• Bishop Keith Butler

Then Peter went down to the men which were sent unto him from Cornelius; and said, Behold, I am he whom ye seek: what is the cause wherefore ye are come? And they said, Cornelius the centurion, a just man, and one that feareth God, and of good report among all the nation of the Jews, was warned from God by an holy angel to send for thee into his house, and to hear words of thee. (Acts 10:21-22)

Cornelius had been praying to God because there was something he was missing in his worship. He needed more information, so he sought God in prayer.

Why didn’t God answer his query through the angel who spoke to him? Why didn’t God just give him all the information he needed while he prayed? I’ll tell you why - because God uses men He has anointed in the earth to bring information and insight to those seeking answers.

The Bible tells us, “How shall they hear without a preacher?” (Romans 10:14)

Even as imperfect as we are, God uses people to do His will on the earth. We are all flawed in some way; I’m not exempt, and neither are you! But even with our imperfections, God anoints those who are willing to follow Him. He still calls people to be His representatives on this earth.

We look to God for answers, but He uses men and women to deliver the goods. Blessings and insight don’t fall out of the sky. I don’t know how many times people have told me over the past 45 years that they got answers to questions they had been asking God through my Sunday message. Many times, people have also told me that my sermons confirmed precisely what God said to them earlier that week.

Seek information from God through prayer and be open to how He wants to bring you the answers.

Practical Application – God has private, personal insights He will give you when you seek Him in prayer. They may come through Scriptures or through a man or woman of God. Be ready to receive.

Jeremiah 33:3; Matthew 7:7

  • Bishop Keith Butler

Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my works forty years. Wherefore I was grieved with that generation, and said, They do always err in their heart; and they have not known my ways. So I sware in my wrath, They shall not enter into my rest.) (Hebrews 3:7-11)

Being led by the voice of the Holy Spirit is different than being led by the peace of God from your spirit. The voice of the Holy Spirit is much louder than the still, small voice of God in your spirit. The first time I remember hearing His voice was when I was 15 years old. My mother was in Grace Hospital, recovering from an operation. I was driving a car, although I wasn’t supposed to be since I was only 15. When I pulled up in the parking lot, that voice that I’m telling you about said to me, “I have you called you to preach.” The voice was so serious and authoritative that I stopped. I looked in the back seat to see if somebody was in the car. I was stunned, and I said, "Say that again.” And He said it again.

Again, I looked in the backseat, but no one was there. I looked to see if someone was around the car at all. Then I said, “No!” Because I didn’t want to be a preacher.

When you learn to listen to the Holy Spirit, He will guide you into truth; He will help you understand the reality of situations beyond what you can see naturally. The voice of the Holy Spirit has saved my life many times because He knows what's coming even when we don’t.

Practical Application – Spend time praying in the Spirit this week and after you pray, spend time in silence, actively listening for the Holy Spirit to speak.

Ezekiel 3:12; Proverbs 20:27

  • Bishop Keith Butler

There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification. (1 Corinthians 14:10)

The Bible tells us that you will hear many voices in life. All of them have a purpose.

Satan has a voice and can speak to us. His voice will always be one of accusation or fear. It will never be in agreement with the Word of God.

Your own regenerated and reborn spirit has a voice, too; this is what most people call our conscience. The Bible talks about following our conscience.

God will move upon our conscience to help us choose right from wrong. Colossians 3:15 says, “Allow the peace of God to rule.” One translation says, “As the umpire, let the peace of God call the shots – safe or out.” So, God will lead and guide you by the Spirit, who is inside you.

However, the most important voice for us to know and follow is the voice of the Shepherd.

The enemy can make lies sound sweet; our hearts and minds can deceive us. Our feelings and emotions can lead us away from the truth of God’s Word.

The Good Shepherd, Jesus, guides and leads us through the valley of the shadow of death and to green pastures and still waters. God is always speaking; we just aren’t always listening.

In Biblical times, when shepherds walked together, sheep from different flocks would combine. However, once the shepherds separated, the sheep would instinctively follow the voice of the shepherd they have known. They listened and responded to the voice that protected them, fed them, and led them to still waters.

Practical Application – Learn to discern from the voice of your soul, your spirit, and the voice of God. The more time you spend in the Word and prayer, the more quickly you will discern the voice of God.

John 10:3; John 10:27





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