What characteristics should we be looking for when we need to know if the voice we hear comes from God, satan or self? The Lord is the Good Shepherd. As His sheep, we know His voice and follow Him. We don’t follow a stranger but we flee from him. A stranger comes in the midst of the sheep to cause division and separate them. It can be in a family, congregation, work place or any fellowship.
It’s helpful to ask ourselves, “Would the Lord say that?” God’s voice always encourages, edifies and exhorts. His word of life lifts us up. The Holy Spirit convicts us with love and draws us closer to the Lord. He never pushes us away. The voice of the enemy brings us down and condemns us, drawing us away from the Lord. Our own voice is focused on self, bringing pride and self righteousness. The key is to pay attention to where the words we hear lead us? Someone told a friend, “Come on, take only one hit of this pipe. It will make you feel better.” It’s not the friend or the pipe that should be looked upon but the voice that is heard behind what is said. We ask ourselves, where is that voice trying to take me? We stay close to the Shepherd and run away from the stranger!
The voice to recognize is God’s voice; then the others are easily detected. We do so as we read the Word, pray and worship, from glory to glory!
John 10:4-5 “And when he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them; and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. Yet they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him, for they do not know the voice of strangers.”