|John 18:37 |
37 Therefore Pilate said to him, "Are you a king then?" And Jesus answered, "You say [rightly] that I am a king. To this end I was born, and for this reason I came into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears my voice."2
2 Everyone who is of the truth hears my voice. Do you hear his voice? If you don't, then you are not of the truth. If you don't hear his voice, you don't know the truth. The Holy Spirit will guide you into all truth, but you must dedicate yourself to silent listening to hear his voice, and then you must obey. You can memorize the entire Bible, and you will not know the truth because the Bible only testifies about the truth; the Bible is not the truth, Jesus is the truth, and the Bible is not Jesus. If you don't hear his voice, you are still lost in your sins; but if you listen and obey the voice of the truth, your soul is purified by obedience to the truth.1 Peter 1:22. Jesus said: "There is only one thing needed, and Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her"— to sit at the feet of Jesus and hear his words. Luke 10:39-42. Further:
the sheep hear his voice; and he calls his own sheep by name, and leads them out. John 10:3
[he leads them out of their sins, John 8:31-32,34,36, out of darkness to light, John 8:12].
when he has brought out his own sheep, he goes ahead of them, and the sheep follow him; for they know his voice.
I am the good shepherd, and I know my sheep, as I am known by my sheep.
Jesus said it another way: My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me [they obey]. John 10:27. If you follow Jesus, then you are denying yourself and picking up your cross every day to follow him (obey his voice). Mat 16:24-25
Notice Jesus said, I know them, and they follow me (those who hear my voice). And if you don't hear his voice and follow him, he doesn't know you. And if he doesn't know you, he will shut the door to heaven, refusing to open it, saying "Assuredly, I do not know you or where you come from" and at judgment he will say to you "depart from me, you who work iniquity [sin, lawlessness, or wickedness], for I never knew you." Mat 25:11-12, Luke 13:24-27, Mat 7:21-23
So you can see that hearing his voice and following him (obeying him) is critical to your future — critical to obtaining life: The words I speak to you are spirit and they are life-giving. John 6:33. The promises are: if you listen to and obey the Holy Spirit, he will teach you all things, he will guide you into all truth, he will show you of things to come, and you will know all things. See that you do not refuse him who speaks. For if they did not escape, who refused him who spoke on the earth, how much more will we be liable, if we turn away from him who speaks from heaven [which is in your heart]. Heb 12:25
It is a cross to a man's will to sit silently, struggling to keep his mind from wandering; it is a cross to a man's will to obey what he is commanded and taught by the Holy Spirit; this is the cross of which you must deny yourself and pick it up every day to then follow Jesus. To follow is to obey. You cannot be his disciple unless you pick up your cross daily and follow his orders. Salvation is only received by those who follow the lamb wherever he goes — who obey completely the voice of the Lord, in whatever he commands. Do not be discouraged if you don't hear for some time. Even your waiting is to your credit: Let your mercy, O LORD, be upon us, in proportion to our waiting and hoping on you. Psalms 33:22. For since the beginning of the world men have not heard, nor perceived by ear, nor has the eye seen a God beside you, who acts for the one who waits for him. Isa 64:4