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Featured The Word and the Scripture

Discussion in 'General Theology' started by Carl Emerson, Oct 21, 2019.

  1. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    Hi there,

    One of our members said the following.

    "God works through his word. Hearing comes by believing and believing the word of God. Jesus is the word and the ''word'' is now scripture."

    Now this claim that Jesus is no longer the Word poses problems for me.

    The theory is that since the scripture is written, Jesus is silent, as His voice is replaced by the scriptures. That means that believers who have the Holy Spirit inside must expect Him now to be silent. Anyone claiming to experience guidance from God is deceived as we now have the bible that has replaced God's voice.

    While I hold the bible to be our God given authority on matters of faith and life, we can't understand it unless the Spirit of God speaks. Further no where do I read that the Voice of the Holy Spirit which the Apostles heard, is now silent. I will go as far as to say that those who hold this position and making an Idol out of scripture.

    I hold the position that He wants us to enjoy a conversational relationship with Him through prayer as we walk with Him in 'the way' and that this leads to a beautiful life of faith as we hear and obey Him in the detail of life.

    Your comments greatly appreciated.
     
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  2. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    One more point - this is not a discussion about the gifts.

    This is about whether any believer can reasonably expect the Holy Spirit indwelling them to make known to them matters that will assist in them knowing the best way to approach the circumstances they face.
     
  3. dailyprayerwarrior

    dailyprayerwarrior Member

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    Agree. The Holy Spirit is our Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor, Counselor, Strengthener, Standby, and Guide. Rick Renner, a Greek scholar, says a better definition of "guide" is "tour guide". In other words, the Holy Spirit has already been to your tomorrow. So when you wake up tomorrow, follow His lead. He knows where He is going. Not to mention, what expert "tour guide" do you know that is "silent"? God is all about relationship. We see Jesus building relationships with His disciples while on the earth. He said that it was advantageous that He go so that the Holy Spirit would come. Well, if Jesus did what He did while on the earth, how much MORE will the Holy Spirit walk and talk with us! Thank God for sending His Son and the mighty Holy Spirit!
     
  4. public hermit

    public hermit Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have never heard someone say that Jesus is no longer the Word. From the quote you gave, I take it they mean the scriptures have the recorded words of Jesus so that now we have all that God says in the recorded words?

    I find many do not recognize that we tend to equivocate over "word." God's Word is first and foremost a Person and not a set of words. John 1:1, Jesus Christ is the Word of God. The scriptures (and the proclamation entailed within) are the means by which we come to know Christ. The word is the means by which we come to know the Word. Once we know Christ, then the scriptures become a tool for faith and practice. In short, the scriptures are always subordinate to Jesus Christ.

    I have seen people, at least in practice, treat the scriptures as if they are equal to Christ. But, this is the first time I have heard of someone subordinating Christ to the scriptures. Interesting.

    I agree.

    Absolutely. Which, as you pointed out, is the function of the Holy Spirit within.
     
  5. ilovejcsog

    ilovejcsog I am a Christian mutt. You can call me Rox

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    BLESSINGS CARL:)
     
  6. ilovejcsog

    ilovejcsog I am a Christian mutt. You can call me Rox

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    I am not sure that he meant to eliminate Jesus from our lives with his statement. Really?

    Thinking they go hand in hand is perhaps all he meant. As they do.
     
  7. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

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    I believe that the written Scriptures are God's total communication with mankind.

    But having said that, I don't believe that Jesus is silent at all. He is involved at the throne of God interceding for the saints. His voice to us is represented by the Holy Spirit whom He has sent to be with and in us until He comes again in person.

    So it is the voice of the Holy Spirit who speaks to us, and this is the same as the voice of Jesus because the Holy Spirit does not speak of Himself, but what the Father and Son tell him to say.

    But He does not speak apart from the written Scriptures. He speaks through the Scriptures. He does not speak new revelation that has not already been disclosed to us in the Scriptures. In every situation we find ourselves in where we need to hear His voice, He will speak through the Scriptures in a way that applies and makes alive what is written that pertains to the issue that we are seeking guidance about.

    We can read the Scriptures in the flesh and approach them intellectually and give a human wisdom interpretation, but that is not the voice of the Holy Spirit speaking through the Scriptures. But when we are seeking God over an issue, and we are consulting the Scriptures, the exact verse or passage will leap out and hit us between the eyes and give us an insight into it that we have never seen before, and we then know that the Holy Spirit has spoken to the issue.

