How to Hear the Voice of God in the Details of Life (part 7)
September 20, 2020
How to Hear the Voice of God in the Details of Life (part 7)
The Voice of the Holy Spirit
It is more important than ever today to know the voice of God.
There are challenges now and in our future that we have never navigated in this way. The world is changing.
Jeremiah 10:23 (NKJV)
O LORD, I know the way of man is not in himself; It is not in man who walks to direct his own steps.
Psalms 32:8 (NKJV)
I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
I will guide you with My eye.
Romans 8:14 (NKJV)
For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
Proverbs 20:27 (NKJV)
The spirit of a man is the lamp of the Lord, searching all the inner depths of his heart.
Week 1 – August 2
Judges 6 – Gideon was called by God to lead Israel into battle, and Gideon “put out a fleece,” that is, he looked to circumstances to confirm what God was saying to him.
Week 2 – August 9
There are two ways we receive direction from God – General Guidance and Specific Guidance.
General Guidance: Logos – the sum total of all of the expressions of God.
Specific Guidance: Rhema – When the Holy Spirit quickens a thought to your spirit, and gives you specific direction about a situation or issue in life.
Week 3 – August 16
1 Thessalonians 5: 23 (NLT)
Now may the God of peace make you holy in every way, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless until our Lord Jesus Christ comes again.
We are spirit beings, we possess a soul, and we live in a physical body.
Week 4 – August 23
I am an eternal spirit being, I have or possess a soul, and I live in a physical body.
When God speaks to us, He speaks by the Holy Spirit in our human spirit.
Begin now to think of yourself as a spirit being, living in a body. Think of yourself as a spirit being before thinking of yourself as having a mind (education, skills) or a body (physical appearance).
Thinking of ourselves first of all as a spirit made in God’s image will put us in a position to hear more clearly the voice of God.
When you think of yourself this way, you can resist mental and emotional challenges.
Week 5 – August 30 – Develop your conscience to hear clearly God’s leading.
There are three ways that the Father leads you in your spirit.
1. The Voice of Conscience.
2. The Voice of the Holy Spirit
3.The Inward Witness
8 points about the voice of conscience
We can be born again and still have a conscience that is not distinct and clear.
A cloudy conscience.
It can be like finding the sun in the sky on a cloudy day.
1. The conscience must be trained in the Word, and only then will it be a safe guide.
1 John 3:20-21 (NKJV)
For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things. 21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God.
2. An Old Testament analogy of changing your belief system and cleansing the conscience.
And, if we don’t challenge the wrong beliefs that we learn from those close to us, then those beliefs can be like thorns in our eyes and thorns in our sides.
3. God designed our conscience to grow in an atmosphere of unconditional love, in a healthy family where love rules.
1 John 4:18 (NLT)
Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.
God planned for our homes to be places of unconditional, self-sacrificial love.
***Because of sin, we rarely see unconditional love in our homes.
4. We learn what love looks like from our families.
We learn what love looks like. For some, love comes with control, abuse, guilt, and neglect. The very people who should love you take advantage of you.
So many people grow up in an atmosphere charged with accusations, anger, bitterness, revenge, and ridicule. Instead of unconditional love, love is based on performance.
These things affect the conscience, and place in us a belief system that says: I must defend myself, I must be wary of other people. I cannot trust people close to me.
5. Mind renewal helps change our belief system, our conscience, and sets us up to clearly hear God speak.
Conscious thoughts – underlying thoughts…
Romans 12:1-2 (NKJV)
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
6. Developing your love nature will begin to renew and cleanse your conscience.
The first fruit of the born again human spirit is love.
1 John 3:14 (NLT)
If we love our brothers and sisters who are believers, it proves that we have passed from death to life. But a person who has no love is still dead.
7. Don’t sear your conscience!
Repetitive injury produces hardness.
8. How to keep a clear conscience:
We are covering the three ways that the Father leads you in your spirit.
1. The voice of Conscience.
2. The Voice of the Holy Spirit
3.The Inward Witness
2. The Voice of the Holy Spirit
You must learn the voice of God for yourself.
1 Corinthians 14:10 (KJV)
There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification.
Learn to distinguish between the flesh, emotions, demonic influences, your conscience, the voice of the Holy Spirit.
Write it down when you think the Lord is speaking to you.
