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“God sent me.”
Yeah? You sure about that?
Do you think God actually sent everyone who says that God sent them? I don’t think so. Do you think God actually said everything someone said God said? I don’t think so.
I don’t think so because I have seen and heard egregious (shockingly bad) abuses of the “God is saying…” thing and the “God sent me.” thing. I have heard people manipulate others and even seen relationships with God crippled. It is ugly!
Understand: I am not implying that God does not speak through people or send people on tasks or missions for specific people or purposes. I KNOW He does. You are reading this message (and have been for twenty five years) because of such a directive.
God communicating through someone or sending someone is real. It should not be dismissed or taken lightly. I am saying that not all who claim it are truthful. Some are… and some are sincerely misguided. A few are intentionally misleading.
It is a weighty thing to say, “God said…”. I wish more in influential positions would comprehend the responsibility of it. I have had “words” (think of it as a message) to deliver to someone from Holy Spirit. I say the responsibility is weighty because what is said can change a life. Unless specifically directed otherwise, I present what I have to say as advice or counsel.
In today’s Scripture passage, Jesus calls out those who speak out of their own heads–for their own reasons, motives, emotions, or benefit. He also says (in so many words), “Anyone in relationship with God will recognize that what I say is from God.” He also says (in so many words) that their actions will reveal their authenticity.
We should heed this. In this message, I hope for you to take away three important points:
- ONE: Never say “God said…” unless you know that you know that you know God actually “said” it.
- TWO: Do not accept someone saying “God said…” unless you know that you know that you know that God actually “said” it.
- THREE: If you are uncertain, ask God if it is from Him–and wait until you know before you act on it.
God does speak through people. This is a valuable and powerful tool and gift. Sometimes it is formal (the speaker knows they are speaking on God’s behalf) and sometimes it is informal (the speaker is unaware that what they say is from God).
I think the latter is much more common. I have experienced both from both sides. When this happens, it is a gift in operation in the speaker and it is a gift TO the hearer. It benefits both.
We must be certain that, as Jesus said, “I’m not teaching my own ideas, but those of God who sent me.” This is certain:
- God sends people–but not everyone who says God sent them are sent by Him.
- God speaks through people–but not everyone who says they are speaking for God are speaking for Him.
- God uses people to teach–but not everyone who teaches is from God and not everything they teach is from Him.
The maxim “caveat emptor” should be in our awareness here. This means, “buyer beware”. Though we are obligated to do what God says, we are not obligated to do what someone says out of their own motives. Our responsibility is to be as certain as we can which is which.
How can we be sure? The closer we draw to God the clearer it will become. In the meantime, seek His guidance–in everything. It is really that simple.
So Jesus told them, “I’m not teaching my own ideas, but those of God who sent me. Anyone who wants to do the will of God will know whether my teaching is from God or is merely my own. Those who present their own ideas are looking for praise for themselves, but those who seek to honor the one who sent them are good and genuine. (John 7:16-18 NLT)
Prayer: LORD, I have heard people say things only to bring attention to themselves or seek the recognition of others. In every word, every decision–and even in my most private thoughts–I want to honor You. Never let me say or do anything that would injure or mislead anyone in their relationship with You. Help me live in a way that gives attention to whom it is due, which is always You! Make it so. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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“Today’s Seed” from E-MIN Jan. 10, 2023