There are millions of people in the world that do some amazing things. People such as firefighters, police officers, doctors, nurses, EMT’s, just to name a few. Millions of people go into careers like these and are often called heroes for saving lives all the time. However, there are some that are even more unique to the world that comes along very rarely. Have you ever seen a movie when the main character becomes famous when they discovered they have a special talent or gift? Maybe a movie about a genie granting three wishes? How about a movie where someone gets superpowers or where someone was chosen to save the world? It’s all focused on that one person and how it’s up to them to do something great. This one person finds out that they were chosen for something special.
With all these are movies, it makes people walk away secretly wishing they were the hero of their own story in life. How exciting. Strangely enough, I do hear people talk as if they do have real unique abilities and they speak of it on a daily basis. They will speak of being someone special, someone with powers, someone that tells stories about their own moments in life that cause others to be in awe of them. Well, allow me to explain more. My first experience with this was with others close to me. They talked of some pretty special, even bizarre abilities and experiences they personally had on many different occasions. Stories that just seemed too bizarre but had just enough “what if” to intrigue me and kept me captivated every time something new happened. They would say God spoke to them all the time. I remember thinking about how it was so cool that they got to hear from God…God!!! I mean think about that. He’s the creator of all things and He chooses to talk to ‘them’ about stuff. However, the stories they told intrigued me but of course today I look back and don’t see God in them at all. One story was how God called them to do something “unfamiliar” and it would make people upset but it was for this person to have faith and trust in what was to happen. This thing God had them to do was something not Christian at all. They were told to get a person’s attention by cussing at them, and another time God gave them the ok to steal something. One time they said God wanted them to cast out a demon in a person and it took several people and they spoke of how strong the demon was in fighting so many at the same time. I remember it sounding like a battle between good and evil, kind of like superheroes.
I remember another time how they discussed how many people they saved and then asked me, “How many people have you saved?” They spoke in tongues which I found amazing because I couldn’t do it and they talked of healing people. Sadly, this eventually caused me to think I too could be like them someday if I was found worthy enough.
I wasn’t mature in the Word of God to even know the truth and they weren’t teaching me Biblical truth either and that was harmful to my faith. I was being fed deception left and right. I just remember thinking, is there some kind of greatness inside all of us or is it just some? How come they could hear from God and do those powerful things and I couldn’t. Are there just some that are special? Or is everyone special? Although, if everyone is special, then truly no one is, right? I was left with so many questions and so confused but I knew I wanted to be like them. Now, that was a problem for me but I didn’t realize it at the time. My desire to be like them was sadly poisonous because it dismissed God completely. It wasn’t that I wanted to be saved because I desired God in my life but because I wanted to be seen as worthy enough to hear God speak to me and heal people and speak in tongues, and look important. Yeah, not good! It was all a very selfish place to be. When people become false converts it’s often because they want to get something not because they have been changed by God. I’ve heard many famous bible teachers do this such a Priscilla Shirer when she preached to her audience about getting saved; that they could get to a place where they were in tune with God and could hear Him speak. People would quickly and joyfully approach her stage to be saved because they believed they would get something amazing in return. You can read the article here: https://biblicalbeginningsblog.wordpress.com/2019/11/26/through-the-narrow-priscilla-shirer-wants-more-by-tami-dykes/
Now to be fair there are some true stories of real individuals that have been picked just for special times and purposes in the world such as the 12 Apostles or Noah, Moses, and Mary and Joseph even in the future God calls the 144,000 Jews. All of these people were not anything special outside of God though. They had no powers and no unique ability that was unheard of. Yes, God did call them to do some really great and powerful things but they were done by God, not them. God used them to showcase His powers. God had a reason for using those people, even though He could have done it Himself faster. Even as He used them, they were scared and uncertain and had feelings of doubt. We read, however, that in the midst of all the fear and doubt they felt, they were willing and obedient. God used their patience, kindness, and obedience and taught us through His Word the importance of good character and being obedient.
