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Our DAILY GOSPEL DEVOTIONAL is the story of Jesus from Incarnation to Ascension. This is a chronology and harmony of the gospel accounts in which the ongoing narrative and doctrinal context are carefully considered. In one year we reflect on every passage of every gospel.
May God bless you as we follow the disciples on the journey through the earthly life of Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Still the Small Voice?








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…the LORD was not in the wind… the LORD was not in the earthquake…the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire the sound of a low whisper. And when Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice to him and said, "What are you doing here, Elijah?"
(1 Kings 19:11-13 – ESV)

How many times have you been told that in order to “hear God” you need to listen for that “still small voice”? Yet when we see Elijah actually hearing words, it wasn’t necessarily in that still small voice, or the gentle whisper, as your Bible version may say. No, the gentle whisper, or still small voice, was the end the demonstration, the earth, wind, and fire preceding it.

Now notice, after Elijah heard the whisper, he then went back to the front of the cave, and THEN he heard a voice speaking to him. It was the same question as before, and Elijah answered the same as before. The text seems to indicate that it wasn’t the still small voice that spoke the question again, but that the whisper led Elijah out, and then he heard as he had before.

Even if the voice that came to Elijah was in that same whisper, there is only one time in the whole Bible when God possibly spoke in a still small voice, and yet for some reason we have people trying and people teaching others to try and hear the still small voice.

Yet, the still small voice wasn’t inside of Elijah, it was outside the cave.

In the Bible we don’t read of anyone who clears their mind to seek the voice of God and actually hearing from God. We see people going about their routine when God suddenly speaks to them.

If God wants to get your attention he doesn’t have to wait until you are still or get quiet. As a matter of fact, as we have said before, when Psalm 46:10 says “be still, and know I am God”, it isn’t God telling us to be still and then we will hear Him, it is God telling His enemies and His people that He is God and so we should shut up!

So it would seem as if this is certainly not the way to hear from God.

Oh, and by the way, when God spoke, whether it was in that still small voice or not, it was to tell Elijah that He accepted his resignation (vs. 15-18). Yes Elijah would still serve for a time after that, but really, now, are you resigned to taking one scenario in the scriptures and making that your final position on the voice of God, when He says elsewhere, “The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty” (Psalm 29:4)?

“Living For Today With An Eye For Tomorrow”©

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16 Comments:

At 8:32 AM, Blogger MrsEvenSo... said...

Time after time your teaching reminds me that we sure do take much for granted as far as belief systems go. There have been many teachings (of which I was one of the ones being taught) where one verse or section of scripture was singled out and used to "argue or prove" the point they were trying to make. It is made more apparent to me, as the day of the Lord quickly approaches, that we need to understand the "scope and sweep" of scripture and not pick and choose when it comes to the character of God Almighty. For we are all accountable individually on that day of judgment.
Which makes me think.... as a child when you stood before your parent guilty as charged, if you were to say "but so and so told me it was okay"... how did that work out for you?

 
At 9:32 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

Not well...

 
At 9:33 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

The "word verification" for that last comment was actually a word..."motion"...just thought that was interesting...

 
At 9:34 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

Not that I think that "word" was a "Word", if you follow what I am saying...

 
At 9:36 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

The cell phone for a pastor doesn't have a "still small vocie" setting...someitmes I wish it did, then perhpas I might not have to answer 14 (yes 14!) phone calls before 8 in the morning, all "emergencies", of course...!

 
At 9:37 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

This is when you must realize your "call" as a pastor, or all thsoe calls will send your mind over the brink...

 
At 9:37 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

Anyways, I obviously need some prayer this morning...

 
At 10:37 AM, Blogger MrsEvenSo... said...

Praying for/with you honey...

 
At 6:05 PM, Blogger Kristine said...

I can't begin to tell you how many times, the most well-meaning of Christians have counseled me by telling me to stop and listen for God's "still-small-voice". It never seemed right, and sure enough, as I studied the scriptures further and further, it never seemed biblical either.

Thanks for the post. I do hope your day got a bit better!

 
At 6:13 PM, Blogger Even So... said...

It did, thanks...

 
At 10:26 PM, Blogger JoyfullyHis said...

wow. If you think about it, stopping and clearing your mind so you hear a still, small voice sounds a little like yoga or something.
And I don't have to be still to know that God is God. I agree that God doesn't need our permission or for us to do something to know that He is God. He is whether we 'get' it or not. So shut up already. :)

 
At 12:45 AM, Blogger Even So... said...

12-12-08

 
At 1:03 PM, Blogger One Sheep's Voice said...

"How many times have you been told that in order to “hear God” you need to listen for that “still small voice”?

Too often...

 
At 2:55 PM, Blogger Even So... said...

Indeed, even if it is done by well meaning people...

 
At 3:35 PM, Blogger Daniel said...

I am knocking myself for not spending more time here JD - these posts on prayer are excellent.

 
At 4:18 PM, Blogger Even So... said...

Thanks Daniel...always good to hear from you, brother...

 

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