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Bible Study: When It Seems Like God Doesn't Answer


How to Know and Follow God's Will and Plan For Your Life:

Brothers and Sisters,
Have you ever been in a place where it seems like God is either deaf, or He has just decided not to answer you? If like me you have been there too, then you will agree that being in that place is not fun.
But what I didn't realize at the time was that the problem was not that God is deaf, nor was He just in a mood where He was not answering me. No! The problem was me! I just had no idea how to hear what He was saying - and so I couldn't get the information I needed so I could know what His will (or plan) was for me - so I could follow it!

And, like me many Christians are in the dark when it comes to knowing God's will. Consequently they ask questions such as:
• Why Doesn't God Answer My Prayers?

Can I Really Know God's Will?
How Can I Know God's Will?
What is God's Will For My Life?
How Do I Know If I'm Following God's Will or Plans?

These are the questions that so many Christians are asking? And, the answers are all
found in the Word of God.



The following is a brief summary of the complete audio teaching
"When God Doesn't Answer
: How to know and follow God's Will and Plan for Your Life".
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Can We Really know God's Will?
Absolutely! The scriptures tell us that we are "not to be foolish or unwise - but to know the will of God." [Eph:5:17]

We are also told how we can know His will: "Now we have received ..... the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God." [1Cor:2:12] 

How Do I Know If I Am Following God's Will and Plan?
Again - the answer is simple: There will be results! After all.
How do we know if anything is working properly?  Don't we get our answer by the results

If what we are doing is producing the results we are looking for - then we are correct in our actions. On the other hand - if we are not getting the desired results then we realize that there is a problem- right?

The same principal applies when it comes to recognizing if we are following God's plan - or our own. The scriptures say the same thing: "Examine (test) yourselves, and see whether or not you are in the faith; prove your own selves." [2Cor:13:5]

In the above scripture we are told first of all to 'examine' ourselves. Another way to say this would be: "Look very carefully at your words, thoughts, and actions - and see if they are in line with the Word of God (in the faith)".

Next we are told to 'prove' our own selves. To make proof means to provide evidence. If there is no evidence - then there is no proof (results) - and if we are not getting all the results that God promised then we know that we are not following His plan.

The Three Keys To Following God's Plan
There are three questions that one need ask when we question whether or not we are following the Lord's plan or our own, and the answer will help us to make sure that we get it right - every time! 

• Am I Where I Am Supposed to Be?
• Am I doing What I am Supposed to Be Doing?
• Am I where I'm supposed to be - doing what I'm supposed to be doing - When I Am supposed to be doing it?

Doing what we are supposed be doing - when we are supposed to be doing it - where we are suppose to be - is essential to getting the results that God has in store for us by following His plans.

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Consider This:
• Imagine what the results would have been, if after having been instructed by the Lord to build an ark, Noah put it off for a few weeks before starting the ark-building project!

• Imagine what the results would have been, if after having been instructed by the Lord to go to the widow in Sarepta, Elijah had decided to go somewhere else!

• Imagine what the results would have been, if after having been instructed by the Lord thru the prophet to go and dip himself seven times in the Jordan - Naaman acted on his first impulse and simply ignored the instruction!

We Have Examples:
"Now all these things happened to them for examples (to us): and they are written for our admonition (warning!), upon whom the ends of the world are come." [1Cor:10:11]

Pay close attention to the above scripture!
Notice two important reasons as to why these stories are included in the Holy Scriptures.

1] They are included to serve as an example to us of the results of doing what we are instructed to do - where we are instructed to do it - and just as important: when we are instructed to do it!

2] They are written to us as an admonition. 
The word translated here as 'admonish' is taken from the Greek word 'nouthesia' which means simply to warn!

That means that the reason these have been included in the Word of God is for our sake - and they are to serve not only as an example of the rewards for obedience - but also as a warning to those of us who fail to follow the Lord's instructions. 

