Oh come, let us sing to the Lord;
let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
2 Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
3 For the Lord is a great God,
and a great King above all gods.
4 In his hand are the depths of the earth;
the heights of the mountains are his also.
5 The sea is his, for he made it,
and his hands formed the dry land.
6 Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
7 For he is our God,
and we are the people of his pasture,
and the sheep of his hand.
Today, if you hear his voice,
8 do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah,
as on the day at Massah in the wilderness,
9 when your fathers put me to the test
and put me to the proof, though they had seen my work.
10 For forty years I loathed that generation
and said, “They are a people who go astray in their heart,
and they have not known my ways.”
11 Therefore I swore in my wrath,
“They shall not enter my rest.” (Psalm 95 ESV)
In John 10:27 the prophet records, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me.” The question each of us should ask himself today is this, “Am I one of Christ’s sheep?” But, beware, when we ask ourselves this question we need to look for a truthful answer. Let us not deceive ourselves into believing we are something we are not. How can we really know if the LORD Jesus Christ considers us to be one of his sheep?
I believe we can find the answer to this very important question many places in the Bible and especially in Psalm 95. Remember that the Book of Hebrews quotes Psalm 95 several times with respect to entering God’s rest and to the salvation of our souls (not our spirits). The Book of Hebrews concerns itself entirely to teaching a believer, a Christian, how to work out his (soul) salvation in fear and trembling. It has nothing to do with our initial “salvation” experience of believing in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of our sins. The book presumes you have already done that. I do not plan to re-teach the Book of Hebrews here, though. If you want to know more about this profound book, then search this web site. I have written extensively about it. Today I want to focus on Psalm 95. “Today if you hear his voice….”
Psalm 95 shows us that we can know that we are in fact the sheep of Christ’s pasture if we know his ways. If you do not already know Christ’s ways, how do you think that you can recognize his voice?
We live at the end of one age and the beginning of another. The leaven of sin, false doctrine, and hypocrisy has now leavened the entire lump. As it was in the days of Noah so it is today. All the world sets its mind upon sin and rebellion against God continually. If you search the internet at all for snippets of God’s truth, you are bound to find more false doctrine and more ramblings of more false prophets than you will of the true word of God spoken by God’s true prophets. Today the true word of God is rare. And, if you do not know God’s ways, then you will not be able to discern God’s true prophet. You will not be able to hearken to God’s voice. You will thus not be considered one of Christ’s sheep.
“Today” it may be too late to learn God’s ways before the final powerful deception comes. But, once again, I have been compelled to write. Maybe one more person will yet hear, will yet repent of his worldly ways and will quickly learn God’s ways. But how? How can one learn his ways?
You must go to his Word, to the Scriptures, to the Bible. You must pray that God himself will give you ears to hear and eyes to see as you read that Word. Jesus Christ is the Word made flesh. He spoke his word to the prophets who wrote it down for our sake. The words that Jesus spoke will one day, he said, judge all mankind. The Bible itself is the flesh of Christ’s Word. We must eat that Word, consume it, make it part of ourselves. And the Word is living, active, sharper than any two-edged sword. The Word cleaves our very soul from our spirit and enables us to recognize the depravity of our sinful souls so that that purity of God’s Spirit may clean us from all unrighteousness. But remember, we can do none of this in the power of our own flesh. Jesus told us to eat his flesh (because it was perfect), not our own. We must rely upon him, upon the comforter whom he sent, in order to understand his Word.
How can a young man keep his way pure?
By guarding it according to your word.
10 With my whole heart I seek you;
let me not wander from your commandments!
11 I have stored up your word in my heart,
that I might not sin against you.
12 Blessed are you, O Lord;
teach me your statutes!
13 With my lips I declare
all the rules[c] of your mouth.
14 In the way of your testimonies I delight
as much as in all riches.
15 I will meditate on your precepts
and fix my eyes on your ways.
16 I will delight in your statutes;
I will not forget your word. (Psalm 119:9-16)
A good place to begin to learn God’s ways would be for you to read and meditate upon Psalm 119. You can find a study on this wonderful psalm under the “Prophetic Psalms” tab above. In order to know that it is Christ’s voice we hear, we must know the contents of that voice. We must know God’s ways.