    I have found listening to a good expository Bible teacher and the same has happened. I can listen to him for an hour, and think, "Yep. I have heard all that before. Nothing new", and then suddenly, he says something that hits my spirit and I go, "Wow! Never seen it like that before, and that answers my question!"

    I have also found that when I have been meditating and thinking about an issue, and have arrived at an opinion about what I think the answer is, a verse or passage of Scripture will come into my mind that either confirms or adjusts my thinking. I have never set out memorizing Scripture, but verses that I have not seen for 40 years have come into my mind when I have thought about certain issues.

    But if a voice speaks to my mind telling me that I am going to be famous or prosperous, or that I am going to be judged and condemned about a particular besetting sin or shortcoming, then I reject it out of hand, because these are totally contrary to the spirit and teaching of Scripture.

    Or if someone comes to me with a "word of knowledge" that does not confirm something that God has already shown me in the Scriptures, I also reject it. I don't even say that I will take it on board and think about it, because with an unsolicited word of knowledge of prophecy that does not seem to line up with Scripture, could carry a spirit of divination which could do me harm, physically or spiritually.
     
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  8. HehasRisen

    HehasRisen Faith as small as a mustard seed

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    Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

    Hebrews 13:8

    If He was once the Word, He is always the Word.

    I don't know if the user was really trying to say that Jesus is no longer the Word though. It could've just been a miscommunication.
     
  9. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    Oscarr - so you believe the living Word of God within us is now silent being replaced by the scripture?
     
    Last edited: Oct 21, 2019
  10. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    Where Paul says "It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us..." That inner peace about a matter is no longer available now we have the scripture?
     
  11. Mathetes66

    Mathetes66 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    John 5:39,40 "You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. Yet these are the very Scriptures that testify about Me. Yet you refuse to come to Me that you may have life."

    John 2:20-22 “This temple took 46 years to build,” the Jews replied, “and You are going to raise it up in three days?” But He was speaking concerning the temple of His body. After He was raised from the dead, His disciples remembered that He had said this. Then they believed the Scripture AND the word that Jesus had spoken.
     
  12. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    If such a major change occurred when the scripture was canonised, would not the Church Fathers have mentioned it?

    Can someone indicate where this teaching has come from please.
     
  13. klutedavid

    klutedavid Well-Known Member

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    I agree completely with what you said, and of course this is true.

    The New Testament is primarily about the life of Jesus Christ and letters that encourage and deal with problems that are disturbing the infant churches. In the New Testament we add a short history of the early church and some additional eschatology.

    Not a lot of information in the New Testament but probably sufficient to establish a strong faith.

    It took us nearly three centuries to establish the New Testament canon (382 AD). It took the Orthodox church six centuries to establish it's New Testament canon (692 AD).

    What is not in the New Testament is a concise list of the doctrines in Christianity. We took centuries to develop the Nicene Creed (325 AD). And the Nicene Creed is not the end of the ongoing debate over doctrine.

    Even today we have so many church movements with, at times, completely different sets of doctrine. So why are we in this predicament?

    Simply because the New Testament is a very brief narration in a very short period of historical time. On the surface, the New Testament is a profound revelation of love and Jesus Christ. But beneath the simple gospel is a deep and difficult text to understand.

    The Holy Spirit is critical to understanding the scripture. Though even with the Holy Spirit people will misunderstand the scripture. Add church tradition, church councils, church history, and you end up with confusion.

    But if you listen carefully when reading the scripture, you will eventually be driven completely into Christ alone and loving others.
    One very, very, clever God we serve.
     
  14. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

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    No, the voice of the Holy Spirit speaking through Scripture becomes the living, rhema Word to us. The voice does not replace Scripture and the Scripture does not replace the voice. They both work together. I believe that the written Bible is God's inspired Word to mankind. The Holy Spirit inspired the authors to write what God wants mankind to know about Him and His ways.

    When we prepare ourselves through study of the Scriptures and prayer, then we develop the proper discernment to distinguish the voice of the Holy Spirit apart from all the other voices.

    When I pray, a good part of my prayer time with the Lord is discussing passages of Scripture with Him, giving Him what I see in them. I find that new thoughts come to mind that shows me what He thinks of them, and it becomes a two-way fellowship in the Scriptures. It is great to be having a Bible study with the Lord, because between the two of us, there are new discoveries and enlightenment through the Holy Spirit that enhances our understand of what God is communicating to us.

    The Scripture says that the secret of the Lord is with those who fear Him. As we fellowship with Him in His Word, the Holy Spirit shows us the secrets embedded in it.

