A frequently asked question I receive is, “Michael, what’s with the numbers you always talk about seeing?”
I used to reply with the following:
The same thing that’s with a talking vision in Gen 15:1, a talking dream in Gen 20:3, a talking burning bush in Exo 3:4, a talking donkey in Num 22:28, a talking fire in Deut 4:12, a talking voice behind you in Isaiah 30:21, a supernatural hand that appears and writes in Daniel 5:5, a talking angel in Mat 1:20, the confirmation of signs in Mark 16:20, a voice in the sky that sounds like thunder in John 12:25, the picking of a disciple by LOTS in Acts 1:26, an audible voice in Acts 9:4, a speaking trance in Acts 11:5, some unknown communication in Acts 20:23...
But I realize that’s not enough of an answer for all, so the following is an excerpt from Ch. 24 of my autobiography titled, “Astonishing Grace to the Chief of All Fools”, where I explain, and also warn, about seeing numbers as possible guidance from God.
Explaining the Numbers
As I end this chapter, I wish to again mention some warnings and explanation about my stories of seeing numbers. First, there is nothing extra-Biblical or unbiblical about this at all, just because others may have not perceived it.
No one of even the faintest intelligence can read the Bible without concluding that God Almighty is indeed a God of numbers. Everything He has spoken, or done, or will do, in the Bible is associated to numbers. There is not one single important event in all of Scripture, the creation, the flood, the exodus, the wilderness journey, the entrance into the promised land, the exile and punishment of the Israelites, the coming of Christ, the writings of Christ, the crucifixion of Christ, the resurrection of Christ, and the second coming of Christ, that do not have God ordained numbers associated with them.
There are truly unbelievable mathematics in the Bible that cannot even be seen at first glance, all hidden beneath the surface. Just one example is in how many incredible ways the genealogy of Jesus Christ, both the words, the nouns, the verbs, and even the consonants and vowels are divisible by the number 7 in more ways than any human could have ever written. Another one can be seen in the book of John, my favorite, which is built on 777. There are 7 miracles, 7 “I am” statements, and 7 discourses. Some are not even in Scripture, but still remain true and astonishing such as the fact that Jesus Christ was crucified on Mount Golgotha which stood at an altitude of 777 meters above sea level. The greatest Mathematician that there has ever been is the Almighty God of the Bible!
Throughout Scripture God has spoken in a variety of strange ways, through the clouds, through a burning bush, through a supernatural hand writing on the wall, through a talking donkey, through evil spirits, through dreams, etc. If the God of the Bible is the Great, I AM, and not the great I WAS, then why should we be surprised that He still loves and uses numbers? I don’t believe any of us should remain surprised, that in a digital age created by man, God is able take advantage of this medium, in order to providentially guide his servant to a passage in the Word of God for guidance or instruction. For two thousand years, Christian history is filled with astonishing or perplexing ways in which the hand of the Lord guided His servants to a timely passage in His book, other than them simply coming across it in their morning reading plan.
There are many counterfeits of this where people get into numerology, angel numbers, and new age meanings of numbers that have NOTHING to do with the truth and the word of God. They are all terribly deceptive and you will recognize that tree by its fruit. God has never led me to see numbers that have any meaning outside of a page number, or actual scripture reference in His Word, with the exception of the 666, which was simply used as a warning for evil. God only uses numbers with me as a means of guiding me to Scripture passages in His living and all sufficient word. There is NO NEED to go beyond the Bible for spiritual insight or guidance.
Psalm 19:7 – The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul. The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes. The fear of the Lord is pure, enduring forever. The ordinances of the Lord are sure and altogether righteous. They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the comb. By them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.
2 Timothy 3:16 – All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Secondly, the numbers mean absolutely NOTHING apart from the insight and teaching of the Holy Spirit. There are numbers everywhere in our life today. I might see 100 or more different numbers today just in my daily business and all of them might be meaningless and I should not drive myself crazy looking for numbers, or trying to figure out if any of them have meaning.
When the Lord has wanted to show me a passage of Scripture, I have always been given insight by His Spirit that this was a number I was supposed to see and secondly the meaning is also given to me. God’s word is living and active (Hebrews 4:12) and incredibly, the Holy Spirit can give you a customized application to a verse which is specific to your situation. For example, when the Lord showed me Mark 2:22, He also gave me a living and active meaning behind that verse for my specific situation. How incredible is the living and enduring word of God!
That verse in Mark, spoken by Jesus, has it’s first and primary meaning in the idea that you cannot take Jesus Christ or His Spirit, which is the new wine, and pour them into the old wineskins of the external rules and regulations of the Law of Moses. Just as Paul taught in Romans 8 and throughout His letters, the Law of sin and death cannot be mixed with the law of the Spirit and life. We no longer live by the letter (old wine) which brings death, but by the Spirit (new wine) which brings life. You cannot pour new wine or new life into the old wineskins of death without them being ruined.
That is the true Biblical meaning of that parable but look how the Holy Spirit was able to use it and give it a custom meaning for my exact situation, by telling me not to go back to sales and motivational speaking after this new work had just been in done in my heart by the Spirit. How unbelievably awesome is our Lord! As you keep reading, you will later hear how the Lord used that same passage another time to warn me about music and even things like masturbation.
There are even many times where I was given the insight that I would see a number before I did, and then shortly thereafter, there it was. This is the living Holy Spirit ministering the living Word of God to me and giving me insight in my heart.
I’ve already been accused of being a heretic or a Christian mystic for mentioning my seeing numbers which I see as a blessing, but I don’t want those who are really wanting to learn how to walk with God to stumble or be deceived. When I first started seeing the numbers, I was shocked and constantly amazed and had never heard of this before. Today, with a ministry that reaches around the world, I have heard stories of many people who see numbers and feel God has used them to guide them. Still others write to me, saying they see certain numbers and they do not know what they mean. That is why you must have insight from the Holy Spirit. Even if you saw a certain verse three times today, apart from the insight of the Holy Spirit, it will be meaningless.
The most important point I wish to make is that God’s Word is everything we need for life and godliness in Christ Jesus, and if we wait upon Him, if we desire His will more than ours, if we fear Him and want to please Him by obeying Him, we must expect God to speak and guide us and however He chooses to do it, that is His business.
Incredibly, as I just finished my final edits on this chapter in the explanation of the numbers, I looked down and saw that the word count for this completed chapter is 7,777 words. There are no coincidences with a Sovereign God who works out everything in accordance to His good purpose, even the number of words written in a chapter about His wonderous works in someone’s life. Is this only a bizarre coincidence, or is it the mighty hand of God in answer to my prayers just this morning to guide every word I write for His glory? I know the answer, do you?