|Last month, I shared how we need to be intentional in listening to the voice of God in prayer, and following in obedience. This month, we will briefly explore some of the ways God speaks to us. It is important that we recognise God’s voice when He is trying to communicate with us. How amazing it is that the God of the universe would want to communicate with us, His most special of all creations.
Can you think of all the ways in scripture that God spoke to people? Read Acts 10:1-33 and you will see a few ways. Cornelius, a God-fearing Roman centurion, was praying in the afternoon and clearly saw an angel in a vision (v3). The angel then spoke to him (v4). Peter was praying the following day at noon (v9). He fell into a trance, an open vision (v11), and God spoke to him (vv13-16). We then see in verse 19 that the Spirit spoke to him. So that’s three different ways in one passage (four if you include the angel). Notice they were praying when these things happened.
What about Hebrews 1:1-2? Verse two says God has spoken to us by his Son. So every word of His that we read is God speaking to us. If you want to hear God’s voice clearly, read all of Jesus’ words in the gospels.
Remember the two Josephs? One was cast aside by his brothers and then became the Prime Minister of Egypt. The other was the husband of Mary, the carrier of the Saviour of the world. Both of them had significant dreams that God used to speak to them (Genesis 37:5-11, Matthew 1:20, 2:13, 19). Some needed interpreting, others didn’t as they were very explicit with instruction.
Paul says in 2 Timothy 3:16 that all Scripture is breathed out by God. He speaks through His written word and in this particular case, Paul is referring to the “sacred writings” of the Old Testament (see 1 Timothy 3:15-16).
He speaks through people. Another example is Timothy himself, where Paul encourages him to “preach the word… reprove, rebuke, exhort” (2 Timothy 4:1-5).
There are so many more ways recorded in Scripture that you could dive into, and if you want to jump in deeper, then I highly recommend Jack Deere’s book Surprised by the Voice of God.
Maybe you have experienced God speaking to you in all of these ways, maybe not. Don’t limit the way God wants to speak to you. He is a supernatural God and can speak to us however He wants. Be like a young Samuel who, when first learning to hear God’s voice, said, “Speak Lord, your servant is listening” (1 Samuel 3:1-10).