God speaks. Everyone who follows Christ is led by Christ. God speaks through Scripture and through every means that is listed in Scripture. God tells us that the person who leans on his or her own understanding will have unnecessary trouble.
One of the most important aspects of Divine revelation is that it doesn’t depend on the human mind to discern it. God gives discernment as a free gift. The directness of the process of Divine revelation eliminates human interpretation of Divine revelation. When human interpretation gets involved, Divine revelation is distorted, twisted. “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 This trusting is also a free gift. Under the Law of Moses, there was an interpretation process and a human effort process, under which no human could succeed. Under grace, God reveals in a sovereign process in which our role is simply to acknowledge Him. Proverbs 3:5-6 He imparts faith that comes by hearing in a sovereign process in which our role is simply to receive. Romans 10:17 His faith gives access to His grace, Romans 5:2 and our role is simply to yield our members of our bodies to His grace, Romans 6:13 so that He does His work through us, 1 Corinthians 15:10 which is righteousness. Anything that is thought, said, or done any other way is sin, slipping or stepping off of the narrow way that leads to life. Romans 14:23 Righteousness leads to holiness. Romans 6:19 Unity and discerning the Body of Christ are part of this process as we all come to find our respective places in Christ’s Body and learn to function in our places. Ephesians 4:13 This is a progressive process, a renewing of the mind Romans 12:2 that goes from faith to faith and from glory to glory until we all come in the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to one perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. Ephesians 4:13
If God speaks, then why are there denominations? Why don’t all Christians believe the same thing? God knows all things and cannot lie. He won’t tell one thing to one person and something else to someone else. So, if everyone is hearing from God, everyone ought to believe the same thing—and they will all believe the same thing when Ephesians 4 is fulfilled. However, many theologies didn’t come from someone seeking God and hearing from God. Many theologians don’t even consider this to be possible. In addition, the human mind is deceitful and desperately wicked to the point where it can’t be known.
The reality is that every Christian is learning to hear God’s Voice. The fleshly nature can deceive you, but if you seek Jesus Christ and don’t resist the Holy Spirit, He will teach you. He will direct you if you persist. He can help you make decisions about things that are not normally considered moral issues or theological issues. There are those who have their senses exercised by reason of use. Others have their consciences seared as with a hot iron. God will never lead you into anything that conflicts with Scripture. In fact, it seems that God interprets Scripture to mean what it says. The following Scriptures are just a few of those that are available:
Romans 10:17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word [Greek: rhema = utterance] of God.
2 Timothy 3:16 ESV All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, (this is true when it was written and whenever it is read or remembered)
John 10:27 My sheep hear My Voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.
Ephesians 4:17-32 This, then, I say, and I testify in the Lord; ye are no more to walk, as also the other nations walk, in the vanity of their mind, being darkened in the understanding, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart, who, having ceased to feel, themselves did give up to the lasciviousness, for the working of all uncleanness in greediness; and ye did not so learn the Christ, if so be ye did hear him, and in him were taught, as truth is in Jesus; ye are to put off concerning the former behaviour the old man, that is corrupt according to the desires of the deceit, and to be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and to put on the new man, which, according to God, was created in righteousness and kindness of the truth. Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbour: for we are members one of another. Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil. Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice: And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
This lets you know the types of things that the Holy Spirit says. By this, you can tell when a false prophet comes saying that God doesn’t lead into righteousness.
John 18:37b Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.
Hebrews 3:15 While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.
Proverbs 30:5-6 Every word of God is pure: he is a shield unto them that put their trust in him. Add thou not unto his words, lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.
John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.
John 15:26 But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:
John 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.
Romans 8:26 Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.
Numbers 12:2-9 And they said, Hath the LORD indeed spoken only by Moses? hath he not spoken also by us? And the LORD heard it. (Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.) And the LORD spake suddenly unto Moses, and unto Aaron, and unto Miriam, Come out ye three unto the tabernacle of the congregation. And they three came out. And the LORD came down in the pillar of the cloud, and stood in the door of the tabernacle, and called Aaron and Miriam: and they both came forth. And he said, Hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream. My servant Moses is not so, who is faithful in all mine house. With him will I speak mouth to mouth, even apparently, and not in dark speeches; and the similitude of the LORD shall he behold: wherefore then were ye not afraid to speak against my servant Moses? And the anger of the LORD was kindled against them; and he departed.
1 Corinthians 12:2-3 Ye know that ye were Gentiles, carried away unto these dumb idols, even as ye were led. Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.
1 Thessalonians 2:13 For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.
1 Peter 4:11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
Luke 10:16 He that heareth you heareth me; and he that despiseth you despiseth me; and he that despiseth me despiseth him that sent me.
Matthew 10:19-20 But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you.
2 Corinthians 3:2-3 Ye are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read of all men: Forasmuch as ye are manifestly declared to be the epistle of Christ ministered by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tables of stone, but in fleshy tables of the heart.
1 Kings 19:7-13 And the angel of the LORD came again the second time, and touched him, and said, Arise and eat; because the journey is too great for thee. And he arose, and did eat and drink, and went in the strength of that meat forty days and forty nights unto Horeb the mount of God. And he came thither unto a cave, and lodged there; and, behold, the word of the LORD came to him, and he said unto him, What doest thou here, Elijah? And he said, I have been very jealous for the LORD God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away. And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the LORD. And, behold, the LORD passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the LORD; but the LORD was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the LORD was not in the earthquake: And after the earthquake a fire; but the LORD was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice. And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah?