    "But as it is written:
    Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
    Nor have entered into the heart of man
    The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.
    But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God"
    ( 1 Corinthians 2:9-10).

    All those deep things of God are embedded in the written Scriptures, and the way we mine those Scriptures to find the veins of gold in them, is to fellowship with God and have discussions with Him concerning our daily readings of Scripture. Too often many people spend their prayer time asking God for things, or guidance, and although that is a part of prayer, according to Philippians 4:6, if we do nothing else, we are treating God is a vending machine to give us what we need and want. But fellowship with God in prayer goes much deeper than that. I once spent a whole hour discussing the Lord's Prayer with Him and couldn't get any further than "Our Father", in which we discussed how He is my Father and all that goes with it. That hour long discussion changed my whole life. I was never the same again. Instead of God being just God whom I have to always obey, He became my Father whom I love, and enjoy spending time with. That was 1969, and in all the years since, I have never known God in any other way than He being my Father, and I can go into His throne room anytime and have fellowship with Him and just enjoy His company, and I believe that He enjoys it when I do that and share my deepest thoughts and secrets with Him too.

    Once we have that kind of relationship, there is no problem hearing His voice, because we are always hearing His voice to us when we just go and have fellowship with Him, not to expect anything of Him, but just the enjoyment of being in His presence, in which there is fullness of joy.

    David had that depth of fellowship with the Lord, and He says in Psalm 119 how he loves the Scriptures and meditates in them day and night. Moses fellowshipped with God face to face, and ended up writing, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the first five books of the Bible. Paul spent three years in Arabia in close fellowship with the risen Jesus and ended up writing, under inspiration of the Holy Spirit, the bulk of the New Testament.

    I like the expression:
    "If we have the Spirit without the Scriptures, we blow up.
    If we have the Scriptures without the Spirit, we dry up.
    But if we have the Scriptures and the Spirit, we grow up!"
     
  15. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

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    The Jewish religious leaders had the Scriptures but not the Spirit, so they missed the fact that Jesus was their Messiah as prophesied. If they had the Scriptures and the Spirit, they would have recognised and accepted Jesus.
     
  16. swordsman1

    swordsman1 Well-Known Member

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    The Holy Spirit guides us in the circumstances of life via scripture. By bringing to light what is taught in scripture, we can apply biblical principles to guide us in the important decisions we make it life. He gives us biblical insights and helps to think biblically so that we have the mind of Christ.

    2 Timothy 3:16-17 says that scripture makes us complete and equips us for every good work:

    "All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work."

    2 Peter 1:3 says our knowledge of Him is everything we need for life:

    “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by his own glory and goodness.”

    And Psalm 119:105 says scripture provides the necessary illumination to guide us on our path:

    "Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path."


    If there are specific decisions that cannot be made by applying biblical principles then we use our God-given intelligence and common sense, and pray for wisdom to enable us make the right decisions. We are promised that if we pray for wisdom then we will receive it, so we can rest assured that any decisions we make will be according to His will.

    James 1:5 "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him."


    What God does not do is give us extra-biblical revelations. It seems some people believe that God speaks to them by beaming thoughts and ideas into their minds which they then declare as "God told me...". Yet this is not taught in scripture. If this was a major method by which the Holy Spirit speaks to us the bible would be filled with exhortations to listen to our thoughts and feelings. Yet what we find is the exact opposite:

    "My thoughts are not your thoughts" (Isa 55:8)
    "Whoever trusts in his own mind is a fool" (Prov.28:26)
    "The heart is deceitful above all things" (Jer 17:9)

    The idea that God speaks to us telepathically via our thoughts and feelings is not only unbiblical but it is a highly dangerous teaching. People say that when God "speaks" to them it is virtually indistinguishable from their own imagination. Yet they make life changing decisions thinking it is God's command when it is most likely nothing more than their own imagination. Not only that but the practice is wide open to abuse and manipulation Eg. "God told me you are to be my wife", "God told me my brother-in-law should be awarded the contract for the church roof", etc. Innocent but naive believers might well think that the Lord has really spoken and who would dare to disobey the commandment of the Lord?
     
  17. bling

    bling Regular Member Supporter

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    Some times we need to take a brother to the side and explain the word to him more clearly, so what and how are you going to approach this brother, so you both might learn and support each other?
     
