How to Hear God’s Voice:
“And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day.” (Genesis 3:8).
“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” (John 10:27).
“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).
Do you know the voice of God? If you read through your Bible, the whole course of history (His-Story, if you will) is about the Lord desiring to have an intimate, personal relationship with human beings. What an incredible thought! From the garden of Eden, where Adam and Eve heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the cool of the day, right through to the book of Revelation, where we hear that Jesus is standing at the door knocking, waiting for someone to hear His voice, open the door, and let Him in for a time of fellowship, the story of the Bible is about God’s relationship with mankind—us.
Friend, don’t be deceived by the idea that God is some distant, far away God who isn’t interested in the day to day activities of your life! The Bible tells us that the Lord Jesus is “a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” (Prov. 18:24). One of the most amazing truths in the Bible is the fact that God became a human being—Jesus Christ is Emmanuel, God with us! God created us, He knows us, and He cares about us very deeply. Which brings me to the wonderful promise that the Lord Jesus has given us in John 10:27…
“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” If you are a Christian—one of God’s children—then you are one of the sheep of the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ. He knows His sheep, and we hear His voice, so that we can follow Him! But how do we learn to hear His voice? How does the infinite, Almighty God speak to us as mere mortals? There are many different examples in the Bible of how the Lord speaks to His people, but for now allow me to mention a few of them.
- God speaks to His people through His Word. God’s Word is His Voice—it’s the primary way that He has chosen to speak to mankind and reveal Himself to us. As we come to God’s Word with expectant hearts, He will speak to us a word for our lives for today. The more familiar you are with the Holy Bible, the more you will come to recognize His voice.
- God speaks to His people through a still, small voice. First Kings 19:12 tells us that when the Lord spoke to the prophet Elijah, it wasn’t in the fire, the whirlwind, or the earthquake, but in a still, small voice. I have never heard God speak to me in an audible voice, but He often speaks to me in the quietness of my heart and my mind, and I know that it’s Him speaking to me. It’s hard to describe to someone else what this is like, but you just know that it’s God speaking to you. The more time you spend with the Lord Jesus in prayer, the more you’ll be able to recognize His voice.
- God speaks to His people through prophecies, dreams and visions. Although the primary way God speaks to His people is through His Word, and the still small voice, sometimes the Lord chooses to speak to His people in supernatural ways as well. Sometimes He will speak to you through a prophetic word given through someone else, and this will usually confirm something that the Lord has already spoken to your heart, to help you know you’re on the right track. Sometimes the Lord will speak to you through a dream or a vision. How do you know whether or not a prophecy or a dream or a vision is from the Lord? It will always line up with God’s Word. The Holy Spirit will never reveal something to you that contradicts the written Word of God. That’s why it’s so important to get familiar with the Bible if you want to learn to recognize God’s voice.
Today I want to challenge you to take a few moments to get alone with the Lord Jesus, to “Be still, and know that I am God.” (Psalm 46:10). Remember, prayer is not talking to God, but talking with God. Wait on the Lord and give Him a chance to speak to you, too.
Pastor Chris Jordan