Thursday, September 12, 2019

How God Speaks to Us 3

The conclusion of a discussion about how God communicates with us in modern time


Scriptures:
  • Exodus 3:1-6 (NASB)
  • 2 Corinthians 10:5
  • John 4:24
  • Acts 13:2 (NIV)
  • 1 Chronicles 28:19
  • Genesis 18:20-21
  • Genesis 19:1
Stories:
  •  How God has spoken to you
Outline
  • Introduction
  • Moses Meets God
  • Burning Bush
  • Mountain of God: When God Speaks
  • How God Speaks to Us (continued)
  • Conclusion

Introduction

Has anyone heard that God Speaking to each of us all the time?
I’ve heard it said that God is speaking to us all the time but like a radio transmitter you have to be tuned to the right frequency.  
  • I don’t believe this.  
  • I can’t believe God is up there chatting away knowing we won’t hear Him.
He speaks when we “could” hear Him
Story: delayed choice experiment
  • John Wheeler
  • Photon or wave
  • Light doesn’t exist in the time realm
God won’t speak unless you have the ability to hear at that moment
Prayer changes the reality of the future and the past

Moses Meets God

Who were shepherds
  • Abel
  • Abraham?
  • David
  • “The Lord”
Shepherd
  • Cares for the vulnerable
  • Can kill predators
  • Tough and self reliant
  • Had to do it on your own

The skills required to maintain these herds would have involved grazing and watering, birthing, treating the sick and injured, protecting animals from predators and thieves, as well as locating strays.

Key Scripture

Exodus 3:1-6 (NASB)
Now Moses was pasturing the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. 3 So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” 4 When the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” 5 Then He said, “Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” 6 He said also, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” Then Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.
  • Took off his shoes because it was Holy Ground

Burning Bush

  • The bush was burning but it was not consumed
The combustible source that is keeping the fire going is not the bush
  • The fire isn’t fueled by the bush
God was the source

Mountain of God: When God Speaks

  • Moses was on the Mountain of God
  • He wasn’t just walking in a random desert
  • He was on Holy Ground
God engages us when we are on Holy Ground
God is more likely to engage us when we’re in a holy place
  • When we’re seeking Him
God speaks more when you are engaging in:
  • Prayer
  • Worship
  • Reading the bible
Stories:
  • Forgive Your Ex-Wife
  • Call Your Enemy

How God Speaks to Us

What are some ways God speaks to us today?
  1. Bible
  2. Unusual circumstances / coincidences
  3. Fleece
  4. Prayer
  5. Pastors / teachers
  6. Prophetic words
  7. Tongues / Interpretations
  8. Dreams / Visions
  9. Peace
  10. Closing doors
  11. Bringing things to your memory
  12. Audible Voice
  13. Inspired thoughts
  14. Prompting of the Holy Spirit
  15. Draw your Attention to something
  16. Nature
  17. Worship / music
  18. Emotions
  19. Writing
  20. Angels

Inspired thoughts

  • When you have an idea/answer/solution out of nowhere

Out of the Blue

We get thoughts that come into our heads 

They are not all good ideas

What comes into your head is different than what you are thinking. If you are thinking there was a voluntary effort about it.  

People don’t think… Thoughts appear to them appear to them. 

Example:
someone cut you off on the freeway and a dark thought comes into your head that you should ram to their car

“What would happen if I”
  • did…
  • said...

We Then Criticize the Thought

After you get those thoughts you can criticize them which is thinking.  
  • and then we judge them

Thought From God

  • Self evident
  • You don’t have to criticize it
  • Wasn’t something you thought of
  • Something feels different about it
Sometimes we get a thought that is such a great idea that it is self evident that it is the right answer. But it is not something that we consciously concocted or created.

Stories:

  • Surprised friend with wisdom
  • Solved your own problem
  • Help someone in supermarket aisle
  • You woke up today because somebody needs you
  • Your actions impact your family - son

Where Do Other Thoughts Come From?

2 Corinthians 10:5
5 We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ
Why do we need to take our thoughts captive?
  • Because every thought isn’t a good thought
Where do our Thought some from?
Source:
  • You
  • God / Holy Spirit
  • Satan
What does “you” mean?
  • Unconscious mind (ex: dream)
  • Your Spirit
Could a thought be a dialogue between the conscious mind and the unconscious mind.