Romans 1:20-21 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.
Psalm 19:1-4 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them hath he set a tabernacle for the sun,
1 Chronicles 16:30-34 Fear before him, all the earth: the world also shall be stable, that it be not moved. Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice: and let men say among the nations, The LORD reigneth. Let the sea roar, and the fulness thereof: let the fields rejoice, and all that is therein. Then shall the trees of the wood sing out at the presence of the LORD, because he cometh to judge the earth. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.
Isaiah 55:12 For ye shall go out with joy, and be led forth with peace: the mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing, and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
Isaiah 44:23 Sing, O ye heavens; for the LORD hath done it: shout, ye lower parts of the earth: break forth into singing, ye mountains, O forest, and every tree therein: for the LORD hath redeemed Jacob, and glorified himself in Israel.
John 7:17 If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.
Proverbs 3:5-8 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.
John 6:28-29 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on him whom he hath sent.
Hebrews 3:15 While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.
Isaiah 66:2 For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.
Galatians 2:2 And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain. (Paul knew that he must check the revelation that he had received with the revelation that the other apostles had received. He could not establish doctrine on his own.
Peter, though God had given him such a vision and confirmation of the vision, did not try to establish doctrine on his own but went to the other apostles in Acts 15. Note that doctrine was determined not by rationalization mixed with logic but by Divine revelation through apostles.
We can see, through the examples given in Scripture, that it is important to remain humble before God. God may speak to us, and our own deceitful minds can get in the way. Our own deceitful minds may interpret what God says, twisting His words and deceiving us. However, within the Body of Christ, the multiplicity of ministries can give balance. Yet, group-think can take over there. The point is that this is a process of unfolding Divine revelation. When you think that you know something, you don’t know it completely. There is always more. Trust God that if you get off course but are sincere in your desire to know the truth and to do His will, He will steer you back on track.
The Church is the Body of Christ, called out of the world. It has a specific order and purpose. It functions in a certain way. Many things, however, are labeled “church” that are not part of that specific order and called out Body.
Ephesians 4:11-13 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
1 Timothy 1:3 As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine,
Galatians 1:18-19 & 2:1-2 Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days. But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother. . . . Then fourteen years after I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also. And I went up by revelation, and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain.
Timothy 6:3-5 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself. 1
Acts 15:1-35 And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. This brought Paul and Barnabas into sharp dispute and debate with them. So Paul and Barnabas were appointed, along with some other believers, to go up to Jerusalem to see the apostles and elders about this question. . . . And the apostles and elders came together for to consider of this matter. . . . Then pleased it the apostles and elders, with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren: And they wrote letters by them after this manner; The apostles and elders and brethren send greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia: Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment: It seemed good unto us, being assembled with one accord, to send chosen men unto you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, . . . We have sent therefore Judas and Silas, who shall also tell you the same things by mouth. For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, . . .
1 Corinthians 11:2 Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you.
2 Thessalonians 3:6-7 Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us. For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not ourselves disorderly among you;
Colossians 2:8Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.
Romans 16:17 Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.
Ephesians 3:5 Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
1 Corinthians 2:16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we [the apostles] have the mind of Christ.
Galatians 1:11 & 15-16 But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. . . . But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, to reveal His Son in me so that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with flesh and blood,
2 Corinthians 11:12-15 But what I do, that I will do, that I may cut off occasion from them which desire occasion; that wherein they glory, they may be found even as we. For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.
Revelation 2:2 I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:
Matthew 7:15-22 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
Jeremiah 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?
This would apply to all the reasonings of men in trying to understand Scripture and also to those who claim special Divine revelation but are being deceived by their own minds. For instance, God may speak to you and tell you to help some person, but God will not tell you to commit a sin.
Jeremiah 23:21-23 I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran: I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied. But if they had stood in my counsel, and had caused my people to hear my words, then they should have turned them from their evil way, and from the evil of their doings. Am I a God at hand, saith the LORD, and not a God afar off?
Jeremiah 29:9 For they prophesy falsely unto you in my name: I have not sent them, saith the LORD.
There have been many who have claimed to have heard from God and who have spoken error. This has always been as the Bible verses quoted above make plain. However, the counterfeit doesn’t eliminate that which is real. And those who want to do God’s will are going to find that they can discern between the person through whom Jesus is speaking and the ones who are speaking visions out of their own minds.
John 7:17 If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.
Some try to limit God to speaking only through the Bible. Their motivation is usually good, but they are not being led by God. Indeed, they don’t even think that they can be led by God, given what they are teaching. Millions of Muslims and Hindus are turning to Christ because He comes to them in dreams and visions. Yet, some Christians find it difficult to accept this fact.
