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Tuesday, December 6, 2011

1--Hear the Voice of God - Introduction

by Faith. . .

Hear the Voice of God
Kay Frances Graves

      True meditation is. . .
the echo
of God's Word
in my mind
as it reaches out
to speak to
the deep recesses
of my heart
bringing light and life
into my soul.


The One True God of the Holy Bible does not operate behind a cloak of mysticism. He is a practical God of order, wisdom, and knowledge.

The real God of the Bible desires to communicate with His people through His Word, just as we communicate and reveal our thoughts and true character to the ones we love, through the words we speak and write.

Yes, the God and Creator of all that exists has a Voice. His powerful Voice created the Earth and every thing in it (Genesis 1). It is this same powerful Voice that will cause the enemies of God to drop dead in their tracks when Jesus returns (Revelation 19).

When we communicate with God Almighty, the first thing we need to understand is that He alone is preeminent. On the universal list of priorities, God comes first.

Therefore our own desires and fantasies about God must be set aside. It is our mission, if we belong to Him, to discover His desires and who He really is so we can get in harmony with His will.

When this happens, an amazing thing will take place. God will reveal Himself and everything we need to know about Him and His will for our life.

Yes, we may experience a few goose bumps as a result of being able to interact and communicate with the Most High God—but will not be getting all “mystical” about our relationship with Him, hearing strange voices in our heads, taking a giant leap into the dark, or jumping off the deep end into dangerous spiritual waters.

Care must be taken to avoid the many counterfeit spiritual voices out there. Dedication and focus are required in order to rightly divide the Word of Truth and accurately discern the real nature of God. This is not a task for the lazy or self-centered individual who is only interested in entertainment, socialization, self-gratification, or assimilation into the world’s system of religion.

The purpose of this book is to assist you in discovering the real joy of communicating with our Creator through the power of His Word.

Thy words were found,
and I did eat them;
and thy word was unto me
the joy and rejoicing of mine heart:

for I am called by thy name,
O LORD God of hosts.

-Jeremiah 15:16

Only those who have been called by God and belong to Him will be able to identify with this verse from Jeremiah and have a genuine appetite for His Word.

Monday, December 5, 2011

2--Hear the Voice of God - Chapter 1

Hear the Voice of God
By Faith

So then faith cometh by hearing,
and hearing
by the word of God.

-Romans 10:17

In the Alpha and Omega style of God, we see how faith and the Word of God are infinitely bound to each other.

True faith is a result of hearing the Word of God and it is only “by faith” that we can hear and have the capacity to understand the Voice of God.

(See details in the blog book, “Hidden Manna,” also posted at this site.)

Therefore we must first understand what “faith” really is.

The World’s Definition of “Faith”

When I first thought about faith and what it is, of course, I considered all of the common phrases I had heard as a child growing up:

“Faith is believing hard enough to make something happen.”

At first this seems like the Christian thing to do. But the next logical questions are:

1) “Just what is being believed?”

2) “How do we apply enough effort?”

Do we need to force ourselves to believe that God can do something? Not at all, if we believe that there is a God we usually understand that He can do anything.

If we are simply trying to will the thing that we want into existence, then we are definitely in trouble with God. Trying to will something into existence or trying to convince ourselves that something is going to happen, is not going to make it happen.

Like spoiled children who can only selfishly think of what they want, we tell God, “If you only knew how much I want this, you would surely give it to me.” So we proceed to convince ourselves that wanting something enough is ultimately going to give it to us and believing it can happen is actually what is going to make it happen.

While it is perfectly okay with God for us to “come boldly” before His throne with our petitions, what is not okay is to think that we will more likely get what we want if we invest the proper amount of believing and effort. Then how can we ever know what the proper amount is?

It is even okay with God if we ask Him about the thing we desire every time it comes to mind. However, we can really get into trouble with God when we take Him out of the driver’s seat and presumptuously take over the controls where believing is concerned and decide how we will define the word, "believe;" for this is where we exchange faith for works. Like everything else, what we believe must also be according to God’s definition.

The desire to control something ourselves (even the amount of belief we put into it) instead of seeking God’s will, His power, and intervention, is what can turn our own efforts into idolatry and witchcraft.

Trying to convince God that we know that He can do what we ask, is not the type of “believing” God wants to see in those who belong to Him.

Then we must ask ourselves, “What if God does not want me to have what I am asking for because it does not work into His plan for me, or it isn’t the wisest, or the safest thing to ask for?”

While it is true that God often leads us according to our heart’s desire, this only takes place when that desire happens to be His desire as well. Trying to control circumstances to get what we want instead of trying to align our desires with His will is what turns this process into witchcraft.

The Bible tells us that if we are stubborn enough we may just get what we want, but it may also bring “leanness to our soul” (Psalm 106:15) also the Bible says “stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry.” (1 Samuel 15:23)

Contrary to what most people believe, the opposite of control is not tolerance and passivity, but responsibility.

To passively disengage when we should be responsibly taking action is also a form of rebellion. We simply must find balance and taking responsibility according to His will is what gives the balance required to harmonize our desires with God’s will for our life.

We learn how to find this balance in our life by seeking balance in and through the Word of God and using Scripture to balance Scripture instead of pulling out verses that support what we want or that line up with our desires (even religious desires), preconceived opinions, worldly belief system, or denominational doctrines.

In fact, it is our own very unique experiences in life that motivate us to search out the truth and balance of God’s Word, provided that we do so with a pure heart and are willing to accept God’s will and take responsibility for acting accordingly when He reveals it to us.

The appropriate response should be, “Amen. Whatever You ask, Lord, the answer is, ‘Yes.’”

In ancient times, God chose Noah and Joseph to prepare to endure what was about to come upon the land.

Because these are examples of how God intervenes to preserve His people, we also must be committed to taking responsibility and acting according to God’s will. Then we will be prepared to endure what is about to come upon the land in this time in history as well.

Regardless of our eschatology, we are admonished to watch and pray always. When we see trouble on the horizon we must ask God what He wants us to do and then act responsibly. Trouble can come in the form of bad weather, pestilence, fire, attacks from animal and human predators, or anything else that comes into our life.

Let us not be caught up in end time debates and be guilty of adjusting the pictures on the wall while the ship is sinking, but pray that God will help us be responsible and wise as we respond to the knowledge and warnings He gives us concerning how and when we should prepare for future events.

“Faith is wishing on a star.” (It helps to close your eyes, cross your fingers, and click your heels together while doing this, we are told by Hollywood producers.)

