Graceful Perseverance: False Prophets - 02/24
Welcome to this week’s blog. I am diving deeply into the meaning of “False Prophets” this week. What is the difference between a false prophet and a true prophet? And, what does the Bible say about false prophets? How do we identify a false prophet? How do we protect ourselves from being led by false prophet preaching and teachings?
What is the difference between a false prophet vs. a true prophet? In religion, a false prophet is someone who believes they have the gift of entitlement or the gift of divination and they use that gift for idol acknowledgement and superior advances. Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. – 1 John 4:1. Many false prophets speak
from the world and the world listens. They speak and worship from a revised version of the Bible and from their own doctrine. This practice is an exact contradiction of God’s word, the Holy Bible, and the commands God has laid out for all generations. False prophets have misled millions in the world for their own personal gain so that we would worship them as our idols, higher than the one and only true God. Thus, says the Lord of hosts: Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you, filling you with vain hopes. They speak visions of their own minds, not from the mouth of the Lord. – Jeremiah 23:16.
False prophesy is a practice of lies, deceit, dishonesty and false perceptions that most will never recognize in their lifetime. Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. – Matthew 7:15.
A true prophet is someone who is considered to preach and teach directly from the Word of God. The Bible, or God’s commands, is a true prophet’s source of truth. Who are the prophets in the bible? There are four major prophets and 12 minor prophets in the Holy Bible. The four major prophets are Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Daniel. The 12 prophets are Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi.
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God.
This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already. Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. They are from the world; therefore, they speak from the world, and the world listens to them. . .1 John 4:1-6.
What does the Bible say about false prophets? The Bible clearly outlines for us – Do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits. This means that we should not believe everything we hear just because some worldly authority says it is a message that was inspired by God.
And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray. – Matthew 24:4-5. There are several ways to test preachers and teachers to see if their messages are truly from the Lord. You must open your Bible and check to see if their message or sermon matches what God says in the Bible. Check their lifestyles and the fruit of their ministry. What do they believe about Christ? Do they preach and teach that Jesus is both divine and human? There are many false prophets in the world today who claim to be speaking for God. Check and test them to see if they truly are indeed speaking God’s truth, the Holy Bible.
But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. – 2 Peter 2:1.
How do we identify a false prophet? False prophets or teachers are popular in the world because, like the false prophets of the Old Testament, they tell people what they want to hear. In 1 John, Chapter 4, he warns Christians who faithfully teach God’s Word that they will not win any admiration contests in this world. People do not want to be held accountable for their sins.
They do not want to listen to God’s commands that they must change their conduct and lifestyle in order to have an eternal life in heaven. A false prophet is always more accepted by non-Christians. Here are a few other signs of a false prophet. Their endeavor is to be recognized as the highest among men. False prophets are habitually dishonest. Another symbol is money. Money (greed) is very much a governing factor in the lives of false prophets. A false prophet is also committed to a great rebellion against God and all Christians.
John 8:4 says this about false prophets - You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father's desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, and has nothing to do with the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies. We can identify a false prophet by the fruits of their ministry. The book of 2 Peter writes about false prophets. And in their greed, they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep. – 2 Peter 2:3.
How do we protect ourselves from being led by false prophet preaching and teachings? For me, whether I am listening to a sermon in church, reading a book, or watching a scholar’s religious video, I test out every piece of information I read or hear against God’s Word. If the communications are always exalting the word of God and providing supporting scripture throughout the message, then I can be confident they are true prophets practicing the fruits of their ministry.
You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. They are from the world, and therefore speak from the viewpoint of the world, and the world listens to them. We are from God, and whoever know God listens to us; but whoever is not from God does not listen to us. This is how we recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood. – 1 John 4:4-6.
Brothers and sisters, it is imperative that we all understand the difference between false and true prophets. I am convinced that we can achieve this through our faith and an equal standing with our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is through the knowledge and the following of God’s Word that we have been blessed as partakers of a divine nature, and gifted with all things that pertain to a godly life.
Blessings until next week, Debra Pauli Unstoppable Believer