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The Voice of God: Experience A Life Changing Relationship with the Lord

The Voice of God: Experience A Life Changing Relationship with the Lord

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The Voice of God: Experience A Life Changing Relationship with the Lord

Length:
382 pages
7 hours
Released:
Oct 25, 2013
ISBN:
9781620200957
Format:
Book

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What characterizes this book is the author’s conviction of the absolute authority of the Bible in spiritual and moral matters. The book describes the basic Christian doctrine, the way to salvation, and the Christian life with God while disclosing and warning against the influence that the spirit of the world has on the people of God. The key to a life changing relationship with the Lord is to listen to His Word, believe it, and apply it in your life. You will then experience the power of the Holy Spirit and learn that transformation does not come by effort, but by surrendering to the Lord.
Released:
Oct 25, 2013
ISBN:
9781620200957
Format:
Book

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The Voice of God - Frank E. Åbyholm

THE VOICE

OF GOD

Experience a life changing relationship with the Lord

Frank E. Åbyholm

Table of Contents

Title Page

Copyright Page

Foreword

Preface

The Perspective of Eternity

The Word of God

A True Image of God

Necessity of Salvation

Why You Can Be Saved—Jesus’ Redemptive Work

Repentance

The Power in the Blood of Jesus

Justified by Faith

Sanctification

In Christ—a New Creation

Christ in Us

The Law and Grace

In Christ—No Condemnation

Neither Do I Condemn You!

Be Strong in the Grace That Is in Christ Jesus

Jesus Christ and Him Crucified

The True Love

Confession

The Christian Baptism

The Teaching of the Apostles

The Great Deception

Do Not Reject the Word of the Lord

Bring the Word of the Lord Back to the Camp!

Where There Is No Vision, the People Perish

Give Glory to God

The Word and the Spirit

The Good Seed—the Word of God

Obedience Leads to Experience and Knowledge

The Narrow Gate and the Constricted Way

The Holy Spirit

Be Filled with the Spirit

Fill Your Wagon

Look at Us!

Faith

To Rest in Faith

Faith and Emotions

Christ and the Church—the Husband and the Wife

Pray with Confidence

Persistent Prayer

The Prayer of Faith

Your Will Be Done

Patience During Tribulation

God’s Kingdom—the Kingdom of Forgiveness

Spiritual Authority

Delegated Authority

Behold and Know That I Am God

Remember Lot’s Wife

To Be Rather Than To Do

Consider the Lilies, How They Grow

Your Heart Is an Enclosed Garden

Worship

Gentle and Humble of Heart

Eagle-Christians

Lift the Banner of Victory

Spiritual Weapons

All My Fountains Are in You

A Redeeming Glance

Only to God Is My Soul Silent

A Sound Mind

Epilogue

THE VOICE OF GOD

Experience a life changing relationship with the Lord

© Frank E. Åbyholm 2011

All rights reserved

www.fabyholm.com

All Right Reserved

Printed in the United States of America

ISBN: 9781935507628

Cover Design & Page Layout by A&E Media

Scripture taken from the Holy Bible: International Standard Version®. Copyright © 1996-2011 by The ISV Foundation. All rights reserved internationally. Used by permission.

Scripture taken from the Modern King James Version of the Holy Bible

Copyright © 1962 - 2011 By Jay P. Green, Sr. All rights reserved. Used by permission of the copyright holder

THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

Scripture taken from the American Standard Version of the Holy Bible. Public Domain.

Scripture taken from the King James Version of the Holy Bible. Public Domain.

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Foreword

The book of Judges ends with the following verse: In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in his own eyes (21:25 ESV). Here we find the key to Israel’s weaknesses, instability, failures, poverty, and difficulties at that time.

This verse in the book of Judges can be viewed as a prophetic statement about our time. The secular, Western world is characterized by the belief that there are no absolute truths and that everything is relative.

The spirit of the world is marked by this way of thinking: realize yourself, seek your own happiness, live your life according to what gives the greatest possible satisfaction, demand your rights. Do not separate from others, and do accept everything that the majority proclaims to be morally and politically correct.

Into the midst of this reality the Bible speaks uncompromising and clear. The Bible is the strongest spiritual counterforce to the spirit of the world. It speaks on the basis of God’s Word and puts all phenomena into God’s perspective. The Bible is God’s love letter to mankind. It shows how God in His love, care, and wisdom gives light and guidance in all things that pertain to life and fear of God. The Bible speaks of the eternal issues and about all matters concerning human life. It provides guidance for a good and blessed life for the individual, family, church, and community.

