How does God speak to us?

God is speaking to us all the time in a variety of ways, but we are not good at listening.

The Bible is not the only way God speaks to us.

Each morning we awaken to consciousness, noticing the world around us. We have come into a visual reality from an unconscious or dreamlike one. There are other realities, such as the spiritual world, which God inhabits, from which the reality of Time and Space has emerged.

Too many people do not notice God speaking to mankind.

“Each day I rise, I will bless Thee” Ps 145:2 is the godly response to this goodness.

“Each day I rise, I will Thee bless,
And praise Thy name time without end.
Much to be prais’d, and great God is;
His greatness none can comprehend.”

Ps 145:2 Scottish metrical psalms (second version)

General Revelation

“The Lord’s mercies are new each morning” Lam 3:23. Whatever yesterday was like, this is a new day, full of God’s mercy for which we ought to be thankful.

If we had been awake during the night, we may have noticed the starry sky. God is speaking there also.

“The heavens declare the glory of God, and the night sky shows His handywork.”Psalm 19:1.

Psalm 19:1

Creation

Creation is the first book God gives us to read. Many study the universe and wonder. Indeed, but we are meant to go further and wonder at its Creator – “How Great Thou Art”.

The vast universe does not teach that we are insignificant, nor that the universe is meaningless. This is an all-too-typical misreading of God’s revelation of Himself. Rather the wonder is that we can observe and think about it.

We are part of God’s creation and this brings us back to our own consciousness. Man is made in the image of God and this is itself a revelation of Himself. Proper study of our own being should lead us to the conclusion that God is speaking to us. Even our dreams tell us that there is more to reality than what we see with our eyes Job 33:14-17.

As rational creatures, we have been given the capacity to think about ourselves, our environment, the meaning of one’s life, what happens after death, and our conscience enables us to form moral judgments about what is right and wrong. This points to the existence of our immortal soul.

Providence

The Book of Providence is another book God has given us to read. It is difficult for sinful man to read, who constantly misinterpret it – a simple truth that they would learn if they would read the Bible.

There are different types of Providence.

Ordinary providence

  • events that we experience in life
  • co-incidences or God-incidents are quite regular
  • dreams

Extraordinary providences that some people call miracles, or even ‘creepy experiences’ because they know that they are unusual, and sometimes highly improbable.

General revelation simply tells us that there is a God, so that atheists and agnostics are without excuse for their scepticism. It speaks to every rational creature Rom 1:20. It teaches us to seek God, and from this awareness of God’s general revelation arises all the false religion in the world. Man is ‘a religious being’ because of this awareness. As a rational creature, man can read enough about God in His General Revelation to know that He exists, and his conscience moves him to seek more, to seek the truth. Nevertheless, his ignorance of God makes sinful man try to appease this unknown God by various religions of his own devising. This religious consciousness makes them vulnerable to religious manipulation. People would discover this, and its folly, if they would only read the Bible.

Special Revelation

General Revelation tells us that there is a God, but not how to find Him. We need Special Revelation, which is God speaking to us more directly with words that we can understand.

This is why the Bible is so central and important. Before there was a Bible God spoke in various ways Heb 1:1 but mankind was and is not good at listening, as we have noticed. So God chose the Jews to keep a record of the Gospel in the Bible, the good news how sinful man can find God and be reconciled to Him.

Even they were not good at listening, but God used them to preserve the essence of the Gospel, until He sent His Son Jesus Christ as the definitive revelation of Himself Heb 1:2.

This is why Jesus is called the Word of God Jn 1:1,14.

We understand people by their words, and God reveals His thoughts to us by His Word. However, Jesus is now in heaven, awaiting the arrival of His people. So He arranged for the details of His life and Gospel to be recorded in the Christian New Testament so that it available to whoever reads it. He is still speaking to us. Are you listening to Him?

Creation reveals God’s power, wisdom and majestic glory in His eternity and infinitude.

Providence reveals that God has not abandoned sinful mankind, although too many of mankind have abandoned Him. God is long-suffering and patient, but He is not mocked and those who ignore Him will find that they are not only on the wrong side of history, but also on the wrong side of eternity.

Jesus warned His hearers of this when He teaches us that natural disasters and calamities are sermons in God’s providence preaching to us to be ready lest we perish impenitent in our sins.

The clearest way in which God speaks to us is through His Word – the Bible.

The Word of God

The Word of God comes to us in various ways.

  1. Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is the Personal Word of God.
  2. The Christian Bible is the written Word of God.
  3. Reading the Bible and preaching the Gospel is the spoken Word of God

Jesus is in heaven but the Bible is on Earth – the world’s best seller, but it is not often read by those who need to read it.

So Jesus has commissioned His Church to preach the Gospel to every creature to whom they have opportunity.

Yet many do not want to hear the Gospel. Some mistakenly think that they know it already.

This is where the Christian Church comes in. Each Christian should learn to graciously bring the Gospel to bear upon his neighbour, his family, friends and acquaintances. Jesus advises to be wise as serpents and harmless as doves Mat 10:16. This does not mean being deceitful nor devious, but to be considerate of other people. It is a large topic, but the point is that believers in Jesus Christ are an important God-given resource for the world to use. Jesus does not take His people immediately to heaven but He leaves them on Earth to be His witnesses.

The Christian Church

Jesus describes the Church as His body. Jesus is in heaven but His body is on Earth. His Holy Spirit has given us His Word, the Bible, has been given by the Holy Spirit and is available on Earth and proclamined by the Church of Jesus Christ. The devil and false religion tries to stop the Word of God reaching people, either through the Bible or the Church declaring it verbally.

Seeing God’s hand in Providence

Do you see God’s hand in other people’s Providence? Do you see it in your own Providence?

Many people misread providence. The biblical Book of Job teaches this and Jesus specifically corrects people’s misreading of providence Lk 13:1-5. You would know about this subject if you read the Bible.

Several of the survivors of the Twin Towers disaster in New York on 9/11 have borne testimony to extraordinary providences in their escape. Some have interpreted this as God’s hand and others have been unable to explain them.

You will have extraordinary providences in your own life. They are intended to teach you to seek God. You can begin with prayer, simply speaking to God.

Do you see God’s providence in your own life? Have you? Then surely it is time to seek the Lord?

“Sow righteousness to yourselves, reap in mercy. Break up your fallow ground because it is time to seek the Lord, till He comes and rains His righteousness upon you.”

Hosea 10:12

It is time to seek your God.

Don’t be fooled by the devil and don’t delay.

Come and welcome to Jesus Christ.

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