God Speaks to Everyone All the Time
Then Why is There So Much Trouble in the World?
Many people ask, Why is there so much pain and suffering in the world? If there really is a God, He wouldn’t allow all this pain and suffering. And certainly, God wouldn’t allow it to happen to Christians, who obey and worship God.
God doesn’t bring random violence on us, with its resulting pain and suffering. He directs our paths every day. But we can follow His directions ONLY if we can hear them. God talks to everyone all the time, but they don’t seem to hear His voice.
Here are a number of examples of God “telling” mankind what to do but mankind doesn’t listen. And these people ALL claimed to be followers of God!
1. God told Adam and Eve: “Don’t eat of this tree, or you will die.”
Adam and Eve didn’t listen to God’s advice. They didn’t understand what “dying” meant because they had never seen anything die. They chose to disregard God’s advice when He “told” them, so they had to learn by experience.
Their sin not only led to their own death 900 + years later, but it resulted in one of their sons, Cain, murdering his brother, Abel.
2. God told Cain what kind of sacrifice to offer to God.
Cain didn’t listen to God’s advice. Instead of bringing a lamb to sacrifice to the Lord, as Abel did, Cain brought the “work of his own hands” the produce that he had grown. When God was pleased with Abel’s offering but not Cain’s Cain became so jealous and enraged, he murdered Abel, his brother.
3 God told Nimrod: (Genesis, Chapter 11) After the flood, God had promised mankind that He would never again destroy the earth with water. Nimrod didn’t believe God, so he, wanting to start the first One World Government, ordered the building of the tower of Babel “that would reach to heaven” so the earth could not again be destroyed by water. Nimrod obviously did not believe in God and His promises, so took it upon himself to “deliver” himself and the others from a future flood.
Up until that time, there was only one language on the whole earth. When God saw their intentions, He stopped their building efforts by “confounding their language that they may not understand one another’s speech.
So the Lord scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city.
“Therefore is the name of it called Babel (Confusion); because the Lord did there confound the language of all the earth: and from thence did the Lord scatter them abroad upon the face of all the earth.” Genesis 11:8,9
4. God told Abraham:
“Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee to the land of Moriah: and offer him there for an ASCENT offering (literal translation not “burnt” offering) upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of. Genesis 22:2
Abraham did as he improperly “understood” God’s commands. All the “ascent” offerings God had previously declared, were animals that had been slaughtered and burned on an altar. Abraham assumed that was what God wanted him to do to Isaac, because Abraham didn’t fully understand God’s character of love.
God does not want human beings killed and burned. That’s why the whole concept of “hellfire” is not of God. “Hellfire” has been manufactured by the Bible translators. God wanted Abraham to offer Isaac as a “LIVING Sacrifice” to dedicate Isaac’s Life to the Lord not to slaughter and burn him.
When Abraham tied Isaac to the altar and was ready to kill him, God immediately stopped him, saying:
Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou anything unto him.” Gen 22:12
And God provided, right there in the thicket, a ram for the offering, instead of Abraham’s son Isaac.
Without Abraham fully understanding the character of God, Abraham misunderstood God’s orders.
For more information on the origin of the doctrine of Hellfire, please see, “Was the Doctrine of “Hell” Manufactured by Theologians?” at http://www.goodnewsaboutgod.com/studies/hellfire2.htm
5. God told Samson, a judge of Israel, that he would take a vow as a life-long Nazarite. Being a Nazarite included not drinking any alcohol, and not cutting his hair.
God gave Samson supernatural strength, but only as long as he did not cut his hair. Samson, against God’s command, started a relationship with the pagan Philistine named Delilah, who eventually persuaded Samson to tell her the secret of his strength. Delilah betrayed him by telling her kinsmen, who then shaved off Samson’s hair while he was sleeping.
Samson’s strength was gone, he was imprisoned, blinded and humiliated, and eventually died, as did thousands of Philistines who were mocking Samson, in the collapse of the building Samson destroyed with the one last burst of strength God provided for Samson after he confessed his sin.
God told Rebecca: When Rebecca gave birth to her twin sons, Jacob and Esau, God told her that “the older would serve the younger.” In other words, Jacob the younger of the two twins, would inherit the birthright (all the possessions of his father Isaac) that would normally have gone to the older, Esau.
When Isaac was elderly, blind and close to death, he told Esau to hunt and kill a deer, and cook some venison for him, and Isaac would bestow the birthright on him.
Rebecca overheard the conversation and concocted a plan with Jacob to deceive Isaac into giving the birthright to Jacob, instead.
Deception of any kind is bad enough, but to obtain all the possessions of one’s father by deceiving him is an even more egregious violation of God’s law. And worse yet, it was Jacob’s own mother, the wife of Isaac, that was the initial instigator of the deception.
Jacob had stolen the birthright from his brother, Esau. Jacob had to run for his life, to a far country to his mother’s relatives. Rebecca never saw Jacob again. What a terrible price to pay for doing God’s work her OWN way.
