True Prophet vs. False Profit
In the modern church system today there are many false prophets among the religious masses. They are not called or anointed by God to speak truth, but are counterfeits. Sometimes it can be difficult to discern truth from the lies, but Scripture gives clear examples and insight to differentiating one from the other.
“They see falsehood and lying divination who are saying, ‘The LORD declares,’ when the LORD has not sent them; yet they hope for the fulfillment of their word. “Did you not see a false vision and speak a lying divination when you said, ‘The LORD declares,’ but it is not I who have spoken?” - Ezekiel 13:6-7
If you read through this whole of chapter of Ezekiel 13, it would become quite clear what characterizes a false prophet.
In fact, these supposed prophets practice divination which God deems an abomination. Many are blinded in their indoctrination and do not know or take seriously the standards that the God upholds in His word. Exposing counterfeits is not popular among the religious crowds and unfortunately they lack and are ignorant on this subject.
Many don't even ponder or investigate the truth with the guidance of the Holy Spirit because they will be deemed as being too controversial, ruffle feathers and makes others feel uncomfortable.
Therefore I have hewn them in pieces by the prophets; I have slain them by the words of My mouth; And the judgments on you are like the light that goes forth. - Hosea 6:5
It is on us to be diligent in studying God's word so that we can take our axe of truth and chop at the lies that would lead us into deception. God’s truth could also be described like a hammer that shatters hard hearts.
If we claim to be followers of Christ then we will have to walk in boldness that will go against the grain of the world. Most people only want their ears tickled with the deception of following after the grand delusions of religious prophets rather than testing what they say with the standard of God's truth.
One of the signs of a false prophet is they are good at manipulating people with their words. Their seduction is in the stories that they tell to draw you in and gloss your eyes over until your purses and wallets are emptied.
"He that speaks flattery (cheleq) to his friends, even the eyes of his children shall fail." - Job 17:5 KJV
Having a hardened heart towards God is a serious issue and not to be taken lightly. Just look in the pages of Scripture of the many accounts of the fate of people who hardened their hearts towards Him.
“For anyone of the house of Israel or of the immigrants who stay in Israel who separates himself from Me, sets up his idols in his heart, puts right before his face the stumbling block of his iniquity, and thencomes to the prophet to inquire of Me for himself, I the LORD will be brought to answer him in My own person. “I will set My face against that man and make him a sign and a proverb, and I will cut him off from among My people. So you will know that I am the LORD. - Ezekiel 14:7-8
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears tickled, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance to their own desires, and will turn away their ears from the truth and will turn aside to myths. - 2 Timothy 4:3-4
Exposing the Lies of False Profits
Unfortunately, most people today are receiving ministry from false prophets that promotes idolatry in their hearts. This is a scary picture where most point to man rather than the work of the Holy Spirit through Christ.
The following Scripture references expose what false prophets are. Take heed to the following words.
- They speak flattering words and make you vain with grand delusions. (2 Timothy 4:3-4)
- Ask for money or endorsement to feed their greed and egos. (Micah 3:11)
- They can work a crowd with their dynamic speech and enticing eye glazing stories. (Isaiah 30:10)
- They twist, mangle and pervert Scripture for their own benefit. (Jeremiah 14:14)
- Lead many into error, idolatry and false hope. (Jude 1:4,11,16)
- They lack discernment, falsely prophecy and lack sound doctrine. (Ephesians 4:14)
“You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? - Matthew 7:16
The true prophet fulfills this text:
“I have many more things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come. “He will glorify Me, for He will take of Mine and will disclose it to you. “All things that the Father has are Mine; therefore I said that He takes of Mine and will disclose it to you. - John 16:12-15
The True Prophet
A true prophet does not have to strive to make a name for himself, but strives only to freely promote and point to Christ and the truth in God’s word, not something that has been made up in someone's vain imagination.
A true prophet’s anointing will either shine or be a flop. The counterfeit will always call to a draw attention to their self where they are deemed as the 'super spiritual' who have been esteemed with 'greater revelation.' What this really is about is self glory as their credential to promote their ministry and sell their religious wares. They claim to do thing in Christ's name, but rather are doing it in their own.
A true prophet first and foremost points to Christ does not seek after and focus on his own needs, but serving in the needs of others.
Many do not understand that it is a blessing to be corrected and exhorted by the truth of Scripture, because it brings us closer to the character and mind of Christ. Unfortunately, many avoid this as they are abusing Christ's name as a means to make money and do not want to bring offence to others as it would impede the flow of the monetary.
Here are some characteristics from the writing of Leonard Ravenhill that may give more insight into discerning the truth form deception.
Characteristics of a Prophet
- The prophet is God's detective seeking for a lost treasure.
- The degree of his effectiveness is determined by his measure of unpopularity.
- Compromise is not known to him.
- He has no price tags.
- He is totally otherworldly.
- He is unquestionably controversial and unpardonably hostile.
- He marches to another drummer!
- He breathes the rarefied air of inspiration.
- He is a seer who comes to lead the blind.
- He lives in the heights of God and comes into the valley with a 'thus saith the Lord.'
- He shares some of the foreknowledge of God and so is aware of impending judgment.
- His message is 'repent, be reconciled to God or else!'
- His prophecies are parried.
- His truth brings torment, but his voice is never void.
- He eats daily the bread of affliction while he ministers, but he feeds the Bread of Life to those who listen.
- He walks before men for days, but has walked before God for years.
- He is a scourge to the nation before he is scourged by the nation.
- He announces, pronounces and denounces!
- He has a heart like a volcano and his words are as fire.
- He talks to men about God.
- He carries the lamp of truth amongst heretics while he is lampooned by men.
- He faces God before he faces men, but he is self-effacing.
- He hides with God in the secret place, but he has nothing to hide in the marketplace.
- He has passion, purpose and pugnacity.
- He is ordained of God, but disdained by men.
Copyright (C) 1994 by Leonard Ravenhill, Lindale Texas
Today, we face many hard and contentious issues within the body of Christ. Some of them require confrontation sacrifice and may bring affliction as part of the God’s calling in our lives in order that His name be glorified through Christ.
Are you willing to count the cost?
It may not look pretty at the moment, but take heart because you are not alone. God will not abandon us and He will give us the strength to fight the fight.
Stand on the rock, Christ our Saviour who by his spirit will give us strength to weather the storms of deception in this day and age.
Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment. But if a revelation is made to another who is seated, the first one must keep silent. For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all may be exhorted; and the spirits of prophets are subject to prophets; for God is not a God of confusion but of peace, as in all the ekklēsiais of the saints. - 1 Corinthians 14:29-33
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