Revelation or Imagination?

How can someone cut through the haze of religious confusion to understand the true will of God? There’s so many different ideas, but I propose that there are two types of people who attempt to understand God’s wishes.

First, the spiritual person refers to the words of the Spirit and quotes Scripture. In Hebrews 3:7-8, the writer said, “Therefore, as the Holy Spirit says: ‘Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion, In the day of trial in the wilderness.’” When the writer quoted Psalm 95, it was what the Spirit said, not man. Nine times in Revelation 2-3 John said, “Hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” Christians, who should be spiritual people, are guided by the Holy Spirit through Scripture. They understand that they have to do everything “in the name of the Lord Jesus” (Colossians 3:17). Scripture, because it is beautiful and perfect (Psalm 19:7-11), makes the spiritual person “complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:17).

Second, the non-spiritual person uses imagination, not revelation for “Spirit guidance.” They imagine God speaking to them and they interpret feelings and urges as God trying to tell them something. In essence, they equate their imagination with the Holy Spirit, and they tend to accept all such impressions over the true voice of the Spirit in Scripture. It doesn’t take a lot of imagination to see that people who accept these premises will remain hopelessly confused. There are literally millions of religious people who claim “Spirit guidance,” yet they couldn’t be more different from each other in their doctrinal understanding. Paul wrote, “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14). The “natural man” is the one who disregards the teachings of the Spirit.

What kind of person will you be? Paul completes his thought by writing, “But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one” (1 Corinthians 2:15). If you want to be someone who can appropriately discern the will of God, make sure you listen to what the Spirit says in the Bible (John 16:7-13).

Kyle Campbell