God told Moses:
“And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens: and he spied an Egyptian smiting an Hebrew, one of Moses’ brethren.
And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man (around), he slew the Egyptian, and hid him in the sand.” Ex 2:11,12
God clearly was directing Moses to take a look at the burdens the Israelites were enduring as slaves of the Egyptians. This was Moses’ first prompting by God that He wanted Moses to deliver the Israelites from the Egyptians.
However, because Moses was a warrior, and the equivalent of the Minister of Defense in Pharaoh’s “cabinet” Moses naturally assumed God wanted him to deliver the Israelites by force!
But deliverance by killing was not God’s plan. Moses had to run for his life, and was banished to Midian for forty years, tending sheep, until Moses had a change of heart, and was ready to follow God’s direction at the age of 80.
God told the Israelites at the Red Sea
Now, at the age of 80, when God again called Moses to lead the Israelites out of Egypt, but they came forth with NO weapons. All they had was gold, silver and yard goods. When they finally got as far as the Red Sea, Pharaoh and his men came after them. The Israelites were terrified, claiming Moses brought them out into the wilderness only to be slaughtered by Pharaoh and his soldiers. But Moses said:
“”Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will show to you today; for the Egyptians whom ye have seen today, ye shall see them again no more forever.
“The LORD shall fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.” Ex 14:13,14
Moses told the Israelites to stop whining and complaining, and that God NOT the Israelites would fight for them.
Then God opened the waters of the Red Sea for the Israelites to cross to safety.
But the Israelites did not want to trust God with their safety, even though He had parted the waters of the Red Sea for them to cross over, and the Egyptians had all drowned trying to follow the Israelites.
Soon we see the Israelites fighting their OWN battles with weapons that they had to have collected from the Egyptians slain in the Red Sea.
From then on, rather than letting God fight their battles for them, the Israelites chose to fight for themselves, a decision that led to many lost lives of the Israelites.
God told the Israelites at Sinai how to live, by giving them the Ten Commandments. But for the rest of the Old Testament, we see the Israelites constantly rejecting God and turning away to worship pagan idols. Every time they did, they were enslaved and abused by a foreign nation until they confessed to God and turned back to him.
God told King Saul and the people:
“Now therefore behold the king whom ye have chosen, and whom ye have desired! And behold the Lord hath set a king over you.
“If you will fear the Lord, and serve him, and obey his voice, and not rebel against the commandment of the Lord, then shall both ye and also the king that reigneth over you continue following the Lord your God:
“But if you will not obey the voice of the Lord, but rebel against the commandment of the Lord, then shall the hand of the Lord be against you, as it was against your fathers.” 1 Samuel 12:13-15
But Saul did not follow the Lord, so David was anointed in Saul’s place.
“And Samuel said unto Saul, The Lord hath rent the kingdom of Israel from thee this day, and hath given it to a neighbour of thine, that is better than thou. 1 Sam 15:28
Saul spent the rest of his reign trying to murder David, whom the Lord protected.
“Whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap.”
In everyone of these instances, God “told” the individual or group how to live. But they did not listen to the Lord and chose to follow their own ways which resulted in severe pain and sorrow.
The Lord did not bring the pain and sorrow. Each person reaped what he had sown.
So why is there so much pain and suffering in the world?
Because no one responds to “being told” by God. They insist on “trying out” sin for themselves and reap the consequences of their actions.
It is only “trouble” that causes us to change our behavior. “Being told” doesn’t seem to work.
God tells us and we don’t listen. And we painfully reap what we have sown.
Just like we “tell” our children, and they don’t listen. And they also painfully reap what they have sown.
God speaks to everyone all the time
Why doesn’t anyone listen or hear God’s voice?
Too addicted to social media
Too distracted by the cares of this world
Just generally inattentive to what’s important in life
Lack of understanding because of disobedience
Lack of true belief in God
Lack of the character of Christ manifested in us
Lack of obedience to ALL that we already know.
How does one learn to recognize God’s voice?
“My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
“And I give unto them eonian life (the life of Christ in you), and they shall never be lost, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” John 10:27,28.”
We “hear” Christ’s voice when we have at least some of the character of Christ exhibited in us.
How do we become like Christ? How do we exhibit His character?
By beholding Jesus Christ, we are changed into His image. By studying His Word and understanding His character. By asking Him to direct our life and live in us.
“But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror, the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord. 2 Cor 3:19
God speaks in a “still small voice.” In order to hear Him, we must “be still.” We must meet Him in our “secret room” where we can be alone with God. We must withdraw, for these periods of time, from the cacophony of the world. We must slow down from the rapid, stressful pace of life.
“Be still, and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
God said to Elijah,
“Go forth and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains, and broke the rocks in pieces before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind, an earthquake: but the Lord was not in the earthquake:
“And after the earthquake, a fire: but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire, a still small voice (delicate whispering voice)
“And it was so, when Elijah heard it that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entrance of the cave, and God spoke to him.” 1 Kings 19:11-13
God’s voice is a delicate whispering voice. It can only be heard if one’s character and heart are in sync with God’s character and “heart.”