So you can see how people in the churches today twist how God works. A false convert may be false because they bought into a lie another person told them about God. They may say something was said by God but if they research what they were being told they would obviously see it’s not the God of the Bible that person is talking about. The God they speak of is of their own making. The false convert sees this person’s life and special abilities and desire it in their own life and hear that all they need to do is accept Christ into their life and they will be special too. They will gain a supernatural connection with a powerful entity that will use them in an extraordinary way. They will be given special messages or visions or power. Yeah, that sounds amazing!
What they need to understand is, God uses us whether we are a believer or not, whether we know it or not. We are the ones that are lost without Him, we need Him not the other way around. We can’t save ourselves or anyone else, only God has that power.
Many uneducated believers argue that our feelings are important when we worship God because when God speaks to us, we can feel Him in some way. I’ve heard that God may give us a chill or the hair on the back of our neck stands up or we feel strongly in our hearts about something good or bad. Is it all about our feelings, all about us doing special things?
It truly amazes me that the “feelings” phenomenon is so hard to break when dealing with people that believe in an Almighty God who created the Universe. If our feelings were so in tune with God, wouldn’t God tell us this in His Word? Wouldn’t God tell us to follow our hearts and listen to our thoughts on things or our gut or trust in our self when we get that shiver down our spine? I realize it seems I’m being repetitive and I know I have a habit of doing that, but being repetitive does help us to learn and remember. Jesus repeated many things in the Bible and many books in the Bible had the same stories in them as well, just worded differently.
So, ask yourself again, why point people to a human feeling and promptings or new revelations that came from our own interpretation? Is it to look good, or to get what we want? Have you ever been deceived by your own feelings? I have many times. Have you been deceived by your own heart? God even says our hearts are deceitful, Jeremiah 17:9~ The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?
Feelings CAN’T be trusted or reliable because they deceive us. But the Bible IS reliable AND trusted. God gave us the Bible and God tells us it’s Him and His Word that is “perfect” and “complete” for all our needs.
So, if we can’t save ourselves or anyone else and we can’t hold certain supernatural abilities what is it we are to do as a Christian? What is important to God? We are to test, research, and get an understanding of who God is and what He wants by reading His Word and obeying it.
Revelation 1:3~ “Blessed is the one who reads aloud the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it because the time is near.”
God says in 2 Timothy 3:15–17~ “how important His Word is in helping us stay wise…..” how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you “WISE” for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.” “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be COMPLETE, thoroughly equipped for every good work.”
It literally means we need nothing more, no feelings, no listening to our hearts just God’s Word. We are “complete” with the doctrine of Scriptures. We are absolutely “thoroughly equipped”. It doesn’t say “kind of equipped”, it doesn’t say a “little bit equipped”. God says we are “Thoroughly” equipped when we read His Word. Other translations say “PERFECT”, thoroughly furnished”. You can’t get better than perfectly furnished with the Word of God.
Romans 12:2~ “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”
Look back at where it says, “that by testing”, do we understand what that means? How do you test something to make sure it’s the will of God? Well, it’s by reading the Bible of course. God points us right back to His Holy Word, we test things to the Bible, we hold it up to Scriptures.
In the next verse, it says, “This Book“.
Joshua 1:8~ “This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.”
The verse tells us to do what is “written in it”. It points out that God’s desire for us is to “read His Words” day and night. When it says, “Book of the Law”, what’s that mean? It’s the Bible! When it says, “be careful to do according to all that is written in it.” This is reminding us the Bible is important, and it’s not about having personal messages, visions, or hearing an audible voice from God but instead, obeying the written Word.
Psalm 1:1-2~ “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.”
What’s the Law of the Lord? The Bible! So many verses of God pointing us to Scriptures and telling us that He wants us to study His Word and take what we read very seriously. We are called to love His Word and be obedient to it. Not strive to look special by saying God gave me a special message. We shouldn’t think we can stand in the place of God and claim we did anything supernaturally, and certainly not presume we could ever hear God speak apart from Scriptures. It should cause great concern to anyone that would be told to believe a prompting or someone’s personal message from the Lord because all that does is point to ourselves or glorifies “people”, instead of God.