This also qualifies as a form of witchcraft and idolatry for the same reasons mentioned above.

It is interesting to note, that in the movie, The Wizard of Oz, when Dorothy followed this procedure, the “good witch” came swooping out of nowhere enveloped in a beautiful orb. However, the glowing orb just happens to be the same method of transportation evil spirits use today as they go to and fro over the earth.

Nevertheless, God’s Word tells us that a witch is a witch is a witch, whether it appears to be a “good” witch or not. The trademark of witches is their compulsive desire to control by trying to call on supernatural powers.

Like Dorothy, Hollywood educated worldlings have been tricked into calling on ungodly powers to fulfill their desires.

Today it is not the “good witch” worldlings are usually looking for, but “good angels” or their “alien space brothers” who are usurping God’s position as Creator by trying to teach all who come in contact with them that they, not God, are the real creators. Sad to say, many people would rather believe that they were created by aliens from other planets than by a benevolent God who gave His only Son so their sins might be forgiven and they might enjoy eternal life forever with Him.

“Faith? Why, it’s just a giant leap into the dark, Honey!”

This reckless attitude turns faith into a presumptuous gamble. We are really tempting God to protect us, just because we are willing to “play the game of chicken.”

This is the game where opponents face each other, rev their engines and put the pedal to the metal for a head on collision. The “chicken” is the one who veers off first to save his life. Hold this thought up to the truth regarding our God-given responsibility and the hidden deception becomes obvious.

This may even be the worst form of idolatry and witchcraft, because it is really an attempt to usurp God’s authority by thinking that He has to do what we want, because His reputation is at stake. What we may fail to realize is that God is perfectly capable of protecting His own reputation even if he lets us fall flat on our face. So we can expect a trip to the woodshed if we engage in this sort of foolishness, trying to blackmail God for what we want.

More recently from the New Age sector: “Faith happens when we exercise our own power of intention.” Here is another form of witchcraft and attempt to control.

While God wants us to interact with others with the good intention of ministering to them, results do not depend on our own intention. It is God alone who supplies the power of His Holy Spirit to enable us to minister to one another as we focus on what He wants, according to His Word and the needs of those we are called to help.

“By the way, just what faith are you?—the Catholic faith, the Lutheran faith, the Baptist faith?” This concept of faith has taken a giant step backwards and distorted the fulfilling intimate personal relationship we are meant to have with our Creator.

By substituting men’s fabricated rules, ceremonies, and regulations the religious have changed the true concept of faith, based on a real flesh and blood Church that has a viable relationship with God through His Word, into a building and an empty system of legalistic denominational requirements, “ministries,” and activities.

This smorgasbord of events can keep members running to and fro through the doors of the church for religious rituals, revival meetings, psychological counseling, socialization, fun activities and music without ever providing the real spiritual food Jesus told us to feed on.

Because of this, members can become so overwhelmed with church activities that they are unable to find time to even think about feeding on the Word of God themselves. Perhaps they would be better off disconnecting the phone and staying home to spend time in the Word.

God’s Definition of Faith

A little word search in my Strong’s Concordance revealed that God’s definition of faith is quite different from what we might think at first. From this study, I realized that faith is the power we receive when God pours Himself into us as we feed on His Word.

This power provides the ability to believe all that He has said. It also creates the desire and strength needed to carefully follow His instructions, one step at a time.

(8)For by grace are ye saved
through faith;
and that not of yourselves:
it is the gift of God:

(9)Not of works,
lest any man should boast.

–Ephesians 2:8-9

Therefore, faith is a gift He gives to us through grace. It isn’t something we are able to conjure up ourselves so we can boast about it.

How to Exercise Faith

The World Tells Us How to Exercise Faith:

“Toughen up.”

“It sounds good. Just do it.”

“Pull yourself up by your own boot straps.”

“Never give up.”

God Tells Us How to Exercise Faith:

* Believe what God has said and He will guide you with truth and wisdom.

* Believe what God has said and He will heal you and make you whole.

* Believe what God has said and He will give you the strength to do what is right.

* Believe what God has said and He will protect you from your enemies.

* Believe what God has said and He will give you eternal life.

(3)The voice of the LORD
is upon the waters:

the God of glory thundereth:
the LORD
is upon many waters.

(4)The voice of the LORD
is powerful;
the voice of the LORD
is full of majesty.

(5)The voice of the LORD
breaketh the cedars;

yea, the LORD
breaketh the cedars

of Lebanon.

(6)He maketh them also to skip like a calf;
Lebanon and Sirion like a young unicorn.

(7)The voice of the LORD
divideth the flames of fire.

(8)The voice of the LORD
shaketh the wilderness;

the LORD
shaketh the wilderness

of Kadesh.

-Psalm 29:3-8

Psalm 29 is referring to the creative power in the voice of God. It is this same power which speaks to us from the pages of Scripture today, working to accomplish His purpose in us, and sustaining every dimension of our being.

Verses 3, 5, & 8 indicate that the voice of the Lord is the Lord.

In other words, the Lord resides in His voice.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

3--Hear the Voice of God - Chapter 2

Hear the Voice of God
How to Acquire Faith

Let all things be done
decently and in order.

-1 Corinthians 14:40

Our earthly home did not just happen by accident, nor did God bring it about through some great chaotic explosion in the universe. On the contrary, the book of Genesis specifies God’s intricate fabrication of this amazing creation...all that is in it and on it...through a carefully planned and detailed order of design.

God was working with a precise intention, preparing a place to carry out the greatest story ever told. Earth was being prepared to manifest His glory and teach His created beings about the benefits and blessings of faith.

The word, “prepare” means to get ready, arrange, organize, plan, set up, practice, and put in order.

Preparation is God’s hallmark, the significant character quality that defines His nature. He is a God of order and has admonished us to follow His example.

In thee, O LORD,
do I put my trust:
let me never be
put to confusion.

-Psalm 71:1

The opposite of order is confusion and in the Scriptures “confusion” is always presented in a negative light describing it as sin or something to avoid. Confusion is used to fragment our thinking. It breaks our focus on the most important things in life and keeps us from hearing the Voice of God.

It is common knowledge that the Holy Bible is not any ordinary book. This can only be true because the Bible was also created by the hand of God. In fact, this sacred volume has often been referred to as “the instruction manual” intended to be a part of the creation package; a providentially provided “tech support document,” if you will, to assist mankind with God’s instructions regarding how to care for and properly use all that He has created.

