Blog 007: White noise - What do you believe?
Posted on January 20, 2018
White noise is all around us. There are sounds coming at us from all directions, even from outer space. In major towns and cities background noise is generated by traffic, construction sites, sports venues, school playgrounds and many other everyday activities.
If you live in the countryside you may hear the distant drone of motorway traffic or commercial aircraft flying overhead. It might be trains or farm machinery or even the wind howling in the trees or electricity pylons.
In an attempt to reduce what is nowadays referred to as ‘noise pollution’, manufacturers of engines and tyres for example, are regulated by EU legislation to keep noise levels within certain decibel limits. Some heavy goods vehicles even have switches to disable their reversing alarms during late night or early morning deliveries in urban areas.
I’m sure we are all familiar with the concept of ‘white noise’. There is also ‘pink noise’ and ‘brown noise’. These are the main categories of noise that we are usually exposed to. Regardless of where we live, it is difficult to find true silence.
There are organisations and individuals who encourage us to actively use white noise in order to block out other specific sounds which may be seen as a distraction. This is called ‘sound masking’. Given the fast pace of life in the twenty first century, it is becoming increasing important to consciously differentiate between noise and sound.
Noise is all around us, but what specific sounds do we focus on or tune in to? What is intelligible? As we have pointed out, we are exposed to all kinds of noise, but some sounds are distinguishable; sounds such as notes played a piano or guitar, a car horn, a fire alarm, a trumpet blast or a voice calling our name. When we hear sounds that are distinguishable we usually respond in some way. We enjoy music or we heed a warning.
On the subject of ‘sound masking’, perhaps we should consider this subject on a spiritual level. Consider this question; what are the sounds which distract us from hearing God’s voice? Is there white noise in our lives that we have become immune to? More importantly; do I have a mechanism which enables me to tune in to the voice of God on a daily basis?
In this busy and bustling generation of Hi-Fi and Wi-Fi, there are many voices and many sounds or noises which compete for our attention and our loyalty. Have you noticed the ‘beats’ boom? Have you observed how many pedestrians and cyclists commute while listening to something through their headsets?
We are bombarded with noise, sounds and voices from many sources including TV, radio, legislation, work colleagues, management and even family and friends. White noise can actually be generated with the deliberate aim to blank out more specific sounds.
Some people who suffer from tinnitus actually play recordings of white noise in the background in an effort to distract them from annoying perpetual sounds in their ears such as high pitched ringing or whistling sounds.
I would encourage you to read the following scriptures which refer to the sound of God’s voice. Perhaps this will set the tone (forgive the pun) for a more conscious awareness of the sounds that permeate our daily lives – consciously or subconsciously.
Genesis 1 v 1-3
1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. 2 Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. 3 And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.
This is the first mention of sound in the bible. God spoke.
Exodus 19 v 1-7
At Mount Sinai
3 Then Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountain and said, “This is what you are to say to the descendants of Jacob and what you are to tell the people of Israel: 4 ‘You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself.
5 Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, 6 you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”
7 So Moses went back and summoned the elders of the people and set before them all the words the Lord had commanded him to speak.
Exodus 19 v 16 - 19
16 On the morning of the third day there was thunder and lightning, with a thick cloud over the mountain, and a very loud trumpet blast. Everyone in the camp trembled.
17 Then Moses led the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain.
18 Mount Sinai was covered with smoke, because the Lord descended on it in fire. The smoke billowed up from it like smoke from a furnace, and the whole mountain trembled violently. 19 As the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and the voice of God answered him.
The above passages of Old Testament Scripture make it clear that the voice of God was audibly heard. The sound of the heavenly trumpet and the sound of the voice of God were unmistakable.
Matthew 3 v 1 - 3
1 In those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the wilderness of Judea 2 and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven has come near.” 3 This is he who was spoken of through the prophet Isaiah: “A voice of one calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’ ”
Matthew 3 v 16 - 17
16 As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and alighting on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”
John 1 v 1 – 2
1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning.
Five hundred years of silence between the Old Testament and New Testament was shattered with the introduction of the Messiah. The voice of God was heard on earth.
John 19 v 28 - 30
28 Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.” 29 A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips. 30 When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
The eternal Word, the Son of God who made all the natural sources of cool refreshing water, said - "I Thirst".
Matthew 27 v 45 – 50
45 From noon until three in the afternoon darkness came over all the land. 46 About three in the afternoon Jesus cried out in a loud voice, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?”(which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”).
47 When some of those standing there heard this, they said, “He’s calling Elijah.” 48 Immediately one of them ran and got a sponge. He filled it with wine vinegar, put it on a staff, and offered it to Jesus to drink. 49 The rest said, “Now leave him alone. Let’s see if Elijah comes to save him.” 50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.
The death of Jesus was marked with the unmistakable cry – ‘Finished’!
Daylight had been turned into darkness, the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom and the rocks were split asunder as the Son of God finished the work of redemption for mankind.
1 Thessalonians 4 v 13 - 18
13 Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. 14 For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.
15 According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.
17 After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18 Therefore encourage one another with these words.
God still speaks today...
There are times when God has spoken to me, sometimes it is just two words; trust me, or don't worry. Sometimes it is just one word; wait, or now. I wonder if you can recall the last time God spoke to you? What did he say?
If we spend time alone with God, especially reading his word, these are often the times when we are open to hear his voice. When God speaks to us it can often be a gentle whisper of assurance or encouragement.
One day the white noise that surrounds us will be overcome with an unmistakable call. At the Rapture there will be the combination of a LOUD COMMAND, the VOICE of the archangel and the TRUMPET CALL of God. The question is; are we tuned in to hear this call?
Can I hear the voice of God? Or am I so distracted with ‘white noise’ that I don’t hear his voice at all? Worse still; am I doing all I can to mask the sound of God’s voice?
Revelation 3 v 20
20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.
STOP for one moment in time and consider; have you heard the voice of God speaking to you? How did you respond?
Will you listen to the voice of God and obey his call to repentance and salvation and share in the wonderful blessings that he has prepared for those who love him? Do you listen for his voice from day to day in order to live a life that pleases him?
Are you a victim of 'sound masking' when it comes to hearing the voice of God? What are the noises that are masking the sound of God's voice? TV? Football? Music? Work? Health? Social life? Self preservation or self interest?
Are you being distracted by 'white noise' all around you and as a result you are not hearing the most important message which can save you from a lost eternity?
Christian friend, are you tuned in to hear his voice on a daily basis? The best way to do this is to read the bible every day in a spirit of submission and obedience. May God help you to tune in and hear what he has to say to you as an individual. And then, under his guidance, pass it on so that others may also be blessed through you.
Read more: The 'I Am' claims of the Lord Jesus
Read more: bibletimeline.org.uk