Draw Your Attention to Something

Draw attention to something
You feel that it is special

Gives Clarity

It answers a question you’ve been praying about
It gives you confirmation
You hear something that you feel is “speaking to you”:
  • Bible verse
  • Song lyrics
  • Conversation

Revelation

“That’s why that happened”

Foretelling

  • “There’s something special about this”
You know this is information you’re going to need
  • Gift of word of knowledge

Story
  • 9V battery In box 
  • Dream about hospital 
  • Opportunity to apologize 
  • Opportunity to connect to the church

Prompting of the Holy Spirit

 We get an unction
  • Don’t go in there
  • Don’t trust that person
  • Convicted of sin
Conviction 

God
  • Towards Holiness
  • prevents you
Satan
  • towards shame
  • reminds you

Spirit to Spirit Communication

John 4:24 
“God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”
This is saying that communication with God is sometimes Spirit to spirit, not brain to brain or mouth to ear, the way we communicate in the physical realm.

Worship / Music

  • Singing, dancing, instruments
Acts 13:2 (NIV)
2 While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”
When we are drawing near to God

Worship
  • To esteem with worth
  • To honor
  • To place the highest value on something
  • To bow down to something
  • To acknowledge in all things
  • Perpetual gratitude
  • To ascribe credit of all things to
Singing, dancing, instruments
  1. God is not interested in your song if it is not to him
  • It’s not worship when we sing to audiences not to God
  1. This source is more important than the resource
  2. Worship does not begin when you start singing or dancing or playing
Worship begins when you acknowledge the source

Praise describes God.  Worship ascribes to God
  • Worship is to surrender to Him.
  • Giving Him credit

Emotions

  • Giving you compassion for others
  • Give you supernatural joy
Some with the gift of healing say that they feel sadness when God wants them to heal someone


Story:
  • Preacher in wheelchair 
  • Overwhelmed by a song

Writing

1 chronicles 28:19
All this," said David, "the LORD made me understand in writing by His hand upon me, all the details of this pattern."
Example: Bible study
  • “Wow that’s deep! … Who wrote that?!?”
Not channeling 

Stories:
  • God telling you what to pray for

Nature

Stories:
  • Beauty of nature
  • Crow following me


Angels
  • Angels act as agents of God
  • Could be via one of the other means
Genesis 18:20-21
20 And the Lord said, “The outcry of Sodom and Gomorrah is indeed great, and their sin is exceedingly grave. 21 I will go down now, and see if they have done entirely according to its outcry, which has come to Me; and if not, I will know.”
  • God said He was going to go and see
Genesis 19:1
1 Now the two angels came to Sodom in the evening as Lot was sitting in the gate of Sodom. When Lot saw them, he rose to meet them and bowed down with his face to the ground.
  • Two angels actually went down

Conclusion

We see that God can speak to us in many ways.  He speaks to us through our spirit, our bodies and our minds.  God can use all 5 of our senses to communicate with us.  He speaks through other people, through nature, and through our circumstances. God can communicate to your conscious or your subconscious mind - asleep or awake.
God doesn’t speak to everyone the same way.  He will speak to you in a personal manner.
We need to be willing to stop and listen at any moment.

Turning From Your Path

In the text, Moses saw a bush burning and not being consumed

He noticed that the fire was not fueled by the bush...so he stopped and paid attention

God spoke to Moses when he turned from his path
  • He turned off of his regular path
  • He stopped what he was doing
  • He noticed something unusual happening and took time out to learn more
  • Took time out to get closer
To hear God, We have to notice when something is a little different
  • God makes the first move but we have to notice it and respond
  • We have to turn away from our normal path in life
We have to allow ourselves to be distracted by God
We have to be willing to pause our busy schedule when God wants to talk
God isn’t going to always speak to you in your quiet time
He may come to you in your noisy time

Will you make room in our schedule?
Will you  be watching?
Will you be listening?

“Earth is crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God,
But only he who sees takes off his shoes”
Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Presenter: Michael Leadon


References

Meaning of Numbers in the Bible The Number 40
Lessons from the Burning Bush - Christopher C. Moore
3 Ways God Speaks

Extra

Acts 7:20-33
20 "It was at this time that Moses was born; and he was lovely in the sight of God, and he was nurtured three months in his father's home.
21 "And after he had been set outside, Pharaoh's daughter took him away and nurtured him as her own son.
22 "Moses was educated in all the learning of the Egyptians, and he was a man of power in words and deeds.
23 "But when he was approaching the age of forty, it entered his mind to visit his brethren, the sons of Israel.
24 "And when he saw one of them being treated unjustly, he defended him and took vengeance for the oppressed by striking down the Egyptian.
25 "And he supposed that his brethren understood that God was granting them deliverance through him, but they did not understand.
26 "On the following day he appeared to them as they were fighting together, and he tried to reconcile them in peace, saying, 'Men, you are brethren, why do you injure one another?'
27 "But the one who was injuring his neighbor pushed him away, saying, 'WHO MADE YOU A RULER AND JUDGE OVER US?
28 'YOU DO NOT MEAN TO KILL ME AS YOU KILLED THE EGYPTIAN YESTERDAY, DO YOU?'
29 "At this remark, MOSES FLED AND BECAME AN ALIEN IN THE LAND OF MIDIAN, where he became the father of two sons.
30 "After forty years had passed, AN ANGEL APPEARED TO HIM IN THE WILDERNESS OF MOUNT Sinai, IN THE FLAME OF A BURNING THORN BUSH.
31 "When Moses saw it, he marveled at the sight; and as he approached to look more closely, there came the voice of the Lord:
32 'I AM THE GOD OF YOUR FATHERS, THE GOD OF ABRAHAM AND ISAAC AND JACOB.' Moses shook with fear and would not venture to look.
33 "BUT THE LORD SAID TO HIM, 'TAKE OFF THE SANDALS FROM YOUR FEET, FOR THE PLACE ON WHICH YOU ARE STANDING IS HOLY GROUND.