In addition, God desired to communicate with the beings He had fashioned by His Word and His own hands and lovingly placed in the unique environment made especially for them. Our heavenly Father and Creator ordained that faith alone, accessed through the Holy Scriptures and interpreted by His Holy Spirit, would enable us to hear God’s Voice, and understand His will.

How do we acquire the faith necessary to experience the promises of God?

The World Tells Us How to Acquire Faith:

 “Stand in front of the mirror and just keep telling yourself that you can do it.”

 “Read lots of biographies. When you see how other people survived, you will have faith that you can survive too.”
(While biographies, Christian or otherwise, can be very inspirational, they should not be a substitute for the life-giving Word of God.)

 “Sit on the floor, cross your legs, and chant Ommmmm, Ommmmm, Ommmmm.”

 “Maybe what you really need to do is to call on a higher power—You know, ‘the Force’.”

God Tells Us How to Acquire Faith:

Faith comes by hearing
and hearing
by the Word of God,

-Romans 10:16-18

* Therefore we (personally) must listen carefully to what He has said in His Word.

* We (personally) must drink freely and frequently from the water of the Word.

* We (personally) must study to show ourselves approved

* We (personally) must hide His Word in our hearts and meditate on it day and night.

* We (personally) must learn God’s Word diligently line upon line.

After I discovered more about faith and realized that it was a result of being infused with the Word of God, I went on a mission to find the best way to absorb the Word and began sharing these techniques with my children.

First I bought some very pricey cassette tapes of the word-by-word recorded Scriptures. (That was in the olden days). As time passed, however, we discovered that Bible CDs can sometimes be purchased now for just a dollar per volume from a dollar store. Each volume can hold several chapters of the Bible. MP3 discs can also be convenient because they can contain several books of the Bible on each disc and are often available on the internet at reduced prices.

I decided to use the King James exclusively, so we would be memorizing consistently from one version. Even when the reading skills of children are still a bit sketchy, they love following along in their Bibles while the CDs are being played. In this way, they receive the double benefit of practicing their reading skills at the same time. Whenever we traveled in the car, did crafts or any other repetitious activity where the brain was free to focus on the Word of God, we also played the Bible CDs.

Unlike some of the spoon-fed modern versions of the Scriptures, the King James offers a more polished form of the English language. It also provides a style that requires careful “dissecting.” As we engage in this process, many hidden details of interpretation are often revealed.

When we become familiar with the King James version, it gives us a clear path of recall in pursuing additional information from the Strong’s Concordance which is most beneficial in helping us understand the true intent and meaning of the words as they were written in the languages of Hebrew and Greek.

Whom shall he teach knowledge?
and whom shall he make to understand doctrine?

them that are weaned from the milk,
and drawn from the breasts.

-Isaiah 28:9

Whom shall God teach knowledge and bless with the capacity to understand His doctrine?

Knowledge and understanding will be given to those who are not satisfied with the pabulum given to babies, but to those who are ready to mature and feed on the deeper things of God—the “meat” of the Word of God.

For precept must be upon precept,
precept upon precept;
line upon line, line upon line;
here a little, and there a little:

-Isaiah 28:10

Only the spiritually hungry follower of Christ will see the value of the Word of God and have the desire, ability to focus, and patience to do the work of building the Word into his life one precept and one line at a time.

My children and I experimented with the “line upon line” theory of hiding God’s Word in our heart and discovered that the rules for the game about “what Jack has in his wagon” could be customized to memorize Scripture line upon line.

The game about Jack goes, “Jack has a dog in his wagon.” The next person says, “Jack has a dog and a box in his wagon.” The next person says, “Jack has a dog and a box and a frog in his wagon, etc., etc.”

When we memorized the Bible, we followed Psalm 1 in the same way. The first person would say, “Blessed.” Then the next person would say, “Blessed is.” The next person would say, “Blessed is the.” The next person would say, “Blessed is the man,” etc. etc.

We also made our own Bible coloring books by drawing a picture for each verse and then writing the verse under the picture. My girls are all grown now, have children of their own, and still treasure these coloring books which meant so much to them while they were growing up.

Drawing the message contained in a verse continues to be a valuable method for building faith through symbolism. Some of us may lack the artistic gifts. In that case, stick-people work exceptionally well in a pinch, making it something even very small children can do.

Wasting time is wasting life, so it is wise to use every opportunity to infuse the Word of God into the lives of our children while we can. “Foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child.” (Proverbs. 22:15) Therefore, children really don’t need silly, vulgar, or otherwise senseless entertainment, which only serves as a perpetual stumbling block to faith and wisdom.

When we view videos, we view Christian videos or other videos with a positive message. When we play games, we play Bible games and other games that will build character or help develop other skills, while at the same time providing an enjoyable family experience. In just minutes, I have seen a child happily transformed by the renewing of his mind as a result of the power of the Word of God.

Keep in mind that we are made in the image of our heavenly Father. He has chosen to communicate with us through His written Word. Therefore, as His children we can greatly benefit by following in His footsteps and write His Word. In fact, this may just be the very best way to feed upon the Word.

As we pray for guidance and study the Scriptures, God will lead us to develop our own style of writing, but it should be Word-focused and based on expounding the Word rather than on what we want to say or how we want to share our own opinions. When we write about our walk with God and our experiences, what we share should flow out of the experiences as they relate to the Word, are validated by the Word, and illustrate how they are submitted to the Word.

This book is an example of how to feed upon the Word. Notice how the lines of Scripture are broken into bite sized pieces? Can you see how God has carefully constructed His Word and transferred it into the pages of the Bible, so it can easily be broken into pieces and digested in this manner?

God will use the events in our life and in the world to motivate us to wonder what He has to say about these occurrences. We will find wisdom and understanding when we isolate the key word that describes the event, do a search on that specific word in the Strong’s Concordance, and expound each Word, verse, and passage by dissecting and meditating on the history, context, and the way it is being used.

In this way, the Word will move us away from our own thoughts and we will be reminded that our purpose is to hear the Voice of God, not about what we want to think or say. It will help us stay focused and allow the Word to instruct us and flow through us. At the same time the Spirit of God will guide us and lead us to the correct interpretation.

Since the mind naturally wants to wander away from the Word, we must watch for this and train our mind to focus and resist being distracted from the task at hand by our own thoughts. If you find your mind wandering, stop and make yourself go back to where you first began to wander—even if it means going back to page 1 and even if it means going back a hundred times. If we have not digested what is written, we really have not read or studied at all and will certainly be unable to hear anything God has to say to us.

The Word of God provides various levels of interpretation and understanding which often can be applied to our personal life as well as applied on a broader corporate level that will address world events. Every time we study a portion of Scripture and allow Scripture to interpret Scripture, the Spirit of God will lead us to a deeper level of understanding.

