Summary: How do we discern the will of God in our lives. I suggest five indicators
Do we really listen to the voice of God
I would like to focus on one verse this morning:
“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them and they follow me” (Jn 10:27)
There are many committed Christians who ask the question “How can I know the will of God for me. Where does he want me to be?"
It is one I have been asking myself for months
But what do we actually mean when we say we want to know the will of God?
It should mean that we want to know His plan for our lives.
We want His guidance in specific decisions so we can make wise choices.
The question we should be asking is,
"How can I know the voice of God?"
Because it is knowing the voice of God that results in finding the will of God. God wants you to know His will:
4Jesus said "It is written: ’Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:4)
The word "comes from" speaks of a continuing action.
It isn’t a once and for all
God speaks today and we need to learn to listen.
Story: One unknown author wrote this:
“At least one time in every sermon, God breaks through the words of the preacher and speaks directly to the people.
It may be in a single sentence or in just one phrase.
We can ill afford not to listen to the entire discourse with care, otherwise we may miss that one illuminated and searching sentence in which God speaks to us--a sentence that brings conviction, penitence, hope, strength, or renewed faith!
So many of us miss that one special word from God because we are comparing the preacher’s manner with that of some other preacher we have heard recently.
From now on, just listen intently for that one portion
God intends to be applied specifically to your heart!"
There are two Greek words translated as "word" in the Bible.
They are the Greek words are "logos" and "rhema".
"Logos" refers to "an expression (articulation) of thought"
It is the embodiment of a concept, idea or thought. It is more than that because Jesus is called the Logos of God.
The Logos of God is someone we can know
"Rhema" refers to the personal, living or life-giving Word of God.
In our Gospel reading this morning, Jesus is asking the question: Who are you listening to?
when he says in John 10:27
“My sheep listen to my voice”
There are MANY VOICES out there clamouring for our attention:
What are these voices in the world?
1. THE VOICE OF MAN:
The voice of man is easy to recognize. It blares out over our television sets
It is the audible voice of another human being:
Sometimes the voice of man may give wise advice, but sometimes the voice of man conflicts with the voice of God.
Often it is the voice we hear on our television screens
2. THE VOICE OF SATAN:
Don’t underestimate this. So many people don’t believe in Satan, yet he is still there. But don’t be caught up in the caricature of a man with a trident fork and spiked tail
The voice of Satan was first heard by man when he spoke to Eve in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 3:l,4,5).
Satan’s voice lies, deceives, and always attempts to lead man into sin away from God.
You can easily recognize this when you read of the temptations of Jesus by Satan in Matthew 4:l-l3.
Evil spirits (demons of Satan) also have voices:
For examples in Acts 8 we read
For unclean spirits, crying with loud voice, came out of many that were possessed with them... (Acts 8:7)
Story: I have only once been confronted by the voice of an evil spirit and it made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up
There was a woman who used to come to our Church in Basle, who once asked me to come with her to Reinhold Dettwiler, a Christian minister well known in the Deliverance Ministry in Switzerland.
When he started speaking to her, her voice changed into a shrill and she started clawing the walls.
She was never delivered of this evil spirit because she wanted to keep it
3. THE VOICE OF SELF:
The voice of self is man talking to himself.
You can read examples of this in Luke l6:3 in the parable of the Crooked Manager where the manager says to himself:
3"….. ’What shall I do now? My master is taking away my job. I’m not strong enough to dig, and I’m ashamed to be
The Bible warns us to about merely listening to our own voice
4. THE VOICE OF GOD: