Dangerous Departure

There is a serious threat when there is abuse of the prophet gift. This is recognized in scripture with the admonition to test every prophecy. The test today is whether it agrees with scripture. The Holy Spirit does not contradict Himself, God is consistent. There is also another test, less reliable than scripture, which tests the truth against reality. Does the word come true and ring true in the hearers experience? This is mainly relevant to prophetic words directed to a person. Prophecy is often directed to a person, particularly in the new covenant. (e.g. John 4:16-19). Prophecy is for encouragement. (1 Cor. 14: 31). Does the message bring encouragement to pursue discipleship in Yeshua?

Where abuse comes is when men seek to control other people or promote themselves. God has given only one Shepherd over His people, Yeshua. The Believer is under God’s authority and care, therefore, an overall submission to earthy rulers and other Believers is within that trust and reliance upon God. This also is tested against scripture. When government demands are contrary to scripture they are no longer applicable, as we must remain true to God, which doesn’t mean we try to overthrow the government, just that we remain obedient to God.

There are many warnings in scripture and the abuse of false teachers may be as severe as any lie, yet a test is required for prophecy. (1 Thes. 5: 19-22) The prophet is the first one who should test every message whether it is accurate, unbiased, and sourced from God. (1 Cor. 14:32) Each person has a gift and measure of faith. We must hold to and exercise the faith we have in following Messiah. In the last days Yeshua said many would arise claiming to be Him and we are warned of false teachers.

All men are fallible and subject to error, so we consider what we hear, but the Holy Spirit is our guide rather than men and we have the written word of God. Nevertheless prophecy is helpful when given by God for our strengthening, comfort, and encouragement. We are subject to lies of our own making just as those from men. The truth is more powerful than a lie. Scripture tells us to “Eagerly desire spiritual gifts especially to prophesy,” and “Do not treat prophecies with contempt.” (1 Cor. 14:1; 1 Thessalonians 5:20) We don’t need to throw out the baby with the bathwater. We should not reject any gift of God, rather become mature in rightly handling the truth.

About Steve2525

Retired Journeyman
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