Some try to limit God to speaking through the Bible, but the Bible says that He speaks through many means. By making this claim, these people are claiming that they are above the Bible and they are contradicting the Bible. God is not limited by human theology that proclaims a human-generated gospel that is not in the Bible. When someone claims that God only speaks through the Bible, that person is claiming that the Bible is incorrect, since it is written in the Bible that God speaks through various means. They are, in fact, claiming extra-Biblical revelation that trumps the very Bible that they are trying to defend. They direct attention away from the living Christ and toward their own teaching and organization.
They limit God’s ability and denigrate what God is doing among His people. There have always been false prophets and false teachers, but these false prophets and false teachers never negated the true prophets and teachers. In fact, the persons who limit God have actually made themselves false teachers who teach something that the Bible does not teach.
On the other hand, there was once a person who would ask God which way she should turn at each intersection when going to work every morning. See how different that is from being in an attitude of prayer and attention to God while driving to work every morning.
There was a man who had trouble with his truck. He took it to a qualified mechanic who changed a part, but the trouble continued. The mechanic tried something else that didn’t work. And the mechanic tried a third cure the didn’t work. As the owner of the truck was driving along, he suddenly knew the solution. The mechanic reluctantly tried the simple solution, and the truck was fixed. The man was bragging to his wife about how he had figured out the problem when the mechanic could not. His wife said to him, “That didn’t come from you. God showed it to you.” She was right. The man was not a mechanic and had no way of knowing the way to fix his truck. His wife also received this fact by Divine revelation, not by her natural mind.
We ought to live in expectation for God’s leading. To seek God means to inquire of God. If we don’t know what to do, we ought to be praying to God for the answer. Often, God makes the answer obvious before us, but we ought always to remember that all knowledge, wisdom, and understanding comes from Him.
Let God be true and every man a liar. Believe God. Don’t limit His power. Beware of false prophets and false teachers. Beware of lying spirits.
There is safety in the Scriptural order for the Church. As you prayerfully read the following Scriptures, you will notice that this order, revealed through Scripture, is not fully restored. At the same time, it is counterfeited. There are many counterfeits, but counterfeits do not make the reality of Divine revelationError! Bookmark not defined. that is given through Scripture any less real.
So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. Ephesians 4:13 NIV
As I besought thee to abide still at Ephesus, when I went into Macedonia, that thou mightest charge some that they teach no other doctrine, 1 Timothy 1:3
Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and abode with him fifteen days. But other of the apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother. . . . Then fourteen years after I went up again to Jerusalem with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also. And I went up by revelationError! Bookmark not defined., and communicated unto them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should run, or had run, in vain. Galatians 1:18-19 & 2:1-2
If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself. 1 Timothy 6:3-5
And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved. This brought Paul and Barnabas into sharp dispute and debate with them. So Paul and Barnabas were appointed, along with some other believers, to go up to Jerusalem to see the apostles and elders about this question. . . . And the apostles and elders came together for to consider of this matter. . . . Then pleased it the apostles and elders, with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; namely, Judas surnamed Barsabas, and Silas, chief men among the brethren: And they wrote letters by them after this manner; The apostles and elders and brethren send greeting unto the brethren which are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia: Forasmuch as we have heard, that certain which went out from us have troubled you with words, subverting your souls, saying, Ye must be circumcised, and keep the law: to whom we gave no such commandment: It seemed good unto us, being assembled with one accord, to send chosen men unto you with our beloved Barnabas and Paul, . . . We have sent therefore Judas and Silas, who shall also tell you the same things by mouth. For it seemed good to the Holy Ghost, and to us, . . . Acts 15:1-35
Now I praise you, brethren, that ye remember me in all things, and keep the ordinances, as I delivered them to you. 1 Corinthians 11:2
Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us. For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not ourselves disorderly among you; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-7
Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ. Colossians 2:8
Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. Romans 16:17
Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealedError! Bookmark not defined. unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit; Ephesians 3:5
or, “Who has known the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?” But we [the apostles] have the mind of Christ. 1 Corinthians 2:16
But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. . . . But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace, to revealError! Bookmark not defined. His Son in me so that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with flesh and blood, Galatians 1:11 & 15-16
In your personal life, you know that Jesus Christ leads you. Testimony is simply speaking about this to other Christians. The testimony of Jesus Christ is the spirit of prophecy. While Christians have been largely preoccupied and have not spoken of Christ and what He is doing in their lives, this is a significant part of what it means to be a Christian. Walking with Christ is not an individual experience. There is an interdependence in the Body of Christ. We are to speak the truth in love. Jesus Christ is the Truth.
Through the centuries, Christians have written many things that confirm their own personal testimonies. The hymns are full of these testimonies. God speaks. Christians have been unafraid to testify of His inner presence, leading, and teaching.
He walks with me
I come to the garden alone
While the dew is still on roses
And the voice I hear falling
On my ear the son of God discloses
And He walks with me and He talks with me
And He tells me I am His own
And the joy we share as we tarry there
None other has ever known
He speaks and the sound of His voice
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing
And He walks with me and He talks with me
And He tells me I am His own
And the joy we share as we tarry there
None other has ever known
Where He Leads Me I Will Follow
I can hear my Savior calling,
I can hear my Savior calling,
I can hear my Savior calling,
“Take thy cross and follow, follow Me.”
Where He leads me I will follow,
Where He leads me I will follow,
Where He leads me I will follow,
I’ll go with Him, with Him all the way.
