Friday, March 11, 2011

What If We Don't!?

It is really interesting, all over the Internet this week, people were asking questions about the Kingdom. And as a result, there was plenty of blogarrhea. How do you feel about having fun as a Christian? About Rob Bell? About Calvinism? About salvation? There are a lot of opinions out there.

I once heard Wayne Anderson say this: "Does God have an opinion?" And all across the sanctuary there were nodding heads. "Yes." "Then why do you need one?" And all across the sanctuary there was hushed silence and a couple of nervous laughs.

If you think about it, God doesn't need us. The Father, Son and Holy Spirit could have thier own gong show without us. As I listen to all these blo-pinions (blog opinions), I have to make some sort of determination as to: A) where the writer is coming from, B) what their agenda might be, and c) what are they not saying that I need to know.

If we follow Mr. Anderson's lead here, we actually don't need to know all that stuff. We need to know what God thinks.

If you are a good evangelical, everything that God thinks is in the Bible - well except for Calvin, Bell and a definitive answer on salvation, you might be missing something.

I don't think I know a Christian that doesn't have an opinion about how exactly one gets saved, is predestined, or ends up in Hell. I have written about all that before - so you can read them by clicking on the links. What I am focusing on today, is finding out what God's opinion is.

I don't believe that Bible contains all the answers; some I think we need to get from God.

How do we do it? I bet you think that I am going to tell you to pray, read the Bible and get to church, but I am not. I think that we need to focus on what a relationship is. If you think of some of your favorites, you probably think of doing nice things for one another, spending time together, getting gifts for important holidays and celebrations, saying kind words, and expressing your relationship in handshakes or hugs and in the case of a spouse, sex. Oh yeah, and you talk to one another.

Interestingly, that is how God is. If you have ever read Song of Songs, you'll see what I am talking about. God wants to be intimate with us, and the Bible also says that as sheep we will know His voice. I am going to assume that if you have read this far, you are interested in hearing God's voice. Let's examine how God speaks to the sheep in the Bible:

- 1 The Scriptures - The infallible guide to Christianity. There is no other authoritative text.
- 2 His people - As God assembles his saints locally and regionally, they have a voice. Hopefully it is Him.
- 3 Your circumstances - Because God knew you before your were born, He will continually try to set up circumstances that bring you closer to Him.
- 4 The internal audible voice (sense or feeling, an impression - direct revelation) - often during prayer and during times of direct ministry.
Revelatory utterances from on High: for the edification of the church and sometimes individuals
- 5 Tongues and interpretations, words of wisdom, knowledge and faith (internal revelation).
- 6 Spiritual Song, both vocal an instrumental (internal revelation) - a form of prophecy
- 7 Dreams and interpretations (internal revelation) - a form of prophecy
- 8 Prophets (internal/external revelation)
- 9 Angels (direct revelation) - Generally reserved for significant information to be brought to earth.
- 10 His audible voice (direct revelation) - Generally reserved for significant information to be brought to earth.

We could have a long debate over how common each of these ways that God speaks, occur in a church or individuals life. The point is, if you actually believe that God has an opinion, then you need to hear it. Amen?


photogr said...

Well the topic of opinions. God definitely shares His opinions with us if we would only listen. Opinions are a lot like anal clefts. Every one has one.

The scriptures say God loves us all (sinners or saints)so I guess He does want a relationship with us dispite our short comings and repeatedly sinning. I am just waiting for Him to lower the boom on what is going on in the world today. But I would imagine He does get a bit peeved with us if we don't follow His guidance such as recorded in Isaiah and other prophesy in the bible.

The recent tragedy that is happening in Japan with the horror of the seas rushing in over the lands in my opinion may well be the descriptions of what may transpire as we approach the end times as described in prophesy all through the bible.

If the volcano in Japan starts to get active now, will certainly have a solid foundation for an opinion. NO I don't think God is punishing Japan but it may well be signs of what is to come on a grander scale.

In my opinion, this is something we have to pay heed to. I sincerely pray for those people to be given His grace and not to suffer.

Charlie's Church of Christ said...

I think God mostly uses the internal voice you mentioned, which conveniently enough is the one you can most easily skew or misinterpret or mis-credit. I liked the list - I found it helpful.

Charlie's Church of Christ said...

I found that list very helpful. The one God seems to most use with me - the internal voice - is also, conveniently enough, the voice most easily misunderstood, misinterpreted and mis-credited/mis-attributed. DANGIT!

Tony C said...

To say/believe the thoughts of God are limited to 66 written books is very limiting to who God is. One of the major reasons we have splits in the church is the limited mind of man trying to force an inspired verse of Scripture into a situation it doesn't apply.

Some of my questions won't be answer until I get to ask Him myself...and for some reason, I just don't think those questions will really matter at that point.

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