1 877-431-4276

Fulfill God’s Will: What is “Guidance by Prohibition?”

Are you sitting around or are you moving towards God’s destiny for your life? Some people sit around paralyzed with fear because they worry they might miss God’s perfect will. Let’s look at the life of Paul to see if he was a “sitter” or a “mover.” Many people have the impression that Paul was so close to God that he never moved without God’s specific guidance, but when we examine Paul’s life we discover that he was not sitting around waiting to hear God, instead he was actively moving. Acts 16:6-10 reads, “Paul and his companions traveled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching the Word in the province of Asia. When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to. So they passed by Mysia and went down to Troas. During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, ‘Come over to Macedonia and help us.’ After Paul had seen the vision, we got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.”

In this passage, Paul decided to take his evangelistic team to Asia but the Holy Spirit prevented them from going. Then Paul traveled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia until they came to the border of Mysia and tried to enter Bithynia but Jesus did not allow them to enter. Finally, God sent a vision of a man in Macedonia calling for Paul’s help.

Notice, Paul did not sit around wondering what God’s will was. He did not stay in one place trying to discover if there was something he had done wrong that was preventing him from going to Asia. No. Paul was traveling and ministering. He was taking action. As Paul was moving, God provided direction. Paul tried to enter Asia; the Holy Spirit said “No.” Paul tried to enter Bithynia; Jesus said “No.” Finally God the Father put him to sleep so he would stay still long enough to see the vision telling him to go to Macedonia. Paul was so busy moving around; the whole Trinity got involved in guiding him!

Often when people preach about knowing God’s will, the vision of the Macedonian man is used as an example of how God guides, but Paul was not just laying around waiting for God to give him a vision. He was actively moving to find a place to preach. Once Paul was moving, God was able to provide guidance by saying “no.” This is guidance by prohibition.

Once you start to move, unless God specifically says “no” then proceed as if it is a “yes.” God will respond to your movement, even if your movement is in the wrong direction. Always give God the power of veto, but unless He specifically stops you, proceed. Assume a green light unless you are specifically given a red light.

You can Discover God’s Will for Your Life – Read Daniel King’s book on How to Fulfill God’s Will for Your Life: