Most people want to know “How do I hear from God?” Why not ask, “Why do we need to hear from God?” and, “Why does God want to speak to us?”
I’m A Friend
Does God want the level of friendship that when He asks us to do something, that we do it, but we really didn’t think about doing it until He asked? Or would He rather have the level of friendship we think about doing something because we know Him and are close to Him, that we just do it without Him asking?
God’s motive for wanting us to hear Him is for us to get to know Him and Him to know us so well that we know that we know what direction to take in our Christian walk.
John 15:15 – “No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.”
John 15:15 (NLT) “I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are My friends since I have told you everything the Father told Me.”
It doesn’t mean that God has stopped talking because He’s already told Jesus everything. It means that while Jesus was on this earth He told the disciples everything that He was supposed to tell them at that time.
So there’s a level of friendship that Jesus establishes. He came so that they and we, could have a right relationship with the Father and part of the relationship is communication. There are three things about being friends with God that might help us to understand this friendship:
1) God does not speak to robots.
God did not create us as robots. He created us as persons with souls, minds, will, and emotions and we have a heart. There are two ways we communicate. We communicate to machines “mechanically.” And we communicate with people “personally.” We’re not machines. God created people, children, and He communicates with us personally.
Genesis 18:17 – And the LORD said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, (Verse 18) “since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? (Verse 19) “For I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the LORD, to do righteousness and justice, that the LORD may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him.”
(Verse 20) And the LORD said, “Because the outcry against Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their sin is very grievous, (Verse 21) “I will go down now and see whether they have done altogether according to the outcry against it that has come to Me; and if not, I will know.”
(Verse 22) Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, but Abraham still stood before the LORD. (Verse 23) And Abraham came near and said, “Would you also destroy the righteous with the wicked? (Verse 24) “Suppose there were fifty righteous within the city; would You also destroy the place and not spare it for the fifty righteous that were in it? (Verse 25) “Far be it from You to do such a thing as this, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous should be as the wicked; far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?”
(Verse 26) And the LORD said, “If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare all the place for their sakes.” (Verse 27) Then Abraham answered and said, “Indeed now, I who am but dust and asks have taken it upon myself to speak to the LORD: (Verse 28) “Suppose there were five less than the fifty righteous; would You destroy all of the city for lack of five? And He said, “If I find there forty-five, I will not destroy it.”
(Verse 29) Then he spoke to Him yet again and said, “Suppose there should be forty found there?” And He said, “I will not do it for the sake of forty.” (Verse 30) And he said, “Let not the LORD be angry, and I will speak: Suppose thirty should be found there?” And He said, “I will not do it if I find thirty there.”
(Verse 31) Then he said, “Indeed now, I have taken it upon myself to speak to the LORD: Suppose twenty should be found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of twenty.” (Verse 32) And he said, “Let not the LORD be angry, and I will speak but once more; Suppose ten should be found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it for the sake of ten.” (Verse 33) So the LORD went His way as soon as He had finished speaking with Abraham, and Abraham returned to his place.
That is just one conversation that the Lord had in the Bible. But why do you think He stood there all that time discussing this with Abraham? Because He loved Abraham and what Abraham had to say mattered! Just as when we talk to the Lord, we matter because He loves us. God does not just want to put “data” into our lives to get the required results. He wants to talk to us.
2) God speaks to people.
All through the Bible, God talks to a lot of people. God even talked to Cornelius in the New Testament and Cornelius wasn’t even a believer yet but heard the voice of God, so did Paul for that matter. Why do people believe that the indwelling Holy Spirit would speak less today than what we’ve read about in the Bible? So many believe that God doesn’t speak today because they are not drawing near to Him and they aren’t listening! Look what Jesus continued to say to His disciples in John 16:
John 16:12 – “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. (Verse 13) “However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.”
God did not stop speaking two thousand years ago. He sent us His Holy Spirit! Most people think that the way God spoke to people in the Bible is different than the way He speaks now. For instance: Some think God spoke audibly and stronger. People just don’t believe that God spoke the same then as He does now.
However, in Hebrews, Chapter 11, we have the “Hall of Fath.” It says, “By faith, Abraham went out not knowing where he was going. By faith Moses.., by faith and it lists all these people. If it was so much stronger in Biblical times that God spoke to His people, then why does the Bible say, “By Faith?” It’s not any less stronger today. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of the Lord!
Couldn’t they have heard God with spiritual ears like we do today? I’m not saying God didn’t speak audibly because I know He can. Do you remember Gideon? He asked for a sign if it was the Lord that talked to Him. If he had heard Him audibly would he have asked for a sign from God? There are too many churches today teaching that God doesn’t speak today because we have the Bible. Well, guess what? They had the Scripture back then also, so that is just a false excuse not to hear God.
For those who still believe that God doesn’t speak to us today, who then called your preacher to preach? In the same way God speaks to our hearts, God still speaks today! God never says anything contrary to His Word though, but He does still speak!
3) God speaks to friends.
Exodus 33:11 – So the LORD spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend…
James 2:23 – And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” And he was called the friend of God.
God wants to communicate with us as friends, otherwise, we will only try to communicate with Him when we are in trouble. We must understand this. God wanted to be our friend before we wanted to be His. He loved us while we were still sinners!
Zachariah 13:6 – If someone asks him, ‘What are these wounds on your body?’ he will answer, ‘The wounds I was given at the house of my friends.’ “
Matthew 26:48 – Now His betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “Whomever I kiss, He is the One; seize Him.” (Verse 49) Then immediately he went up to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” and kissed Him. (Verse 50) And Jesus said to him, “Friend, why have you come?” Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and took Him.
Jesus still called Judas friend even though he betrayed Him.
John 15:13 – “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.
Think of your closest friend, God’s closer! Don’t you recognize the voice of your friends? Become friends with God and you will hear His voice. The people who hear God’s voice are the people who know God the best.