Additional Means Of Divine Guidance

There Are Numerous Forms Of Divine Guidance -- But Be Careful!

Additional Means Of Divine Guidance
Image Source - Image owned, uploaded and copyrighted 2018 by the author, Peter P. Macinta (BrotherPete).
God is certainly active in the lives of all, especially those who are receptive to Him. And while He has provided numerous means of divine guidance we must be aware of false guidance.

We have previously addressed the fact that God has provided foundational means of divine guidance {1}, viz. the written Word of God, Christ dwelling within (if we have received Him as Lord), the Holy Spirit, the ability to spiritually discern (if we are truly His disciple), and divine providence. All five do not have to be active in every case of specific guidance from God.

However, it is best that one truly knows God through Christ, having Christ dwelling within, and knowing the written Word of God. And, the more of the written Word we know, especially in its entirety, the better we will be able to analyze all other means of guidance as we should. That includes having the incarnate Word within us because even though some come out of the world unto Christ, each of us must remove all false notions of how Christ is.

For example, much of the world is quick to grab Christ’s words “judge not” out of context, so that when some come out of the world and into His kingdom they bear spiritual cataracts and cannot see that as the salt of the earth we are to speak against sin and expose it {2}. Some think Jesus was “easy on sinners” when He really was not {3}.

Jesus within is the truth and will speak the liberating truth. It is also good to realize that Jesus was not just a bump on a synagogue bench, but was a wholehearted participant in worshiping and serving the Father.

So anyone that names the Name of Christ will want to do the will of the Father. While those who are unsaved will not be of the same mind purely, sometimes they want direction from God for a matter in their life. God will, in His mercy, offer His divine guidance according to His will. Along with the foundational elements of divine guidance one encounter some of the following.

Prophecies

Holy Bible prophecy is best described as a Holy Spirit empowered pronouncement of the will God. It does not necessarily have to deal with the future but many times it does. Some Holy Bible teachers class prophecy under divine guidance by the Holy Spirit.This is fine provided the pronouncement is coming from God through a person without much tainting by the human vessel involved instead of from the person themselves.

However, I really think a distinction must be made between divine guidance directly from the Holy Spirit and guidance from the Holy Spirit through any of us frail and faulty humans. And a very strong distinction must be made between the written Word of God and prophetic utterances (at times termed by some as the “spoken Word”). These two things are true and sure: Prophetic utterances are never equal to the written Word and never supercede it. The truth is all prophetic utterances need to be evaluated upon the written Word. Always believe the written Word above prophetic utterance or any other mens of divine guidance.

Examples of prophetic utterances abound in the Holy Bible. An example of its use in divine guidance is found in Acts 11:27-30: “Now at this time some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28 One of them named Agabus stood up and began to indicate by the Spirit that there would certainly be a great famine all over the world. And this took place in the reign of Claudius. 29 And in the proportion that any of the disciples had means, each of them determined to send a contribution for the relief of the brethren living in Judea. 30 And this they did, sending it in charge of Barnabas and Saul to the elders.”

Timothy received prophecies as he entered the ministry. By the Holy Spirit Paul writes to him in 1 Timothy 1:18-19, “This command I entrust to you, Timothy, my son, in accordance with the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you fight the good fight, 19 keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their faith.” And, again we see in 1 Timothy 4:14, “Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you, which was bestowed on you through prophetic utterance with the laying on of hands by the presbytery.”

The Holy Bible also warns us about false prophets, especially in the “last days”, and given the host of current events that most likely will set in motion the occurrence of Armageddon it is apparent we are close to the end of the Gentile Age. 2 Peter 2:1-2 states, “But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves. 2 Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of the truth will be maligned.” Verse 2 reminds me very much of the “prosperity Gospel” as well as the concept of “cheap grace”.

Visions

There are times the Holy Spirit will send images to a person’s mind whether or not they have their eyes closed, or they supernaturally see something not within their mind but away from it. It is recorded in Acts 10:10-16 that Peter had a vision which prepared his mind for him to minister to the Gentiles. We read in Acts 16:9 that Paul had a vision that directed him to go to Macedonia after being forbidden by the Holy Spirit to go to other places.