In the course of a few decades the belief in the authority of God’s Word has been reduced to almost nothing in many contexts. We see this by the fact that sins that the Bible warns against—and which were absolutely unthinkable for Christians to accept a few years back—are now becoming more and more common, and not just more common but accepted and defended.

This book is written in the midst of this situation. It is written by one who has unwavering trust in and loyalty to God’s Word and who is fully convinced that what the Bible says is right, is right and what it says is wrong, is wrong. Scripture is the sole authority for faith and life. Those who call themselves by the name of Christ must listen to and be transformed by His words.

Letting the Bible be the authority for faith and life will always arouse reactions. The natural man has never had a sense of what belongs to God. In our time, where human thoughts and the wisdom of the world (as the Bible calls folly) dominate so significantly in many Christians’ minds, the reactions will be strong. Therefore, most preachers fail to lift up the guidance for the holy life which the Scripture provides. The personal costs are too great. It is terrible to fall into the hands of ungodly media. But it can also be terrible to fall into the hands of indignant members of congregations.

This book will let the Scripture speak. It contains many more Bible quotations than most other Christian books. The author compares various testimonies which speak of the same issue. In the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established, said Jesus. In this book there are often many testimonies that reinforce each other. If one is to take full advantage of this book, one must read it slowly, ponder the biblical quotations, and let them speak to oneself. One must give time for the Scripture to do its work.

The book covers a number of areas. It starts with the basic truths: a true image of God, the scriptural testimony of salvation in Jesus Christ, how necessary it is, and what it offers to those who accept it. The book emphasizes the importance and necessity of hearing the Word, submitting to the Word, and doing the Word. It also puts the reader to the test concerning a number of issues: will he listen to the thoughts of this world, or will he bow to the Word of God that Jesus, the prophets, and the apostles have passed on to us in the Bible?

This book not only throws a critical light on much of what is happening in our time but also describes the blessed life for those who believe in and follow the Word of God.

This book contains no stories or personal experiences. That is not because the author is not without examples from his own and others’ lives; he has preached the Word of God for over thirty years. But he wishes to let the Word speak for itself. Nothing, not even touching stories, speaks more clearly than the Scriptures.

I who have written this preface have regularly been under Frank Åbyholm’s teaching for seven to eight years; it was my good fortune. The teaching of the Word has been searching. It has gone to the depths, it has revealed my spiritual condition, and it has humbled me. But I have never felt condemned. For the Word not only slays; it gives life. I kill, and I make alive; I wound and I heal(Deut. 32:39 MKJV). I have by the grace of God received forgiveness and experienced the truth and the power of the Word of God. Blessed is the one who reads and hears the words of this prophecy, and the ones keeping the things written in it, for the time is near (Rev. 1:3 MKJV). Behold, I come quickly. Blessed is he who keeps the words of the prophecy of this Book (Rev. 22:7 MKJV).

—PER HORNTVEDT

Oslo, March 2010

Preface

Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ

ROM. 10:17 NIV

I have experienced the truth of these words from God. To listen to true and anointed preaching is a great blessing. I think with gratitude of those who spoke the Word of God to me and made the Bible alive to my soul. I’ve seen more lives changed and more miracles happen through the preaching of the Word of God than by any other remedy.

God has spoken clearly in the Holy Scriptures. The Bible is not difficult because it is unclear, but because it is clear. It is difficult because it reveals the natural man’s sinful nature and judges the works of the flesh. But God’s Word also has regenerating power. It is spirit and life and is sent to us so that we may have life and life more abundant.

The contents of this book are brief summaries of speeches. Bible quotations are from the International Standard Version, Modern King James Version, New International Version, English Standard Version, American Standard Version, and King James Version.

I want to thank Per Horntvedt for review and preparation of the manuscript and for spiritual and practical advice. I would also like to thank Bjarne and Turid Helland for close fellowship through thirty-seven years and for their inspiration and support during the work. And not least, thanks to my wife Kari and our children for wise advice.

God’s Word is our great heritage

And shall be ours forever;

To spread its light from age to age

Shall be our chief endeavor.

Through life it guides our way,

In death it is our stay.

Lord, grant, while words endure,

We keep its teachings pure

Throughout all generations.¹

To my dear wife, Kari, and our children, Johan, Astrid, and Andreas.

