Beware the Spiritual Panacea
Yes, you may think you are hearing a fantastic promise from God but if you think he is promising no suffering, no failure, and lots of prosperity, you are most certainly not hearing from God’s word. Perhaps you’ve heard the health, wealth and prosperity preachers. They make big money to drive big fancy cars and wear fine clothes and jewelry. After all, they know the secret, why not flaunt it to help you believe it.
Let’s recall the exchange between Jesus and Peter.
Matthew 16:21-23 (NKJV)
From that time Jesus began to show to His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised the third day.
Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “Far be it from You, Lord; this shall not happen to You!
But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.”
Peter was not happy about Jesus being killed (he did not understand the whole story yet, remember he was a little dense headed). This was Peter’s wishful thinking getting in the way of what the desire and will of God was from the foundation of the world.
Beware Satan’s imitation
Satan can appear as an angel of Light, or he can disguise his voice as that of God. When Jesus was tempted of Satan, you know how he knew he was wrong? Satan misquoted scripture. Jesus corrected him. How? because Jesus was quite familiar with God’s word. The only reason I make such an understatement about that (obviously Jesus knows the Bible) is to encourage you that you too can recognize Biblical truth.
What if we’re wrong?
Nobody’s perfect but one.
God’s Word is Key
Fredrick B Meyer’s says
The written word is the wire along which the voice of God will certainly come to you if the heart is hushed and the attention fixed.
Dallas Willard says:
Both in the experience of scripture and of other things—circumstances, our own inner thoughts and impulses, the reading of history or biography—God’s word frequently comes in a way that at least approximates the experience of an audible voice. When examined closely the data of Christian experience reveals that this is much more common than is generally thought. But the audibility of the voice is not anything essential to it, nor does it have any effect on reliability of our experience of the voice. The essentials The essentials remain, once again, the distinctive quality, spirit and content that we have learned through experience to associate with the personal presence of God.
Bottom line: All that is required for receiving salvation and a guiding word, is humility and openness before God’s Word recorded in the Bible. Be much occupied with that.