Tag: false prophet

Beware of ‘feel-good’ prophesies!

Scripture reading for August 11th: Jeremiah 26-29

It takes discernment to hear the voice of God.  What sounds good is not always truth and only the truth will make us free!  In Jeremiah 28 we have a story of two prophets speaking to God’s people.  One had a message of victory and hope, and the other a message of judgment and captivity.  One message was true and the other was false.   After the messages were given, the people had to decide which one to believe.

In the fifth month of the fourth year of King Zedekiah, all the people were gathered with the priests in the temple.  Hananiah, a prophet from Gibeon spoke to Jeremiah in front of all the people.   Jeremiah had been wearing a wooden yoke around his neck for a long time telling the people of their coming captivity.   Hananiah spoke that within two  years, God would remove the yoke of the Babylonians and Judah would be free.  To illustrate that message, he took the yoke off Jeremiah and broke it in front of the people.  (Jeremiah 28:1-4,10-11)

Jeremiah responded initially with an ‘amen’ to the message.  But he added some prophetic insight.  Most prophets are sent to warn of coming disaster and turn the people back to God.  This prophecy of peace will only be from the Lord if it actually happens.  (Jeremiah 28:6-9)

Jeremiah went his way and then the Lord spoke to him to go back with a word for Hananiah.  He was to tell Hananiah that he was not sent by the Lord and that his prophecy was not true.  God was going to remove the wooden yoke and place an iron yoke on his rebellious people.  His final word was that Hananiah would die because he preached rebellion against the Lord.

How would you decide which was true?  As we finish reading, the truth becomes apparent.  In the seventh month, three months later, Hananiah died!  God’s word is always validated because it comes to pass!  Please take time today to thank God for His word and the blessing of knowing the truth.  Ask Him for discernment in these last days to keep you from being deceived by messages that simply make you feel good but are not of God!

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The Lake of Fire!

Scripture reading for December 29th: Revelation 20:1-15

Not all are part of the heavenly army of the King of Kings.   The first to be dealt with was the dragon, Satan.  He was bound by a great chain and thrown into the Abyss to keep him from deceiving the nations.  The set time was a thousand years or what we would call a millennium.  (Revelation 20:1-3)

Next John witnessed a resurrection of the souls who had been beheaded for their testimony of Jesus.  These souls came to life and were given authority to judge on the earth and reign with Christ for a thousand years.  ” (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) This is the first resurrection.  Blessed and holy are those who have part in the first resurrection.  The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.” (Revelation 20:5-6)   This is the fifth ‘blessed’ statement of Revelation.  These martyrs are now rewarded with rulership with Christ on the earth for his thousand-year reign.

The ‘second death’ is a term defined in this chapter for John.  At the end of the thousand years, the devil is released for a short time.  He goes out and deceives the nations again and the gathers them for battle.  Fire comes from heaven and devours those who are deceived and the devil is thrown into the lake of fire along with the beast (Antichrist) and false prophet.   This lake of fire and burning sulfur is the ‘second death’.  (Revelation 20:14)  This lake of fire has been long prepared for the devil and his angels who rebelled against God.

However, there will be multitudes of people who will also go to this horrible place of  burning sulfur.  John saw a great white throne and Christ as judge.  Death and Hades were opened and a second resurrection company of those who had died in their sins were brought before the Judge.  Books were opened that held the record of their evil deeds and sins.  Another book, the Book of Life, was examined to find their names.  “If anyone’s name was not found written in the Book of Life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:15)  Each person must answer personally to God!  Is your name in His Book of Life?

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“Feel-good” messages can be deceptive!

Scripture reading for August 9th: Jeremiah 26-29

It takes discernment to hear the voice of God.  What sounds good is not always truth and only truth will make us free!  In Jeremiah 28 we have a story that always makes me stop and consider what I might have done as I listened to these two prophets share.  One had a message of victory and hope, and the other a message of judgment and captivity.  One message was true and the other was false.  God allowed the contest to take place in the temple of the Lord in front of the priests and all the people.  After the messages were given, the people had to decide which one to believe.  Were they to prepare for captivity or deliverance?

In the fifth month of the fourth year of King Zedekiah, all the people were gathered with the priests in the temple.  Hananiah, a prophet from Gibeon spoke to Jeremiah in front of all the people. Jeremiah had been wearing a wooden yoke around his neck for a long time telling the people of their coming captivity.   Hananiah spoke that within two  years, God would remove the yoke of the Babylonians and Judah would be free.  To illustrate that message, he took the yoke off Jeremiah and broke it in front of the people.  (Jeremiah 28:1-4,10-11)

Jeremiah responded initially with an ‘amen’ to the message.  But he added some prophetic insight.  Most prophets are sent to warn of coming disaster and turn the people back to God.  This prophecy of peace will only be from the Lord if it actually happened.  (Jeremiah 28:6-9)

Jeremiah went his way and then the Lord spoke to him to go back with a word for Hananiah.  He was to tell Hananiah that he was not sent by the Lord and that his prophecy was not true.  God was going to remove the wooden yoke and place an iron yoke on his rebellious people.  Hananiah would die because he preached rebellion against the Lord!