—FRANK ELLOF ÅBYHOLM

March 2010


¹ God’s Word Is Our Great Heritage, Nikolai F. S. Grundtvig (1783–1872), trans. Ole G. Belsheim (1861–1925).

The Perspective of Eternity

The Perspective of Eternity

But now Christ has risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruit of those who slept. For since death is through man, the resurrection of the dead also is through a Man

(1 COR. 15:20–21 MKJV)

If our existence were only for the time from the cradle to the grave, then we could live our lives here on earth for our own pleasure. We would not have to be accountable for our lives. The Apostle Paul says, If the dead are not raised, Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die (1 Cor. 15:32 NIV).

Life on earth has a time limit, but death is not the end of our existence but the beginning of eternity, to be spent in either heaven or hell, either with God in heaven or away from God and His glory forever.

The Scripture says, And as it is appointed to men once to die, but after this the judgment (Heb. 9:27 MKJV). Jesus speaks of two options: the resurrection of life or the resurrection of condemnation (John 5:29). All people shall stand before God and give an account for their life. The Word of God about this eternal perspective makes it necessary for us to witness about Jesus, Who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He is the only One Who can open the way to eternal life in heaven. The prescription is repentance, a new birth by faith in Jesus, and a life in the power of the Holy Spirit.

The Bible’s words about man’s sin and God’s judgment of sin set our lives in a serious perspective. There is no room for superficiality or irresponsibility. He sent out his word and healed them, and delivered them from their destruction (Ps. 107:20 ESV). The Word of God is the only source of true knowledge of the only true God.

Jesus says, Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My Word and believes on Him who sent Me has everlasting life and shall not come into condemnation, but has passed from death to life (John 5:24 MKJV). The Apostle John says, This is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is found in his Son. The person who has the Son has this life. The person who does not have the Son of God does not have this life (1 John 5:11–12 ISV).

All of the following is written with one goal in mind: that you by the Word of God shall know the Truth, that the Word of God will be glorified, that you will learn to know Jesus, and that you by Him shall be saved.

The Word of God

The Word of God

The words of Jehovah are pure words; as silver tried in a furnace on the earth, purified seven times. Thou wilt keep them, O Jehovah, Thou wilt preserve them from this generation for ever

PS. 12:6–7 ASV

Is the Bible the Word of God?

Can we really trust that the Bible is the Word of God? Christians in Norway are used to hearing that the Bible is God’s Word. Many imagine that they believe it, but when they are put to the test, it turns out not to be so. The enemy’s main weapon is still, Has God really spoken? It is easy to hold the Bible for the truth when it does not cost us anything, but in times of tribulations, in times of temptations, one will experience failing at exactly this point: Is the Bible, as we have it, the Word of God?

The Old Testament is the Word of God

Jesus says: You study the Scriptures diligently because you think that in them you have eternal life. These are the very Scriptures that testify about me (John 5:39 NIV, emphasis added). Jesus is speaking of the Old Testament.

God sent His son into the world to save us. The Bible testifies about Jesus, the Savior of the world. Is God’s testimony about His Son correct?

We accept human testimony, but God’s testimony is greater because it is the testimony of God, which he has given about his Son. Whoever believes in the Son of God accepts this testimony. Whoever does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, because they have not believed the testimony God has given about his Son. And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life (1 John 5:9–12 NIV).

Jesus prays for his disciples, "Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth (John 17:17 NIV, emphasis added).

In John 10 we read that Jesus has a conversation with the Jews and is accused of claiming to be God. Notice how Jesus responds: "Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are gods’? If he [God] called them ‘gods,’ to whom the word of God came—and Scripture cannot be set aside—what about the one whom the Father set apart as his very own and sent into the world? Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, ‘I am God’s Son’?" (John 10:34–36 NIV, emphasis added).Jesus quotes Psalm 82:6 and says that this verse is God’s Word and that this scripture cannot be broken.

In Matthew 22 Jesus emphasizes again that the Scriptures, the Old Testament, is God’s Word. Jesus is in a discussion about the resurrection of the dead and says, "But about the resurrection of the dead—have you not read what God said to you, ‘I am the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob’? He is not the God of the dead but of the living" (Matt. 22:31–32 NIV, emphasis added).

Here Jesus is saying that it was God who said, I am … the God of Abraham, etc. (Exod. 3:6 MKJV). Another important detail here is that when God said to Moses, "I am the God of Abraham" (not was), then this is proof of the resurrection of the dead.