The Holy Spirit’s voice is more authoritative or you could say stronger than the inward witness or the conscience.
Acts 8: 26-29 – NLT
As for Philip, an angel of the Lord said to him, “Go south down the desert road that runs from Jerusalem to Gaza.” (27) So he started out, and he met the treasurer of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under the Kandake, the queen of Ethiopia. The eunuch had gone to Jerusalem to worship, (28) and he was now returning. Seated in his carriage, he was reading aloud from the book of the prophet Isaiah. (29) The Holy Spirit said to Philip, “Go over and walk along beside the carriage.”
Acts 16: 6-7
Now when they had gone through Phrygia and the region of Galatia, they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the word in Asia. (7) After they had come to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit did not permit them.
Acts 10: 19-20
While Peter thought about the vision, the Spirit said to him, “Behold, three men are seeking you. (20) Arise therefore, go down and go with them, doubting nothing; for I have sent them.”
The Holy Spirit will never say anything or ask you to do something that disagrees with the Word of God.
1994 – You take that church!
2013 – You can keep believing for that property, but, if you let me…
The Holy Spirit also speaks in dreams and visions:
No, what you see was predicted long ago by the prophet Joel:
(17) ‘In the last days,’ God says, ‘I will pour out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams.
Acts 16:8-10 (NKJV)
So passing by Mysia, they came down to Troas. (9) And a vision appeared to Paul in the night. A man of Macedonia stood and pleaded with him, saying, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” (10) Now after he had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go to Macedonia, concluding that the Lord had called us to preach the gospel to them.
Matthew 1:20-21 (NLT)
As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. (21) And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”
Matthew 2:11-14 -NLT
They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. (12) When it was time to leave, they returned to their own country by another route, for God had warned them in a dream not to return to Herod. (13) After the wise men were gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up! Flee to Egypt with the child and his mother,” the angel said. “Stay there until I tell you to return, because Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.” (14) That night Joseph left for Egypt with the child and Mary, his mother,
In recent years I have made changes in how we manage our church. During those changes I had very specific dreams about the changes that helped me navigate through that time.
Some of the dreams had to do with warnings and danger points to be aware of as we made changes.
Last June 11th, I recorded a dream in my journal:
Last night, I slept hard. I had a dream that I was driving some kind of vehicle that was pulling a long row of carts carrying people, like what we sat in when looking at Christmas lights in Benson last December.
We were ALL naked! Me too! Now, I didn’t see nakedness, I was just aware that we all were undressed. I was navigating the vehicle around obstacles and traffic. I kept telling everyone, It’s going to be ok.
End of dream.
The nakedness had to do with being vulnerable and unprepared. The navigating had to do with my leading us around in hard places that are coming.
Several times over the last 3 or 4 years I have had dreams of storms, and each time I knew we would navigate through them and be ok.
We are in a time that we need to be open for the Holy Spirit to speak to us, and we need to listen to what He is saying.
1. Can you differentiate between the voice of conscience and the voice of the Holy Spirit.
2. Are you seeking to obey God’s word as you make decisions hour by hour each day?
3. Do you write down dreams that you remember? Do you keep a journal of things you believe that the Lord speaks to you?
God Still Speaks Through Dreams and Visions!
Acts 2:16-21 -NLT
No, what you see was predicted long ago by the prophet Joel:17 ‘In the last days,’ God says, ‘I will pou r out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams. 18 In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on my servants—men and women alike— and they will prophesy. 19 And I will cause wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below— blood and fire and clouds of smoke. 20 The sun will become dark, and the moon will turn blood red before that great and glorious day of the Lord arrives. 21 But everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’
This is how Jesus the Messiah was born. His mother, Mary, was engaged to be married to Joseph. But before the marriage took place, while she was still a virgin, she became pregnant through the power of the Holy Spirit. 19 Joseph, her fiancé, was a good man and did not want to disgrace her publicly, so he decided to break the engagement quietly. 20 As he considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream. “Joseph, son of David,” the angel said, “do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife. For the child within her was conceived by the Holy Spirit. 21 And she will have a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All of this occurred to fulfill the Lord’s message through his prophet: 23 “Look! The virgin will conceive a child! She will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means ‘God is with us.'” 24 When Joseph woke up, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded and took Mary as his wife.