Speak, Lord, in the stillness
Speak, Lord, in the stillness,
speak your word to me;
hushed my heart to listen
Speak, O gracious Master,
in this quiet hour;
let me see your face, Lord,
feel your touch of power.
For the words you give me
they are life indeed;
living bread from heaven,
now my spirit feed.
Speak, your servant listens,
be not silent, Lord;
let me know your presence;
let your voice be heard.
Fill me with the knowledge
of your glorious will;
all your own good pleasure
in my life fulfill
It would probably be impossible to overstate the dogmatic attitude of a person who has purposely turned against Christ after hearing the Gospel. Skeptics will argue. Rational thought is not an issue for them. “Winning” an argument is all that matters. They will go to any means. Of course, you never know the innermost mind of the person you are talking to, but if you do any witnessing at all, you will run into some who truly love darkness and hate light.
How a skeptic will argue against Divine revelation? First, the skeptic or scoffer has no argument that is not based on some form of arbitrary assumption, made-up story, or fallacies to make arbitrary assumptions and made-up stories seem to be part of reality when they are not.
When discussing Divine revelation with a skeptic, the discussions tend to go like this: At first, the skeptic believes that he or she is being rational and has facts and evidence. The skeptic is appalled when confronted with reality that the skeptic’s worldview (if it were valid) would make reasoning to any conclusion impossible. The skeptic spends his or her time quibbling or using straw man arguments. Then, the skeptic realizes what the Münchhausen Trilemma is and that it has been around for 2,000 years and no one has found a Secular solution. The skeptic generally responds with shock and anger for a moment, but quickly recovers. Having nowhere else to go, the skeptic makes some tu quoque arguments, trying to project the Secularist problem on the follower of Christ. Usually this takes the form of claiming that Divine revelation is assumption, a claim that is based on unsupported assertion. So, they are back to axiomatic thinking fallacies to support their tu quoque fallacies.
In the tu quoque argument, the skeptic is likely to compare rationalized faith to the faith of God, failing to notice the difference between the two. Rationalized faith consists of made-up stuff. The faith of God comes by hearing and hearing comes by the word (rhema, meaning utterance) of God. God speaks. When we acknowledge Him, faith comes. It is faith that is not generated by the human but imparted by the Divine. Everyone who knows Jesus experiences this and Christ leads them and teaches them. This faith is a gift of God, lest anyone should boast. Some Christians do boast of their faith, which is irrational, since their faith is a gift of God to them.
The skeptic can deny this, but they do so by unsupported assertion. Unsupported Assertion is just another example of made-up stuff. The skeptic usually will then try to frame the discussion in terms of the responsibility of the Christian to prove to them that the Christian is having this experience. First of all, it is impossible to prove any personal experience to another person, so this is a framing fallacy. Second, there is no need to take anyone’s word for this, since anyone who seeks Christ does find Him. He must be approached with respect, sincerity, and a will to do His will.
There is one other, often overlooked, point. It may be the most important point. When Christ was incarnated, those who were seeking truth recognized Him. Keep in mind that there was nothing special about His appearance that would give a clue to this. They knew by the Spirit, by Divine revelation. Sometimes, it took a while, but they eventually realized that, if they heard Him speak, they were hearing from the Father. Though we tend to think of Christ as being in Heaven, or we think of Christ according to incarnated Christ of that time. However, Christ is a Head in Heaven and also a Body here on Earth. Whoever has Christ living inside is a member of that Body of Christ. When a member of the Body of Christ is speaking by the Holy Spirit, and the skeptic rejects Christ speaking through the member of the Body of Christ, the skeptic is directly rejecting Christ.
Mostly, you will find that skeptics have no problem with committing logical fallacies. They will stack up fallacies, thinking that three or four fallacies in the same sentence will surely give their thoughts validity. This is the life of the skeptic. Since the Münchhausen Trilemma only allows them to use axiomatic thinking and to try to hide that irrationality with other fallacies, they are used to thinking in this way. It is the only way that they can think without giving glory to God. The problem is that they are blocked from rational thought by their refusal to give glory to God and failure to acknowledge Him.
The “inconsistent revelations” argument can be found on Wikipedia: “it is unlikely that God exists because many theologians and faithful adherents have produced conflicting and mutually exclusive revelations. The argument states that since a person not privy to revelation must either accept it or reject it based solely upon the authority of its proponent, and there is no way for a mere mortal to resolve these conflicting claims by investigation, it is prudent to reserve one’s judgment.” A skeptic may come with a question, “Which God?” or “Which Scripture?” They may then ask how you know that your Scripture or your God is the real God. The answer, of course, is “Divine revelation.” You know Jesus Christ, Who is leading you and teaching you and changing you moment to moment. (This assumes that you do know Christ. Some Christians do not know Him in any real way.) This argument uses the logical fallacy of selective evidence. Here are the facts that this argument ignores: Everyone who seeks Jesus Christ finds Him. All Divine revelation is partial. Human frailty doesn’t negate true Divine revelation. For every gift God gives, Satan creates at least one counterfeit. For every truth God tells, Satan tells at least one lie. The lies do not negate the truth. The counterfeits do not negate the genuine. This argument commits the perfect solution fallacy in which the skeptic defines what he or she considers to be the perfect solution (that there would be no flesh or evil spirit to deceive and that Divine revelation would be complete with no other deception mixed in for every person all the time) and, since this idealized solution is not met, therefore God doesn’t reveal. The fact is that Divine revelation is an unfolding process that goes forward until what God calls the “perfect day.”
