How Do We Hear the Voice of Jesus?
Do you want to hear the voice of Jesus? So do I. The Father certainly wants us to. “This is my Son, my Chosen One; listen to him!” (Luke 9:35).
To which we cry, “Yes, Lord. Yes! We want to listen to him.”
Does he speak today? He does.
Every word of the Bible is the voice of Jesus.
How do we know this? By inference. And better, by experience.
First, by Inference
We believe that “all Scripture is inspired by God” (2 Timothy 3:16). And we know that “whatever the Father does, the Son does likewise” (John 5:19). When the Father, by the Spirit (2 Peter 1:21) was guiding the writing of Scripture, the will and heart of the Son was in perfect concert.
Not only were all things made by the Father, with the Spirit (Genesis 1:2), through the Son (John 1:3), but all things are absolutely through the Son: There is “one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things” (1 Corinthians 8:6). The inspiration of the Bible was through the Son. Therefore the Bible is the word of Jesus.
When the Spirit guides the New Testament writers, he is taking the heart and mind of Jesus and rendering them in scripture as the words of Jesus: “All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that the Spirit will take what is mine and declare it to you” (John 16:15). Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, James, Peter, Jude, and the writer to the Hebrews write the words of Jesus.
When the Gospel writers say, “Jesus said,” it is Jesus saying, “I said.” When they write “Jesus did,” it is Jesus saying, “I did.” When they write about Jesus, Jesus is speaking about Jesus. When they quote Jesus, Jesus is quoting Jesus. In the Bible we hear the voice of Jesus talking about Jesus.
Second, by Experience
When we are born again, we have new ears. They are tuned to the frequency of the voice of Jesus. “The sheep follow him, for they know his voice. A stranger they will not follow, for they do not know the voice of strangers. . . My sheep hear my voice . . . and they follow me” (John 10: 4–5, 27). We know the Bible is the voice of Jesus because when we hear it we hear his voice.
Does Jesus speak today? You may listen to him any time you please. On hundreds of topics. The way he means for us to live is to be so familiar with his voice from a thousand pages of precious Scripture that we sense his will where he is silent.
Recent posts from John Piper —
- When Is Indecision Loveless and Sinful? (A Lesson from Bonhoeffer)
- Lent or No Lent, Life Is War
- Dietrich Bonhoeffer and Wolfhart Pannenberg on Schism
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