25 November 2020
One day, I was in a room of the house with our dog. I heard my wife's voice from elsewhere in the house, but couldn't pick up what she was saying. Meanwhile, my dog's ears perked up and she raced out the door towards my wife. I don't know that my dog understood what my wife said, but my dog knew the voice.
There are a lot of voices these days -- voices in the culture, voices in classrooms, voices in the media and on the Internet, voices of people and even our own voices. Sometimes the voices are repeating, ruminating reels of ruin. Sometimes they bring discouragement and fear. Sometimes they bring falsehood. What voices are you listening to?
In John 10:16 and 27, Jesus says, "And I have other sheep that are not of this fold; I must bring them also, and they will listen to My voice; and they will become one flock, with one shepherd. ... My sheep listen to My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me" (NASB).
We need His voice. We need to have clarity against all the noise of today. Are you one of His sheep?
Where can we hear His voice of Truth? If we think about communication with others, we hear their voices by listening to or reading their words. So, we need to listen to and read Jesus' Word. His Word is the Bible. Are you spending time in the Bible?
We can also hear His voice in Bible-preaching churches and among Bible-believing Christians. Are you in correspondence or fellowship with God's people?
And sometimes, we can hear His voice in circumstances. There are times when I am discouraged. Often the discouragement reveals an idol. Am I surrendering that idol to Him? Are you surrendering your idols to Him?
In a fog, a ship relies on a lighthouse to keep from hitting the rocky shore, which brings destruction. Likewise, the voices of the world system, the carnal flesh and the devil bring destruction. Jesus is a lighthouse shining a light in the darkness. It reminds me of John 1:1-14 (NASB):
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him not even one thing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of mankind. And the Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not grasp it.
A man came, one sent from God, and his name was John. He came [f]as a witness, to testify about the Light, so that all might believe through him. He was not the Light, but he came to testify about the Light.
This was the true Light that, coming into the world, enlightens every person. He was in the world, and the world came into being through Him, and yet the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own people did not accept Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of a man, but of God.
And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us; and we saw His glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth."
And if you know Jesus, you are to be His voice. Matthew 5:16 says, "Your light must shine before people in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven" (NASB).
Further, Paul writes in 2 Corinthians 5:20-21: "...we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. He made Him who knew no sin to be sin in our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him."
Do you know Him? Are you hearing His voice? Are you listening to His voice? Are you being His voice? Are you discouraged? I repeatedly learn the hard way that the encourager is indeed the one who is encouraged.
And using your gift is going beyond merely hearing His voice, but is part of listening to His voice and acting. As James 1:22 says, "But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not just hearers who deceive themselves" (NASB).
Whether it is encouraging, writing, sharing, evangelizing, singing, or administering or teaching, whatever your gift is you can act on hearing His voice. First, though, you have to listen. Romans 10:14-15 (NASB) says the following:
"How then are they to call on Him in whom they have not believed? How are they to believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how are they to hear without a preacher? But how are they to preach unless they are sent? Just as it is written: 'How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things!'"
Upon hearing the voice, my dog went to my wife, not knowing the what, but the who. When we react that way to Jesus, we act in faith. May you hear His voice and may you respond in faith.
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