The “partial knowledge” argument asserts that because only partial Divine revelation is given, no knowledge is possible. This is known as the logical fallacy of inflation of conflict. It is true that nothing could be known if Secularism were true. There would certainly be no way to know anything. Yet, human beings do know things. They know enough to be able to survive, to build sky scrapers, or to fly airplanes. Those who follow Christ are able to know Christ and whatever Christ reveals to them, since God knows all things and cannot lie. All human beings have trouble discerning between make-believe and reality. As a result, Christ-followers must be open to correction by the Holy Spirit on everything they think they know—and God tells them this through Scripture. This ongoing, unfolding Divine revelation proceeds from glory to glory by the power of the Holy Ghost, not by human intellect.
The “presuppositional” argument maintains that a genuine relationship with Christ cannot exist. It asserts that God’s revelation is through Scripture alone and that belief that the Bible is God’s revelation is based on mere presupposition (made-up stuff). This is a circular argument. It assumes that God doesn’t reveal in order to prove that God doesn’t reveal. This is also a straw man argument, though many Christians express a similar argument that may be confusing the skeptic. God reveals that the Bible is His Word and without error, therefore, the Bible is His Word and without error. God also speaks through the Bible, but He speaks through other means. God speaks of these other means through the Bible.
The “weakness of the human mind’s ability to know” argument maintains that the human mind cannot know the difference between God’s revelation, a demon’s influence, or the human mind. The fallacy that the skeptic commits is that the skeptic is assuming that the human intellect is responsibility for discernment. This is intellect worship. The human mind is indeed incapable of knowing any truth on its own. The human intellect was created to be filled with the living Spirit of God. Out of our innermost beings, this Holy Spirit is to be flowing. God gives the discernment. God gives the revelation. God tears down the strongholds in our minds. From Him comes all knowledge, wisdom, and understanding. It is true that we see as if looking in a mirror, and that this vision is incomplete. However, don’t commit the nirvana fallacy. We may not know much, but we know and trust the Person Who knows all things and Who cannot lie. Jesus Christ is patient with us, transfiguring us from glory to glory as we see Him in the members of the Body of Christ, as we discern the Body of Christ that is being manifested in the world.
The “absurdity” argument maintains that Divine revelation is absurd. This is the logical fallacy of phantom absurdity. If the skeptic is to claim absurdity, the skeptic must prove absurdity. What is absurd is for the skeptic to make things up and to call the made-up things, “reality.”
The “Scriptural error” argument maintains that there are errors, inconsistencies, or absurdities in Scripture. However, there is not a single instance that is not based on some form of arbitrary assumption, made-up story, or on fallacies that are used to make arbitrary assumptions and stories seem to be part of reality when they are not.
The impossibility of knowing argument maintains that it is impossible to validate the authenticity of any Divine revelation. Here are two quotes from the irrational website known as Rational Wiki. ‘Theorem: It is utterly impossible to validate the authenticity of any divine revelation.” “Proof of the theorem (This is for the monotheistic God. Proof for the case of other gods is similar) Suppose God is trying to send a message. How would the recipient determine the message is from God? Let’s suppose the message is sent by X, so the task is to determine whether X is God. Lemma 1 dictates that the only method to validate the message’s authenticity is by checking the message’s content. In this case, it is sufficient to attribute the message to God regardless the true identity of the sender. Suppose the content of the message is checked. How would one determine whether it is from God? If it lies in the realm of “God would/wouldn’t say such a thing”, it is compared to a separate list. In this case, since there is already a list on the receiver’s end, the revelation is no longer “divine” (As in someone else have revealed it to the receiver already).’
Consider how foolish this argument is. Suppose your boss is trying to tell you something. How would you determine that it is your boss who is trying to tell you something? The only way to know would be by checking what your boss said? Really? You know it’s your boss because you have come to know your boss. Some evil person may try to pretend that he is your boss. You might be fooled if the person is good at deception. In fact, under Secularism’s assumptions, you can never really be certain of anything because of the Münchhausen Trilemma. However, there is much more to this, which we will handle when Argumentum Ad Fidentia is discussed in the following two sections.
That reasoning is non sequitur. The proof (in the wiki) doesn’t prove what it says it is proving. How does the Rational Wiki suppose that their reasoning will prove their stated universal negative, “It is utterly impossible to validate the authenticity of any divine revelation.” The Rational Wiki writer is claiming to have infinite knowledge. The reality is that it is possible to validate the authenticity of Divine revelation. Every person who follows Christ does it on a moment-by-moment basis—as long as they are following Christ.