We need to remember to approach the Word prayerfully and request God’s direction each time we study and write. If we have jumped ahead and misinterpreted something we must be humble enough to allow God to correct us. This is vital. Many great Christian writers have been snared in their own net of pride because they could not admit an error in their doctrine. The Spirit of God leads us into all truth, but it is our own weaknesses that can cause us to embrace something that is false, so we must be careful to stay open and be willing to let God correct us.

While the Creator has not shared all of the details with us, He has given enough information in the Scriptures to indicate that the Word of God contains His life-giving Spirit. Jesus said, “My Words, they are Spirit and they are life.”(John 6:63).

The Book of Genesis teaches that during Creation, when “God said”—it was the power, somehow contained in the spoken Word and very Voice of God, which called into existence and assembled the necessary molecules to accomplish the process of creating all things.

The Word of God is alive with His power. Just as physical bread keeps our body alive, God’s Word is the spiritual bread that keeps our spirit alive. Jesus has revealed that we must have both spiritual food as well as physical food in order to live:

But he [Jesus] answered and said,
It is written,
Man shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word
that proceedeth out
of the mouth of God.

-Matthew 4:4

Saturday, December 3, 2011

4--Hear the Voice of God - Chapter 3

Hear the Voice of God
Listen and You Will Hear

And he said,
Unto you it is given
to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God:
but to others in parables;
that seeing they might not see,
and hearing they might not understand.

-Luke 8:10

Some ask, “If God exists, why is it that I never receive a Word from Him, like other people do? Why doesn’t God speak to me?”

In truth, God is always speaking to us, so perhaps the question should be: “Am I really listening?”

When I was a girl, sometimes when I asked my dad a question, he would not answer me. That was very strange because at other times we had a lot of entertaining conversations.

If I pressed him for an answer he would say, “Do whatever you want.”

Then I realized that he was not answering my question because the last time he gave me advice, I did not listen to him. He was telling me that I should do whatever I wanted to do because I was not going to listen to him anyway.

At that point my heart felt so heavy that I thought it was going to stop beating. I really wanted to talk with my dad the way we had talked before and I had to admit that I needed to hear what he had to say. He was an inventor and when I was faced with huge problems and everything looked hopeless, he had the ability to “think outside of the box” and could come up with amazing solutions that I would never have thought of myself.

My earthly father was the one who taught me that if you want your father to listen to you, you must first listen to your father. When I became a Christian, I realized that this is the same way God functions. If we hear Him, He will hear us.

Much more is involved in hearing and listening than sound waves successfully vibrating the ear drum.

Man has been given the unique ability of “selective hearing.” In other words, we can choose to tune out what we hear and not receive it, or can even reinterpret what we are hearing as it is being said. In fact, it is our natural tendency to tune God out and follow the path of least resistance where our own will is concerned.

Nevertheless, if we secretly, within our heart, choose to reject what God is saying, our “tuning out” will not remain a secret forever. God knows everything and all secrets are eventually going to be revealed for all to see.

(17)For nothing is secret,
that shall not be made manifest;
neither any thing hid,
that shall not be known and come abroad.

(18)Take heed therefore
how ye hear:
for whosoever hath,
to him shall be given;
and whosoever hath not,
from him shall be taken
even that which he seemeth to have.

-Luke 8:17-18

We can even pretend to be listening, when we are not.

We can presume to be hearing a Word from God and believe that we know exactly what He is saying, but have not heard anything God has said at all.

In this way, we deceive ourselves and others as well.

Jesus warns us, “Take heed therefore how ye hear.”

I remember one of the first times my mother told be to be careful. She said that if I put my hand on the burner of the stove, I would get a very painful burn that would keep hurting for a long, long time and nothing would be able to stop the pain until it would eventually heal.

From past experience, I knew that my mother was usually right. In any case I was not going to gamble that she was wrong and risk anything as painful as the type of burn she had described. This is how I reasoned within my heart and came to an understanding of what I had heard my mother say.

I not only heard what my mother said, I listened, remembered, and took action to avoid coming in contact with the burner on the stove.

Not so with my younger sister. While she also heard the warning, she wasn’t getting the message. She argued about it and decided that the burner was only hot when it “looked red.” Mother did not know everything. Nobody was going to tell her what to do. She would decide for herself.

So one day after Mother had cooked lunch and the burner was no longer red, my sister put her hand on it and discovered the truth. A burner that is not red can still be hot enough to burn your hand.

We must be careful how we hear and examine the details of what we are hearing before we presume that we understand what God is saying.

Many years later, this habit of disregarding warnings eventually caused my sister to lose her life.

Our desire to hear and obey determines the accuracy of what we are actually going to hear. When Jesus warns us to be careful about how we hear, He is telling us that what we hear depends on how we hear.

In reality the condition of our heart (not our ears) actually has more to do with hearing.

Fragmented Thought

Our brain was created by God to flow with complete thought patterns via electrical impulses in the brain. Whether we realize it or not, from the time we are born, our brain is learning and perfecting all the various techniques of thought.

Most of the time the brain just flows with random thought, but the brain also has to learn to intentionally compose thought, hold one thought and interject another as well as revise thoughts and connect a series of related thoughts. This is also how we compose our belief system and our basic frame of reference.

Jesus warned us to be careful how we hear, because our thoughts and belief system are influenced for good or for evil via the type of information it feeds on.

Today we are experiencing an epidemic of A.D.D. (Attention Deficit Disorder) and other very strange mental illnesses. The term “A.D.D.” is just another way of describing fragmented thinking by people who are unable to connect thought patterns and keep thoughts flowing and developing. Fragmented thinking can be caused by spiritual, physical, mental, or emotional issues that affect the brain.

The physical dimension of thought can also be affected when the brain does not receive adequate nutrition, water, and detoxification. Like every other organ of the body, it can only maintain health when it gets what it needs to function properly.

But as with any type of dysfunction in the body, the spirit, mind and emotions must also be considered.

Since the brain learns how to develop thought from the time a child is born, it is also possible that it can be taught to fragment thought as well.

If the devil wanted to fragment thought in order to sabotage the Word of God, all he would have to do is influence men to engage in activities (and expose others to activities) that work against the development of complete thought patterns. Two of the many ways this is achieved is by constant interruptions and multi-tasking too many things at once.