  18. Maria Billingsley

    Maria Billingsley Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Jesus Christ of Nazareth is the "Word". The written scripture is the historical account of the "Word", the manifestation of the "Word" as flesh and the resurrection of the "Word" for the restoration between God and humanity. The Holy Spirit lives in each believer and the "Word" is with us forever. Holy Scripture captures the written history of man and the "Word" commencing with the final union in the Body of Christ. The "Word" is not the bible, it is Jesus Christ of Nazareth.
    John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God

    Blessings
     
  19. Carl Emerson

    Carl Emerson Well-Known Member

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    This is a huge issue.

    No one is arguing against scripture.

    The claim being made is that we can only hear God's voice as we read or remember bible verses.

    This is false.

    This idolises scripture and denies a vital function of the Holy Spirit within, to speak to us personally about whatever He chooses.

    Sure some are deceived and hear other voices they claim are God's voice and are wrong.

    Sure communion with Jesus through His written word is vital - but it is not exclusive.

    To condemn any claim of having heard the voice of the Holy Spirit within us is religious nonsense.

    It is a serious matter deny His genuine indwelling Voice just because some 'flakes' have got it wrong.

    This is an attempt to further silence the testimony of the Body of Christ which is already muted to a large degree.

    Don't get sucked in by this.

    Jesus wants us to study scripture diligently, mature in the faith, learn to discern His voice, and take His Living Word to the world. This may be a scripture - or it may not. It could just be an inspired word of comfort or a gentle word of correction. The voice of Jesus should become our voice as we become more like Him. Jesus did not only speak scripture. He heard and obeyed what He saw the Father was doing and so should we. Aspire to this vial walk with Him - He is not silent.
     
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2019
  20. Mathetes66

    Mathetes66 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Someone isn't reading their Bible nor experienced the leading of the Holy Spirit nor Christ speaking to His sheep & their hearing His voice.

    I Kings 19:11-13 Then the LORD said, “Go out & stand on the mountain before the LORD. Behold, the LORD is about to pass by.” And a great & mighty wind tore into the mountains & shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind. After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake.

    After the earthquake there was a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire. And after the fire CAME A STILL, SMALL VOICE. When Elijah HEARD it, he wrapped his face in his cloak & went out & stood at the mouth of the cave. Suddenly A VOICE CAME TO HIM--& said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”

    Elijah not only heard an audible voice but he also had a voice come TO HIM (one that he understood but didn't hear audibly).

    John 10:4,5,27 YLT And when his own sheep he may put forth, before them he goeth on & the sheep follow him, BECAUSE they have known his voice. And a stranger they will not follow, but will flee from him, because they have not known the voice of strangers.' According as I said to you: My sheep my voice do 'hear' & I know them & they follow Me...(G193: 'akouousin', comprehend by hearing & listening to)

    John 10:16 I have other sheep that are NOT of this fold. I must bring them in as well & THEY WILL LISTEN TO MY VOICE. Then there will be one flock & one shepherd.

    Acts 15:28 For it seemed good to the Holy Spirit & to us, to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things... (how did James know this?)

    Acts 5:32 We are witnesses of these things AND so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey Him." (how did all the apostles know this?)

    Acts 2:4,38,39 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit & began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit GAVE THEM UTTERANCE…

    Romans 8:5,9,14,16 Those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh; but those who live according to the Spirit set their MINDS on the things of the Spirit. You, however, are controlled not by the flesh, but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.

    For all who are LED by the Spirit of God are sons of God. The Spirit HIMSELF TESTIFIES WITH OUR SPIRIT that we are God’s children.

    Acts 13:2-4 While they were worshiping the Lord & fasting, the Holy Spirit SAID, “Set apart FOR ME, Barnabas & Saul, for the work to which I HAVE CALLED THEM.” So after THEY had fasted & prayed, they laid their hands on them & sent them off. Then Barnabas & Saul, SENT FORTH BY THE HOLY SPIRIT, went down to Seleucia & sailed from there to Cyprus.

    How did this whole group hear what the Holy Spirit SAID to them all? How did Barnabas & Saul KNOW they were sent out by the Holy Spirit, except they heard directly from Him.

    Acts 10:19 While Peter was still thinking about the vision, the Holy Spirit SAID TO HIM, "Three men are here looking for you. Get up! Go downstairs & accompany them WITHOUT hesitation, BECAUSE I HAVE SENT THEM.”
    (How did these men know they were sent by the Holy Spirit & how did Peter know they were sent also?)

    Acts 11:12 Then THE SPIRIT TOLD ME TO GO WITH THEM, doubting nothing. Moreover these six brethren accompanied me, and we entered the man’s house.

    Acts 8:29-31 The Spirit SAID TO PHILIP, “Go over to that chariot & stay by it.” So Philip ran up and heard the man reading Isaiah the prophet. “Do you understand what you are reading?” Philip asked.“How can I,” he said, “unless someone guides me?”