Though the writer of this wiki page doesn’t disclose his or her assumptions, it appears that there are two hidden assumptions. One is the assumption that “there is no real God Who takes responsibility for Divine revelation and discernment.” The other assumption is that “the human mind is the facility by which validation of authenticity of Divine revelation is accomplished.” Both of these are false assumptions. God reveals. He takes responsibility for the validation by validating Himself. In addition, every person can check this. God reveals Himself to every person. The person who wrote this bit of philosophy in the wiki does know that God exists and that God is just. The person who wrote this bit of philosophy in the wiki also knows that the sins that he or she is committing deserve death. God reveals that this person knows, speaking to us through the Bible in the first chapter of Romans. Further, God reveals that this person has suppressed the truth in unrighteousness. They do this because they love darkness rather than light.
The skeptic resists the idea that his or her worldview is in conflict with the very idea of logical conclusions. If there is no Divine revelation, then all reasoning must be based on assumptions. Assumptions are simply pretending that the assumptions are true. When you say, “I assume,” it would be much more clear to say, “I pretend.” Why is this true? Because of infinite regression. Take any one thing that you think you know without Divine revelation. Ask yourself how you know it until you come to something, some premise, of which you can say, this is known and there is no need to prove it. Of course, you can simply say that there is no need to prove something. Anyone can do that about anything, and that is called axiomatic thinking. It is a fallacy. How do you know that there is no need to prove it. Anyone who gives it an ounce of thought suddenly realized that they have been pretending, making everything up, all along.
After the shock of this wears off, the skeptic immediately resorts to the fallacy of lost contrast. They have just been confronted with the correlative, the contrast, between Divine revelation and made-up stuff. They have suddenly realized that they have been basing all their thinking on made-up stuff. The reaction is to redefine Divine revelation as also being made-up stuff as a way to get rid of the contrast. This leaves the skeptic claiming to know nothing for certain and yet asserting a universal negative that no one can know that God has revealed Himself to them. It is axiomatic thinking. “This is what I prefer to believe; therefore, it is true.” This is the logical fallacy of internal inconsistency, since, on the one hand, the skeptic claims to know nothing, and, on the other hand, the skeptic claims to have amazing knowledge beyond what a rational person would claim to know. Unless the skeptic is sincerely seeking truth, this is a general rule of where they will take the discussion.
Argumentum ad fidentia is an argument against self-confidence, in this case, against confidence in God. It is related to the suppressed correlative argument, which was just mentioned. Both of these fallacies are tactics of desperation, last ditch efforts to try to suppress the truth in unrighteousness.
A question is asked by skeptics something like this: “How do you know that what you are calling ‘Divine revelation’ is not just your own mind tricking you? What about all the nuts out there who claim Divine revelation? What about the false prophets?”
God provides an answer to this question. The answer has to do with obedience to God. It has to do with holiness. Holiness is not something we can do by human effort. In fact, it is not something we do. It is something we are becoming. Righteousness is a free gift from God that comes by grace through faith. This is something that all Christians enter into, though it may be that most don’t understand what is happening. And it’s not necessary to understand it until we are asked to give a reason for the hope that is within us. The Holy Spirit leads us and teaches us at a given moment. We acknowledge Him, and God gives the free gift of faith to believe what He has led us into or taught us. In this process, we actually are given a partial vision of who we are in Christ, how we fit into the Body of Christ, and what we are to do in this very moment as a member of the Body of Christ. If we will acknowledge it, we see a glimpse of our connectedness to every other member of the Body of Christ. When faith comes, it gives access into God’s grace. God’s grace does God’s work through us. All of this is revealed through Scripture and confirmed to those who walk in it by experience.
So, this is righteousness, but righteousness is not the final goal. The interaction with the Holy Spirit in this process of submission results in something amazing. The veil of our flesh is removed to some extent. As we all with open (unveiled) faces beholding as in a glass (mirror) the glory of the Lord, we are changed (transfigured) into the same image, from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord. This transfiguration is holiness. Holiness is Christ in us, the hope of glory. Paul was in travail over the Galatians until Christ would be fully formed in them. We are now in travail waiting for Christ to be fully formed in us. As He is formed in us, the strongholds in our minds begin to topple. This is how obedience is key in the process, but God performs the obedience. All we do is submit to Him in every little detail.
It’s in dealing with the little foxes that this transfiguration happens. Little foxes spoil the vine. At any moment, our flesh is tempting us toward something, covetousness, anger, lack of peace, contempt, or whatever. At the same time, the Holy Spirit has an opinion on that. He says, “Ask me about that.” When we acknowledge Him, Proverbs 3:5-6 He leads, and God’s process of righteousness starts. Something of the confused natural mind dies in the process and we become more alive to Christ. Christ is more fully formed in us. Our senses are somewhat exercised by reason of use. If we acknowledge our fleshly nature and its demands instead of acknowledging God, we re-crucify Christ in our flesh. The flesh has more hold on us. Our consciences become somewhat seared, at least on this issue.
This is the answer to the skeptic Ad Fidentia question: “How do you know that what you are calling “Divine revelation” is not just your own mind tricking you? What about all the nuts out there who claim Divine revelation? What about the false prophets?” Obedience is not what they want to hear about, but there it is. Only by obedience can we gain discernment. It may be that this is what the Holy Spirit is speaking to us through the first chapter of the letter to the Romans when He says that they have suppressed the truth in unrighteousness. Unrighteousness (disobedience to God) destroys our spiritual senses so we can’t know truth. Disobedience progressively leads to a lack of ability to know the difference between reality and make-believe. If we hear His word and obey it, we are building on Rock. If we hear His word and disobey it, we are building on sand. If we hear His Voice and try to obey in our own power, this is also sand. Obedience by the power of the Holy Spirit progressively leads to ability to know the difference between reality and make-believe.
