Intro: one of the questions that many people ask pastors is, “how does God communicate with us, or make Himself known in our lives. Hearing from God, knowing God, is a very important subject to many new believers and those that have served the Lord many years. Tonight, I would like to give the ways in which God reveals Himself today.
Hearing and Knowing God
1. Audible voice— ! Samuel 3:4—and the Lord called Samuel
In my life I have never heard God speak in an audible voice to me or to anyone else, so even though this is a way in which God uses to communicate with man, it isn’t his main way of communication.
Ill) years ago I heard a testimony of the audible voice of God by an Evangelist named John Wesley Fletcher. He was riding down the road listening to the radio, when God spoke directly to him out of the radio. He received his call into ministry by an audible voice from God.
2. Divine visitation—Exodus 3:2—Angel of the Lord appeared to him in a flame of fire. Moses experienced the next way in which God reveals himself to man, by a supernatural visitation. In my life I have experienced God’s move in powerful ways, but to date, there have been no burning bushes in my life.
Ill) there are two people that gave witness to divine visitations. A missionary named Morris Plots said one time when he was about to be killed by savages in Africa, that they all ran off. Later in his ministry these same natives were saved and he asked why they ran off. They said, we couldn’t fight against the hundreds of men who were over 12 feet tall.
John Kilpatrick as a young man was in a prayer service with his pastor. A group of thugs were about to break into the church, but a line of giant beings stood in the doorway, and the group took off.
3. Angelic assistence—Genesis 19:15-16 Lot and his family were assisted out of Sodom and Gomorrah by angelic assistence. Once again, in my life I have never had angelic assistance, even though I know they encamp about our family and church.
Ill) powerful story of angel’s –Charlie Fowler was in a plane crash. He actually had two men pull him from a blazing plane. They carried him to safety. When the police and medical people, along with many in the community came, he told of the two men who had rescued him. No one in the community knew of anyone who fit the description of these two men.
4. The Word of God—hearing by the Word of God—Romans 10:17
The next way in which God speaks to us is through the written word of God. As you read the word of God, a divine illumination takes place in your heart and spirit. Your faith is built up, you receive truth into your life.
This should be a consistent way in which God speaks to our lives. If
Someone doesn’t study to show themselves approved, then they will not
Consistently hear from God.
5. God’s Messengers—Apostles, Prophets, Evangelists, Pastors-Teachers—Ephesians 4:11—the next way in which God speaks to our lives is through his messengers. God gives the church these gifts that are his voice into our lives. Most of us have received a word from God through a message. As a minister, preacher or teacher shares revelation, we hear a word from God.
Ill) Pastor Barker—many here sat up under Pastor Barker’s ministry years ago. During that time I heard God speak through his word to me on several occasions. Once he preached on people who stopped one step short of their miracle, and I committed to always take one more step.
He preached a sermon on Shammah, it was called, I’m not leaving my pea patch again—it was about standing up and fighting the enemy. Steve Hill preached a sermon, 2 steps forward, 3 steps back, on people who don’t make progress with God.
6. Manifestations of the Spirit—I Corinthians 12:6-12
Time will not allow us to go through every manifestation of the spirit. But they all are God’s ways of revealing himself to man. I would like to give you two personal instances.
Ill) Raymond Culpepper in the middle of his sermon stopped, gave a prophesy about God has not deserted you, these trials will turn to blessings, and not to be discouraged in the work God has called you to do. At that moment I was on fire, I knew God had spoken a word directly into my life through a manifestation of the Spirit of God.
Ill) Jim Kelly in Tallassee—a word of knowledge- he preached 4 nights and continually told things about the church that he could never have known, that hit the nail on the head. It was so amazing that some people thought I had told him everything about the church before he arrived.