How God speaks today
1 In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways,
2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son….
–Hebrews 1:1–2 NIV
In the New Testament age, God speaks to us through His Son, the Word. Jesus said, “My sheep listen to my voice” (John 10:27).
Now that Jesus has ascended to the right hand of the Father, how does He speak?
12 “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear.
13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.
14 He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you.
15 All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you.”
–John 16:12–15 NIV
Jesus speaks to us today through the Holy Spirit.
When we listen, we glorify Jesus. Jesus said, “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says…” (Rev. 2:7,11,17,29; 3:6,13,22).
Ways that God communicates
God communicates with us in many ways, through various means.
- Psalm 19:1–4
- Romans 1:20 NIV: “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.”
- Proverbs 12:15 NKJV: “The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, But he who heeds counsel is wise.”
- Proverbs 11:14
- Proverbs 15:22
- Proverbs 20:18
An Audible Voice (Rare)
- Isaiah 30:21 NIV: “Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.'”
- Matthew 17:5
Personal Visitation of the Lord or Angels
- Acts 9:3–6 NIV: “3 As [Saul] neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. 4 He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, ‘Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?’ 5 ‘Who are you, Lord?’ Saul asked. ‘I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,’ he replied. 6 ‘Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.'”
- Luke 1:26–38
Dreams and Visions
- Genesis 20:3–7
- Acts 18:9–10 NIV: “9 One night the Lord spoke to Paul in a vision: ‘Do not be afraid; keep on speaking, do not be silent. 10 For I am with you, and no one is going to attack and harm you, because I have many people in this city.'”
Revelation through Scriptures or Preaching
- Daniel 9:2–3 NIV: “2 [I]n the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the Scriptures, according to the word of the LORD given to Jeremiah the prophet, that the desolation of Jerusalem would last seventy years. 3 So I turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and in sackcloth and ashes.”
- Acts 14:8–10
Inner Witness of Your Spirit
- Romans 8:16 NKJV: “The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God,”
Voice of the Holy Spirit in Your Spirit
- Acts 8:29 NIV: “The Spirit told Philip, ‘Go to that chariot and stay near it.'”
Ministry of the Prophet
- Acts 21:10–11 NIV: “10 After we had been there a number of days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. 11 Coming over to us, he took Paul’s belt, tied his own hands and feet with it and said, ‘The Holy Spirit says, “In this way the Jewish leaders in Jerusalem will bind the owner of this belt and will hand him over to the Gentiles.”‘”
Gifts of Holy Spirit Through Other Believers
- 1 Corinthians 12:7–10 NKJV: “7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 8 for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.”
- 1 Corinthians 14:3,24–25 NIV: “3 But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort. … 24 But if an unbeliever or an inquirer comes in while everyone is prophesying, they are convicted of sin and are brought under judgment by all, 25 as the secrets of their hearts are laid bare. So they will fall down and worship God, exclaiming, ‘God is really among you!'”
Next installment, we’ll learn more about hearing and discerning God’s voice.