“God Spoke To Me”
Occasionally, people claim God spoke to them. By such a claim, they do not mean they saw some picturesque scene in nature and, thereby, were reminded of God’s splendor. Nor do they mean that they looked into a newborn baby’s eyes and, therefore, contemplated the child’s Creator. By contrast, they mean God spoke to them audibly. That is, God had a special message He orally delivered to them. What does the Bible teach about God speaking to humans?
There was a time in history when God spoke directly to people (i.e., Noah, Abraham, Moses, etc.). This is an undeniable fact. A common mistake people make, though, is reasoning in this fashion: since God once spoke directly to people, then He continues to do so. Sincere as these folks may be, this is an unwarranted conclusion. Today, God speaks religious truth to everyone in the same manner: through the Bible, and only through the Bible. Notice these biblical points, which undergird this truth...
First, Jesus promised the apostles that the Holy Spirit would guide them into all truth (John 16:13
). Since Jesus does not lie, it is rational to conclude that the apostles were
guided into ALL truth. If the apostles were guided into all truth, what else remains to be guided into today?
Second, if God is speaking directly to people today--to convey religious truth--then the apostle Peter was in error when he wrote that God has “given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness...”
(2 Peter 1:3
). Again, notice the word “all.”
If all religious truth had been given by the end of the first century, what more is there to receive?
Third, Jude exhorted the Christians, to whom he wrote, to “contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered...”
--emp. mine--dg). The faith Jude referenced had already been delivered once for all time.
Fourth, those who claim God speaks directly to them often disagree (about doctrinal matters) with others who claim God spoke directly to them. Is God giving different messages to different people, or is He lying to one or both groups (Titus 1:2
)? Though they would hardly admit it, their actions imply that God is lying to one or more groups.
Being as generous to these people (those who claim God spoke to them) as we would want them to be to us, we must admit this: we are not saying they did not hear something or some voice. What we are saying is that whatever they heard, it was not God’s voice. We are not able to accurately say whether they heard a voice. We are, however, able to accurately say it was not God’s voice. This, we are confident of.