After having a conversation with a saint the other day and hearing her say, “How can I hear the voice of God if I don’t read the bible?” I parted ways with a heavy heart. Of course I tried to encourage her in the fact that He lives inside of her, and that is how she could hear His voice; however, she was having none of it.
A couple of days later, I was reading out of the Old Testament to my husband, and it was the book of I Samuel chapter 3; and my husband had an amazing revelation regarding hearing God’s voice. I Samuel chapter 3:1-10 states the following:
Now the boy Samuel ministered to the Lord before Eli. And the word of the Lord was rare in those days: there was no widespread revelation. And it came to pass at that time, while Eli was laying down in his place, and when his eyes had begun to grow so dim that he could not see, and before the lamp of God went out in the tabernacle of the Lord where the ark of God was, and while Samuel was laying down, that the Lord called Samuel. And he answered, “Here I am!” So he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am, for you called me.” And he said, “I did not call; lie down again.” And he went and laid down. Then the Lord called yet again, “Samuel!” So Samuel arose and went to Eli, “Here I am, for you called me.” He answered, “I did not call, my son; lie down again.” Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord, nor was the word of the Lord yet revealed to him. And the Lord called Samuel again the third time. So he arose and went to Eli, and said, “Here I am, for you did call me.” Then Eli perceived that the Lord had called the boy. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, “Go, lie down; and it shall be, if He calls you, that you must say, speak, Lord, for your servant hears.” So Samuel went and laid down in his place. Now the Lord came and stood and called as at other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” And Samuel answered, “Speak, for your servant hears.”
The book of Hebrews speaks of God’s voice visiting the saints of old in various ways, at various times; such was the case with Samuel. Samuel was visited by the spirit of the Lord to convey a message to Eli; but one must conclude that the Lord did personally speak to Samuel. Now Paul on the other hand, realized full well that the living God dwelt in Him; Paul grasping the mystery of the gospel as revealed by God in terms of the New Covenant. This is a whole new ball game; which of course is where we as New Testament believers stand now! For once again as the book of Luke says, which Paul knew well, “This is My beloved Son, Hear Him!
Galatians 1:15-16 – But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the gentiles, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood.
It breaks my heart, and I would imagine His as well; to have so many amazing saints living as though they are not worthy to hear His voice, and I believe too ashamed. It is easier to look into a book and take note of all the things we are doing right and what we are not doing wrong (law), then to draw near to a God of love! It is easier to listen to a man spin the gospel with fear, guilt and just plain perversion than to sit at the Lord’s feet and let Him tell us personally who we are and what He has made us. Jesus never said it would be easy to follow HIM, but He also said, “My sheep will know and hear my voice!”
I’m sorry to say that if someone is teaching you, maybe not outright, that the only way you can hear God’s voice is by reading the bible; then they are teaching you idolatry. Just as God does not dwell in a temple made with hands, He does not dwell in a book! Can we read things about Him in it, of course! The story of our new identity is in there, but it is only confirmed by the spirit of Jesus Christ who lives in us! And with so many terrible interpretations and wrong motives by those who call themselves shepherds, wouldn’t it be wise to let the good shepherd teach us truth? He promised us He would, but we need to learn how to recognize His voice! You already know it! After all, it ain’t you wanting to help that homeless person, or call someone that might need some love today just because you are a good person. It is Christ living in you, your only hope of glory! Now Hear Him!
Peace out….Lisa and George