God is progressive with us. If we aren’t moving on with God, we are in disobedience to the Spirit, because the Spirit is calling us to go higher in Christ. The Spirit is teaching us how to discern the Body of Christ and to fit into the Body of Christ as particular members. We do get it wrong sometimes, and, when we do, we confess it to Jesus. When we confess our faults, He is both faithful and also just to forgive us our faults. Forgiveness not only pardons but it also sends those faults away.
This argument will try to find something wrong with you (until the manifestation of the sons or God, this won’t be hard to find) and then use reasoning such as, “If you are not perfect, Jesus Christ doesn’t reveal anything to you. You are not perfect. Therefore, Jesus Christ doesn’t reveal anything to you.” The whole point of what Jesus Christ has done is that He loved us while we were in total rebellion against Him. He works with us now and forgives us when we step off the path (sin). He brings us back onto the path and pardons our misstep. From there, we continue the upward path.
This argument asserts, “If you personally know Jesus Christ, then you must know all things.” One skeptic said, “Well then, tell me my birthdate.” This would be an unwarranted extrapolation fallacy, since we only know a very small amount. What we know is by Divine revelation. God decides what He will reveal.
The argument is, “If you claim that Jesus Christ has shown you something, then you are claiming to have extra-biblical revelation.” If God warns you not to sign a business contract, this is not extra-Biblical. That’s just one possible example. If God lets you know that you need to avoid being alone with someone because they intend to put you into a compromising position and tempt you to sin, this is not extra-Biblical revelation. It is revelation, but it is not beyond what the Bible says. There are many similar examples that could be given. In fact, Divine revelation will always be Biblical. If a man says that he is being led by the Holy Spirit to leave his family without support so he can be a missionary, the man is deceiving himself. The Holy Spirit will not lead anyone in a way that is inconsistent with Scripture. Personal leading will always be Biblical.
God gives us examples, through Scripture, of times when godly people made decisions but failed to inquire of God first—and the result was a disaster. Also, there is a difference between revelation of doctrine and guidance and direction for the moment-by-moment decisions of life. Even interpretation of Scripture is given in a very specific way that is specified in Scripture. God doesn’t twist Scripture, and He tells us that through Scripture. There is no private interpretation of Scripture. Acts 15 gives the pattern for interpretation and establishment of doctrine. Neither Peter nor Paul considered themselves to be able to establish doctrine on their own, and God has made that plain to us through Scripture.
The argument is, “If you don’t know everything, then you don’t know anything.” God has revealed that we only know in part. Inflation of conflict is a common fallacy that is used on other things as well. We may not know anything as we ought to know, but we know Jesus Christ. We also have knowledge to the extent that Jesus has revealed things to us. It may be partial, but it is real.
In all of these skeptical arguments, the arguments are based on things that are made up. They are based on fabrications and stories. They are all riddled by fallacies. This is not a comprehensive list of every argument that a skeptic might be able to dream up. Sometimes, skeptics will just keep arguing in circles that can only be defined as insane jumbles of assorted fallacies. A person who has hardened his or her heart against Christ will resort to virtually any irrationality to avoid Christ. Any skeptic can, at any time, come to Jesus Christ in sincerity, respect, submission, patient endurance, and humility, and they will personally find Jesus Christ. Christ will validate Himself to them and they will know. They will begin to acknowledge His Voice as He speaks. They will turn from all wickedness to serve Christ and worship Him. skeptics remain skeptics because they are willingly ignorant.
There is a problem with us hearing God speaking. Though we can see from Scripture that God does speak, though we have experienced His leading, there is a problem. It’s not a new problem. It’s an old problem. We have seen this problem in the Bible. When Miriam asked, “Does God only speak through Moses?” she was questioning Moses’ authority. False prophets and false teachers have said that they were speaking for God or that God was speaking through them. Yet, they were speaking visions out of their own minds.
We (followers of Christ) are only learning to hear His Voice. We can be fooled by our own minds. God is only able to reveal a bit of His glory to us at a time, since, in our present fallen condition, too much light blinds us. We don’t always have absolute confidence that we have heard from God. Sometimes, we have to wait and see if doors open or close. However, there are times when we know that we are hearing God’s Voice. For instance, it is quite often that a brother or sister prophesies in a meeting, and we know for certain that God is speaking directly to us in that word/logos/rhema that is spoken. Sometimes, when we read the Bible, some passage jumps out to us and we know exactly what God is saying. There are times when we are tempted to sin, but God speaks into our innermost being and directs us to the way that leads to the genuine and absolute fullness of life. Sometimes, as we are singing hymns in a gathering of Christians, the Presence of the Holy Spirit is so heavy that we can hardly bear the brightness of the light and our frail bodies are shaken by the awsome power.
If an organizations says that God is still speaking so they can condone sin, they are not listening to the God Who speaks to us through the Bible. Satan uses an organization that does such a thing to make sincere Christians disbelieve the fact that God does indeed speak.
