Contributor: Isekhua Evborokhai
Last week, we looked at how to keep our hearts tender for the Holy Spirit to be able to lead us. We learnt that one of the ways is to live above condemnation – that the Holy Spirit does not condemn us but convicts us. We also learnt the differences between condemnation and conviction. We concluded that we must learn to keep a tender conscience and correct our ways once our conscience pricks us if we want to be led by the Spirit.
The ultimate “voice” we need to listen to and follow is the voice of the Spirit. Romans 8:14 says: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” However, it is important to know that there are other voices out there that contend with our faith and distract us. Like the voice of reason (the use of common sense – or logic) or the voice of strangers; Jesus talks about in John 10:5 “And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.”
Or the voice we will be looking at today: The voice of the body otherwise known as “Feelings”. When we talk about feelings, we are referring to sensations, moods, thrills, excitement, anger, fear, sorrow, hate, etc.
• Feeling is the voice of the body.
• Reason is the voice of the soul, or the mind.
• Conscience is the voice of the spirit.
TEXT REVIEW 
Let's review what Jesus said about the Holy Spirit in John 16:13. "... He will guide you into all truth....
... For he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak...."
The Holy Spirit does speak.
He speaks whatever He hears God say, whatever He hears Jesus say; but when He speaks, He speaks to our spirits.
The Holy Spirit lives in our spirits, and that is where He speaks. He doesn't speak out in the air somewhere. He speaks on the inside. The Holy Spirit passes God's message on to our spirits, either by an inward witness, by the still small voice—the voice of our conscience, or by an inward voice which is the more authoritative voice of the Holy Spirit (as we have learnt in the past weeks). But there’s an ongoing conflict between the flesh and the Spirit. What the flesh (the body and its voice – our feelings) desires is contrary to what the Spirit desires and what the flesh says is also contrary to what the Spirit says and ultimately what God says!
“For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.” Galatians 5:17
Instances of the ongoing conflict
The voice of the body says: “I don’t feel like going to church” when the voice of the Spirit says “we should not forsake the assembly of ourselves”
The voice of the body says: “I’m sick” when the voice of the Spirit says “we were healed by His stripes”
Think about times the voice of the body tried to contradict the voice of the Spirit in your life. Discuss
TEXT REVIEW 
Romans 8:16 says: “The Spirit itself [Himself] beareth witness with our spirit....” Emphasis mine
The Spirit of God bears witness with our spirits. He does not bear witness with our bodies. That is the reason why we cannot live our lives by physical feelings.
One of the many definitions of “feeling” is: “to have a particular way of thinking about something, especially one that depends on your emotions rather than on facts or evidence.”
To go by feelings is to get into trouble because our feelings are unreliable. Feelings are tied to our ever-changing circumstances; that is the reason so many Christians are up and down; and in and out; because they go by their feelings. And to go by one’s feelings also means that we fail to walk by faith. Also, feelings are based on our human (physical) senses but 2 Corinthians 5: 7 says: “For we live by faith, not by sight.”
We should base our faith and ultimately our lives and destinies on the Word—not on our feelings.
Romans 8:16 does not say that the Spirit beareth witness with our bodies, or with our feelings.
Smith Wigglesworth, the great English apostle of faith, said, "I am not moved by what I feel. I am not moved by what I see. I am moved only by what I believe. I cannot understand God by feelings. I understand God by what the Word says about Him. I understand the Lord Jesus Christ by what the Word says about Him. He is everything the Word says He is."
We cannot understand ourselves by feelings. Instead we should understand ourselves as born-again, Spirit-filled Christians by what the Word of God says about us. And when we read what the Word says about us—then, whether we feel like it or not, we should say, "Yes, that's me. I have that. The Word says I have that. I can do what the Word says I can do. I am what the Word says I am."
Many things may produce an emotional response. Some are in the moment, others are from our past. Still other emotions may be a response to mere fantasies, lies we tell ourselves, etc. They may also be a result of misunderstandings. Feelings are not “evil”; God gave us feelings for a purpose. We need our feelings to interact with one another. Even Jesus is "touched by the feelings of our infirmities". So they have their place in our lives. As a matter of fact, there is no end to the amount of feeling (both positive and negative) that flows through our lives on a daily basis; but they are fleeting (short-lived) reason why we shouldn’t be led by them! Neither should we relate to God based on our feelings. Because when they change or expire we will be left stranded! Proverbs 14:12 (NIV) says: “There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death.”
So let’s flee from the “strange” voices.