The Wise Men and Joseph
Matthew 2:11-14 -NLT
They entered the house and saw the child with his mother, Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasure chests and gave him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. 12 When it was time to leave, they returned to their own country by another route, for God had warned them in a dream not to return to Herod. 13 After the wise men were gone, an angel of the Lord appeared to Joseph in a dream. “Get up! Flee to Egypt with the child and his mother,” the angel said. “Stay there until I tell you to return, because Herod is going to search for the child to kill him.” 14 That night Joseph left for Egypt with the child and Mary, his mother,
Matthew 2:19-23 – NLT
When Herod died, an angel of the Lord appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt. 20 “Get up!” the angel said. “Take the child and his mother back to the land of Israel, because those who were trying to kill the child are dead.” 21 So Joseph got up and returned to the land of Israel with Jesus and his mother. 22 But when he learned that the new ruler of Judea was Herod’s son Archelaus, he was afraid to go there. Then, after being warned in a dream, he left for the region of Galilee. 23 So the family went and lived in a town called Nazareth. This fulfilled what the prophets had said: “He will be called a Nazarene.”
Matthew 27:17-19 -NKJV
Therefore, when they had gathered together, Pilate said to them, “Whom do you want me to release to you? Barabbas, or Jesus who is called Christ?” 18 For he knew that they had handed Him over because of envy. 19 While he was sitting on the judgment seat, his wife sent to him, saying, “Have nothing to do with that just Man, for I have suffered many things today in a dream because of Him.”
Genesis 20:3-6 -NLT
But that night God came to Abimelech in a dream and told him, “You are a dead man, for that woman you have taken is already married!” 4 But Abimelech had not slept with her yet, so he said, “Lord, will you destroy an innocent nation? 5 Didn’t Abraham tell me, ‘She is my sister’? And she herself said, ‘Yes, he is my brother.’ I acted in complete innocence! My hands are clean.” 6 In the dream God responded, “Yes, I know you are innocent. That’s why I kept you from sinning against me, and why I did not let you touch her.
Genesis 37:5-12 -NLT
One night Joseph had a dream, and when he told his brothers about it, they hated him more than ever.6 “Listen to this dream,” he said.7 “We were out in the field, tying up bundles of grain. Suddenly my bundle stood up, and your bundles all gathered around and bowed low before mine!”8 His brothers responded, “So you think you will be our king, do you? Do you actually think you will reign over us?” And they hated him all the more because of his dreams and the way he talked about them.9 Soon Joseph had another dream, and again he told his brothers about it. “Listen, I have had another dream,” he said. “The sun, moon, and eleven stars bowed low before me!”10 This time he told the dream to his father as well as to his brothers, but his father scolded him. “What kind of dream is that?” he asked. “Will your mother and I and your brothers actually come and bow to the ground before you?”11 But while his brothers were jealous of Joseph, his father wondered what the dreams meant.
Pharaoh’s Cup-bearer and baker
Genesis 40:5-22 – NLT
While they were in prison, Pharaoh’s cup-bearer and baker each had a dream one night, and each dream had its own meaning.6 When Joseph saw them the next morning, he noticed that they both looked upset.7 “Why do you look so worried today?” he asked them.8 And they replied, “We both had dreams last night, but no one can tell us what they mean.” “Interpreting dreams is God’s business,” Joseph replied. “Go ahead and tell me your dreams.”9 So the chief cup-bearer told Joseph his dream first. “In my dream,” he said, “I saw a grapevine in front of me.10 The vine had three branches that began to bud and blossom, and soon it produced clusters of ripe grapes.11 I was holding Pharaoh’s wine cup in my hand, so I took a cluster of grapes and squeezed the juice into the cup. Then I placed the cup in Pharaoh’s hand.”12 “This is what the dream means,” Joseph said. “The three branches represent three days.13 Within three days Pharaoh will lift you up and restore you to your position as his chief cup-bearer.14 And please remember me and do me a favor when things go well for you. Mention me to Pharaoh, so he might let me out of this place.15 For I was kidnapped from my homeland, the land of the Hebrews, and now I’m here in prison, but I did nothing to deserve it.”16 When the chief baker saw that Joseph had given the first dream such a positive interpretation, he said to Joseph, “I had a dream, too. In my dream there were three baskets of white pastries stacked on my head.17 The top basket contained all kinds of pastries for Pharaoh, but the birds came and ate them from the basket on my head.”18 “This is what the dream means,” Joseph told him. “The three baskets also represent three days.19 Three days from now Pharaoh will lift you up and impale your body on a pole. Then birds will come and peck away at your flesh.”20 Pharaoh’s birthday came three days later, and he prepared a banquet for all his officials and staff. He summoned his chief cup-bearer and chief baker to join the other officials.21 He then restored the chief cup-bearer to his former position, so he could again hand Pharaoh his cup.22 But Pharaoh impaled the chief baker, just as Joseph had predicted when he interpreted his dream.
