Learning to Hear the Voice of God
By: David Martin
I want to emphasize that you only need to pray one time for something. You only need to pray one time in faith because God hears your prayer. In 1 John 5:14, it says, “And this is the confidence that we have in Him, if we ask anything according to [His Word] His will, we know He hears our prayer” and then verse 15 says, “If we know He hears us then we know we have it.” When you pray you have to know God hears your prayer and then God answers your prayer. Just pray in faith.
But there is an example of when Yeshua prayed for a blind man two times. The first time He prayed, the guy said, “I see like trees walking around” and Yeshua prayed again. This time the man was completely healed. My personal perspective issometimes God will do something in the spirit first, fix one level of problem at the spiritual level, then come back and deal with another level and in this case it was the physical level. Again, I believe you only need to pray one time, but you can attack it a second time and ask God for insight —“What’s the hindrance here?” The point of this is not giving up — you need to get the mind and the heart of God. If you don’t see the results right away, that’s just your opportunity to dig a little deeper and inquire of the Lord and say, “Okay God, show me something here. Is there something more I need to do?” Just follow the lead of God, but remember that your expectation has to be there. Sometimes you can’t see it, but you know it is done, and it is not till the middle of the night or the next day that it is fully made manifest.
When God gives a word of knowledge, always respond quickly. Respond right then because God is moving. If you are in a ministry situation and you hear something that relates to you, a personal need, move on it. Don’t hesitate. When God speaks, be quick to respond.
Let’s move into the next category of gifts, called the revelation gifts. We’re going to begin with the word of wisdom and the word of knowledge. Okay, how do you know you have a word of wisdom or a word of knowledge?
My experience is you will usually receive it as an impression. Often you hear me say, “God said, God gave me this instruction.” Some people think they’re missing something because it sounds like God just speaks it word for word. Often that’s not the case. Often times it is just an impression, an idea. It is a thought or a picture that God just puts into my heart. The expression “a picture’s worth a thousand words” applies here. God will put one impression into your heart, a thought, and you become sensitive to it when He impresses you. Then you interpret that. What does that picture mean? Even when someone writes it out, usually it was received as an impression, a thought, an idea, even as a picture that you hear within your heart. Basically God communicates Spirit to spirit, through the Holy Spirit within you.
There are instances where God actually speaks to you in other ways. Although it is possible what you receive as a “word” is coming to you through your mind, most likely it is only perceived that way. When you get a thought it is going to come to you from God in your spirit, although the perception may be, “That happened in my head.” When you ask God a question, the very first thing that’s going to come to you will be from Him, the majority of the time.
In contrast, the devil works against (exercises) your mind with thought. 2 Corinthians 11 says, “Lest Satan get an advantage of you. For we are not ignorant of his devices.” That word “devices” is the Greek word “noema.” It means to exercise your mind with thought. That’s why you will need to recognize the communication that’s going to come to you from the demonic world. I’ve actually seen into that realm and seen demons work and they have the ability to put thoughts into your head. We see in the same word “noema” in 2 Corinthians 10 where it says, “Cast down imaginations, and every lofty thing that would exalt itself against the knowledge of God, and bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Messiah.” You see it again in 2 Corinthians 11:3 where Paul says, “I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled…” that means to seduce or deceive… “beguiled Eve through his subtlety…” that means sophisticated trickery, “…your minds [would] be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Messiah.” There’s a battleground that happens in your mind and that’s where the devil is going to infiltrate and try to get you to worry, fear, doubt, and have every kind of negative thought.
It is important to recognize God communicates to you by words of wisdom, words of knowledge or a general leading by the Holy Spirit within you, and we can see this in Romans 8:16. It says, “The Spirit Himself testifies….” Another translation says, “It bears witness…with our spirit that we are children of God.”
A word of wisdom, a word of knowledge, is often more than just one word like “cancer.” It could be a simple word, but often there might be three or four words chained together. “Somebody has been debilitated by an accident.” A word of knowledge refers to a small segment or a piece of information that God’s going to give you that you didn’t know. It is God downloading a little bit of insight into something you didn’t know. It could be triggered by something natural, such as a billboard or seeing something on television. God will use natural stimuli to get you thinking about something and then will just touch you, by the Spirit.
The word of wisdom and the word of knowledge are going to happen a lot when you are open to it. Have the expectation to have God speak to you more by the supernatural ability of the Holy Spirit. Start imagining and expecting that God is going to use you this way, and you are going to hear the voice of God!