Take a moment and think about the many other ways words and thoughts are fragmented such as:

1) abbreviated techno-speed-speech and writing with the use of a multitude of communication gadgets and devices

2) constant interruptions by these gadgets and devices

3) overwhelming amounts of multi-tasking

4) music that isn’t really music at all, but sound that is a constant repetition of interrupted noise

5) habitually interrupted meals and activities for the purpose of rushing off to experience something else

6) Pornography, or any other addiction/compulsive self-imposed distraction that interrupts focus and changes the normal function of the mental process

7) television news casting thought-changers of today who bombard us with programs that are called “interviews” or “discussion panels” but are really no more than chaotic shouting matches and verbal interruptions of the comments attempting to be offered

8) flashing synchronized lights in movies, television programming, and commercial advertising

On the other hand, research indicates that those who study the Word of God and memorize the Scriptures are often able to successfully overcome fragmented thinking. The reason for this is found in the way God has constructed His Word. This unique design creates the amazing healing power that resides in the Word.

Because children who memorize Scripture acquire a deeper level of concentration and focus, they usually get higher grades in school—that is, unless they are being taught via the use of fragmented teaching techniques.

In other words, God designed His Word to be completely compatible with the human brain which He also designed. Furthermore, He built into His Word a healing function based on teaching the brain to complete thought patterns that flow, are able to hold one thought while interjecting another, and have an ability to revise and connect a series of related thoughts.

This correction of thought patterns does not usually happen by occasionally reading the Bible. It is a specific activity that takes place when genuine focused study in the Holy Bible is experienced.

Since the power of the Holy Spirit resides in the Word of God, He is actually the One (we are told in the Scriptures) who brings us into all truth. The Holy Spirit is our Guide and Teacher residing in the written Word of God as well as in our inner most heart when Christ, the living Word, comes to dwell within us.

How to Hear

In previous chapters we have already discussed the preeminence of God’s Word and determined that it must come before any other word or philosophy of men.  In fact, the Apostle Paul warns believers in Colossians 2:8:

"Beware lest any man spoil you (steal your spiritual potential) through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments (principles/belief system) of the world, and not after Christ." 

The Word of God, as it is given to us through the Holy Bible, is the Creator’s instruction manual and guidelines for the standard of living He requires of those He has created. Through His infinite wisdom revealed in His Word, He has woven power, protection, happiness, and success into the lifestyle He has chosen for His people.

If we take care how we hear what He has said, we will be able to access this wisdom of God and reap the benefits of it.

On the other hand, if we (1) do not see the value of it, (2) misinterpret it, or (3) corrupt it, we will find an eternal curse at the end of our lives instead of an eternal blessing. This is why Jesus gave us the warning to be careful how we hear.

Everyone has the freedom to choose whether they will hear or not and some have not been given the capacity to hear. Seeing the value of the Word of God and misinterpreting the Word of God were thoroughly expounded in the blog book, “Hidden Manna” previously posted at this blog.

Therefore it is “Corrupting the Word of God” that still needs to be addressed.

By misinterpreting the Word of God through a wide variety of modern translations, the Word has been redefined and corrupted to accommodate man’s philosophy and new social gospel. But the purity of the Word of God has also been attacked and adulterated in other ways.

Nevertheless, we have God’s promise that His Word will last forever, so we can conclude that He will personally see to it that the purity of His Word is preserved.

In John 6:27, Jesus tells the people not to labor for physical food, but for eternal spiritual food. He was telling them that the “workings” or functions of eternal life take place in the spiritual realm. They heard what He said, but were not able to receive and understand it. They could only think in terms of the physical realm—physical work and physical food.

Therefore they responded by asking Him, "What shall we do, that we might work the works of God?” (John 6:28)

Regardless of the multitude of religions found in the world today, there are really only two religions—(1) the religion of man and (2) the religion of the One True God.

The religion of man is based on self worship then usually incorporates the worship of some entity or idol(s) through lifestyle, ceremonies, and works in various forms. However, the religion of God is based on faith alone via the Word of God.

The devil, the god of the system of this world, wants to make religion complicated. But the truth about religion is really very simple when you consider what Jesus told the people in John, Chapter 6.

When Jesus told them about faith and their spiritual life, they heard with their ears, but they really were not able to hear and understand with their hearts. So they responded to what He had said as if they did not hear it at all and went back to asking Him about working the works of God.

The people had seen the miracles of Jesus and were attracted to His power. They want to receive the blessings of this power, but were not really interested in the spiritual food (the Word of God) that He wanted to feed them. They wanted their physical needs and desires met their own way. They really just wanted to use Jesus for what He could give them and were even willing to do some sort of religious works to acquire this power.

If they really had heard and listened to what Jesus had to say, they would have had to stop being the god of their own life, would have had to stop doing whatever they wanted to gratify themselves, would have had to stop trying to control their world, and would have had to submit to the preeminence of the Most High God.

When mankind cannot or will not believe by faith via the Word of God and only wants the power of God without acknowledging the preeminence of God and hearing His Word, mankind thinks that the next logical step is to put on a religious cloak and create a system of religion based on some sort of works.

Jesus tells the people that if they really want to work, they should do the “work” of believing (John 6:29). This is the work of actually hearing and listening to the Word of God.

When they could not receive and understand that they needed to work at or do whatever it takes to believe, they asked Jesus to give them “a sign,” some mystical supernatural sensational experience outside of the Word of God to help them believe.

As we will see, this was definitely the wrong thing to ask for. . .

Friday, December 2, 2011

5--Hear the Voice of God - Chapter 4

Hear the Voice of God
Signs of a Corrupted Word

(37)For by thy words
thou shalt be justified,
and by thy words
thou shalt be condemned.

(38)Then certain of the scribes and
of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master,
we would see a sign from thee.

(39)But he answered and said unto them,
An evil and adulterous
[#G3432=unfaithful – polluted – apostate]
generation seeketh after a sign;
and there shall no sign be given to it,
but the sign of the prophet Jonas:
(40)For as Jonas was three days and three nights
in the whale's belly;
so shall the Son of man be
three days and three nights
in the heart of the earth.
-Matthew 12:37-40

How the Word of God is Corrupted

Yes, we must be careful how we hear, but we must also be careful how we speak, since we will be judged by our words and how we use or abuse God’s Word. This includes being careful not to spiritually harm ourselves or join in the attack against the minds of others by participating in the world’s fragmenting and corrupting process.

The people were unable to grasp Jesus’ definition of “work.” Neither could they comprehend what sort of work Jesus was involved in. So like today, they asked Him for a sign, some mystical supernatural sensational experience outside of the Word of God to “help” them believe.

That was definitely the wrong thing to ask for.

