by Pastor Tim Burt
There is a powerful and exciting experience within the true Christian life that so very many Christians are not aware of and know too little about. I am confident that many have probably experienced what I’m going to share with you but don’t even realize that it’s a God experience and something that God expected you to experience on a regular basis. It’s hearing His voice. I don’t mean in the way that you usually hear a voice. I mean more like an impression of the heart, a feeling about something you should pay attention to, a deep knowing of something you really have no way of knowing, a still small voice from within that is the voice of God. It sounds like your voice since everything we hear that is not audible is heard from within, but it’s not your voice. It’s not like when you’re reasoning with yourself or talking to yourself about something. It’s different. It’s the voice of God—Him speaking through the Holy Spirit to your spirit. It’s communication from God THAT ONLY Christians can experience. It’s one of the benefits that comes to anyone who has accepted Jesus Christ as their Savior. From that point on, God makes many of His benefits available to you.
In John 10:27 we read Jesus saying these words… “My sheep recognize my voice; I know them, and they follow me.” What would be the point of needing to recognize Jesus’ voice if we weren't able to hear from Him?
Jesus had been with His disciples for three years teaching them what He could in the time. He taught them His love, His purpose, about Heaven, about earth, about life and man’s purpose in this earth, He taught them about everything that was vital for them to carry on His work in preaching the gospel. The time was approaching for Him to complete God’s plan and redeem mankind from sin.
Jesus knew He would die upon a cross to take the sins of mankind upon Himself. He knew he would go to the belly of Hell and pay the price that we deserved for the sins that we committed. He would die a sinner’s death though He never sinned. He knew that Hell could not hold an innocent man any more that our jail system holds a person in jail that is proven innocent. Jesus knew that His Father would raise Him from the dead and from the pit of Hell. He knew that He’d return to Heaven having paved and paid for the way for mankind to follow Him to Heaven. Because He knew these things, He knew He wouldn't be in the earth once He ascended into Heaven. Jesus wanted His disciples to know that He had a plan—that He would not desert them and leave them alone to figure out everything on their own. On that note, He spoke to them to tell them of the change that was coming. His plan included a way He would speak to them, even after He ascended to Heaven.
Jesus said He’d sent them "another Counselor." He was referring to Himself as the first one. But, when He’d ascended to Heaven, He would send them another—the Holy Spirit. He revealed that the world wouldn't understand this ‘God talking to man stuff,’ but we would.
We read more in John 16:5-7 & 12-14. Jesus explained to them, "Now I am going to Him who sent me, yet none of you asks me, 'Where are you going?' Because I have said these things, you are filled with grief. But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you…”
He continued in verse 12, "I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on His own; He will speak only what He hears, and He will tell you what is yet to come.”
Jesus said the Holy Spirit would come and He would “speak.” He called the Holy Spirit the Counselor and said that the Holy Spirit would guide them. Counselors speak. They help sort lies and confusion and bring us to truth. They share wisdom. They give direction. Guides know where they are going and help you get there. They tell you about the places you are going to. In other words, God has much to say to us through the Holy Spirit as the Counselor and Guide living with a Christian's heart.
God speaks to the spirit of man by His Holy Spirit. If you don’t know that, you wouldn't know it was happening. Many people don’t and put other spiritual tags on it. There are two voices beyond our own —God’s and Satan’s. We need to know that. We need to be able to tell them apart. And for sure we want to understand how to hear the voice of God as it makes for the most exciting Christian life possible.
The verses in John 14:18 & 20 were to encourage us saying, “I will not abandon you as orphans; I will come to you…and I am in you." I know there are times when we feel alone. We have problems we don’t know how to solve and we can feel like we are without help. We aren't! The Holy Spirit is with us always and He knows what we don’t. He wants to comfort us with God's promises and help us learn what we need to know! Pray to God and know that He’ll speak back to you through His Word, through the Holy Spirit within you. And you will begin to receive His direction, instruction, and comfort. How powerful and supernatural! And it's God's way with us! Wow!
Psalm 29:4 says, The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is full of majesty.
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt