No, God Didn’t Tell You That

Over my years of teaching high schoolers in both a church & school setting, I am going to say this:

it is destructive to tell new or young believers, “God told me…” if you don’t have verses to point to.

It paints a picture to new/young believers that there is knowledge they need from God outside of the Scriptures & it easily causes anxiety and fear (“what if I miss God’s will for my life?”), creates two-tier Christianity (those who “hear” God’s voice & the carnal noobs that don’t), & implies that the Scriptures are not enough to make us “thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Tim. 3:17).

I recognize there are brothers & sisters in Christ who may differ. My point here is not to give a full-throated defense of my particular theological view, but to recognize out-loud that this language of personalized revelation from God, in my experience twenty-plus years of working with young and new believers, regularly decreases confidence in Scripture’s sufficiency, creates anxiety and fear, and often makes people confuse their feelings/circumstances/desires for the will of God.

It is a theological and practical mess that does real harm.

At very least, if you must, say, “I feel God is leading me…” Even better say, “God said in his Word (quote chapter/verse)…” But, if you don’t have verses, don’t forge God’s signature under your own words.


About Dana Dill

I'm a Christian, husband, daddy, pastor, professor, and hope to be a friend to pilgrims on their way home.
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