When I was a young boy I asked my mother a question, “How can I hear from God?” She answered the question, but I had a hard time understanding. Some of you may have that same question. Can I hear from God? How do I know if it’s God or me?
The question itself reveals a problem. In Southern Illinois, what I have found is that most people associate the speaking voice of God with the “Still small voice” of the Holy Spirit. I was young when I heard a Godly man frame the question in this way “Did you hear the birds today? If you haven’t heard the birds today, it’s not because they were not chirping but because you were not listening.” Therefore, if you have not God speaking today it’s not because he is not speaking but because we are not listening.
In that context, he was talking about the still small voice of the Holy Spirit. Again, when most people think about hearing from God I think that is what comes to mind. People want the feeling of spectacular, signs from God, and impressions from God. Without neglecting the work of the Holy Spirit and the “Still small voice” 1 Kings 19:11-13, I want to call you to something more supernatural and more spectacular! The Bible!
I still remember how much of a bombshell it was to learn the very obvious lesson, the Bible is the speaking voice of God! I should have known this firmly already. The home and church I grew up in both loved the Bible. When I was barely able to read my parents got me a devotional book called “Every Day With God.” But, for some reason when I thought about God speaking, the Bible didn’t come to mind.
Back to my story. My mother left the room and I picked up my children’s Bible. I opened it up and started reading in the first place my eyes landed. It was Hebrews 1, “Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed to the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.” Boom! God was speaking to me! He heard my request and he told me how he speaks! Obviously, I never forgot that moment, but I did forget the lesson.
If you grew up in a Charismatic church as I did, you may know what I am talking about. People were always “Hearing from God” which made everyone else want to hear from God too. It was exciting and supernatural! Well for those that “Heard from God” that is. For the other group, it was confusing. Countless times I heard people say “I just don’t hear from God as you do.” People wanted to hear from God but simply did not know how. Conclusion? God must not speak to me.
Back to the Bible. You can hear from God! Yes, you heard me say that correctly! You can hear from God! You don’t have to wonder if it was the food you ate the night before or if it’s God. You don’t have to wallow in sorrow believing the lie that God never speaks to you. Open your Bible and hear the speaking voice of God and it’s clear and objective! If you want to hear the audible voice of God then just read your Bible out loud! Talk about spectacular!
Listen to what God says about his word from 2 Tim. 3, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” I say this as a continuationist, we have every word we will ever need from God right here in the Bible. In the Bible, we are equipped for every good work God will ever call us to do. In the Bible, we have everything we need for us to be completely human. The Bible is sufficient for everything I will ever need to know. If I never get another impression from the Holy Spirit, if I never get another prophetic word, if I never get another sign from God, I have everything I need in the Bible. Do you believe that? You should, because that’s what God says right there in 2 Tim. 3.
I want to challenge you today. Just two days ago, a new reading plan started. Our church is participating in the #samepagesummer reading plan. We are going to read the New Testament this Summer. We will be hearing the exact same things from God every day. Friends, that is supernatural. God has preserved his Word for us and we have access to it. The next time you find yourself wondering “Why won’t God speak to me?” remind yourself; HE HAS!