Can God Speak To Us Today?
Most people will say that they believe in God or “A Higher power” when asked in surveys, but for many this is a vague idea about a guiding principle behind the universe or the hand of destiny or fate, and NOT a person who they could talk to or EVEN LESS a person who might speak to them.
But the Bible says Job 33:14:
“For God does speak - now one way, now another – Though man may not perceive it.”
How can God speak to you and me in the twenty-first century?
The Bible says that God communicates to mankind in a variety of ways:
Here are 6 possible ways:-
Romans 1:20 “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities -
His eternal power and divine nature - have been clearly seen,
being understood from what has been made, so that men are
Beauty and design of nature, whilst not proving the existence of God, give man a sense of awe and transcendence, for example each snowflake is different.
Science has discovered The Anthropic Principle in the universe which is the observation that many physical constants are set at just the right numerical level for life to exist - a slight change up or down would result in no life as we know it being possible in this universe, for example:
The Gravitational Constant is just right for the production of stars and galaxies; any lower and the universe would consist of particles thrown apart too fast by the big bang to form into galaxies and any higher and it would collapse back in on itself in a “Big Crunch”. Also regulates the earth’s orbit and temperature.
The Electromagnetic Charge on an electron and proton is just right for the formation of a hydrogen atom, (and the other atoms), and so all matter.
Ecc. 3:11 “He has made everything beautiful in its time He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end”
Our minds can conceive of abstracts such as beauty, love and eternity which science cannot deal with but are actually the most important things to us, for example science could quantify and then measure the mechanics of a kiss, telling us the angle of the two peoples faces, the pressure on the lips, even the level of hormones in the blood stream and the heart rates involved, but nothing about the meaning of it all or what it actually feels like to be in love.
Romans 2: 14-15 says that the requirements of God’s law are written on our hearts.
All human beings everywhere in all cultures have a consciousness of good and evil - a conscience - with a sense of the rightness of good and love.
Real Altruistic Love could have no evolutionary advantage as, by definition, altruism can have no advantage for the giver or it ceases to be real altruism. Yet such love is considered the most noble hroughout humanity and yet such love is universally hard to find, which is a
Why should mankind uphold standards which we all fail to keep?
Where do these standards come from? The Bible says that they are God’s values and appeals to every man’s conscience 11 Cor. 4:2 Most people would say that the Bible is a good book and that Jesus was a good man, teaching love and forgiveness to even his enemies, and so why not believe them?
Exodus 20:18-19 says that when God spoke directly to the ancient Israelites, they were so terrified by hearing His voice that they asked Moses to get God to stop and to speak to them through him. We would also be terrified by the voice of our creator and so God has given His messages through specially chosen men ( and sometimes women) called - prophets.
11 Peter 1:20-21 “No prophecy of scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation or prophecy never had its origin in the will of men, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”
The Prophets heard God’s voice directly, ( like Samuel who thought Eli was calling him), and sometimes saw visions, (like Isaiah who had a vision of God in His temple or John who saw a vision of the risen Jesus in heaven).
Prophets often foretold the future, for example there are over 300 prophecies about the life of Jesus in the Old Testament, some written over 1,000 years BC.
They predict: Where he would be born
Where he would grow up and begin to preach
Details like entering Jerusalem on the back of a donkey
How much money would be paid to Judas to betray Him
The Roman solders casting lots for His clothes
His death by a fixed trial, burial in a rich man’s grave
Through Scripture - The Bible
In 11 Timothy 3:16, the Bible claims to be God’s word and to be useful in instructing us the right way to live.
The Bible has more than 2,000 references to phrases like “This is what God says” or “The word of the Lord came to me.”
Psalm 119:105 says “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path”.
Countless people have found the Bible to be an invaluable guide in their lives, C. S. Lewis said that he believed the Bible not so much because other things confirmed it but because, by its light, he could understand the w orld around him.
What the Bible has to say about human nature and the characteristics of good and evil ring true in our experience, for example that human nature has a tendency towards wrong from the start as children, (no one has to teach their children how to be selfish, angry or prideful, these come naturally but we need to teach sharing, patience and kindness), or that the pursuit of money, pleasure, power or wisdom without God is ultimately meaningless as death robs them of any purpose.
In Hebrews 1 The Bible says that God has spoken to man in various ways but that the ultimate way has been through Jesus - God who became man Hebrews 1:3 says “ The exact representation of His being”.
John 1:14 “The word (of God) became flesh and made Hi s dwelling among us.”
Jesus led a morally perfect life so that his friends, who lived with Him, and even His enemies could not find fault with Him. He even forgave His enemies from the cross whist He was dying.
His teaching is renow ned as the highest moral philosophy - Mahatma Gandhi - who was a Hindu - said that nothing had influenced his life so much as the teaching of Jesus in the New Testament.
His commands to “ turn the other cheek”, “go sell all that you have and give it to the poor”, “ love your neightbour as much as you love yourself”, “Do to others as you would have them do to you”, “love your enemies”, are legendary, unique and set the highest standards. No one lives up to them except Jesus himself - moral authority.
Confirmed by many miracles. Jesus came to give the ultimate sacrifice of His life for our sins and the cross is the ultimate communication from God of His love.
In Our Hearts
God can speak directly to us in a vision, dream, words in our mind or just an absolute conviction about what is right and true.
Testimony-many people have experienced God’s direct communication through the above means, for example, the famous Punjabi Christian, Sadhu Sundar Singh, was originally a Sikh and earnestly sought to understand what was the true way to God. One night, he prayed to God that he would kill himself that night unless the true God revealed Himself to him. He had a vision of Jesus who told him that He was the way, the truth and the life and that no-one could come to God except through Him.