Disguising, Distorting and Destroying God's Voice

The method of God speaking and humanity hearing and understanding God's voice and words clearly has changed over the years. From walking face-to-face in Eden, to speaking to people from burning bushes, clouds or from a visit from the Son of God Himself, to now following the prompting of the Holy Spirit's inspiration - God's voice has not changed, just the transport. 

Another thing that has not changed is the effort of the enemy of our souls to either disguise, distort and/or destroy God's voice. From Genesis to Revelation, from the beginning of our lives to the end - the Accuser is trying to capitalize on opportunities to kill God's voice in your life, steal God's voice out of your life or from ever reaching your life and destroy God's voice by implementing many tactics to compete with God's voice or even usurp it.

In order to know that God's Voice is under attack in your life and act on that attack, one has to know the sound of God's Voice. When I was growing up, I could tell you without looking, who was walking from one room to the other because of their cadence and who was literally talking behind my back because of their voice. All the times I have been on a team, in a job or part of a church family for an extended period of time - I knew them. Because I shared so much time in my relationships, I could distinguish the many voices in my life from one another – seen or unseen.

That is familiarity based on an established bond. This only comes with time spent with that person. Many instances the time is just the quantity that determines the familiarity of the bond, like going to work everyday therefore knowing your coworkers. Many more instances knowing someone’s voice, cadence, posture and the like come from quality time with that individual.

I have heard many pastors and teachers of the Bible say something like – “I heard God say to me…. Or God said to me….” I desire to interview those people and ask, “Really? You heard God speak? What did He sound like?” I have often pondered – what does the actual voice of God sound like? Many of us have associated The Voice of God with a good baritone or smooth bass voice, compliments of movies and t.v. with James Earl Jones and the like.

In 1 Kings 19:11-13 the voice of God is described as "a still small voice" or "a whisper". However, the scale for God’s voice seems to be tipped more to the loud end of the spectrum then that of the whisper mentioned in 1 Kings 19. Such descriptions as thunder and lighting in Psalms 29:7, trumpet blasts in Hebrews 12:19, the Niagara Falls effect of "the roar of rushing waters" in Ezekiel 43:2 and Revelation 1:15, the murmur of a large crowd depicted as "the sound of a multitude" in Daniel 10:6, the breaking of Cedars (Ps. 29:5), the shaking of the desert (Ps. 29:8), the twisting of the oak (Ps. 29:9) and the shattering of Assyria (Isa. 30:31). His voice has been documented as coming from a cloud (Matt. 17:5), speaking from out of the fire (Dt. 4:12) and even reaching the dead and they hear Him in John 5:28; John 11.

The individuals who lived during the time of Christ got to hear the voice of God in human form. They heard the Word of God, the Logos, made flesh, speak. John says in his gospel –

“In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God. (Jn. 1:1) “The Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us.” (Jn. 1:14) 

That which Father God uttered as words now was flesh and speaking Father God’s very words to us.

After the resurrection, two disciples were walking on the Road to Emmaus contemplating the events that just transpired in Jerusalem around Jesus when Christ Himself appeared with them and walked with them to their destination, explaining the life and role of The Messiah and His death and resurrection while the disciples were purposefully oblivious to His identity. Then later, at dinner, when Christ broke the bread, their eyes of perception were opened and they recognized Jesus and the Lord vanished. Then they said, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?” (Luke 24:32).

Now-a-days I do not claim to hear God’s voice as loud noises, storms or even whispers. So how can John speak about the sheep listening to Christ’s voice as The Great Shepherd in John 10:27? The actual verse reads, 

“My sheep listen to my voice; I know them and they follow me.” 

I believe identifying the competing voices which include disguised voices, distorting voices and voices bent on destroying God's voice in our lives are crucial in order to single out God's voice, in order to hone-in on the voice of The Great Shepherd.

Disguised voices could be our own thoughts about a matter and/or any source that has its roots somewhere other than The Word of God, like the self, enemy and the world. Distorting voices are those words, speeches, songs and art that convey a twisted view of the original meaning which has been established and known by most if not all the Christian community. Destroying voices piggybacks on both of these, disguised and distorting and uses the venue of choice to totally deny God's voice in any and all situations in life and even replace God's voice with something or someone else.

God has a magnificent voice and has used it many times to acquire the attention and obedience of nature and humanity. Where God's voice was unmistakable in the past, His voice is a matter of faith, diligence in His Word and Godly discernment today. Especially since Christ's visitation, God's voice is built on a relationship with Jesus by accepting His sacrifice for our redemption and trusting in His Holy Spirit to guide believers.

For the Christian today, I believe God's Word and His Holy Spirit within the believer are how Christ mainly speaks. Not that God could not audibly, loudly or softly speak His words to the believer, but for all ages future of Christ’s ascension Jesus stated -

"But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you." (John 14:26).

God’s communication to the Christian is more of a Holy impression, a Holy inspiration based from and on God’s Word. In Paul's second letter to Timothy, the word theopneustos (theh-op-nyoo-stos) is used meaning God-breathed or inspired to describe all Scripture -

"All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

This listening to and for God’s voice all begins by following Him or spending time in His Word and manifest presence. The original word used for "know" in John 10:27-28 - "My sheep listen to my voice; I know them and they follow me." - is ginosko, meaning to know absolutely; be sure; to understand in a great variety of applications and with many implications. The word implies an intimate, developing relationship that God knows everything about with the believer's part being to “listen” and “follow”.

God's voice will one day be undeniably unmistakable to all. As Jesus steps down from His throne in Heaven and pierces the thin cloak of invisibility, He will descend with "a loud command" (1 Thess. 4:16). This shout, this resounding utterance, this Voice of Thunder will be enough for all Christians to be transformed or glorified and the dead in Christ will rise first, then the remaining believers will meet them and Christ in the air to go Home.

Meanwhile, God says, if you are part of the family of God, you will want to and need to be listening for God’s impressions, His inspiration and discernments through His Holy Spirit. To help in this effort, remain a man or woman of integrity. Also, continue to pray to Him, allowing for listening time. Permit the Holy Spirit and Word of God to guide you in all truth because this is God’s Voice and there is one whose efforts never cease in Disguising, Distorting and Destroying God's Voice.