“The Lord said to Abraham, “Go from your country, your family and your father’s house to a land that I will show you.”
Abraham’s environment and heritage were the opposite of his faith. He was a citizen of Ur of the Chaldees, probably in the area where the Garden of Eden was located. The people to whom he belonged had built the city of Babel and the great tower, and they were idol worshippers.
But Abraham had something that set him apart. He knew God, heard His voice and believed in Him. He had an extraordinary faith in this God whom he had never seen, although he had heard His voice. It was this faith in God that enabled him to hear God’s voice. And in this relationship, Abraham had received the word from God that he should leave his home, his country and all his people and that he should go from there. God had promised to bless him if he did what He asked.
God speaks to many people, but too often they do not recognise God’s voice. It is so sad to see so many people who do not know their Father’s voice, simply because they do not understand the vital importance of faith.
Faith in God means recognising and hearing the voice of God. God was speaking and Abraham was listening. How can you hear the voice of God? By being silent before Him, by His Holy Spirit, by living in His presence, by reading His word, by loving Him with all your heart. God wants to speak to His children when they trust Him.
One fascinating thing about Abraham is that when God spoke, he heard him. He didn’t have to run off like little Samuel when he said to Eli, “Did you call me?” and Eli would answer, “No, I didn’t call you”. After the third time, Eli said, “Samuel, it is surely God speaking to you.” When God has something to say, you have to listen to him!
I don’t want to pretend that it is easy to hear God every time. Jesus did say that there were people who had ears and did not hear. The good news is that God has given each of us ears to hear by giving us a certain amount of faith that allows us to hear His voice and believe. All we have to do is to develop that listening ear without doubting.
Doubt, and in particular lack of faith, is a barrier to hearing the voice of God. Doubt and lack of faith are the voice of the devil, which is the opposite of God’s language. So it is essential, when we wish to hear God’s voice, that we do not listen to words that are the opposite of God’s. Reading and proclaiming the Word of God is the basis for allowing faith to be born and developed in us. And this faith in God will develop our ability to hear His voice very clearly. Faith is the knowledge within us that when God speaks, we understand what He has just said.
That said, faith hears God, and that counts for you too!
Prayer: Thank you Lord for the ears of faith you have given me, and I want to use them to hear your voice. You are a living God who wishes to speak to me. So I want to be like Abraham who never saw you, but through his fervent faith he heard you and believed in you. I renounce all doubts, and in particular the lack of faith, which could prevent me from hearing Your words clearly for my life. Holy Spirit, come and water me with your spirit of faith so that I may hear the voice of my shepherd.
Quote: Faith hears the voice of God.