Google+ 11/09/12 Who's Speaking?

1 John 4:1-6

 

Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit.

You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God.

For there are many false prophets in the world.  This is how we know if they have the Spirit of God:

If a person claiming to be a prophet acknowledges that Jesus Christ came in a real body,

That person has the Spirit of God.

But if someone claims to be a prophet and does not acknowledge the truth about Jesus,

That person is not from God.

Such a person has the spirit of the Antichrist,

Which you heard is coming into the world and indeed is already here.

But you belong to God, my dear children.

You have already won a victory over those people,

Because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world. 

Those people belong to this world, so they speak from the world’s viewpoint,

And the world listens to them. But we belong to God, and those who know God listen to us.

If they do not belong to God, they do not listen to us.

That is how we know if someone has the Spirit of truth or the spirit of deception. 

 

Being in the ministry over 30 years, I often hear people talk about God.  One of the most asked and not asked questions centers around "Who is really speaking?"  1 John 4 speaks directly to this point.  We often hear "voices" in our lives.  We truly believe that we are being led to do something and we naturally assume the voice that is prompting us is God's.  After all, we are Christians, right?  We pray and obviously God speaks to us, right?  Of course He does.  Where we make the mistake in our daily life is that Satan also speaks to us regularly, even when we don't ask.  We live in an evil world and we need to begin each day with the premise that the world is the devil's playground. Satan sets us up every day to fail.  Satan is the great deceiver.  This short 6-line passage tells us how to determine who is speaking to us and what to do when we discover it is not God.  In the world, would it really surprise an active Christian that the loudest, most persistent voice in our lives probably does not come from God?  This is why the Scripture tells us that we must call on the name of the Lord. The Scripture reminds us that where two or more are gathered in HIS name that God and Jesus and the Holy Spirit are present.  So what if two or more of us are not really gathered in HIS name?  That's simple.  If we don't call on the name of Jesus and choose to reject Him or have a superficial relationship with Him, He accommodates us in love.  God gave us free will.  We get to choose every day.  Be careful.  This is the same God that allows us to choose to spend eternity away from Him.  Remember that Satan is crafty.  He knows all of our weaknesses and will use all of them against us.  Recently I have "stepped up" my effort for God.  I am trying to be all He has called me to be.  Let me encourage you by saying that Satan has also "stepped up" his attack on God's work through me.  It is to be expected, but still seems to be a surprise when it happens.  Do you ever say to yourself or out loud "I can't believe someone would say those things or act like that?"  I know, it is a popular question that comes up a lot.  It is proof to me that we are still surprised when Satan acts like Satan.  If you are struggling today, I am with you and so is God.  Discern carefully who genuinely speaks for God and tells the truth in Christ.  Do not be deceived, as the Scripture tells us, the other speaker is the antichrist who is already here.  Walk in God's love and truth and reject the deceivers and false prophets.  Not sure which is which?  No problem.  Simply proclaim your love of the Lord and let Him help you choose wisely as we discern who's speaking.