1 Timothy 6:3–5~ “If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming togodliness, he is conceited and understands nothing; but he has a morbid interest in controversial questions and disputes.”
2 John 9–11~ “Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds.”
1 Corinthians 4:6~ “Now, brothers and sisters, I have applied these things to myself and Apollos for your benefit, so that you may learn from us the meaning of the saying, do not go beyond what is written. Then you will not be puffed up in being a follower of one of us over against the other.”
When it says, “learn from us the meaning of the saying”, “Do not go beyond what is written” and people say they have new revelations from God (not what is written in the Bible), well, they are going beyond what is written. People follow a certain teacher that isn’t teaching what is written but going beyond it. People that go to Bible studies listen to one person’s personal teaching and not to God’s teaching because they want more or they want something AMAZING and they want a wow factor in their studies are going beyond what is written. The first teacher I thought of is Beth Moore!
Hebrews 4:12~ ”For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”
The Bible which is a living book (the word of God) is alive and active. The Word gives us wisdom and instructs us and equips us, strengthens us and protects us, even convicts us, and judges our thoughts, and attitudes which should bring fear when we tend to drift in the direction of feelings. The law of God commands us to grow spiritually with the truth of Scriptures.
Romans 15:4~ “For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.”
Here again, it’s talking of Scriptures, not feelings, voices, hearts, or promptings. God is pointing back to the Bible and that is where we find instruction for our life’s choices.
Deuteronomy 4:2~ “You shall not add to the Word which I am commanding you, nor take away from it, that you may keep the commandments of the Lord your God which I command you.”
Deuteronomy 12:32~ “Whatever I command you, you shall “be careful” to do; you shall not add to nor take away from it.”
Revelation 22:18~ “I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues which are written in this book.
Proverbs 30:4-6~ “Who has gone up to heaven and come down? Whose hands have gathered up the wind? Who has wrapped up the waters in a cloak? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is the name of his son? Surely you know! “Every word of God is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar.”
Above are 4 different verses that are talking of God’s “written” Word, the prophecy of Scriptures, not our prophecies or others. We are also repeatedly warned by God not to add or take away from what He says in His Holy Word. I’m thinking this is a big deal and the warnings are serious and it should cause us to check ourselves to keep us from violating God’s commands.
Matthew 4:1-12~ “Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread. But he answered, “it is written man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God. “
Here we read that Jesus points to the authority of God’s written Word. The verse continues…
“Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, “‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and “‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’”
Interesting how Satan catches on to Jesus’ teaching and says “It is written” because he sees how important Jesus makes obeying the Word. Satan thinks saying this will be convincing to Jesus somehow by using the word, “written” to point to the authority of Scriptures to Jesus in hopes to tempt Him. However, Jesus continues on with His point to teach us how important it is to trust His Word not our feelings or our own desires. I’m sure Jesus had many feelings that would have swayed anyone else to give in. Jesus was hungry, tired, and weak. But Jesus stands firmly on the Scriptures and not His feelings and emotions. In these verses, Jesus points us back to the “WRITTEN” Scriptures and its authority.
“Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.’” Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written, “‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.’” Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.”
Jesus said in John 14:16, He would send the Spirit to us to be our “Helper”, “Comforter”, and “Guide”. “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever”.
Believers in Christ will receive the Holy Spirit and He will “guide” them however there is nothing in the Scriptures that says we will know when that happens. The best response I’ve ever heard was from John MacArthur when he said, “One of the follies of the Charismatic movement is to say, “The Holy Spirit is leading me,” or “directing me.” You have no way to know that. I have no way to know that. I don’t have a red light on my head when it’s the Holy Spirit and goes off when it’s just me. I have no mechanism of understanding when it’s the Holy Spirit or just me. All I know is I can experience the result of His moving in my life. And it started when I was saved.”
