Saturday, May 27, 2017

Does God speak to us? Should I expect Him to?

How can I hear God? What do you do to listen to God? Will God be giving me explicit instructions for my life, like He seems to be doing for so many other women?

Beth Moore book: Jesus, the One and Only, p. 48.
Personalized whispers are not scripture, nor are they equal to scripture. "Personalized whispers" is not a teaching method Jesus uses. Yet women are being taught consistently and for decades that it is.

The concerning part is that this generation of younger women has been raised on a steady diet of women in celebrity positions who, for decades, have 'taught' the above, that they regularly hear the voice of God. Therefore, women coming up now believe it is the norm to have a personal God in your pocket whispering instructions to you for every little thing, from career moves to audible instruction in theology. But this is most assuredly not the case.

What these celebrity women leaders have done is create a discontent among female congregants who do not have a personal God and wonder what they are doing wrong because they don't. Because of the poor teaching and constant eisegesis in their celebrity lessons that they, unfortunately, have relied upon, many younger women now realize they lack the skills to understand God's will in a biblical way.

The will of God is to repent & believe, be baptized and participate in communion, and obey Him all your life.

We know how and where to obey in specific life choices because we read the Bible.

For example, as far as day-to-day choices go, like where to live, what college to go to, whom to marry or whether to marry, the more we obey, the more we're conformed to Him, which means the more we can confidently decide for ourselves, knowing God prevents bad choices and ordains all things, AND makes all things work to the good of those who love Him. This is where trust comes in. We pray, (not to 'hear back' but to repent and submit and praise His sovereignty over all things), we understand the generalities of God's will for our lives (Matthew 22:36-40). Then we pull up our big girl panties and we just decide.

Should we expect to hear from God? NO. Here are two scriptural explanations why. I repeat, we should NOT expect to hear God audibly, or in a still small, voice, or even in signs or omens, tell us specifically what to do or where to do at any given moment.

Ladies, expect to find God's will by reading the Bible, whereupon the Spirit can conform you to His image and likeness and renew your mind. Don't expect to hear a personalized whisper, an impression on your heart, or an audible voice directly telling you. Ultimately the reality of our sanctification is more delicate, mysterious, and beautiful than any whispers could ever be.

RESOURCES


"God told me...?" a 90-second video.


The Blazing Center has an essay titled "Listening to God without Getting All Weird About It". HT Michelle Lesley

Two other resources for you on God's will

Here is GotQuestions with a short answer to 'What is God's will?'
Know God's will

And John MacArthur with a longer answer-
Taking the Mystery out of God's Will

Sola Sisters, from 2012-
False Teachings About Hearing Audible Words From God Taking Even Deeper Root in Today's Church

Grace To You blog from 2016
That's Not Jesus Calling


6 comments:

  1. Beth Moore's words are very disturbing. She exalts herself above other women in numerous ways, with her (false) divine revelations, "play dates" and conversations with God, demonstrating that she doesn't understand scripture and isn't qualified to teach anyone. She even exalts herself over her husband.

    Its a great comfort to me knowing that God is sovereign, ordains all things and rules all things by Providence.

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    Replies
    1. VERY well said, Sheryl. I like how you said she exalts herself over her husband. I had not thought of it that way before. Thank you!

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  2. Thank you, Elizabeth, for your wise words and pointing out the truth as it is shown in Scripture. I spent many years wondering why wasn't hearing from God in a "supernatural" sort of way. I thought I must not be spiritual enough. Thankfully, a few years ago, God directed me to sites like yours. I got rid of all my Beth Moore and Richard Foster-type books, realizing the Bible can be understood in a straightforward way. God bless you for your faithfulness!

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    1. Hi Laura,

      I'm so encouraged to hear that the Spirit is working visibly and demonstrably in hearts and minds, like yours! I'm thrilled He brought you out of the expectation of hearing from God. In researching for this essay, I'd read that some years ago when Louie Giglio and Beth Moore and some other people were leading the Passion Conference (for young adults in Atlanta), Giglio asked the throng of 60,000 to raise their hands to show they'd heard from the Lord lately, not in scripture, but specifically in audible, whisper, or 'heart impression ways. In the hallways outside afterward, apparently there were just as many young men and women who had not heard from the Lord, crying and wondering what was the matter with them.

      There's nothing like a two-tiered prophetic system to make the 'have-nots' feel less than. I'm so sorry you spent years wondering why you weren't spiritual enough. That's the duplicity of false teaching, it is THEY who are not spiritual! 2 Timothy 3:5

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  3. I agree someways and in someways i disagree. AS in Spiritual gifts , now were in Scripture does it say that ANY Spiritual Gifts is done away with before the Return of the Lord Jesus. Just not a verse that says this. Now i agree in that for the most part , stay within Scripture and Study Scripture every day and pray hard , and God will lead you. God bless

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  4. Hi Roger,

    I agree that the issue of cessationism (that some spiritual gifts ceased after the Apostolic Era) can be a confusing one. However there are verses which implicitly indicate that some gifts did cease. However, saying "just show me one verse" isn't the best way to go about interpreting this issue. If we stick to that, we can say there is no Trinity. "Just show me one verse that states there is a Trinity." You can't, but that doesn't mean that the God-head doesn't exist. It's the same with the sign gifts that ceased. It is a more nuanced interpretation but it IS clear.

    But that is another issue. This essay doesn't cover that because the Holy Spirit speaking directly to people isn't a spiritual gift. It is a matter of special vs general revelation, not gifts. The issue is, is the Holy Spirit speaking directly to people today? If you believe He is, then the canon is not closed and all manner of individual revelation is open for authoritative obedience by everyone.

    I usually look at it this way. If someone says that God spoke directly to them, (and they do, like author Sarah Young of Jesus Calling, Bible "teacher" Beth Moore, and HGTV Christian personality Joanna Gaines to name just a few) they excuse their personal revelations by saying, 'well, compare what God told me to scripture.' But that is a misnomer. If what they claim God told them doesn't line up with scripture, it wasn't God. If it does, you didn't need the voice.

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