How God Spoke in the Old and New Testament
Last week we began to look into the topic of Listening to God and we considered the question-Does God Want to Talk to Today?
We were able to conclude that of course, God desires to talk to us today so that we can know what He desires. However, in order to do what God is talking about, we have to listen to Him.
So if God is still talking, how does He speak? God has clearly shown His methods of speaking to man in the different ways that He revealed Himself in the Old and New Testament. There are several ways He accomplished His desire to speak in the days of the Old and New Testament-
1) God would speak by divine revelation
A great way to see this is His dealings with Abraham
1Now the Lord had said to Abram: “Get out of your country, from your family and from your father’s house, to a land that I will show you.
2 I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing.
2) God would speak through dreams
The Bible does not ever say to seek the mind of God in dreams. Yet, God may speak to a person through times of searching but this is in response to a true desire to know what God desires for a person.
Acts 2:17 tells us that-“ ‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.
3) God would speak through His written word
A great example of this is the giving of the Ten Commandments to Moses. There is also the account of an audible hearing as was seen for Paul on the road to Damascus.
3Now as he journeyed he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven flashed about him.
4And he fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, "Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?"
5And he said, "Who are you, Lord?" And he said, "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting;
6but rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do."
4) God would speak through His prophets
God hs always had those who were to speak His truth. Today although we might use the term prophet there re those who proclaim the truth of His Word. It is important though to be discerning as a believer into who and what listen to and believe. A pastor friend years go said that “all in the name of Jesus, ain’t.” The truth is just because it is said to have come from Him it may not so discernment is important for everyone.
1If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder,
2and the sign or wonder that he tells you comes to pass, and if he says, ‘Let us go after other gods,’ which you have not known, ‘and let us serve them,’
3you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams. For the Lord your God is testing you, to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.
5) God would speak through circumstances
Gideon was always fearful about doing what God wanted him to do. Gideon would lay out a fleece to understand the direction God desired. God was gracious in His dealings with Gideon and gave Him the assurance and confidence he needed. Yet, this is the only time in scripture where we see God deal with man in this manner.
36 So Gideon said to God, “If You will save Israel by my hand as You have said—
37 look, I shall put a fleece of wool on the threshing floor; if there is dew on the fleece only, and it is dry on all the ground, then I shall know that You will save Israel by my hand, as You have said.”
38 And it was so. When he rose early the next morning and squeezed the fleece together, he wrung the dew out of the fleece, a bowlful of water.
39 Then Gideon said to God, “Do not be angry with me, but let me speak just once more: Let me test, I pray, just once more with the fleece; let it now be dry only on the fleece, but on all the ground let there be dew.”
40 And God did so that night. It was dry on the fleece only, but there was dew on all the ground.
6) God would speak through angels
Mary and Joseph are a beautiful example of His using angels to give His plan to man.
26 Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent by God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth,
27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin’s name was Mary.
28 And having come in, the angel said to her, “Rejoice, highly favored one, the Lord is with you;]blessed are you among women!”
29 But [fwhen she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and considered what manner of greeting this was.
30 Then the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.
31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name Jesus.
32 He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the
throne of His father David.
33 And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”
34 Then Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I [g]do not know a man?”
35 And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God.
36 Now indeed, Elizabeth your relative has also conceived a son in her old age; and this is now the sixth month for her who was called barren.
37 For with God nothing will be impossible.”
38 Then Mary said, “Behold the maidservant of the Lord! Let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.
18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit.
19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not wanting to make her a public example, was minded to put her away secretly.
20 But while he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit.
21 And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.”
22 So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying:
23 “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.”
24 Then Joseph, being aroused from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord commanded him and took to him his wife,
25 and did not know her till she had brought forth her firstborn Son. And he called His name Jesus.
7) God would speak through the Holy Spirit
Look at Acts 16:6-7
6 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.
Proverbs 1:33 says-
33But whoever listens to me will dwell safely, and will be secure, without fear of evil.”
I trust that you are enjoying this series of blogs and you will join us again next week.
A thought to ponder,