Perry Noble advised pastors on how to hear from God last week.
One of the KEYS to receive REVELATION is PREPARATION! It’s not that God isn’t wanting to download HUGE vision into us as leaders…but many times we just aren’t ready for it.
Now, I might have said that the key to receive revelation was to open the Bible and read it, but perhaps that’s because I’m just not ready for Noblesque visions. Noble, and many other leaders like him, promote themselves as special vessels for God’s direct messages, to which all their followers must submit without question.
Noble certainly believes God continues to speak beyond the Bible. On Sunday, he seemed to rebuke the Bible-only approach to God’s word.
It is a dangerous thing to say God is silent when the Bible says that His Word is living and active!
The crazy thing is that this gets it all backwards. Folk who believe that the Bible contains, and closes the book on, God’s revelation to us do so because we believe that that revealed Word is eternally living and active. When you think you need to have new revelation downloaded by God, it is a good indication that you don’t really believe that the Bible is sufficiently living and active in 2009.
Besides holding a low view of Scripture, Noble’s position is inherently weak and dangerous in its susceptibility to error, especially when it’s combined with a violent intolerance to being tested and criticized.
John Calvin warned that when we think we hear God in our gut, we can’t always be certain that we’re not hearing yesterday’s lunch or the Devil himself.
Since Satan transforms himself into an angel of light, what authority can the Spirit have with us if he be not ascertained by an infallible mark? …but these miserable men err as if bent on their own destruction, while they seek the Spirit from themselves rather than from Him. (Ch IX.1)
The only infallible mark of the Holy Spirit’s authorship is the written Word of God–the Bible. The Scriptures are the Spirit’s finest and complete works, to which he need not add even a single comma.
When a leader tells us that he has “heard” God speak to him in any way that comes from inside him or was downloaded to him, we should wonder whether he has a special spiritual caller ID. There’s a good chance that it’s not actually God.
There’s enough in the Bible for clear-eyed biblical leaders to lead with. Anything beyond that is red-alert territory.
With no less confidence than folly, they fasten upon any dreaming notion which may have casually sprung in their minds. Surely a very different sobriety becomes the children of God. (Ch IX.3)
Brad Cooper reports this Noble quote from an all-staff meeting yesterday:
We must continue to dig into God’s Word because ”˜Today’s Church cannot be lead on yesterday’s revelation.’
What was yesterday’s revelation? How is that different from today’s revelation?
How many revelations are there?
Does revelation have to conform to and change with culture?
How did the New Testament church survive for 2,000 years based on insufficient revelation?