I occasionally receive visions, usually when I lay down for the night and begin worshiping God. Back probably in the early 1990s when I closed my eyes one night an image of a high mountain range with some snow on it came to my mind. The only thing I could think of was Nepal. Nepal was strongly against the Gospel of Christ at that time. So I prayed for Nepal. About two years later I heard a report there had been a sovereign revival in Nepal. And I am sure God had directed other disciples in some way to pray for Nepal.

Again, we must be careful not to think that any vision we have is equal to or supercedes the Holy Bible. While pastoring in Flintstone, Maryland, an older lady in the church said she saw Jesus in a vision, but He had no wounds. She insisted that was the only way He could be, because that is what she saw. Apparently she forgot Revelation 5:6, 12, and 13:8, or the fact He will be recognized because of His wounds by the Jewish remnant after Armageddon (Zechariah 13:6, Revelation 1:7).


Signs

Divine guidance by signs occurs in numerous ways including, but not limited to, supernatural phenomena (Exodus 3:1-4), an event (Luke 17:26-30), or a person (Isaiah 8:18), and “are ordained by God to be a token or symbol of some message He wishes to convey” {4}. Some have the erroneous idea that something is immediately going to happen when a sign from God occurs or is pointed to. Signs may point to the distant future. Note some of the signs mentioned in Matthew 24 regarding the return of the Messiah.

I have gotten the impression that some feel the “blood moon” tetrad of 2014 - 2015 that fell twice on Passover and The Feast Of Tabernacles was not a sign in regard to the end times (of the Gentile Age). I disagree. If you ask a number of dedicated Christians they would tell you the election of Donald Trump was miraculous -- the providential hand of God. In December 2017 President Trump called Jerusalem the capital of Israel and announced that the U.S. Embassy would move there. At the time of publishing this article that move is slated for May 2018. This is one of many things that may set in motion the rise of The Beast (a.k.a. The Antichrist, The Man Of Sin) and consequentially Armageddon which does mark the end of the Gentile Age.

Dreams

A lot of, if not all, people dream. But there are times the one who had a dream will sense something special about the dream. Many times this means God is sending a message. Genesis 41 records Pharaoh had two very strange and troubling dreams, and God used Joseph to give the interpretation. In the New Testament Joseph, the husband of Mary, was warned in a dream about Herod the Great’s attempt to kill Jesus. In our time there are reports that some Muslims are given dreams to bring them to God through Christ.

Personal Integrity

It is written in Proverbs 11:3, “The integrity of the upright will guide them, But the crookedness of the treacherous will destroy them.” Very much a key here is “integrity” being described as “of the upright”. Because we are all born with a sin nature no one is spiritually upright. The uprightness must come from God through Jesus Christ. As we remain in Christ our personal integrity must improve in the light of God’s written Word (Job 31:6).

Conscience

Turn a deaf ear when you hear the phrase “he / she does not have a conscience”. That is a worldly phrase that ignores three facts. First, each person is made in the image of God, so each person has a conscience to aid them in giving glory by obeying the moral law of God. Secondly, each person is born with a sin nature that affects their entire being, including one’s conscience (Titus 1:15). Third, one can corrupt themselves to where they have a seared conscience (1 Timothy 4:12). When someone comes to God through Christ their conscience begins to improve to the glory of God.

As the disciple spiritually improves their conscience comes in line with the will of God. One’s conscience might help in ascertaining the specific will of God, but in using our conscience we must feed it with the written Word of God and determine to follow through with whatever God says. A simple example is two or three months after Christ brought me into His Kingdom I was still using vulgarity. Bob, a Christian friend, said “I thought you came to Christ. Why are you cursing?”. I told him I thought it was normal, that most people were doing it.

Additionally, until my parents came to Christ everyone in my immediate family thought it was fine to use vulgarity. And, indeed, was it ever used in our house! As you see, my conscience had been molded by family and society. Bob then pointed out passages like Colossians 3:8. The Word of God is supreme, so I asked God to help me to stop using vulgarity. He has helped me and continues to help me. My conscience was corrected by the written Word and made healthier by the grace of God.

