By Elizabeth Prata
For the last week I’ve been presenting different essays examining from a biblical perspective whether direct revelation is happening today. There were 4 previous parts to the series. Today is the conclusion. It was sparked from a conversation I’d had with Jennifer Ross of Confidently Called Homemakers on her podcast. Please go take a listen to the wonderful material Jennifer has for you over at her site.
Over the course of the series, I looked at what is the ‘God told me’ religion? We also examined whether God speaks audibly today. In part 2 we learned how we can we confirm a voice we hear. And if it’s not God, then who is speaking? In part 3 I asked what is the difference between hearing audible voices and claims that God “spoke to my heart?” In part 4 I asked if we should we avoid ministries where the person says they receive direct revelation.
Here is my final question: Why is all of this important knowledge for the average Christian mom and wife?
Whether you’re a man or a woman, in ministry or layperson, famous or obscure, it important to understand that God is not speaking personally today, because it’s all for the name of Jesus and His glory. That is the chief end of man, the Westminster Confession says in number 1. We must glorify Him. Anything that glorifies him is necessary and anything that detracts from it is, well…not glorifying. We are His trophies of grace, trophies bought at great cost.
I understand the loneliness of the stay at home wife and mom. You are thirsty for an adult to talk to, you want grown up conversation, you feel your mind dulling by the day. This makes a woman a target for voices that are pitched to her yearnings and inner desires for affirmation, attention, or just love in a busy life. Ignore those devilish voices. Stay in the word, the sure word. A MORE sure word. Honor the word by following the prescriptions outlined for women of all ages, no matter what age you are.
Many women claim to hear a voice instructing them not because they are disobedient, but because they want to be obedient. They want to go here or do this or attend college or drop out of college or marry a certain person. We want to honor Jesus, we want to obey Him. So we get to thinking we’d pray and ask Him directly, which is a good thing. But then we are being taught to wait for a reply. This is not good. The Bible provides instruction for a life of following Jesus but not specifically for making life decisions. Proverbs 3:6 says
In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.
It is God’s will that we honor Him, obey His precepts, worship Him, and engage in our spiritual disciplines. His will isn’t a mystery. As for major life decisions, we can look to 1 Corinthians 7:39 for proof that as long as we follow the general principles of life in Christ, it is OK to just decide for ourselves what to do.
A wife is bound as long as her husband lives; but if her husband dies, she is free to be married to whom she wishes, only in the Lord.
‘As she wishes’ AKA just decide. No sign is necessary, no voice whispering ‘marry him’. No omen, Bible dip, or any other direct intervention from heaven. Just decide, it’s not being disobedient to Jesus to make a measured and rational decision about whatever life issue is before you.
In the sermon Taking the Mystery Out of God’s Will, John MacArthur shares the following:
If you’re saved, Spirit-filled, sanctified, submissive, suffering, and thankful – you ready for this? – do whatever you want. Do whatever you want. Marry whoever you want. Go wherever you want. Work wherever you want. Choose whatever you want. You say, “Whoa. Are you sure?” Absolutely. Because if this is true of your life, guess who’s controlling your wants. Do whatever you want.
People say to me, “Why did you come to Grace Church?” I wanted to come. There wasn’t nothing mystical; I didn’t hear voices in heaven. Did I know all this would happen? No, I just came here because I wanted to come. I said, “That’s a good place. They want me; nobody else wants me; I want to go.” It wasn’t like I had a lot of options; still don’t.
People say, “How did you decide to decide to marry Patricia?” That was easy; I wanted her and no one else. And I said, “God, that’s the one I want right there. And I believe You’re controlling my wants.”
You say, “I need a verse for that, that’s way out there.” I’ll give you a verse. I know, you’re used to getting a verse. Here’s a verse: Psalm 37:4. You ready for this? “Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart.” That doesn’t mean He’ll fulfill yours, it means He’ll plant His. You delight in the Lord – saved, Spirit-filled, submissive, all of those things. You delight in the Lord; and He will plant His desires in your heart.
Trust the Lord to transform your desires to His desires, trust Him to make all things good for those who love Him, trust Him with your decisions to work it out according to His plan. And trust yourself to make these life decisions without attributing words or signs or omens to Jesus that He didn’t say or make or send, and be responsible for your own choices. In the end, it’s all good. 🙂