In the same chapter (Matt. 22:43 NIV) Jesus refers to Psalm 110:1: He said to them, How is it then that David, speaking by the Spirit, calls him ‘Lord’? Jesus is saying that it was "David … by the Spirit," who said this—Spirit with a capital letter. David spoke, carried along by the Holy Spirit (2 Pet. 1:21).

Jesus confirms the words of the prophets in the Old Testament: And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself (Luke 24:27 NIV).

Jesus said: This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms (Luke 24:44 NIV). If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say? (John 5:46–47 NIV). According to Jesus, there is just as strong convincing power in The Old Testament as in His own Words. It is God who speaks through both.

In the story about the rich man and Lazarus, we read, And he [the rich man] said, I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him [Lazarus] to my father’s house, for I have five brothers, so that he may testify to them, lest they also come into this place of torment. Abraham said to him, They have Moses and the prophets, let them hear them. And he said, No, father Abraham, but if one should go to them from the dead, they would repent. And he said to him, If they do not hear Moses and the Prophets, they will not be persuaded, even though one rose from the dead (Luke 16:27–31 MKJV).

Jesus speaks the Word of God

Jesus emphasizes very strongly that He does not speak of Himself. We will look at three passages in John’s Gospel.

So Jesus said, "When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he and that I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me" (John 8:28 NIV).

For I have not spoken of Myself, but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say, and what I should speak. And I know that His command is life everlasting. Therefore whatever I speak, even as the Father said to Me, so I speak (John 12:49–50 MKJV).

For I have given to them the words which You [the Father] gave Me, and they have received them and have known surely that I came out from You. And they have believed that You sent Me (John 17:8 MKJV).

The life of Jesus confirms the divinity of the Word

Everything that happened to Jesus was prophesied about Him in the Scriptures. Everything that was spoken by the prophets about Christ is fulfilled. We often read expressions such as the following in the Gospels: This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet and that Scripture should be fulfilled. The spoken Word of God is a reality at the moment it is spoken. It is not visible, but it is on the way to fulfillment. None of God’s words shall pass away. They are spoken with a purpose: So shall My Word be, which goes out of My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall certainly do what I sent it to do (Isa. 55:11 MKJV).The word that comes out of God’s mouth is not passive. God speaks to accomplish something with His Word.

The apostles confirm the authority of Scripture

The apostles speak of the Scriptures just as Jesus does: For prophecy was not borne at any time by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke being borne along by the Holy Spirit (2 Pet. 1:21 MKJV).

All Scripture is God-breathed, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness (2 Tim. 3:16 MKJV).

God, who at many times and in many ways spoke in time past to the fathers by the prophets, has in these last days spoken to us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things, by whom also He made the worlds (Heb. 1:1–2 MKJV).

Paul says, But I confess this to you, that after the Way which they call heresy, so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things that are written in the Law and in the Prophets (Acts 24:14 MKJV).

The apostles refer again and again to the Old Testament to confirm their teaching. In the ninth chapter of the letter to the Romans, Paul refers to the Old Testament twelve times.

Is The New Testament the Word of God?

Were the apostles infallible, and are their recordings accurate? Was their doctrine not influenced by the time they lived in, their culture, etc.? Can we take their words as God’s Word for us today?

Jesus gave his disciples the following commission: Therefore, as you go, disciple all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to obey all that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you each and every day until the end of the age (Matt. 28:19–20 ISV).

The New Testament’s accuracy has never been dependent on human intelligence and memory, but solely on the Holy Spirit’s reliability and power. Jesus says, But the Comforter, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things and bring all things to your remembrance, whatever I have said to you (John 14:26 MKJV). This is why the New Testament is absolutely trustworthy.

Scriptural reliability depends solely on God Himself. He is able to speak through people today as before. God spoke to the fathers by the prophets, and He has spoken to us through His Son and the witnesses whom the Son chose to be His apostles. I [the Lord] will watch over My Word to perform it (Jer. 1:12 MKJV).

God’s Word creates faith in God’s Word

God’s Word and the Holy Spirit convince us of the truth. If we read and meditate on the Scripture and ask God for help to understand the Scripture, we will receive the full assurance that the Bible is God’s Word. The Bible will then have the power and the authority in our minds as it should have. For the weapons of our warfare are not fleshly, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds, pulling down imaginations and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought into the obedience of Christ (2 Cor. 10:4–5 MKJV).

If we will be in agreement with God, Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, and the apostles, we must have this confession: The Bible is the Word of God.