Thursday, August 29, 2019

How God Speaks to Us Part 2


Continuing the discussion on the various ways that God speaks to us today.

[Video Coming Soon]

Scriptures:
  • Exodus 3:1-6
  • Ezekiel 8:15-17 (NASB)
  • 1 Timothy 4:16
  • Philippians 1:15-18
  • Acts 16:16-18
  • 1 Corinthians 14:27-28
Stories:
  •  How God has spoken to you
Outline
  • Introduction
  • Moses Meets God
  • 40 means Preparation
  • Facing the East
  • How God Speaks to Us
  • Conclusion

Introduction

The reasons it’s important to hear from God is to
  • Strengthen our faith
  • Develop a relationship
  • Ascertain God’s will

Scriptural Context

Moses had 3 significant 40 year segments
  • Birth to killing the Egyptian
  • Tending to sheep and burning bush
  • Leading Israel through the desert and getting to the doorsteps of the promised land

Moses Meets God

Key Scripture

Exodus 3:1-6
Now Moses was pasturing the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. 2 The angel of the Lord appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. 3 So Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” 4 When the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” 5 Then He said, “Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.” 6 He said also, “I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” Then Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.
  • God gave Moses his new identity
  • God revealed Himself to Moses
  • The Angel of the Lord is pre-incarnate Jesus

40 is the Number of Preparation

The number 40 generally symbolizes a period of testing, trial or probation.
During Moses' life he lived forty years in Egypt and forty years in the desert before God selected him to lead his people out of slavery.
What did Moses do to prepare?
  • He had 40 years of learning how to live in prosperity
  • He had 40 years of learning how to live in humility
  • Moses had 40 years in the king's house
  • Moses in 40 years in the priests house
  • Moses was also on Mount Sinai for 40 days and nights, on two separate occasions (Exodus 24:18, 34:1 - 28), receiving God's laws.
  • The book of Exodus has 40 chapters
  • He also sent spies, for forty days, to investigate the land God promised the Israelites as an inheritance (Numbers 13:25, 14:34).
It rained on Noah 40 days and 40 nights causing the great flood
  • Preparing the earth for a new people of God
The prophet Jonah warned ancient Nineveh, for forty days, that its destruction would come because of its many sins.
  • He prepared their hearts to repent
The prophet Ezekiel laid on His right side for 40 days to symbolize Judah's sins (Ezekiel 4:6).
Elijah went 40 days without food or water at Mount Horeb.
Judges who served 40 years include Othniel, Deborah and Barak, Eli and Gideon.
The first three kings over the children of Israel, Saul, David and Solomon, each ruled for forty years (1050 to 930 B.C.).
Jesus spent 40 days and nights in the wilderness fasting just before his ministry began.
  • He also appeared to his disciples and others for 40 days after his resurrection from the dead.
  • 40 days of preparation for His public ministry

Facing the East

  • The mountain was on the west side of the wilderness
  • Facing the west signified facing (our) God
If the mountain on the westside of the desert and you want to pray to God which direction would you face?

Ezekiel 8:15-17 (NASB)
15 He said to me, "Do you see this, son of man? Yet you will see still greater abominations than these."
16 Then He brought me into the inner court of the LORD'S house. And behold, at the entrance to the temple of the LORD, between the porch and the altar, were about twenty-five men with their backs to the temple of the LORD and their faces toward the east; and they were prostrating themselves eastward toward the sun.
17 He said to me, "Do you see this, son of man? Is it too light a thing for the house of Judah to commit the abominations which they have committed here, that they have filled the land with violence and provoked Me repeatedly? For behold, they are putting the twig to their nose.
  • Putting the twig to their nose is a practice of sun worship
God said that facing East was an abomination
  • Facing the east is to worship the sun god
  • Adrammelech, Amon, Tammuz, Baal, Osiris
  • If your God is to the East it is not the same God
Note: Modern Jews believe:  they should face toward the Holy Land when praying, those in Israel should face toward Jerusalem, those in Jerusalem should face toward the Temple Mount, and those on the Mount should turn toward the Holy of Holies.