He bluntly told them that seeking a sign was a manifestation of apostasy and unfaithfulness to God.

Jonah was the only sign they were going to get. This was a sign recorded in the Word of God. Just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale and then expelled onto dry land, Jesus would be three days and three nights in the earth and then resurrected. For those who had really responded to the call of God and been born again (See John Chapter 3), this account of the death and resurrection of Jesus would be sufficient evidence to support their belief.

Jesus emphasized the importance and detailed fulfillment of the Word of God. After the resurrection, under the leadership of the Holy Spirit, Paul continued to warn those who considered themselves to be followers of Christ.

This time it was the Corinthian Church and Paul was warning them about seeking gifts and signs outside of the Word of God patterned after the pagan practices of Delphi, Greece’s most famous center of oracles who often spoke in strange utterances and an unknown language.

Instead of accessing the power of God through the Word of God, the church at Corinth was creating a mockery of the Word by twisting the true meaning of the “gift of tongues.”

Remember, in the above passage in Matthew 12:37 Jesus had said: “For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.”

Paul corrects the false doctrine of tongues in 1 Corinthians 14:

Follow after charity,
and desire spiritual gifts,
but rather that ye may prophesy.

[#G4396 = rightly interpret – declare the Word of God]
-1 Corinthians 14:1

Paul is telling the congregation at Corinth (and us) that it is good to let love lead you and to desire spiritual gifts, but being able to correctly interpret and declare the Word of God is more important.

Here is why:

For he that speaketh
in an unknown tongue

[G#1100 = ethnic language from a known geographic location]
speaketh not unto men, but unto God:
for no man understandeth him;
howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries.

-1 Corinthians 14:2

First of all, every time the gift of tongues is mentioned in the Scriptures, in the Greek, it is referring to an ethnic language from an existing geographic location.

When language is referred to as “an unknown tongue,” it means that the language from that particular country cannot be understood by those who are not from that country or cannot be understood by those who are not able to speak that specific ethnic language.

Let us use the German language as an example, since it is an unknown tongue to people who have not been born in Germany. In this case, when a believer visiting the United States speaks in the German language in a church that is located in the U.S., the language is not going to be known to everyone. Therefore, the German person visiting the U.S. can only really speak to God when he talks in German, because no one else can understand him.

As a result, what he is saying does not provide any spiritual knowledge to the listener—it remains a mystery.

(3)But he that prophesieth
[expounds the Word of God]
speaketh unto men
to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.

(4)He that speaketh
in an unknown tongue

[foreign language]
edifieth himself;
but he that prophesieth
edifieth the church.

-1 Corinthians 14:3-4

On the other hand, when someone prophesies, everyone is edified, encouraged, and comforted. If someone speaks in another language that is not understood by the listeners, the person who is speaking is only (perhaps selfishly when in a group setting) edifying or building up himself.

I would that ye all spake with tongues
[had the ability to speak in foreign languages]
but rather [even more desire] that ye prophesied:
for greater is he that prophesieth
than he that speaketh with tongues,
except he interpret,
that the church may receive edifying.

-1 Corinthians 14:5

Paul would like it if everyone had the ability to speak in foreign languages, (because those having the gift of being able to speak in foreign languages have an advantage to proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ to foreigners) but he makes it clear that it is better to “prophesy,” that is to clearly declare the Word of God, than to be able to speak in other ethnic languages, since understanding the Word of God is the primary purpose of declaring the Word of God.

Therefore, if someone is going to speak in an unknown ethnic language in the congregation, he must do it through an interpreter, or there isn't any logical reason to speak at all because without understanding what is being said, no one can be edified.

Now, brethren,
if I come unto you speaking with tongues,
what shall I profit you,
except I shall speak to you
either by revelation, or by knowledge,
or by prophesying, or by doctrine?

-1 Corinthians 14:6

Again Paul reminds the congregation that the whole purpose of speaking in the Church is to provide comprehensible revelation, knowledge, and explanation of the Word and doctrine of Christ. Common sense tells us that no one can profit from speech that they are unable to understand.

(7)And even things
without life giving sound,
whether pipe or harp,
except they give a distinction in the sounds,
how shall it be known what is piped or harped?

(8)For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound,
who shall prepare himself to the battle?

[understand and receive marching orders]
(9)So likewise ye, except ye utter by the tongue
words easy to be understood,
how shall it be known what is spoken?
for ye shall speak into the air.

(10)There are, it may be,
so many kinds of voices in the world,
and none of them is without signification.

(11)Therefore if I know not
the meaning of the voice,
I shall be unto him that speaketh
a barbarian,

[#G915 = crude and rude foreigner],
and he that speaketh
shall be a barbarian unto me.

-1 Corinthians 14:7-11

Paul boldly illustrates the absurdity of speaking in unknown ethnic languages when listeners are unable to understand. He says that it is like a musical instrument that does not have any distinction in the sound or like a trumpet that makes a sound but the people cannot distinguish what sound it is and therefore cannot take instruction from it and prepare for battle.

Whether Paul, or anyone else, speaks in an unknown ethnic language (or any other unknown utterance) to people who cannot understand it, they become like a crude and rude foreigner, a barbarian (#G915), to the listener.

(12)Even so ye,
forasmuch as ye are zealous
of spiritual gifts,
seek that ye may excel
to the edifying of the church.

(13)Wherefore let him
that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray
that he may interpret.

-1 Corinthian 14:12-13

If a congregation is desirous of spiritual gifts, it should be for the purpose of magnifying the Word of God and edifying the entire church. Therefore, no one should speak in a foreign language unless he can interpret what is being said.

(14)For if I pray in an unknown tongue,
my spirit prayeth,
but my understanding
is unfruitful.

(15)What is it then?
I will pray with the spirit,
and I will pray with the understanding also:
I will sing with the spirit,
and I will sing with the understanding also.

-1 Corinthians 14:14-15

Paul addresses the matter of prayer as well. Neither is there any benefit to praying in an unknown ethnic language when people cannot understand the prayer.

How can an incoherent prayer bare any fruit when no one can understand what is being sung or what is being said?

We must conclude, with Paul, that when praying or singing, understanding must also be present in order to benefit the spirit.

(16)Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit,
how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned

[one who has not learned the specific ethnic language]
say Amen at thy giving of thanks,
seeing he understandeth not
what thou sayest?

(17)For thou verily givest thanks well,
but the other is not edified.

-1 Corinthians 14:16-17

Furthermore, when a prayer is answered and brings a blessing, how can anyone praise and thank God for it if they do not understand what was even prayed for?

