us the freedom to accept or reject His provision and His plan for salvation. But neither will you be saved. The choice is up to you.

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