Thursday, November 29, 2007

speak to us, HOLY SPiRiT

The more I read the Bible and see how its main characters interact with God, the more I have seen how most of them had an open speaking relationship with Him. This is true for Adam, Abraham, Moses, Joshua, David, Nehemiah, the prophets, Peter, Philip, Ananias, Paul, and others. Does this happen today? Yes.

Dumb dispensational arguments cannot stand against this because this truth transcends all of their abiblical categories. The cessationist argument cannot stand either. If the crazy gifts were only for the apostles, and Philip and Ananias were not apostles, then their position likewise crumbles [with the help of a dozen other reasons; sorry Pd].

So, how do we hear from the Spirit today? How do we listen to the voice of God? I'm not speaking metaphorically. This doesn't necessarily mean that God will at all times speak audibly or call your cell. But how is it that we hear from God just as believers in the NT did? Acts can't be a normative template because it is a historical narrative. At the same time, it can't be a book of exceptions either. How do we do this without turning into faith-healing, doctrinally shallow, third wave, give-me-your-money-so-you-can-get-blessed Pentecostals? Here are a couple things to keep in mind.

  1. 98% of guys today who say they have heard God also tell you to put your hands on the screen if you've had a lousy day. We see so many who claim to be led by the Spirit, but it is evident by their fruit that that is not the case. That scares us.
  2. We simply don't believe it can happen and our thoughts of the power of the Holy Spirit's presence are far too small.
  3. We never pray to that end. Paul also said to "earnestly desire" to prophesy, but we never do. This could be closely related to numero 2.
  4. Many think that hearing God speak is dangerous because it could be added doctrine or extra special revelation. When guys on TBN, etc stand up and say they have "a word" from God, generally they mean they are getting ready to preach something they call a sermon.
  5. If one looks closely, this is not how the Spirit speaks. He speaks unto kingdom ministry [i.e. like Philip going to talk to the eunich in Acts 8]. God does not speak today on the lines of new revelation and/or new doctrine. How absurd. He speaks to prompt in ministry and service, not to reveal something that no one else never knew.
  6. We have to surround ourselves with others who also want it. I meet with some pastors and guys every Tuesday and we crave to hear the Lord's voice. We crave to feel the Spirit's presence.
  7. We have to realize that this happens in juxtaposition to the revealed word of God. The Spirit and the word are life. Read John. Read Luther. They concur.
  8. Lastly, read books and listen to sermons of guys who believe that we can hear from the Holy Spirit and who do.
  9. Download week 15's sermon from here.

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