Timing is Critical:
The historic account of Noah and the flood records that Noah entered the ark - on the very day that the flood was loosed upon the earth! [Genesis 7:13]

"In the six hundredth year of Noah's life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, the same day were all the fountains of the great deep broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened....... And the rain was upon the earth forty days and forty nights. .... On that very day Noah (and his family) entered the ark..." [Genesis 7:11-13]

It was raining!
Now just imagine what would have happened if he had delayed building of the ark for even a few days - much less a few weeks! 

I realize that many Christians have the 'opinion' that God would not have loosed the flood until Noah was ready! Let me tell you right up front - that opinion is not scriptural! Not only is there no evidence to support that 'opinion' - but there are countless scriptures that refute it altogether.

One of the most striking scriptures regarding this subject is found in Jeremiah:
"Do not listen to those who tell those who despise me (that will not follow my instructions) that you will have peace! Do not listen to those who tell you that despite the stubbornness of your heart - (your refusal to act upon His word or follow the direction of the Holy Spirit) - no harm shall come to you" [Jeremiah 23: 16-18]

And dozens more that so many refuse to acknowledge: Here are Just A Few:
"pay attention to me and live! [Is. 55:3]

".. if only you had paid attention to my commands your peace would have been like a river." [Is 48:18]

"....woe to him who strives with his maker" [Is 45:9]

"....if you are willing and obedient you will always have the very best" [Is 1:19]

"Do not act like the gentiles who are separated from the life of God due to their ignorance and blindness of heart" [Eph 4:17]

The key to Noah's Supernatural Deliverance is found in Genesis 6:22:
"Noah did everything just as the Lord commanded him."

Noah did exactly what the Lord commanded him to do - WHEN he was commanded to do it. He didn't do some of it - he did all of it. He didn't just start doing it and then stop because he didn't see any results - he followed thru and built the ark - WHEN he was commanded to build it.

After all, if as the Word tells us, he did everything just as the Lord commanded him - then that must include when to start - and when to make sure it was done! So he must have started building WHEN the Lord instructed him to do it. Not later! 

• He didn't wait until it was convenient for him.
• He didn't wait until it looked like it was going to rain
• He didn't wait until he understood everything about the coming flood
• He built the ark WHEN the Lord told him to build it!

Think About This:
According to the scriptures it had never even rained upon the earth:
".... the LORD God had not caused it to rain upon the earth, ..... But there went up a mist from the earth, and watered the whole face of the ground." [Genesis 2:5-6]

One can only imagine the taunts and mockery suffered by him and his family - yet despite the fact that there was absolutely no evidence whatsoever that there was going to be a flood - and despite the taunts and mocking of those who endeavored to stop him - Noah obeyed - and received the rewards for obedience because he did everything just as the Lord commanded him - and he did it WHEN the Lord commanded him to do it! 

Timing Is Critical to Success:
WHEN we obey is Just as Important as what we do and where we do it:
If Noah had put off the building of the ark for even 1 day - he would have been swallowed in the flood along with everyone else.

Noah is an example and a warning to us of how important it is for us to make sure that we are doing what the Lord commands us to do - WHEN the Lord has instructed us to do it.

The Key to Elijah's Supernatural Provision is found in Luke 4:25-26
"But I tell you of a truth, many widows were in Israel in the days of Elias, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, when great famine was throughout all the land;... But to none of them was Elias SENT, except to Sarepta, a city of Sidon, to a woman that was a widow."

First of all - notice that Elijah was sent (in a time of great need) to the place WHERE the Lord had ordained supernatural provision for him. 

Now, like many Christians today - Elijah could have gone anywhere! 
After all, there were many widows in the land, and I can only imagine that there were probably more than a few that had more meal and oil than the widow to whom he was sent. (She only had enough for one more cake - and then she was going to die!)

Most Christians today would consider the Lord's instructions and decide:
"This can't be God! This other place looks much better - this must be the place for me!" 

