Hearing God (Part 1)
To the spiritually dead the universe is a silent tomb, its walls filled with an illegible script…
…but I’m getting ahead of myself. There’s a lot of us that claim to believe in metaphysics, the spiritual and the esoteric; yet when someone testifies that they’ve heard voices or had a personal “paranomal” or spiritual experience we give them the phone number of our favorite shrink and tell them to stop doing drugs and get a good eight hours sleep.
We’re pulled apart by our desire to find meaning (transcendence) and our instinct to survive in an increasingly unsurvivable world. Is meaning critical to survival or is it the other way around? If you’re still struggling with the concept of God’s Existence, read on. If you’re unsure that it’s even possible to “meet” God, continue reading. And if you’re certain that nothing exists except matter and energy, there’s something here for you, too!
I am a Christian, so like many of you I’m quite comfortable with the Biblical lingo and I don’t want to make the mistake of leaving behind those of you not so familiar with conventional religious thought…
When I say “the spiritually dead” I’m referring to four categories of people:
the Atheist (for obvious reasons)
the Agnostic (for whom ignorance is bliss)
the Religious (who measure their value by how much they know)
the Spiritist (that consider themselves to be quite alive spiritually…they are God, after all)
The Atheist, unencumbered by the deceptions that have swallowed the spiritist and religious, measures right and wrong, good and evil by an ever-shifting morality that adjusts to suit their present mood or impulse. The Atheist is methodical, meticulous and extremely detailed in their view of science and reality EXCEPT WHEN IT COMES TO THE BIBLICAL IDEA OF GOD, which is far too specific, meticulous and historically detailed to coexist with the Atheist’s idea of freedom. The idea of being OWNED by another being–even if that being is God–brings with it the shackles of responsibility and accountability and the threat of eternal judgement against a life that has been embarrassingly self-obsessed.
The Agnostic, while more easy-going than the Atheist, is nevertheless the Atheist’s first cousin. Unlike the Atheist, the Agnostic is more than willing to entertain and discuss the concepts of Divine Truth, Holiness and Self-Sacrifice (to a point); Like the Atheist, however, the Agnostic will not allow themselves to be called upon to commit themselves to a specific historical fact (like the Birth and Resurrection of Christ) or a specific doctrine (like repentance or obedience).
The Spiritist (or “Spiritualist”), by the very definition of their title, is spiritual…or so they think. The Spiritist IS a spirit, and operates in the company of spirits while either awake or asleep. The Spiritist has gone where no man has been, and has seen what few men have seen. The Spiritist may have seen Christ (or so they believe) and have become privy to secrets they dare not utter; but, alas, it is all for nought. Present to the Spiritist the Biblical Identity of Christ as the Only-Begotten Son of God or the Propitiation for Sin (or mention Sin itself or the Cross of Christ) and the spiritist will bob and weave and juke their way out of the conversation. The Spiritist doesn’t believe that Sin exists and may very well believe that All is God (including themselves).
The Religious is very much like the Christian in every way but one: the Religious doesn’t have the Spirit of Christ.
Point of Fact: One cannot know God if one does not know Christ. One doesn’t not know Christ if one does not have the Spirit of Christ.
The Religious (also known as the Sorcerer, the Faith Healer or the Legalist) knows the same lingo that the Christian does and may be as familiar with Scripture as the Christian. The difference is the Religious has NEVER given up control of their life to Christ. Rather than be controlled by God, the Religious always seeks to control God and bend God’s Power to their own will and agenda. Religious people thrive on the “name it and claim it” or “prosperity now” philosophies and seek to prove their closeness to God by their exercise of the more spectacular Gifts of the Spirit (healing, tongues, word of wisdom, word of knowledge, miracle-working faith, prophecy, discerning of spirits). While seeking to appear pious and humble, the Religious hungers for fame, fortune and international recognition. The Religious are willing to suffer asceticism to any depth as long as someone is watching and they are made to appear more spiritual than they really are.
I imagine that you may know people that fit these categories; I suppose we all have passed through these phases at one point or another in our lives. The problem is if and when we begin to take these attitudes and attributes as evidence of our spirituality.
Having laid some groundwork, we can start to observe why the true Child of God is able to hear God’s Voice.
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