From age to age and through generations of the church, a recurrent vital question for the body of Christ is ‘how can we know God’s will or how do we hear from God’? All we get to hear from God are the very issues that matter to Him, His will, for us, for the world.
Does a young child learn to hear? No. So, how do they hear? They just do! That’s what ears are for (not just what you see outside which is the pinna – outer ear, there is the middle ear, inner ear with all its structure designed to hear). But does/can a child understand what is heard? Understanding and identifying the sounds heard definitely needs a guide, but there’s no special skill to hearing.
God speaks (communicates) always, like all of the time. But only those who have ears can hear. And only those with a guide or training or understanding can interpret what is heard. Dogs, birds, and all animals communicate too with their kind. An animal of a different specie will be lost when a similar group communicates.
We are made in God’s image and likeness, we have the mind of Christ…we belong to a family line, a common genealogy, we are born of God, we are not different species. Whosoever is born of God has God’s seed, God’s genes. When we come to Christ, we receive a new nature, we become regenerated. We possess all the intrinsic abilities of that new line – including the ability to hear. My sheep hear me and know my voice, and they follow me.
God’s will is made known to us as He communicates with us. How does He communicate?
Heb 1:1-2 God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; KJV
…and even now by His Spirit.
Now, the Spirit as He pleases speaks, reveals to us, makes known to us God’s mind and purpose, by any way He deems fit 1 Cor. 2:7-16.
Consider these examples:
Samuel’s first encounter with God was through a voice, but he didn’t know, Eli had to help 1 Samuel 3: 4-10
Samuel heard God’s voice, but didn’t know it was God. After being put through by Eli, he didn’t need Eli anymore to recognise The Voice.
Gideon had a visit revealing God was on his side and victory was assured. Judges 6:11-24
The 2 Israeli spies to Jericho (Joshua & Caleb) just knew they would overcome, they just knew Numbers 14:6-7
Joseph dreamt of his glorious future, his reign and successes, but he did not know what those meant at the time Genesis 37.
Pilate’s wife had a dream about Christ, she tried to warn Pilate Matthew 27:19.
Ananias had a vision to go pray and minister to Saul Acts 9:9-12.
Peter was in a trance that led him to go minister to Cornelius Acts 10:9-20.
He employs diverse manners, still our new nature can decipher and decode them all. We may need to unlock several levels in this diversity by way of training and acquaintance. All humans that have ears can hear sounds, but some have unlocked the understanding of more than one language. For the unilingual ones, when a different language is being used in discussion, they hear, but do not understand. If they learn that new language, they also begin to understand.
You really will never be able to recognise God’s voice if you do not by constant use, training and familiarity acquaint yourself – in prayer, the word, meditation etc. God is ever-speaking, most times we hear, we just don’t register or recognise either by negligence or by outright incompetence. We miss out most times because we are somewhere in the middle of trying not to spiritualise every matter and waiting for some lofty and highfalutin manifestation. God isn’t out to confuse you, He will not tweak His voice or filter the way it sounds, He will speak in a known language, a familiar manner, one you are used to…He wants you to hear, that’s why He is speaking.
You also must have heard, ‘how do I differentiate God’s voice from mine and from the devil’s?’ Well, the new creature is a Spirit man, in God’s nature and image, for God is a Spirit. This Spirit man still dwells inside a body, and you as a person get to retain the freewill God has given unto all. So, basically, the devil appeals to your body – the flesh, never to the Spirit man, he (Satan) isn’t from our clan or specie, so he does not have the ability to communicate with our Spirit. God speaks to our Spirit. The Spirit and the flesh are in a continuous and constant battle, always at variance, they can never agree Galatians 5:17. You (your freewill) feeds either side as you choose, and the fed side prevails.
So, I put my body under, I subdue the flesh 1 Corinthians 9:27
Walk in the Spirit and you will not fulfil the desires of the flesh Galatians 5:16
Until we exit this side of eternity and undress the corruptible gown for an incorruptible garment, we have a constant battle ongoing, and the victory of either side depends on our choices.
So, when your flesh is fed fat (by the love of the world, lust of the eyes, pride of life), it prevails and gets clear radio signals from the devil. When the Spirit is exercised in praying in the Spirit, feasting on the word, meditating in the word and sharpened by other Spirit-beings (believers), the Spirit prevails, becomes resonant to the frequency of God’s voice, the signal becomes sharp and clear, blurs out the ‘eddy currents’ of Satan’s suggestions.
After we come to Christ, we must give place, priority to renewing of the mind. For it is the mind that exercises the freewill of whether to feed the flesh or to uplift the Spirit. Be ye transformed by the renewing of your minds Romans 12:2. We receive the new nature and redemption by grace, the same grace which ticks the enable button of our minds to choose the feeding of the Spirit over the flesh. The grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us to say NO to all unrighteousness Titus 2: 11-12
When your Spirit man has thus been lifted up and activated, the very desires you feel in your mind are in sync with God’s will, for your mind has been renewed. Jesus said, my meat is to do God’s will and accomplish what I have been sent to do John 4:34. His meat, His desire…it was no longer just God’s will, it had become His meat! Christ was and is in sync with the Father. So, you will not have to bother about differentiating God’s voice from your mind’s voice when you are in sync with Him. And when the devil is appealing to your body, you feel it not for that body is dead….peradventure you feel the appeal, your Spirit is energized to put it under and subdue it. When your computer’s Antivirus database is up to date and license still active, it clears the system of spam, junk and all sorts, and attacks ferociously any newly discovered virus. There is a measure of confidence with which you slot in a memory stick into such computer, knowing the Antivirus installed is capable.
The renewed mind of the Spirit man fears nothing, what can the devil do? Though fiery darts and arrows be shot, the whole armour of God is on standby, fully equipped with an arsenal of both defensive and attacking options.
He who has an ear, let Him hear what the Spirit is saying.