In the Bible you will not find any statements that weaken the authority of the Scripture. All critical remarks about Scripture come from other sources. The Bible is full of testimonies of the reliability and truth of Scripture. The knowledge of divine truth comes by hearing the Word of God: Then faith is of hearing, and hearing by the Word of God (Rom. 10:17 MKJV).

Carl Olof Rosenius (1816–1868), a well-known Swedish preacher who was also called Little Luther, in one period of his life became filled with doubt about the absolute authority of the Bible: Has God really spoken?Can I be sure that the Bible is God’s Word? He went to a good friend of his, a pastor, and asked for advice. The pastor said, Read the Bible. It was a good advice because faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. By reading the Word, Rosenius was again convinced about the Truth.

God’s Word is perfect

God’s Word is not only true but divinely true and absolutely perfect. The words of Jehovah are pure words; as silver tried in a furnace on the earth, purified seven times. Thou wilt keep them, O Jehovah, Thou wilt preserve them from this generation for ever (Ps. 12:6–7 ASV).

If you should find that certain passages in the Bible seem to contradict each other, or that you do not always manage to understand everything, you can be sure it’s just lack of light and insight on your part that is the reason. You will find, if not in this life then later, that the Scripture is as perfect as God Himself: And His [Jesus’] name is called The Word of God (Rev. 19:13 MKJV).

The Word is effective in those who believe

Faith in the Word provides certainty and confidence to rely on God’s many promises and that what He has said will come to pass.

The Word is alive and active: For the word of God is living and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing apart of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart (Heb. 4:12 MKJV).

The word is spirit, life, and power. It exhorts, builds up, and comforts. And for this cause we thank God without ceasing, that when you received the Word of hearing, of God, you welcomed it as the Word of God, not as a word of men, but as it is, truly the Word of God, which also effectually works in you who believe (1 Thess. 2:13 MKJV).

You cannot have one relationship with Jesus and a different relationship with God’s Word. God’s Word is the testimony of Jesus. Jesus is like the Word says He is. You relate to Jesus in the same way that you relate to God’s Word.

God’s Word is forever settled

God’s Word does not change: For ever, O Lord, thy word is settled in heaven (Ps. 119:89 KJV). Jesus does not change: Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever (Heb. 13:8 NIV).

God’s Word is an entirety

We shall not take away anything from the Bible. The Passover Lamb must be eaten whole. Jesus is the Word. The Scriptures testify about Him. We cannot just take a portion of Scripture, the part we like. Everything stands or falls on this. If you take away some of the truth, then everything falls apart. If anyone takes away any words from the book of this prophecy, God will take away his portion of the tree of life and the holy city that are described in this book (Rev. 22:19 ISV).

The mark of a disciple

Jesus’ prayer for His disciples in John 17 is a powerful and intimate prayer. He would soon leave His disciples. It was a crucial time in the life of Jesus and His disciples. In His prayer, Jesus said this about His disciples: "They have obeyed your word … for I gave themthe words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me" (verses 6–8 NIV, emphasis added). Are you a disciple of Jesus?

When we consider the apostles, we see what their priority was: Then we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word (Acts 6:4 ISV).

Revival

In Acts 19:18–20 we read about the revival in Ephesus: And many who believed came and confessed and showed their deeds. Also many of those practicing the curious arts, bringing together the books, burned them before all. And they counted the prices of them and found it to be fifty thousand pieces of silver. So the Word of God grew mightily and prevailed.

The mark of true revival is that God’s Word captures man’s soul. Enthusiasm and excitement are not sure signs of revival. These may occur during revival, but they are not enough. Something stronger and more powerful than human thoughts and feelings must gain authority over people’s minds. It is only through the preaching of the Word of God that true faith can be created. If anyone speaks, let it be as the words of God (1 Pet. 4:11 MKJV).

Exhortation

Have you been tempted by the devil’s slyness: Has God spoken? Have you abandoned the source of the true knowledge of God, the Bible? If so, I advise you to pray: Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in your law (Ps. 119:18 NIV).

Your word is very pure; therefore Your servant loves it

Ps. 119:140 MKJV

A True Image of God

A True Image of God

"This is what the Lord says—Israel’s King and Redeemer, the Lord Almighty: I am the first and I am the last; apart from me there is no God. Who then is like me? Let him proclaim it. Let him declare and lay out before me what has happened since I established my ancient people, and what is yet to come—yes, let them foretell what will come. Do not tremble, do not be afraid. Did I not proclaim this and foretell it long ago? You are my witnesses. Is there any God besides me? No, there is no other Rock; I

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