    Acts 8:39,40 When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord CARRIED PHILIP AWAY & the eunuch saw him no more, but went on his way rejoicing. But Philip APPEARED at Azotus & traveled through that region, preaching the gospel in all the towns until he came to Caesarea.
    (How did that happen?)

    I Tim 4:1 Now the Holy Spirit tells us clearly that in the last times some will turn away from the true faith; they will follow deceptive spirits and teachings that come from demons.

    Acts 20:23 I only know that in town after town the Holy Spirit WARNS ME that chains & afflictions await me.

    Acts 21:11 Coming over to us, he took Paul's belt, bound his own feet & hands & said, "THE HOLY SPIRIT SAYS: 'In this way the Jews of Jerusalem will bind the owner of this belt & hand him over to the Gentiles.'"

    I Cor 2:9,10 Rather, as it is written: “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no heart has imagined, what God has prepared for those who love Him.” For God has revealed it to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God.

    Eph 3:5 ...Which was not made known to men in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God's holy apostles & prophets.

    Romans 8:26,27 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know how we ought to pray, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groans TOO DEEP FOR WORDS. 27And He who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit INTERCEDES for the saints according to the will of God.

    Many more verses could be shared, but this is a plethora that is more than enough.

    I have had many times where the Spirit spoke to me in my spirit. Sometimes He used Scripture, sometimes He didn't. One time I haphazardly looked for a cow of my dad's on 40 acres that was going to have a calf & quit early, heading back to the house without finding it.

    As I approached the house the Spirit reminded me of Proverbs 12:10
    "A righteous man has regard for the life of his animal, but even the compassion of the wicked is cruel."

    I had not memorized this verse nor had read it for awhile, yet it clearly came to my mind. I immediately recognized the indwelling Spirit testifying to my spirit & convicting my heart, that I was grieving God for my disobedience.

    God knew my heart. I confessed my sin, then asked Spirit where the cow was, as I didn't know but He did. He simply said, "Go up the hill by the pond." I went up the hill by the pond & there was the cow with the newborn calf. The other cows were standing silently watching & all I could hear is the mother cow licking the newborn calf. Wow!

    Another time I had a hectic day working with incarcerated adolescents & had finally finished my logwork & waited to go off shift & head for home. While I was sitting with one minute to go, the Spirit said, "Wait five minutes." Have recognized His Voice many times, I simply prayed, "That's you isn't it God?" OK, I will wait 5 minutes."

    The other staff noticed I was still there & asked why I wasn't going home. I told him that I had to wait 5 minutes. He asked why. I just said it was important that I did, though not knowing just how important it was at that moment.

    I left after 5 minutes & missed being in a major multiple car accident, where people were killed.

    Another time the Spirit woke me up out of a dead sleep & said simply, "Pray for your parents." I got out of bed, dropped to my knees & began to immediately pray for my parents, for their safety, as they were traveling back from a trip.

    At the same time I was praying, the Spirit spoke to my father, telling him that a car coming down a hill was going to hit them. Dad told my mom out loud that the car coming down the hill in the right lane at that moment, was going to hit them & he was going to turn off the road & go in the ditch.

    She said that was nonsense until the car suddenly swerved right in front of them, in their lane. Dad was already going off the road into the ditch & the car still hit them, turning it over. But they were not hurt.

    Coincidence? Hardly.

    One day I was praying for people & missionaries, looking at a world map. I momentarily stopped, thinking of things to pray & asking the Spirit to help me in my prayers. I knew a missionary couple in Germany that had been married 9 years but couldn't have children.

    As I began to pray for them in Germany, the Spirit impressed upon me that I should pray for the power of the Lord to break a 'spiritual' stronghold in their lives & then they would have children. So He led me in praying for them. Suddenly I stopped & knew it had just been broken & praised the Lord! Next month their prayer letter stated Heidi was pregnant. They had 3 children.

    In various parts of the world, they don't have ready access to the Scriptures, led alone even one Bible or their Bibles are confiscated. So how does God communicate with His people? Brother Andrew of 'Open Doors' ministry shares a story of needing to contact a Christian in a large 'state' church in the USSR.

    Neither had ever seen each other, yet this Russian walked up to him & said you must be brother Andrew. He wanted to know how he knew him in this large crowd. This Russian brother told him that God gave him a dream & pictured Andrew before him. That is how he knew.

    Many more could be shared but I will stop there.
     
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