How God Speaks to Us

What are some ways God speaks to us today?
  1. Bible
  2. Unusual circumstances / coincidences
  3. Fleece
  4. Prayer
  5. Pastors / teachers
  6. Prophetic words
  7. Tongues / Interpretations
  8. Dreams / Visions
  9. Peace
  10. Closing doors
  11. Bringing things to your memory
  12. Voice
  13. Inspired thoughts
  14. Prompting of the Holy Spirit
  15. Draw your Attention to something
  16. Nature
  17. Worship / music
  18. Emotions
  19. Writing
  20. Angels

Pastors / Teachers

Story: 
  • sermon matching what I taught
  • marriage advice
Regardless of Motives

Philippians 1:15-18
15Some, to be sure, are preaching Christ even from envy and strife, but some also from good will; 16the latter do it out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel; 17the former proclaim Christ out of selfish ambition rather than from pure motives, thinking to cause me distress in my imprisonment. 18What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed; and in this I rejoice.
  • We should rejoice
  • But not necessarily follow them
Correct Doctrine

1 Timothy 4:16
16 Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you.
Your salvation can be influenced by who is teaching you are listening to
Story: Super Bowl trade
  • Tennessee Titans to the New England Patriots
  • Right team
Spit out the Bones
  • If you have studied doctrines and the bible you can eat the meat and spit out the bones

Prophecy

Prophecy is God speaking through a person
  • God actually gave them the words to say
Stories:
  • submit to God
  • give me money for a prophecy

Testing prophecy
  • Prophecy always lines up with God’s word
  • The problem is that we have many self-made prophets
  • Some people try to use it as manipulation
How can you tell a false prophet?
  • If any of their prophecies don’t come true
If their prophecies come true does that mean it was from the Holy Spirit?
  • Not necessarily
Acts 16:16-18
It happened that as we were going to the place of prayer, a slave-girl having a spirit of divination met us, who was bringing her masters much profit by fortune-telling.
17 Following after Paul and us, she kept crying out, saying, "These men are bond-servants of the Most High God, who are proclaiming to you the way of salvation."
18 She continued doing this for many days. But Paul was greatly annoyed, and turned and said to the spirit, "I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her!" And it came out at that very moment.
  • Just because it is Supernatural doesn’t mean that it is from God
  • Just because a psychic is accurate doesn’t mean that you should solicit them
Is prophecy always a confirmation of what God already told you?
  • No
  • Samuel told Saul he’d be king
  • Jonah
  • Hezekiah's death

Tongues and interpretations

The gift of tongues is the Holy Spirit speaking
  • If it is an unknown tongue God is not speaking to the listener
1 Corinthians 14:27-28
27If anyone speaks in a tongue, it should be by two or at the most three, and each in turn, and one must interpret; 28but if there is no interpreter, he must keep silent in the church; and let him speak to himself and to God.
If someone is speaking in tongues and you don’t understand what they are saying then God is not speaking to you through them unless there is an interpreter

Dreams / Visions

Dream is when you were asleep a vision is when you are awake
Dreams can be hard to interpret
  • There is a gift of interpretation of dreams
All dreams aren’t from God
God speaks to believers and unbelievers through dreams
  • The Magi, Nebuchadnezzar, Abimelech, Pharaoh (Joseph)

Stories:
  • Niece having daughter named "faith"
  • Coming to the USA

Peace

Sometimes His presence is His voice
  • He speaks through His peace
  • When you get a supernatural peace

Closing Doors

  • Sometimes God will close a door to an option that you weren’t meant to take
  • “anti-miracle”
Sometimes it was from God
  • Layoff
  • Breakup
Stories:
  • Cancelled flight to London
  • Seth McFarland 911 flight
  • Moving to Bay Area to take job after breakup
“At some point, we must recognize that the circumstances we ask God to change are often the very circumstances God is using to change us.”
- Mark Batterson

Discussion
  • What brings people close to God?

Bringing things to your memory

  • God may bring a scriptures to your mind
Stories
  • girlfriend motives

(Still Small) Voice

Stories:
  • mom's voice

Inspired thoughts

Thoughts God puts in our heads

Clarity

Angels


Conclusion

The point of hearing God is to
  • Strengthen our faith
  • Develop a relationship
  • Ascertain God’s will
Once we hear from God, We’ll need faith to do what God told you to do
  • when it doesn't make sense
  • When you don't understand
  • When it seems to take us further than the goal we’ve set ourselves

References

Meaning of Numbers in the Bible The Number 40
Lessons from the Burning Bush - Christopher C. Moore
How God Speaks to Us - Jumoke