There is danger of interpretation of His Utterance and always has been. However, interpreting Scripture without the Anointing of the Holy Spirit is certain to result in error. The natural mind is wicked and deceitful.
In addition, there are many who never stand in His presence but claim to hear Him speak—and that has been a problem that we can read about in the Scriptures. We all must be careful about following false prophets and false teachers. Jesus said that those who really want to obey the Father would know whether He was speaking His own words or speaking the words of the Father. We also must remember that the fact that there is a false teacher or prophet does not make the real any less real.
The philosophy of this organization may have begun with a Word from God, that Jesus came to save sinners, not those who think they are righteous. But it’s very easy to add to God’s Words. Jesus comes to save us from our sins too, not just from the punishment that is due because of our sins. Jesus came to lift from us the desire to sin. Sin is, after all, leaving the very narrow Way that leads to the genuine and absolute fullness of Life. And whatever the Holy Spirit isn’t leading us into and doing through us is sin. God never leads us contrary to His Written Word in the Bible. “For you are to deal with Scripture in such a way that you bear in mind that God Himself says what is written. But since God is speaking, it is not fitting for you wantonly to turn His Word in the direction you wish to go.” Martin Luther
So, there will be counterfeits. There will be lies. It seems as though Satan has many fake things for every real thing that God is doing. Satan is a liar and doesn’t want us entering into the blessings of God. However, the lie does not make the truth any less true.
Every revelation that God gives you, every guidance for your life, will be in accordance with the Scripture. God will make it plain to you. Sometimes He does this by closing doors. Sometimes He does this by a feeling. Sometimes He does this by a word. Sometimes He does this by some other spiritual sense. Often, He will speak to you through brothers or sisters in Christ. In many, perhaps most, cases He will speak through those He has set in authority over you in your church, a parent, an elder, or an apostle. If someone claims to be hearing from God while obviously not in conformity with Scripture, they are not hearing from God. God doesn’t contradict Himself.
Satan does work constantly to try to confuse the believers. The most powerful tool he has is the human mind. The human mind is deceitful and desperately wicked. (references) That’s why we constantly need to choose between listening to our own reasoning or seeking God and His Voice. God speaks to us through all the translations, even as flawed as they are. It is true that God speaks. It is also true that our own minds have the capability of tricking us. For this reason, we must always remain humble. Allow for the possibility that we need correction. Allow brothers and sisters in Christ to correct us. Especially, allow those who have been set into offices of authority in the church to correct us. This is part of discerning the Body of Christ. Acknowledge Him Proverbs 3:5-6 when He speaks to us through His Body.
This is also true of prophecy, visions, dreams, the counsel of the elders, and every other way God speaks. We all make many mistakes as James said, and we need to be open to the correction of the Holy Spirit.
Here is another problem: There are high-profile teachers who are saying that God doesn’t speak to us, that God doesn’t lead us. Their motivations may be that of fearing groups like this apostate group mentioned or they may be bound by some extra-biblical dogma that they learned. However, their reasoning is self-refuting.
If someone says that God is no longer speaking (an extra-biblical doctrine), then the people who are saying that God is no longer speaking are irrationally claiming that God is still speaking through them. Think about it. If what they say is true, then it is false. That is the nature of a self-refuting doctrine.
Every single pattern of the true church operates by grace through faith. Grace is the power of the Almighty Creator God for righteousness, holiness, and redemption. Grace is accessed by faith–that is to say that grace is through faith. Romans 5:2 Faith comes by hearing. Hearing comes by God’s utterance. Romans 10:17 King James translation says, “Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.” Translated from Greek, “hearing by the rhema of God. The Greek, “rhema,” means utterance. God always is the first-mover in faith, and faith begins with God’s leading. Grace then does the works of God through you. 1 Corinthians 15:10 Human beings are incapable of good works except by yielding to the Holy Spirit and allowing Him to do the work. This is the essence of wisdom. To be fulfilled, you must find True Wisdom and True Love. To find True Wisdom and Love, you must find God. God is True love. True Love is God. 1 John 4:16-20 Jesus Christ is Wisdom. 1 Corinthians 1:30
God speaks through Romans 14:23 telling you that anything that is not of faith is sin. Faith comes from God. James 1:17 Faith comes by hearing the word of God. Romans 10:17 It is possible to read the Bible and not hear the word of God. 2 Corinthians 3:14 When you are born again, you are born again by grace through faith. It starts with God and finishes with a measure of holiness and redemption. From the moment of your new birth forward, every step you take toward the manifestation of the sons of God is by grace through faith. This is God’s process. Each step you take in this walk in the Spirit is begun by God leading, you acknowledging and honoring God’s voice, and God’s faith coming and giving access to God’s grace. Grace then does God’s work through you as you submit. 1 Corinthians 15:10 The result is that God plants good seed into your heart, the ground of your heart is made receptive to the seed by the water of the Holy Spirit Matthew 13:18-23, and the seed yields holiness in your heart and you are set free (redeemed) to some degree. You are changed into the image and likeness of Jesus as you see the glory of the Lord as if looking in a mirror with the veil of the flesh taken away from our faces. 2 Corinthians 3:18