(18)I thank my God,
I speak with tongues

[various ethnic languages]
more than ye all:
(19)Yet in the church
I had rather speak five words
with my understanding,
that by my voice
I might teach others also,

than ten thousand words
in an unknown tongue.

-1 Corinthians 14:18-19

Paul was a very well educated man and able to speak many different ethnic languages, yet his priority was to teach the Word of God, not hear himself speak in a foreign language that could not benefit anyone else.

Brethren, be not children in understanding:
howbeit in malice be ye children,
but in understanding be men.

-1 Corinthians 14:20

Paul tells them straight out that this type of thinking is childish and he exhorts them to “grow up” and get their priorities in order. Mature Christians should realize the primary importance of understanding the Word of God.

(21)In the law it is written,
With men of other tongues and other lips
will I speak unto this people;
and yet for all that
will they not hear me, saith the Lord.

(22)Wherefore tongues [ethnic languages] are for a sign,
not to them that believe,
but to them that believe not:

but prophesying serveth not
for them that believe not,
but for them which believe.

-1 Corinthians 14:21-22

Paul goes back to the law of God and begins this passage by expounding the Word of God for the congregation.

He further explains that even when some people hear the Gospel clearly in their own ethnic language, they still may not have ears to hear what God is really telling them. Some people just do not have the capacity to receive the Word of God, even in their own language.

Furthermore, Paul makes it clear that the gift of ethnic languages was given by God for the purpose of preaching the Gospel to unbelievers. When the gift of languages was first given, each unbelieving person was able to hear (not speak) the Word of God in his own ethnic language.

It was initially a unique method which God used to reach a special group of unbelievers from a variety of ethnic backgrounds. While meant to be a special “sign” and an amazing occurrence, it was not intended to be a mystical experience, but a very practical indication that the message they were receiving was really from God, so they could understand the Word and believe in Jesus. (See the Book of Acts).

On the other hand, prophesying or expounding the Word of God in the common language, was given to all believers so they could be personally, spiritually strengthened and restored by understanding the Word of God.

If therefore the whole church
be come together into one place,
and all speak with tongues,

[other ethnic languages]
and there come in those
that are unlearned,

[in the specific languages being spoken]
or unbelievers,
will they not say that ye are mad?

-1 Corinthians 14:23

People who do not understand the specific ethnic languages that are being spoken in some churches and observe everyone speaking in confusion at the same time, will think that those who ramble in unintelligible speech are “mad” or insane.

Actually we see this today. The senseless babble and mutterings of some professing Christians really does cause many unbelievers to think that Christianity is comprised of wackos and makes it impossible for true believers to understand what is actually being said, when they find themselves in the midst of babble-speakers.

This unbiblical behavior is one significant means whereby the first love was lost (See the book, “Mystery of the First Love Lost” at this blog which is based on the warning of Jesus in Revelation 2:4-5. This passage of Scripture confirms that if those who call themselves the followers of Christ do not remember what they have lost, they and their “church” will be removed from their presumed relationship with Christ).

The unbiblical behavior of the Corinthian Church, as recorded in the Word of God, continues to be a means of:

1) interrupting, fragmenting, and breaking our focus on the Word and Spirit of God

2) a stumbling block to unbelievers

3) a reproach to Christ’s Name/blasphemy [# G989 = reproachful speech injurious to divine majesty] against the Holy Spirit (Matt. 12:31) because it is interrupting and quenching the Spirit of God in Christian assemblies

4) misrepresenting the true nature of God, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit

5) hiding the truth about how we are to really communicate with God and fellowship with one another through His Word

Because our communication with God and others depends on understanding the Word of God, it is an outright attack against His Word.

(24)But if all prophesy, and there come in
one that believeth not, or one unlearned,
he is convinced of all, he is judged of all:

(25)And thus are the secrets of his heart made manifest;
and so falling down on his face he will worship God,
and report that God is in you of a truth.

(26)How is it then, brethren?
when ye come together,
every one of you hath a psalm,
hath a doctrine,
hath a tongue,
hath a revelation,
hath an interpretation.
Let all things be done unto edifying.

(27)If any man speak in an unknown tongue,
[ethnic language]
let it be by two, or at the most by three,
[in orderly manner—one at a time]
and that by course; and let one interpret.
(28)But if there be no interpreter,
let him keep silence in the church;
and let him speak to himself, and to God.

-1 Corinthians 14:24-28

When the Word of God is clearly proclaimed and understood, unbelievers will be convicted of their sin, their lives will begin harmonizing with the Word of God, they will begin worshipping God as He has specified, and everyone who hears will realize that Jesus Christ, the Living Word of God, is in their midst.

Everything in the Church must be done for the explicit purpose of spiritually strengthening and firmly establishing others in the Word of God.

This is how the power of God is really manifested.

While the incoherent babble of the church at Corinth is assumed by many scholars to have been influenced by the pagan practices of Delphi, Paul does not need to specifically address that issue in 1 Corinthians, Chapter 14, because he has already defined the genuine gift of tongues as the unique ability to speak in any other ethnic language(s) which would also automatically exclude any other strange utterances from what is permissible in the church.

Therefore, Paul establishes the rules of conduct in this passage for those desiring to speak in a genuine unknown/foreign (ethnic) language:

1) No more than three are allowed to speak in an ethnic language at the same time.

2) Those speaking must do so in an orderly manner, one at a time.

3) There must be an interpreter present who is gifted in interpreting the specific language being spoken.

4) If there is not an interpreter present, then those desiring to speak a foreign language must remain silent.

Does this mean that a genuine gift of tongues no longer exists today?

On the contrary, when we realize that the gift of tongues is the ability to speak and interpret ethnic languages, it becomes obvious that some people do have a very real gift, specifically as it pertains to accurately translating the Word of God from the original languages into many languages that can be understood by a multitude of people living in the many different countries and speaking many different languages in the world today.

Through Paul’s Scriptural reproval of the Corinthian Church, God is reminding the followers of Christ; again, that believing does not depend on some mystical apostate sign. This is not the way to a relationship with God or eternal life. Jesus did not come to promote a mystical or sensational approach to His Holy Word.

Jesus Christ was simply teaching His followers how to clearly understand God’s Word so they could obey it.

(Dear Reader...When God pours out His wrath upon the Earth, will you be among those who will receive His wrath because you have not been loving Him and listening to His Voice? If you are ready to turn from going your own way, desire to have a relationship with the living God, and want to live with Him forever, go to left side of this page and click on the picture near the top titled, "God's Gift of Salvation.")

