“In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways. (Hebrews 1:1) This truth is shown throughout the Scriptures. In the time of the Old Testament, God spoke through angels (Genesis 16:7), visions (Genesis 15) and in dreams (Genesis, 28:12). He used the Urim and Thummim (Exodus 28:30), and symbolic actions, (Jeremiah 18:1-10). He spoke in a gentle whisper (1 Kings 19:12), by miraculous signs (Exodus 8:20-25), and in many other ways. However the issue is not how he spoke to man, but that he spoke to man. Those he spoke to were certain it was God and they understood what He was saying to them.
In New Testament days, God spoke through the special revelation of His son, Jesus, as He lived here on earth, through the early missionaries, as they preached the word, and through the Holy Spirit. Today we continue to hear God speak through the special revelation of Jesus Christ as revealed in the Scriptures and prayer by the power of the Holy Spirit. He also speaks to us through the church by men and women He has called, who preach and teach God’s Word by the direction of the Holy Spirit. God speaks through general revelation, and through our own personal experiences.
In Henry T. Blackaby’s book, Experiencing God, Blackaby reminds us that God’s goal is always to show Himself to us and draw us into a love relationship with Him. Jesus said, “This is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus, whom you have sent.” (John 17:3). Knowing God does not come through a method or program, but it comes through a relationship with a Person. The first step is for us to acknowledge Jesus Christ as exactly who He is-Lord-and to accept Him as Savior-one who has come to rescue from sin and darkness. To accept that He died to paid the price for our sin and to give us freedom to live no longer enslaved by Satan and his lies. As that relationship grows, he reveals more of himself to his child.
Out of an intimate relationship with God, we come to recognize God’s voice and His direction for our lives. We get that direction through an appointment with Him daily for Bible study and prayer. The Holy Spirit directs our mind toward the mind of Christ. A person cannot understand spiritual truth unless the Spirit of God reveals it. We must ask God to reveal the truth about what we read and then meditate on it by immersing ourselves in the study of the meaning of it. It is also good to pray a response back to God. As we pray, we can know that the Holy Spirit already knows what God has ready for our lives. He tells us what He hears from the Father and guides us as we pray. Then we need to practice watching how God uses what we learn as a part of our daily lives.
Experiencing God by Henry T. Blackaby
Holy Bible, New International Version, International Bible Society