The watchman recently went to a house of God where people worship God day and night, read His words and pray. Their lifestyle is God-focused and Holy Spirit directed. He visited this place nearly four years ago and this time he noted the significant transformation. A whole new generation of godly young people had been raised. The current teaching is on “hearing God’s voice”.
Increasingly Christians want to know God and hear His voice.
When the end time comes if one cannot hear God’s voice (i.e. be led by the Holy Spirit), he would be trapped in the physical worldly system which would require everyone to take the beast’s mark as an access key to conduct all transactions: monetary/food supplies/medical/utilities/education/work/ citizenship entitlement etc.
Christians who follow Jesus will have no option but to learn to hear God’s voice NOW as this requires CONSISTENT preparation and CONSTANT practice.
Obedience is required for those who want to hear God’s voice.
In the Bible there are many examples of those who heard the voice of God and obeyed. Hearing the voice of God transformed lives.
Abraham: He heard God and obeyed. At an advanced age he moved from his secure homeland to a place whereabouts of which he did not even know. He even had to give up his only son Isaac through whom God had promised to make a great nation and descendants as numerous as the stars.
Moses: He heard God and obeyed. At the peak of his personal worldly success as an Egyptian prince, he stood up against the dark power of Egypt, accepting the loss of power, status, wealth, relationship and even his life.
Noah: He heard God and obeyed. He endured being mocked and scoffed at for 100 years by the whole nation of people among whom he dwelt forgoing all credibilities built up over his past 500 years of life.
King David heard the voice of God and obeyed when he was told not to build the temple of God. He was described by the Lord to be the man after His heart and indeed he was.
The prophets heard the voice of God and delivered His messages faithfully, to people who may or may not listen or obey. Many were persecuted and even killed.
The Apostles and disciples heard the voice of God and obeyed faithfully. They spread the Gospel with signs and wonders confirming the word, and they witnessed fearlessly even to death.
How to hear God’s voice? The watchman summarized below some of the valuable teachings he received during the three days’ stay in God’s house.
To hear God’s voice you must get rid of the following obstructions:
- Any personal agenda (no matter how ‘right’ it may seem to you). Haggai 1:4-5 “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in paneled houses, and this temple lies in ruins?” Now therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts, “consider your ways!” 7 Thus says the Lord of hosts, “consider your ways!” (Note: verse 6 lists out a whole list of their personal problems!) Be concerned with what God wants and not what you want.
- Self (me, mine, my, us, we, ours, I am). Gen.11:4 And they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves,” Gen.3:5 “and you will be like God”; John 8:43-44 “Why are you not able to understand My speech? Because you are not able to listen to My word. You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do.” Let your ‘anti-Christ-self’ be crucified with Christ. Gal.2:20
- lifestyle that reflects the values of the world and its way (the lusts of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life). 1 John 2:15-17 “Do not love the world or the things of the world. If anyone loves the world the love of the Father Is not in him. For all that is in the world-the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life-is not of the Father but is of the world. And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.”
- Any plans or ambitions that follow the dictates of your own heart (no matter how grand and beneficial your expected/perceived outcome would do to the ‘church’ ). Jeremiah 13:10 “this evil people, who refuse to hear My words, who follow the dictates of their hearts, and walk after other gods to serve them and worship them, shall be just like this sash which is profitable for nothing.”
- Anything that is not spiritual in origin, process and of no spiritual value in outcome. John 3:5-6; John 4:23-24; 6:63 “It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life.” Hearing God’s voice is therefore a life and death matter. Romans 8:1-14. 8:13 “For if you live according to the flesh you will die,”
The key to hearing God is to walk (live) according to the Spirit. Rom 8:13 “For if you live according to the flesh you will die.”
The Lord continues to speak to those as follows:
- who have a poor and contrite spirit and who trembles at His word. Isaiah 66:2
- who listen to His words. Haggai 2:2 “Speak now to…the remnant of the people.” God is specific and knows who will listen.
- who work with God. Haggai 2:4 “Yet now be strong…all you people of the land, and work, for I am with you.”
- whose mind is stayed on God because he trusts in God (God will keep him in perfect peace). Isa.26:3
- who is not rebellious or turn away from God. Isa.50:4-5 God awakens and opens the prophet’s ear morning by morning to hear as the learned.
- who know the Lord. 1 Sam.3:7 (When Samuel did not yet know the Lord, the word of the Lord was not yet revealed to him)
- who know the word of the Lord. 1 Sam.3:21 (God revealed Himself to Samuel by the word of the Lord)
- who persistently stays in the presence of the Lord. 1 Sam.3:19 “And Samuel grew, and the Lord was with him and let none of his words fall to the ground”. 20 “And all Israel…knew that Samuel has been established as a prophet of the Lord.” 7:2-3 “So the ark remained in Kirjath Jearim a long time; it was there twenty years…” “Then Samuel spoke to all the house of Israel,”
- who always live in the realm of prayers, staying in the presence of God by prayers and supplications with thanksgiving. Eph.6:18; Col.4:2; 4:12; Phil.1:3,9,11; 1 Thess.1:2-3; 3:10-13; 4:3, 7, 12, 18.
- who live the watchman lifestyle. Matt.26:41 “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation.” Luke 21:36 “Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.” Matt.24:42 “Watch therefore, for you do not know what hour your Lord is coming.” Mark 13:33 “Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time is.” 13:37 “And what I say to you, I say to all: Watch!”
God is Spirit (John 4:24). An effective intercessor enters the spiritual realm. So does one who watches. It takes a life time of practicing living before God. Samuel took 20 long years to prepare himself. Moses took 40 years. Noah took 600 years. Samuel and Moses were described as powerful intercessors (those who called upon the Lord and He answered them Psalm 99:6; Jeremiah 15:1). Noah was described as man of righteousness together with Daniel and Job (Ezekiel 14:14) . Daniel entered the lions’ den when he was an old man. Job too was old when he was hit by the colossal tragedy of losing all his children and everything with one blow. These were men who lived their life consistently before God. They could hear the voice of God. They lived by the Spirit. They lived their lives obeying God.
July 12, 2012.