When we become saved the Holy Spirit lives within us believers. The Holy Spirit speaks to us through the “Word” that we read and study. God is sovereign and works in our lives without us knowing anything of what He does, this is where we exercise our faith. We believe God is in control and accept it. There is nothing we can do to change God’s plan or spoil God’s plan in our lives. Not long ago when I was pointing out the false teachings of Priscilla Shirer, someone said to me, “Be careful that you do not hinder God’s work.” They did not like that I was warning about and calling out a false teacher who they must have looked up to but I found their response to me interesting. Their comment made God seem powerless against our choices. If I needed to be careful not to hinder God’s work, that meant God’s will could be interfered by my will, doesn’t it? Is God at the mercy of what people do? In which case makes God seem less of an authority. God will do whatever He wants to do and nothing I do will change it or stop it. I am not that powerful and never will be. We only need to read His Word, have faith, believe it, and obey it. We only need to look to the Scripture to learn of God’s authority, and that no one, not even Satan can alter it. The “God told me” fad is said by many out of ignorance because they don’t know God and they don’t understand the severity of those words yet at the same time people hear a preacher at the pulpit or well-known bible teachers who should know better say God told them a message. They like to make themselves look good by making others believe they actually hear directly from God Himself. They are quick to manipulate others and say, “God told me this or that,” when He didn’t tell them anything. That is a serious offense in God’s eyes as said in Deut. 5:11~ “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD, will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.” People are quick to put God’s name to their stories or testimonies or reasons to do whatever in life because then who could argue? God said it, right?! No one could tell them they are wrong. How do we know its truth? We don’t! I remember several years ago my daughter came home from college to tell me that a guy said that God told him he was to marry her. She very confidently said, “Then why wouldn’t God tell me that too?”
Matthew 12:36 ~”I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak.”
Matthew 16:24~”Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”
The hardest thing for us to do is deny ourselves and our desires which is our flesh. We are commanded not to obey the flesh, but to slay it. Following our prompts, feelings, or what we “feel God wants us to do” is obeying our flesh. We are going with our own idea and voices in our minds. Instead, we are to slay all that and point ourselves back to the Scriptures.
Deuteronomy 13:1-5~ “If a prophet were a dreamer of dreams rises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder and the sign or the wonder comes true concerning which he spoke to you saying let us go after other gods, let us serve them, you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams, for the Lord your God is TESTING you to find out if you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. You shall follow the Lord your God and fear Him. And you shall keep His commandments, listen to His voice, serve Him and cling to Him. But that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams shall be put to death because he “has counseled rebellion” against the Lord your God who brought you from the land of Egypt and redeemed you from the house of slavery, to SEDUCE YOU FROM THE WAY IN WHICH THE LORD YOUR GOD COMMANDED YOU TO WALK so you shall purge the evil from among you.”
Basically, it’s saying if a prophet comes to you preaching good things, and even if the prophet does things that seem unbelievable or says things that come true, be warned because they will lead you away from God’s truth. God says they are rebellious and against Him.
Below taken from https://www.gty.org/library/blog/B170626
2 Peter 1:19–21~ “We have the prophetic word made more sure, to which you do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star arises in your hearts. But know this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation, for no prophecy, was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.”
“The last three words here make the point that God says all along. Yet Peter goes on to say that even what he heard with his own ears and saw with his own eyes was not as authoritative as the eternal Word of God contained in Scripture. Peter is not saying that his eyewitness testimony makes the “prophecy of Scripture” more sure. He is saying that the written Word of God by its very nature is more sure than his own experience. This is confirmed by Peter’s argument in verses 20–21, where he establishes the authority and divine origin of every “prophecy of Scripture. The Greek word order in verse 19 also supports this as the true meaning of the text: “We have more sure the prophetic Word.” More sure than what? More sure than experience—even the valid, genuine, eyewitness experience of the apostles. Peter is saying that the written Word is an even more reliable source of truth than his own experience. To paraphrase Peter’s message to his readers, it is this: “James, John, and I saw Christ’s glory firsthand. But if you don’t believe us, there is one authority even more certain than our testimony: the written Word of God.” Scripture tells us that the Devil masquerades as the light. If the Devil can deceive so many of God’s heavenly angels, then the Devil can and will deceive us mere humans. That’s why we need to rely on the Scriptures, it’s the only thing we know as solid truth and that we can trust because the Word is God