Identifying the Voice of God
At a very young age, a baby begins to identify his parents’ voices. Even after hearing them speak for just a few weeks, the child starts to distinguish that they sound different from other people. Similarly, God has supplied us—His children—with the capacity to recognize His voice. Over time we can learn to distinguish Him speaking to us through His Word, His responses to our prayers, and godly people.
To help identify God’s voice, ask:
• Is the message consistent with the Word of God? By examining Scripture, we will know to reject the voice that tells us we are under condemnation (Rom. 8:1) and accept the truth that the Lord forgives us.
• Does what we hear conflict with human reasoning? If so, it could be from the Lord—He tells us to turn the other cheek and love our enemies, plus other unexpected things like, “The last shall be first.”
• Do God’s words clash with our fleshly desires? He wants us to have godly enjoyment but objects to our gratifying earthly desires outside His plan.
• Are His words a challenge to our faith? He wants to build our faith to deepen the relationship with Him.
• Is courage required to obey God? When He speaks, a decision requiring sacrifice or change of direction is often necessary.
Jesus is the Good Shepherd (John 10:11), and He promises that we will be able to distinguish His voice so we can follow Him. He doesn’t want us listening to “strangers,” because then it would be easy for us to be led astray (vv. 4-5). Won’t you spend time in God’s Word so you will know His voice?
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