Trumpet Blast

Hebrews 12: 19             New Living Translation

For they heard an awesome trumpet blast and a voice so terrible that they begged God to stop speaking.

The Word of the Day for December 19th, 2018 characterized the voice of the Lord. The excerpts I used from Psalm 29: 3 – 9 read, “The voice of the Lord . . . is powerful, . . . is majestic, . . . breaks the cedars, . . . hews out flames of fire, . . . shakes the wilderness, . . .makes the deer to calve and strips the forests bare.” We see clearly that His voice is powerful, but that is not the end of the story.

This passage refers to the Israelites who were led out of captivity and sojourned many years in route to the promised land. In Deuteronomy 5: 25 their reaction to God’s voice was recorded thus, “Now then why should we die? For this great fire will consume us; if we hear the voice of the Lord our God any longer, then we will die.” Is this the God you know? What was in the hearts and minds of the people that they heard Yahweh’s voice as terrible, a voice so strong and dreadful that they thought the mere sound of it would consume them? I imagine to Moses God’s voice was anything but terrible. I imagine it was like the purr of a kitten, like sweet nectar dripping from a new spring blossom.

God’s image is very often a reflection of the canvas of our heart. That which is written upon our hearts, we project as the image of God. We find this to be dangerous, though, for we have not allowed our hearts to be perfected in His love. So, we hear His voice as thunderous and angry because we know we deserve no kindness or gentleness. In other words, we remake Him and even His voice in the image of our self-esteem and self-image. He is to us as we allow Him to be.

God called David a friend. What??!! Think on that literally for a moment. God Himself says of David, “He’s my friend.” What do you imagine God says of your relationship with Him? Do you imagine Him calling you friend? Well, if you don’t, perhaps you should. Again, I say, He is to us as we allow Him to be, so we need to change the image within us. He will be to us as we allow Him to be and He wants to be our friend too.

The Bible tells us He is kind, gentle, patient, forgiving and loving but is that how He interacts with you? Are those the words you use to describe your relationship with Him. The Bible teaches us the true character of God but just because that is who God truly is does not mean those are the filters through which we allow ourselves to interact with Him. Our internal person may be telling us that we only deserve anger and reproach. Therefore, we put that image onto God even though it is not His nature.

Who do you want God to be in your life? He is love. He is the most kind and gentle of all persons or entities you will ever know. He is actually sweeter than the little kitten and more faithful and forgiving than a puppy. But, will we allow Him to express His true personality in our lives? Will we paint Him as merciless and vengeful because we know that is what we deserve?

Kenneth Hagin used to say that if you listen to a person speak long enough, he will tell you exactly where he is. The image we hold of God reveals more about who we are than about who He is. When you encounter people who know an angry God, one bent on damnation and criticism, then you know they have not allowed the love of God to wash through their souls. They have not received the divine love of the Father. They may have touched it long enough to receive salvation, but it has not penetrated their hearts and washed their conscience clean. They have not been bathed in the love of God or else they would know He is gentle and caring. If they are judgmental, it is because they know they are deserving of judgment. If they condemn others, it is because in their hearts they know they are worthy of condemnation. They reflect their hearts, not God’s. Now ask yourself, who is your God. Is He kind or vengeful? Is He loving or angry? Is He here to judge or to rescue? The answers to these questions reveal the condition of your heart.

We all need to soak in His love until we know the love of God which saves our immortal souls. He is love. Taste it, breathe it, know Him and the gentleness of His ways. Then you will hear His voice as a whisper upon a cool breeze. You will feel His gentle touch upon your fevered brow. His voice will be a sweet song rather than trumpet blast. When you receive this truth, you will be able to hear His voice more easily and sense His presence because you will allow that truth to manifest in you. Be still, He says, be still and know I am God (paraphrase of Psalm 46: 10). Breathe His calming presence and still the thunderous blast of your conscience.