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May 21, 2015

Listen Up! (Part 1)

Listen for GOD’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; He’s the one who will keep you on track. Don’t assume that you know it allProv. 3:6 (MSG)

Second only to Jesus, Solomon was known as the wisest man that ever lived. He lets us in on the secret to his wisdom. He listened for God’s voice in everything he did. Why is it important to listen to God’s voice? It protects us from bad decisions. Solomon said,

Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take. (Vs. 6 NIV)

Another benefit of hearing God’s voice is for confidence and strength. In verses 7 and 8, Solomon adds,

Don’t be impressed with your own wisdom. Instead, fear the LORD and turn away from evil. Then you will have healing for your body and strength for your bones.” 

Solomon said that hearing God’s voice keeps us on track and is the secret to a productive life. If we want to hear God’s voice, we need to learn to listen to how He speaks. God speaks in a number of ways. There are four practical ways that you and I can hear God speak to us today.

  1. The clearest way we hear God’s voice is through His Word, the Bible. In fact, the Bible itself makes that claim. In 2 Timothy 3:16, 17 the Bible says,

The whole Bible was given to us by inspiration from God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives; it straightens us out and helps us do what is right. It is God’s way of making us well prepared at every point, fully equipped to do good to everyone.

No other book can make such a claim. No other book has God as its author. While God used men to write the Bible, the words they wrote were inspired by God. The word “inspired” means “God breathed.” God spoke to each writer and, through their uniqueness, He gave us His Word. Peter tells us in 2 Peter 1:20-21 (NLT)

Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God.” 

When it comes to knowing God’s will, there are many things you don’t even need to pray about. God has already spoken about them in His Word. We just need to read it and know that we’ve heard from God about it. For example, I don’t have to pray about loving my wife, going to church, or paying my taxes. I don’t have to pray about whether I should give back to God. All of these – and more – are revealed in Scripture. The point is that, if I build my life on God’s Word, I will hear God speak. If we think we’re hearing God’s voice and it contradicts His Word, the voice we’re hearing is not God’s. Beware of the deception of being misled. This is one of the greatest benefits of having the Bible today. In fact, Luke tells us that, when the Apostle Paul preached in the city of Berea, the Bereans were of more noble character because they listened eagerly to Paul’s message and searched the Scriptures day after day to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth. Acts 17:11b (NLT)

Do you search the Scriptures every day to see if what you’ve been told is true?  What is your standard for truth? The clearest way to hear God’s voice is in His Word. Read it today and listen! Tomorrow, we’ll look at several other ways that God speaks.