Finding God's will
Helps in guidance
Discovering God's will is not always easy, particularly when there are several options and so much need everywhere. However, the Bible has some basic principles for us to follow.
Read Acts 16:5-10
Paul and Silas were seeking guidance. In verse 6 we read they "were forbidden of the Holy Ghost" (A.V) or "having been kept by the Holy Ghost from preaching" - it was not the right time to go into Asia.
In verse 7 they tried to go to Bithynia, but the Spirit did not permit them".
How does the Spirit not permit us to go?
Lack of peace
"And let the peace of God RULE in your hearts" Col.3:15.
Lack of opportunity
The Apostle Paul often referred to doors opening for him.
Read 1 Cor. 15:8-9, Col.4:3, Rev 3:8.
However, in 2 Cor.2:12, even though a door had opened for Paul in Troas, He had no peace (1st point).
As one preacher put it, "The need does not constitute a call".
Just because there is a need, it does not mean that you are the one to fill the gap. (But, you may be!).
Lack of a Word
"And your ear shall hear a word behind you, saying, "This is the way, walk in it, when you turn to the right hand, and when you turn to the left" Isaiah 30:21. C.F. Psalm 119:105.
In Acts 16:9, Paul received his guidance through a vision. He saw a man from Macedonia. God opened Paul's eyes to a man from the area where Paul was to go. *The Lord may burden your heart, or open your eyes to the needs of a certain people group. Paul saw that the man was in need because he was saying, "Come over into Macedonia and help us".
God has promised to guide the believer.
Psalm 25:9. "The humble He guides in justice, and the humble He teaches His way .
Psalm 32:8. "I will instruct you and teach you in the way that you should go, I will guide you with mine eyes. God can see ahead! Also, read Isaiah 42:6 and John 16:13.
We have a responsibility - how we live etc.
1. Fear God
Psalm 25:12, "Who is the man that fears the Lord? Him shall He teach in the way He chooses".
2. Move with God
Psalm 32:9, "Be ye not as the horse, or as the mule, which have no understanding, whose mouth must be held in with bit and bridle, lest they come near unto thee".
Galatians 5:25, "If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit".
3. Trust God
4. Yield all to God
Romans 12:1-2. "That you may prove what is that good, and acceptable and perfect will of God.
5. Obey God
When God makes His will plain to us.
What did Paul do after he had seen the vision? Acts 16:10. "Now after he had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go Macedonia, concluding that the Lord had called us to preach the gospel to them
Do you need guidance? - Pray.
Psalm 31:3. "For thy names sake lead me and guide me.
Psalm 143:8 & 10. "Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust. Cause me to know thy way wherein I should walk , for I lift up my soul unto thee. Teach me to do thy will, for thou art my God, thy Spirit is good, lead me into the Lord of uprightness.
Mr. S. Wright. Baptist Pastor.