Two of the biggest examples of Christians missing the will of God due in part to their impure conscience is d-ivo-rce {5}, and rem-arr-iage after d-ivo-rce. If we study the entire counsel of the Holy Bible we see both are highly displeasing to God. In regard to just d-ivo-rce prayerfully consider Malachi 2:16 and Matthew 19:8, and for rem-arr-iage after d-ivo-rce Luke 16:18 and 1 Corinthians 7:39 (with the same being true for the husband in regard to his wife).

Did you read those passages? Now, let me ask how can it be the will of God for someone to do something that God hates and that Christ said should not be? How can it be the will of God for someone to commit adultery? Yet, I have seen a number of cases where a Christian said God told them to get d-ivo-rced. I have seen even more where Christians claim God gave them permission to r-ema-rry, with some later d-ivo-rci-ng their new spouse! And much of the blame for this is upon ministers who teach such things are proper and even perform such weddings. Certain elements in the h-omo-se-xu-al {6} community are absolutely correct when they point out the hypocrisy of such ministers that say sa-m-e-s-ex marriage is wrong but neglect passages like I cited above!

Angels

There are times God will use an angel to give divine guidance such as when an angel told Philip to go to the road out of Jerusalem that went towards Gaza (Acts 8:26). There he was able to bring an Ethiopian to the true knowledge of Christ. In Acts 10:3 an angel appeared to Cornelius and told him to send for the apostle Peter. There are occasional current reports of angels telling Arabs and Muslims to contact certain Christians in order to hear the Gospel.

But, once again, carefulness must be used. By the Holy Spirit Paul writes in Galatians 1:8, “But even if we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to what we have preached to you, he is to be accursed!” He also writes by the Spirit in 2 Corinthians 11:14, “No wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.”

Again, The Written Word Of God Is Supreme

Galatians 1:8 is a reminder that we ought to hear directly from God (“. . . if we, or an angel . . .”). Barring any misinterpretation of the text {7}, if we read a literal translation of the Word of God then there is no mistake as we are guided by the other foundational means of divine guidance {1}. Therein we will find direct instructions and principles to follow in regard to any course of action we need to take. It is best that we not only read it, but know it and obey it.

Jesus is recorded in Matthew 24:24 saying, “For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect." There is much deception around us. It is geared to make us walk away from the will of God. This is why we ought to have Christ within. Through the Holy Spirit He will help us to understand the written Word and give us the will and ability to follow through.

Notes:

{1} Please see the article, Foundational Elements Of Divine Guidance, at https://newsandsociety.expertscolumn.com/foundational-elements-of-divine-guidance .

{2} Ephesians 5:11, “And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them.”

{3} Please read "Is It Wrong For A Christian To Shame Someone?"  at http://thesureword.expertscolumn.com/article/is-it-wrong-for-a-christian-to-shame-someone .

{4} Beuttler, Walter: Divine Guidance

{5} These words are purposely broken apart to avoid unwanted advertisements, and so throughout the article as needed.

{6} I include le-sbi-ans and bi-se-xua-ls in this term.

{7} Learn how to correctly understand the Holy Bible by links provided under the title “Essential Holy Bible Information” at http://thesureword.sapphirestreams.com/ .

Unless otherwise noted all Holy Scripture is from the New American Standard Bible changing LORD to YHVH as it rightly should be when the text so indicates and adding “(The Existing One)” to readily express the meaning of His Name without making repeated explanations in articles. * = For other versions the spelling of some words is updated for our time in addition to changing LORD to YHVH as it rightly should be when the text so indicates.

Not responsible for any advertisements appearing with this article nor am I necessarily in agreement with any of them. The statements of this paragraph hold true not only for this article, but for everything I have placed on the Internet.

For list of more articles please see Holy Bible Treasures at http://holybibletreasures.sapphirestreams.com/ .


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Many of don't know the blessings of God and that is why we continue to struggle and suffer. If we knew the blessings of God and His salvation we will have no reason to stay away from God and His love. We have nothing to be afraid of in Him so we should step towards Him joyously. Many of the points you made have struck home with me. I do hope that they make an impact on others too.

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Thank you for these guidelines. It's a good information. :)

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