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  • Writer's pictureJ.D. King

The Meat-Eaters Hear God—How to Move in the Realm of the Prophetic

Updated: Jan 24

Have you ever seen children misunderstand the Bible. I’ve heard some funny lines over the years. Here are a few that come to mind:

• Shadrach, Meshach and a billy goat were thrown into a fire. • Solomon had 700 wives and 300 porcupines. • Jesus healed the leopards. • The “Golden” Rule—“Do unto others before they do unto you.”

Growing up, I also misunderstood the Bible at times. For example, in the Old Testament story of Lot’s wife turning back to Sodom and Gomorrah, I thought the preacher said that she turned into a “pillow of salt,” instead of a "pillar of salt." It didn’t help that it was Arkansas, and words get enunciated differently.

We're not kids, but we still have misunderstandings. However, I'm convinced believers can position themselves to hear the voice of God better and learn the deeper realities of the Kingdom. Let's talk about that.

Biblical Background and Setup

The writer of Hebrews, in chapter 5, discusses higher-level spiritual realities associated with Jesus. He compares Jesus to Melchizedek, a mysterious priest with no record of dying. People didn't know where this holy man came from or where he went. The writer makes it clear that the Lord shared some similar qualities.

However, as the writer of Hebrews shared this illustration, he expresses frustration. He acknowledges that his readers probably aren't following along with him as well as they should. So he shares the following:

"Concerning him [Jesus] we have much to say, and it is hard to explain, since you have become dull of hearing. For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you have need again for someone to teach you the elementary principles of the oracles of God, and you have come to need milk and not solid food. 13 For everyone who partakes only of milk is not accustomed to the word of righteousness, for he is an infant. But solid food is for the mature, who because of practice have their senses trained to discern good and evil" (Hebrews 5:13-14 NASB).

The inspired writer compares his audience to adolescents who think they still need milk. Obviously, the "kids" should begin the process of growing up. When one only drinks milk, it is hard to go deep, but if he or she can chew solid food, many marvelous things can be consumed.

I want to focus, for a moment, on the last part of verse 14. In this passage, the writer reveals that as the mature build on a diet of solid food, it positions them for intense growth. They not only get the opportunity to taste substantive things, they are able to advance further than ever. The meat-eaters apparently develop practices that reorder their lives. Eating solid food enables them to train their senses and discern the matters of the Kingdom. By the application of this diet, they can tell the difference between what is truly excellent and what is evil and harmful.

The idea of investing our lives in reading scripture, going deeper in relationships with godly people, and maturing is a notion that’s striking. Choosing maturity will place quite a demand on your life. Nevertheless, every time I think about it, I'm reminded that it is one of the secrets to hearing the voice of God.

How Do We Hear From God?

A few years ago, I was praying, and I asked the Lord about how he speaks to his people. What does it look like to experience the leadings and nudges that he sends? I felt like God said, "Get back into the meat of the Word." So, I jumped into scripture and looked for patterns.

What I found was captivating. I discovered that God often speaks to men and women through their senses. Let me share a few examples:

Through Seeing

Moses Saw a Burning Bush:

"Moses stared in amazement. Though the bush was engulfed in flames, it didn’t burn up. 'This is amazing,' Moses said to himself. 'Why isn’t that bush burning up? I must go see it.' When the LORD saw Moses coming to take a closer look, God called to him from the middle of the bush, 'Moses! Moses!' 'Here I am!' Moses replied" (Exodus 3:2-4).

Jeremiah Saw a Potter at a Wheel:

"So I did as he told me and found the potter working at his wheel. But the jar he was making did not turn out as he had hoped, so he crushed it into a lump of clay again and started over. Then the LORD gave me this message: 'O Israel, can I not do to you as this potter has done to his clay? As the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are you in my hand'" (Jeremiah 18:3-6).

Through Hearing

David Had to Wait for the Sound before he Advanced into Battle:

“When you hear a sound like marching feet in the tops of the poplar trees, go out and attack! That will be the signal that God is moving ahead of you to strike down the Philistine army” (1 Chronicles 14:15).

Ezekiel heard the Sound of Rattling Bones in a Dry Valley:

"So I spoke this message, just as he told me. Suddenly as I spoke, there was a rattling noise all across the valley" (Ezekiel 37:7).

Through Tasting

John the Revelator was Instructed to Eat a Scroll:

“I took the little scroll from the angel’s hand and ate it. It tasted as sweet as honey in my mouth, but when I had eaten it, my stomach turned sour. Then I was told, ‘You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, languages and kings’” (Revelation 10:10-11).

Ezekiel also had to Taste the flavor of the Scroll.

“I opened my mouth, and he gave me the scroll to eat. Then he said to me, ‘Son of man, eat this scroll I am giving you and fill your stomach with it.’ So I ate it, and it tasted as sweet as honey in my mouth” (Ezekiel 3:2-3).

I could share dozens of other examples from scripture. The biblical pattern is God showing a picture, conveying a sound, releasing a touch, taste, or several other sensory experiences. The Lord often communicates through the realm of imagination.

The Crisis Point

If the biblical pattern is God speaking through the senses, then many churchgoers are in trouble. In the American church, the mind, will, and emotions have been neglected. In fact, in many cases, they have been ceded over to the devil. Movies, music, social media, fashion, and the arts are targeted by darkness. The senses can be a cesspool.

I know well intentioned Christians who insist we should stay away from the senses and every semblance of the "soul"—the mind, will, and emotions. I understand this line of thought. Satan often runs roughshod over the senses of unbelievers and the spiritually weak. Many of these people don’t have the ability to discern what is good or evil.

So, I understand the pushback. It's true that some churchgoers are so "juvenile" that their "senses" are out of control. We can't trust anything rising up in their hearts or minds because it isn't rooted in Christ. It is tragic when churchgoers can't put down the milk.

It doesn’t, however, have to be this way. Paul writes: “Now may the God of peace sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept complete, without blame until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thessalonians 5:23).

Apparently, a believer's mind, will, and emotions can be sanctified and set apart for the Lord's use. Their senses can be filled with the beauty and goodness of Jesus. Christians can grow up and harness their imagination for the betterment of the Kingdom.


The writer of Hebrews wants us to start growing up and eating solid food. He wants us to grapple with the truths of the Word of God and rediscover the mysteries of the Cross. He wants us to apprehend the beauty of Jesus’ victory—letting that reality transform every part of our lives, including our minds.

When we learn how to eat meat, it reorients everything in our lives. Then our senses—and everything else—are aligned with Jesus.


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