We will hear His voice when we have the mind (and heart) of Jesus Christ.
“For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that He may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.: 1 Cor 2:16
How does one discern truth? Obedience to God brings the understanding of truth.
“If any man will do His will (obey) he shall know regarding the doctrine, whether it be of God.. .” John 7:17
“The recognition and glorification of God as God is the basic qualification for the ability to understand truth. In the measure in which we deny God’s divinity or devise a dual deity, our minds will falter and we will fail to grasp God’s revelation of Himself, either in nature or in His Word.” The Spirit of a Sound Mind.” A. E. Knoch, Unsearchable Riches, Vol 105, No. 2, p 71.
Those who do not hold to the recognition of God become mentally disqualified.
“And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge. God gave them over to an abased mind, to do those things which are not right.” Romans 1:28
That is precisely why those who don’t know God are unable to understand truth, whether it is in the field of medicine, religion, or politics. Neither those who are trained in those fields, or the rank and file population who foolishly look to them for direction, can understand truth unless they truly know the Lord.
The Blessings that come from Obedience`
“If thou shalt indeed obey His voice, and do all that I speak, then I will be an enemy unto thine enemies, and an adversary unto thine adversaries.” Ex 23:22
“Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken (is better) than the fat of rams.” 1 Sam 15:23
“God has given His spirit to those who obey Him.” Acts 5:32
By faith Abraham, when he was called to go out into a place which he should after receive for an inheritance, obeyed; and he went out, not knowing where he was going.” Heb 11:8
It is far better to obey God’s voice, than to “sacrifice” (work for God).What is the result of not hearing God’s voice?
“We ought to obey God, rather than man (that includes doctors).” Acts 5:29
When we don’t “hear” what God is telling us, when we don’t follow His direction, He teaches us by the circumstances of our life: and that method is ALWAYS painful!
The Prodigal son wanted his inheritance at a young age so he could leave home and “have fun.” He wasted his money on wine, women and song, and ended up feeding pigs, and eating what they ate.
The prodigal son had reaped what he had sown; a painful way to learn a lesson.
He decided to return to his father and ask for a job as a servant, all of whom were living and eating better than he was. Of course, his father ran to meet him, and welcomed his repentant son with open arms.
David lusted after Bathsheba, who was married to Uriah, the Hittite, a warrior who was fiercely loyal to his King David. David committed adultery with Bathsheba and she became pregnant. To cover his sin, David had Uriah transferred to the front of the battle so he would be killed and David could marry Bathsheba.
Not only was David’s sin found out by his whole kingdom, but the baby conceived in adultery died.
David had reaped what he had sown; a painful way to learn a lesson.
Moses was told to fetch water for the Israelites in the wilderness. The first time God told Moses to strike the rock, which represented Christ’s death on the cross which gave salvation, the “water of life,” to the world.
The Second time God told Moses to give the Israelites water, when they were moaning and complaining and threatening to mutiny against Moses, God told Moses to “speak to the rock.”
And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying,
“Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together, thou, and Aaron thy brother, and speak ye unto the rock before their eyes; and thou shalt bring forth to them water out of the rock: so thou shalt give the congregation and their beasts drink.
“And Moses took the rod from before the Lord, as He commanded him.
“And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels, must WE fetch you water out of this rock?
“And Moses lifted up his hand, and with his rod he smote the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly and the congregation drank, and their beasts also
God told Moses to “speak to the rock” but, instead Moses hit the rock twice sending the message that Jesus’ death ONCE on the cross was not enough for salvation. Instead, like the animal sacrifices, they had to be repeated over and over again.
Furthermore, it was God who was giving the Israelites water. Moses vastly over-reached his position by saying, “Must WE fetch water out of this rock?” as though Moses had the power, like God, to perform this miracle.
The consequence for Moses’ act was swift and sure:
“And the Lord spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because you believed Me not, to hallow Me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore you shall NOT bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.” Numbers 20:13
Because Moses would not listen to the Lord, and do as God had directed, Moses was doomed to die in the wilderness, after forty long years of leading the Israelites. He would die, and Joshua would lead the Israelites into the Promised Land.
Moses reaped what he had sown; a painful way to learn a lesson.
King Saul was told by God to get rid of all the witches in the land of Israel, which he did. However, before a specific battle, King Saul, himself, visited a witch, asking her “bring up Samuel” to tell Saul what would happen in the battle he was waging.
Because Saul committed this great sin, King Saul died in the battle. He was beheaded by his enemies, and his body was nailed to the entrance gate of the city of his enemies.
Saul had reaped what he had sown; a painful way to learn a lesson.
When will we become so close to the Lord that we are able to hear His voice?
And how much trouble and pain must we have before we learn to follow His direction?