4 Ram (was) the father of Amminadab, and Amminadab the father of Nahshon, and Nahshon the father of Salmon… Matthew 1:4 ESV
The scripture above gives the genealogy of Jesus Christ in the lineage of the tribe of Judah from the time of the Exodus from Egypt, through the forty years wandering in the desert and up to the triumphant entry into the Promised Land of Israel.
We know from other scriptures that Nahshon was the leader, or chief, of the tribe of Judah while in the desert. He was at the head of the line whenever God directed Moses that it was time for the Israelites to move. Nahshon was also the first chief to make a sacrifice for his tribe at the installation of the tabernacle. His place in the lineage of Jesus Christ seems to have symbolism, as Jesus would ultimately become both the Leader and the Sacrifice for all.
Yet, Nahshon did not make it into the Promised Land. Only Caleb and Joshua from his generation made it, as a reward for them holding fast to God and trusting in Him while the others broke faith with God, failing to go into the Promised Land when God had first directed them to, thirty-eight years earlier.
Salmon would be the one from the genealogy to enter, ultimately marrying Rahab, the Canaanite woman who saved the Israelite spies in Jericho, and was spared and justified by her faith in Almighty God. She became a part of the genealogy of Jesus Christ, as mentioned in a previous meditation on Rahab.
Before their entry, Moses gave the people some final instructions to remember as they took possession of and rested in the land.
33 Did any people ever hear the voice of God speaking out of the midst of the fire, as you have heard, and live? 35 To you it was shown, that you might know that the Lord Himself is God; there is none other besides Him. 36 Out of heaven He let you hear His voice, that He might instruct you; on earth He showed you His great fire, and you heard His words out of the midst of the fire. 37 And because He loved your fathers, therefore He chose their descendants after them; and He brought you out of Egypt with His Presence, with His mighty power, 38 driving out from before you nations greater and mightier than you, to bring you in, to give you their land as an inheritance, as it is this day. Deuteronomy 4:33, 35-38 NKJV
The Israelite people heard the voice of God, speaking to them from fire, giving them the instructions needed to live life to the fullest. It was a unique experience until Christ came and walked among us. He is still walking among us today in the power and presence of the Holy Spirit.
The voice of Jesus Christ is the voice of God, the Word of God Himself. As Paul writes in the book of Colossians:
15 He (Christ) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. Colossians 1:15 NKJV
9 For in Him (Christ) dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily; 10 and you are complete in Him, who is the head of all principality and power. Colossians 2:9-10 ESV
Today, God speaks to us in many ways, but primarily through His word, the Bible. The Holy Spirit of God will never speak contrary to God’s word found in the scriptures. That is the primary way that God speaks to believers today.
There are some cases I know of where friends have heard the audible voice of God. Some were in a time of personal crisis or were getting prepared for one. Other times it led to a re-orientation of their thinking, direction, attitude or worship practices. I also know that there are many times that the Spirit of God has spoken to someone’s spirit, giving them a word of knowledge or wisdom, vision, dream or prophecy. And I am sure there are many private experiences we do not hear about that are kept in confidence between a person and their loving God.
But even for those who have heard the voice of God, the primary mouthpiece from heaven is scripture. We study it to grow closer to God, to charge our spiritual batteries and to better follow the will and guidance of our loving Savior, Jesus Christ, who abides in every word, to the glory of the Father.
The Spirit of God also speaks through people. When two or more believers are gathered together in the service or worship of God, the Spirit of Jesus is there among them. He will often speak through believers to give assurance, encouragement, guidance and power to other believers. We know in our hearts when it is God speaking to us, as each sheep knows its Master’s voice.
God even works to lift us up when we are physically separated. The Holy Spirit power to encourage and bring each other joy and strength even works when we “gather” remotely through a phone call, text or the internet. God knows no limitations of space or time.
May you experience joy and support from God’s voice today!
How do you seek to hear the voice of God today?
If necessary, how could you adjust your schedule to allow time for reading and meditating on God’s word? Don’t miss a life changing experience of fellowship with Jesus as His Holy Spirit speaks personally to you through His word.
Who do you know who helps to support you spiritually? When we reach out to others in love through a visit, phone call, text or internet, we not only lift up a brother or sister in Christ, but we are also lifted up in the process. Nothing lifts us out from a negative spirit like reaching out to to another to help them or just to show love. In this way, we serve as the voice of God in someone’s life.