Yet the Word of God is clear on this subject:
" none of them was Elias SENT, except to Sarepta, a city of Sidon, to a woman that was a widow."

What many fail to see is that many were dying due to the famine - and if Elijah had gone anywhere else - he would have died too! Why? Because of his disobedience and failure to follow the guidance of the Lord.

Location Is Essential to Achieving Results:
Elijah is an example and a warning to us of how important it is for us to make sure that we are WHERE the Lord has instructed us to be. 

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The Key To Naaman's Supernatural Healing is Found in 2 Kings 5:1-15 & Luke 4:27:
"And many lepers were in Israel in the time of Elisha the prophet; and none of them was cleansed, saving Naaman the Syrian." [Luke 4:27]

First of all notice that there were many lepers in Israel - not just Naaman. This begs the question: "Why weren't the others cleansed?"

Answer: The key is to make sure that in addition to being where we are supposed to be when we are supposed to be there - we need to make sure that we are doing WHAT the Lord has instructed us to do! 

Naaman Didn't Get It!
Not the first time anyway. Like so many Christians today - he needed convincing!

He was totally unwilling to believe that God was going to do a miracle in His life the way the Lord said He would do it. All Naaman needed to do was simply to follow the instructions spoken by the prophet and do WHAT the Lord said to do: 

"And Elisha sent a messenger unto him, saying, Go and wash in the Jordan seven times, and your flesh shall come again to you, and you shall be clean....... But Naaman was angry, and went away, and said, Behold, I thought, He (the prophet) will surely come out to me, and stand, and call on the name of the LORD his God, and strike his hand over the place, and recover the leper." [2Kgs:5:10] 

Pay Close Attention:
Notice the two reasons why Naaman got angry. They are the same reasons why Christians today won't listen when the Lord speaks!

1] Naaman didn't like the PERSON God Spoke thru:
Naaman was a Captain of the Syrian King's army. [2 Kings 5:1]

Naaman thought of himself as an important man. And when the prophet didn't come himself - but rather sent his servant - he got real mad about it. You see he didn't like the person thru whom the Lord spoke the instructions he needed to hear!

So many Christians today never experience the miraculous power of God in their life because they either don't like the messenger - and they refuse to believe the messenger thru whom the Lord is speaking.

God resists the proud. [Jms:4:6]
Until we are willing to humble ourselves and receive the servant of the Lord with the proper esteem - and give him/her the honor they are due - we will never receive the miracle that the Lord is endeavoring to do in our life. [Rom:13:7 • 1Thes:5:12-13] 

2] Naaman Didn't Like The Message: WHAT the Lord told him to do:
Naaman had it all figured out!

Naaman figured that what needed to be done was for the prophet to: "come out, stand, and call on the name of the LORD his God, and strike his hand over the place" - and this is what would cleanse him.

The last thing Naaman expected was to be instructed (by the servant no less!) - to go and wash himself in what he considered to be a dirty river! ("Are not Abana and Pharpar, rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel?" - verse 12)

And that's exactly how many Christians react when they receive what they believe to be 'foolish' instructions or guidance. "Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is." [Eph:5:17] 

"The natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned." [1Cor:2:14]

The reason why so many Christians today never experience the miraculous power of God in their life is because they don't like the message! They just will not accept the instructions of the Lord spoken under the anointing that is intended to bring the miracle they so desperately need.

Naaman Was Wrong!
And so are we if we fail to do WHAT the Lord has instructed us to do!

Notice also that Naaman got the miracle he was seeking - only after he followed the Lord's instructions - no matter how foolish they sounded - and despite the fact that Naaman did not understand them. He did WHAT he was told to do!

Brothers and Sisters, like Noah, Elijah, and Naaman - if we want to experience the awesome power of God in our life we must make it a priority to make sure that we are:

• Doing what the Lord has instructed us to do
When the Lord has instructed us to do it
Where the Lord has instructed us to be


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