Thursday, December 1, 2011

6--Hear the Voice of God - Chapter 5 - (The End)

Hear the Voice of God
Overcome and Endure to the End

Blessed is he that readeth,
and they that hear the words

of this prophecy,
and keep those things
which are written therein:
for the time is at hand.

-Revelation 1:3

Our Heavenly Father has chosen the vehicle of the written Word and the spoken Word to communicate with His children.

His children are the “good seed” planted into the world by His Son, Jesus Christ.

In addition, they are the “good ground,” which will receive the seed of the Word of God; the brethren are sowing in obedience to that Word. The “good ground,” children of God, are equipped within their hearts to nurture the seed of the Word so it will bring forth much fruit.

Furthermore, the children of the Kingdom of God are the “sheep” who will hear the Word of God carried on the wind by the Voice of the One True Shepherd. They will follow the Shepherd’s Voice, keeping (remembering and obeying) the things that are written.

This is how the children of God will be occupied just before Jesus Christ returns, when “the time is at hand.”

These are the real children of God who love the sound of the Voice of God. They are entrusted to the Son for safe keeping and the Father has promised that none of those who truly belong to Him will be lost.

He that hath an ear,
let him hear
what the Spirit saith
unto the churches;
To him that overcometh
will I give to eat of the tree of life,

which is in the midst
of the paradise of God.

-Revelation 2:7

Only a few will have an ear to hear. The rest will not be listening to what the Spirit of God has to say to the churches. They will not realize that they do not qualify to inherit eternal life. They will not understand what being “saved through faith” really means. They will believe that their church, opinions of men, and religious works will save them and will presume to belong to Christ because they have called Him, “Lord.”

However only those who overcome and possess eternal life, will be given the privilege of eating from the tree of life which grows in the middle of the paradise of God.

Only those who hear His Word and are in the habit of listening and spiritually feeding on it, will overcome because it is “through faith” that we are saved and faith can only come “by hearing and hearing by the Word of God” (Romans 10:17).

He that hath an ear,
let him hear

what the Spirit saith
unto the churches;
To him that overcometh
will I give to eat of the hidden manna,

and will give him a white stone,
and in the stone a new name written,
which no man knoweth
saving he that receiveth it.

-Revelation 2:17

Revelation 2:7 and Revelation 2:17 begin with identical words about the necessity of overcoming and how overcoming is the mandatory requirement of receiving eternal life, the white stone, and a new name.

God’s alpha and omega are not the same as man’s idea of beginning and ending. While infinity functions by design and a unique type of order, it is not chronological.

So will those who overcome be rewarded by being given the “hidden manna” to eat or will those who eat the “hidden manna” be given the ability to overcome?

Let us ask this question again. This time we will expound the key words to consider.

So will those who overcome (by their own efforts) be rewarded by being given the Bread from Heaven, the written and living Word of God to feast on, or will those who feast on the Bread from Heaven, the written and living Word of God, be given the ability to overcome (by the grace of God and the power of His Word) ?

Since “hidden manna” is the secret spiritual food, or Word, that God gives to those who are listening; this makes it vital to overcoming. It is the Voice of God that resides in the Word of God.

The teaching of Jesus and the Kingdom of God are not for everyone. 

Only those who have an appetite for His Word will be able to spiritually feed on His Word and receive the power to overcome and endure 
. . .until they hear the Voice of Jesus commanding them to "Come up!"

(See details regarding this in the blog book, “Hidden Manna,” which you can also read at this site.)

Remember therefore
how thou hast received
and heard,
and hold fast,
and repent.

If therefore thou shalt not watch,
I will come on thee as a thief,
and thou shalt not know
what hour I will come upon thee.

-Revelation 3:3

This verse provides some important things we are commanded to remember:

1) how we have received (the Word and knowledge of God)

2) how we have heard (the Word of God)

3) to hold fast to what God has taught us

4) to repent, if we have not been consistently listening

If we do not heed this warning, we will not be watching for the coming of Christ as we should, we will not expect Him, and He will appear as a thief to us.

How does a thief appear?

--> He comes suddenly in secret.

--> Dread and fear will grip our heart when we are surprised by Him.

--> Instead of being joyful at His coming and looking forward to all that we are about to receive, we will be agonizing over losing our worldly possessions.

--> He may seem like an intruder coming to take something from us. Perhaps some of us will come to the painful realization that we loved this world and the things of this world more than we loved to hear what God had to say and we did not really have an eternal relationship with Christ after all.

--> He may not be the type of Person or type of God we expected to see. Maybe the Jesus we were worshipping was not even the real Jesus. Therefore the real Jesus will appear to be a threatening stranger to us.

Every person is defined by two things: (1) their actions and (2) the words they speak. This is how we learn who people really are. If we are not reading, listening, and feeding on the Word of God, how are we ever going to know who Jesus really is?

He could turn out to be just a lovely figment of our own imagination or a passive victim who tolerates sin.

It is impossible to really know Jesus and have a relationship with Him without having a complete and accurate account of what He has done and what He has said. 

The genuine information regarding this is only available in the Word of God, the Holy Bible. 

If that information has been adulterated or fragmented in any way, it becomes impossible to know who Jesus really is.

The truth is, we are just carelessly gambling with our eternal life by taking someone else’s (even “sincere” or “religiously authoritative”) word for who Jesus is. When Jesus returns He will hold each of us personally accountable for how we hear, as the Holy Spirit interprets what He has said in His Word and what we are personally required to believe.

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock:
if any man hear my voice,
and open the door,
I will come in to him,
and will sup with him,
and he with me.

-Revelation 3:20

It is the Word and Voice of God that calls to us to open the door to our heart and receive Him.

First we must accurately hear His Voice and His Word. If we are called to be His child, we will have the capacity to hear His Word and will respond by opening the door.

When we open the door, Jesus will come in and share His food with us. He will feed us the pure Word of God and will give us a true interpretation and understanding of what His Word says. We will “sup” with one another, meaning that we will share a meal.

What will we be eating?

He will share His Word with us and we will share our word with Him. In other words, we will engage in a true relationship, fellowship, and communication with Him.

By hearing the Voice of God through the Word of God, He will define who He really is; we will turn from going our own way, and embrace His preeminence in all things. The only way we can truthfully call Him “Lord,” is if He really is our Lord. Therefore, He and His Word must BE preeminent . . .the most important priority in our life.

This is the only way we are given a new life, can be spiritually born-again, and can discover an eternal relationship with our Creator, the Most High God.

~The End~