My cable TV package has two “Christian” TV networks. Both of these have all kinds of teaching and preaching programs. On one of the stations, there is a lady with huge, pink hair, a guy who lays hands on people and knocks them over, and another man who predicts the future with so called prophecies (although many of his predictions have proven to be false). These teachers claim to be speaking directly form God, and proclaim that their “miracles” and works come directly from Him. The problem is that much of their teaching is contrary to Scripture and the basic beliefs of Christianity.
Does God speak? If He does, how and what does He say? These are questions Christians have asked since the beginning of the church. This text gives us the answer. God has spoken and continues to speak, through His Word and through His Son. Verse one says that God spoke to the fathers through the prophets. In Hebrew thought, the entire Old Testament was summed up by referring to “the Law and Prophets”. But often they shortened this phrase, and just spoke of the prophets. This is a reference to all of the Scriptures of the Old Testament. Verse two indicates that in the last days, God has spoken through His Son. This means that if we want to understand what God is like, or want to understand His ways and His will, we need to look no farther than Jesus. He is a picture of everything God is and everything God wants.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I don’t believe that the Bible is teaching here that God sent us the Bible, and then sent Jesus, and then went on vacation and doesn’t speak any more. In fact, the Bible teaches us that if we know God, we will hear the voice of Jesus. God speaks to us every day. But we need a filter to make sure that what we hear is actually what God is saying. Jesus and the Bible are the filter.
It’s kind of like making a pot of coffee. To make coffee, you start with a cup or so of coffee grounds. But you don’t put the coffee grounds into a bowl of water and boil. If you did this, it would be gross. All kinds of floating things would stick in your teeth. And the taste would be terrible. No, you put the grounds in a filter and run the water through the filtered grounds. As the water moves through the coffee, and pours through the filter, it keeps the junk out of the coffee. The end result is a full, hot, tasty cup of java for a morning pick me up.
When you believe God is speaking to you, or you hear someone else say they are speaking for God, ask these two questions. First, are the things being said consistent with the clear teaching of Scripture? Second, if I follow the direction given, will it lead me closer to the risen Son of God? Jesus and the Bible are our filters. When we run other ideas through these filters, God will strain out that which is not from Him. The end result is a refreshing walk with Him that is full of grace and truth.
God has spoken. Are you listening?