A Famine of God’s WordBro. David Chancellor
3/20/2011 11:00 AM
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report? So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.
Every person who cries out for help in his soul can receive help. “How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent?” All these “hows” need to be met in our lives. “How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!” This is from Isaiah 52. It is wonderful when the word of God comes to us. “But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?” When we hear from God, we need to take action on what God shows us. Our faith depends on hearing the word of God. The Bible is God’s word sent to us. When we go to the Bible, God has to speak to us through it. You wont hear until God speaks. The word should come alive to us. If we don’t hear from God, we should be concerned. God has to direct us to what he wants us to know. We all need to hear from God.
Some people don’t like it when god speaks to them. If God speaks to you, it is a good basis for faith. Behold, the days come, saith the Lord GOD, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the LORD: And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the LORD, and shall not find it.” (Amos 8:11-12) The famine would be of hearing the word of God. They weren’t listening so there wasn’t any point in talking. We don’t want to have a famine like this. We need to hear from God. If you’re having a fight of faith, seek God’s voice.
2 Peter 1:19-21
We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.
Peter had seen Christ transfigured. It was a wonderful thing. We have something sure when God speaks to our hearts. We all face situations in life. What is spoken should come from God, not a preacher trying to tailor to certain situations. Faith is inspired when the Spirit of God speaks to your heart. When the Spirit inspires the message it will speak to us what is needed for our situation. God can speak to us explicitly about what to do in life.
1 Kings 22:1-23
And they continued three years without war between Syria and Israel. And it came to pass in the third year, that Jehoshaphat the king of Judah came down to the king of Israel. And the king of Israel said unto his servants, Know ye that Ramoth in Gilead is ours, and we be still, and take it not out of the hand of the king of Syria? And he said unto Jehoshaphat, Wilt thou go with me to battle to Ramothgilead? And Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, I am as thou art, my people as thy people, my horses as thy horses. And Jehoshaphat said unto the king of Israel, Enquire, I pray thee, at the word of the LORD to day. Then the king of Israel gathered the prophets together, about four hundred men, and said unto them, Shall I go against Ramothgilead to battle, or shall I forbear? And they said, Go up; for the LORD shall deliver it into the hand of the king. And Jehoshaphat said, Is there not here a prophet of the LORD besides, that we might enquire of him? And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, There is yet one man, Micaiah the son of Imlah, by whom we may enquire of the LORD: but I hate him; for he doth not prophesy good concerning me, but evil. And Jehoshaphat said, Let not the king say so. Then the king of Israel called an officer, and said, Hasten hither Micaiah the son of Imlah. And the king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah sat each on his throne, having put on their robes, in a void place in the entrance of the gate of Samaria; and all the prophets prophesied before them. And Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah made him horns of iron: and he said, Thus saith the LORD, With these shalt thou push the Syrians, until thou have consumed them. And all the prophets prophesied so, saying, Go up to Ramothgilead, and prosper: for the LORD shall deliver it into the king's hand. And the messenger that was gone to call Micaiah spake unto him, saying, Behold now, the words of the prophets declare good unto the king with one mouth: let thy word, I pray thee, be like the word of one of them, and speak that which is good. And Micaiah said, As the LORD liveth, what the LORD saith unto me, that will I speak. So he came to the king. And the king said unto him, Micaiah, shall we go against Ramothgilead to battle, or shall we forbear? And he answered him, Go, and prosper: for the LORD shall deliver it into the hand of the king. And the king said unto him, How many times shall I adjure thee that thou tell me nothing but that which is true in the name of the LORD? And he said, I saw all Israel scattered upon the hills, as sheep that have not a shepherd: and the LORD said, These have no master: let them return every man to his house in peace. And the king of Israel said unto Jehoshaphat, Did I not tell thee that he would prophesy no good concerning me, but evil? And he said, Hear thou therefore the word of the LORD: I saw the LORD sitting on his throne, and all the host of heaven standing by him on his right hand and on his left. And the LORD said, Who shall persuade Ahab, that he may go up and fall at Ramothgilead? And one said on this manner, and another said on that manner. And there came forth a spirit, and stood before the LORD, and said, I will persuade him. And the LORD said unto him, Wherewith? And he said, I will go forth, and I will be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets. And he said, Thou shalt persuade him, and prevail also: go forth, and do so. Now therefore, behold, the LORD hath put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these thy prophets, and the LORD hath spoken evil concerning thee.
He spoke what God gave him to speak. It wasn’t what Ahab had in mind. He wanted to hear he would prosper. The 400 prophets tormented the one prophet. Even after the plain words of the prophet, this was how Ahab died. When God speaks to us the picture may not be pretty, but it will be true. God sends warning if we’ll listen. Ahab didn’t listen.
God has to personalize his word to us. We need God to speak to us what applies to our situation. When God speaks plainly, we need to listen. You need to hear from heaven. If God has said it, it will be.
We could want things to be a certain way, but we need God to speak to hearts.
Acts 27:21-26, 33-36
But after long abstinence Paul stood forth in the midst of them, and said, Sirs, ye should have hearkened unto me, and not have loosed from Crete, and to have gained this harm and loss. And now I exhort you to be of good cheer: for there shall be no loss of any man's life among you, but of the ship. For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve, Saying, Fear not, Paul; thou must be brought before Caesar: and, lo, God hath given thee all them that sail with thee. Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me. Howbeit we must be cast upon a certain island.
And while the day was coming on, Paul besought them all to take meat, saying, This day is the fourteenth day that ye have tarried and continued fasting, having taken nothing. Wherefore I pray you to take some meat: for this is for your health: for there shall not an hair fall from the head of any of you. And when he had thus spoken, he took bread, and gave thanks to God in presence of them all: and when he had broken it, he began to eat. Then were they all of good cheer, and they also took some meat.
Paul was saying, “I told you so, now listen…” We don’t have to say that, but Paul was trying to help them understand what was coming. The angel came because Paul was praying, not just for himself, but for everyone.
“Wherefore, sirs, be of good cheer: for I believe God, that it shall be even as it was told me.” We can be this positive when God speaks to us. We need faith that comes by hearing. Hear what God says in the circumstances of your life. Faith comes by hearing God speak.
1 Thessalonians 2:10-13
Ye are witnesses, and God also, how holily and justly and unblameably we behaved ourselves among you that believe: As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children, That ye would walk worthy of God, who hath called you unto his kingdom and glory. For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.
These had taken it for the word of God it was. If God sent it, you need to listen. Not everything spoken of man is necessarily from God, but when God speaks to you through a man, listen up. It could be direct or it could be in a sermon. Be able to recognize the voice of God and listen. It should have an effect on you. God can inspire faith in us and cause it to work. We don’t want a famine of God’s word.