Two full years later, Pharaoh dreamed that he was standing on the bank of the Nile River.2 In his dream he saw seven fat, healthy cows come up out of the river and begin grazing in the marsh grass.3 Then he saw seven more cows come up behind them from the Nile, but these were scrawny and thin. These cows stood beside the fat cows on the riverbank.4 Then the scrawny, thin cows ate the seven healthy, fat cows! At this point in the dream, Pharaoh woke up.5 But he fell asleep again and had a second dream. This time he saw seven heads of grain, plump and beautiful, growing on a single stalk.6 Then seven more heads of grain appeared, but these were shriveled and withered by the east wind.7 And these thin heads swallowed up the seven plump, well-formed heads! Then Pharaoh woke up again and realized it was a dream.8 The next morning Pharaoh was very disturbed by the dreams. So he called for all the magicians and wise men of Egypt. When Pharaoh told them his dreams, not one of them could tell him what they meant.9 Finally, the king’s chief cup-bearer spoke up. “Today I have been reminded of my failure,” he told Pharaoh.10 “Some time ago, you were angry with the chief baker and me, and you imprisoned us in the palace of the captain of the guard.11 One night the chief baker and I each had a dream, and each dream had its own meaning.12 There was a young Hebrew man with us in the prison who was a slave of the captain of the guard. We told him our dreams, and he told us what each of our dreams meant.13 And everything happened just as he had predicted. I was restored to my position as cup-bearer, and the chief baker was executed and impaled on a pole.”14 Pharaoh sent for Joseph at once, and he was quickly brought from the prison. After he shaved and changed his clothes, he went in and stood before Pharaoh.15 Then Pharaoh said to Joseph, “I had a dream last night, and no one here can tell me what it means. But I have heard that when you hear about a dream you can interpret it.”16 “It is beyond my power to do this,” Joseph replied. “But God can tell you what it means and set you at ease.”17 So Pharaoh told Joseph his dream. “In my dream,” he said, “I was standing on the bank of the Nile River,18 and I saw seven fat, healthy cows come up out of the river and begin grazing in the marsh grass.19 But then I saw seven sick-looking cows, scrawny and thin, come up after them. I’ve never seen such sorry-looking animals in all the land of Egypt.20 These thin, scrawny cows ate the seven fat cows.21 But afterward you wouldn’t have known it, for they were still as thin and scrawny as before! Then I woke up.22 “Then I fell asleep again, and I had another dream. This time I saw seven heads of grain, full and beautiful, growing on a single stalk.23 Then seven more heads of grain appeared, but these were blighted, shriveled, and withered by the east wind.24 And the shriveled heads swallowed the seven healthy heads. I told these dreams to the magicians, but no one could tell me what they mean.”25 Joseph responded, “Both of Pharaoh’s dreams mean the same thing. God is telling Pharaoh in advance what he is about to do.26 The seven healthy cows and the seven healthy heads of grain both represent seven years of prosperity.27 The seven thin, scrawny cows that came up later and the seven thin heads of grain, withered by the east wind, represent seven years of famine.28 “This will happen just as I have described it, for God has revealed to Pharaoh in advance what he is about to do.29 The next seven years will be a period of great prosperity throughout the land of Egypt.30 But afterward there will be seven years of famine so great that all the prosperity will be forgotten in Egypt. Famine will destroy the land.31 This famine will be so severe that even the memory of the good years will be erased.32 As for having two similar dreams, it means that these events have been decreed by God, and he will soon make them happen.33 “Therefore, Pharaoh should find an intelligent and wise man and put him in charge of the entire land of Egypt.
1 Kings 3
Daniel 2, Daniel 4
Daniel 7 – 4 beasts
People who had visions and/or angelic visitations:
Peter – released from prison by angel