How would you decide which was true?  In time,  the truth became apparent.  In the seventh month, three months later, Hananiah died!  Please take time today to thank God for His word and the blessing of knowing the truth.  Ask Him for  discernment in these last days that you will not be deceived by messages that simply make you feel good but are not of God!

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The Remedy for Snake-bite!

Scripture reading for February 17th: Numbers 21-25

Complaining can be deadly!  The Bible teaches that there is power in our words and what comes out of our mouth has roots in our heart.  (Matthew 12:34-35)   Faith is something that we believe in our heart and confess with our mouth.  The object of true biblical faith must be God and His word, not our fears or a lie.  The Israelites had a lot to learn.

“They traveled from Mount Hor along the route to the Red Sea, to go around Edom.   But the people grew impatient on the way; they spoke against God and against Moses, and said, “Why have you brought us up out of Egypt to die in the desert?  There is no bread!  There is no water!  And we detest this miserable food!”” (Numbers 21:4-5)

Sin is deeply ingrained in our hearts.  Even this group of people who had seen many miracles and daily experienced the miraculous supply of manna still had sin in their hearts.   The cloud of Glory and Fire of God at night did not keep them from complaining.  The earth opening and swallowing some who complained alive did not seem to have an effect.  They wanted what they wanted, when they wanted it, and would not be happy until they got it!

God did answer their complaints about Him and Moses by sending some poisonous snakes to bite them.  When the complainers began to die because of the bites, they cried out to Moses for help.  It is interesting that leaders are blamed for perceived troubles, but when the consequences of sin do begin to come, then the same complainers want prayer and begin to confess sin.  (Numbers 21:6-7)

Moses was given a strange remedy for the snake bites by God.  (Numbers 21:8-9)  He was to make a bronze snake and put it on top of a pole for the people to look at.  Anyone who was bitten could look with faith and live!  Jesus Christ used this verse from Scripture to describe His own death on the cross for the whole world.  “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in Him may have eternal life. For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:14-16)

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Truth? Or consequences?

Scripture reading for August 11th: Jeremiah 26-29

It takes discernment to hear the voice of God.  What sounds good is not always truth and only the truth will make us free!  In Jeremiah 28 we have a story that always makes me stop and consider what I might have done as I listened to these two prophets debate one another.  One had a message of victory and hope, and the other a message of judgment and captivity.  One message was true and the other was false.  God allowed the contest to take place in the temple of the Lord in front of the priests and all the people.  After the messages were given, the people had to decide which one to believe.  Were they to prepare for captivity or deliverance?  Was the message of peace and restoration truth or was the message of judgment and a yoke true?  I know which I would have wanted to believe!

In the fifth month of the fourth year of King Zedekiah, all the people were gathered with the priests in the temple.  Hananiah, a prophet from Gibeon spoke to Jeremiah in front of all the people. Jeremiah had been wearing a wooden yoke around his neck for a long time telling the people of their coming captivity.   Hananiah spoke that within two  years, God would remove the yoke of the Babylonians and Judah would be free.  To illustrate that message, he took the yoke off Jeremiah and broke it in front of the people.  (Jeremiah 28:1-4,10-11)

Jeremiah responded initially with an ‘amen’ to the message.  But he added some prophetic insight.  Most prophets are sent to warn of coming disaster and turn the people back to God.  This prophecy of peace will only be from the Lord if it actually happens.  (Jeremiah 28:6-9)

Jeremiah went his way and then the Lord spoke to him to go back with a word for Hananiah.  He was to tell Hananiah that he was not sent by the Lord and that his prophecy was not true.  God was going to remove the wooden yoke and place an iron yoke on his rebellious people.  His final word was that Hananiah would die because he preached rebellion against the Lord.

Wow, what would you have done?  Who would you want to believe?  Wouldn’t it have been tempting to hate Jeremiah and his message?  How would you decide which was true?  As we finish reading, the truth becomes apparent.  In the seventh month, three months later, Hananiah died!  God’s word is always validated because it comes to pass!  It took three months of waiting to know, but the truth became evident!  Please take time today to thank God for His word and the blessing of knowing the truth.  Ask Him for  discernment in these last days that you will not be deceived by messages that simply make you feel good but are not of God!

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Sunday Rest and Reflection–Baalam

Greetings! Today is another day of rest and reflection about what God has been saying to us.  Have you enjoyed Numbers?  What have you learned about Jesus Christ through this book?  Do you sense God speaking to you about Christ as you read the stories about Moses and the people of God as they learn to walk with God in their midst?

A story I did not write on comes to mind today.  It’s the story of Balaam.  Balaam was a prophet for hire who was hired by Balak, King of the Moabites.  Balak was afraid of the Israelites and had heard the reports of how they had completely destroyed Sihon and Og, two other kings that opposed them.  God had given them this victory and led them in this conquest.  Balak was trying to get advantage the only way he knew how.  He sent a delegation to hire Balaam to come and curse the Israelites.  Balaam, to his credit, sought God as to what he should do.  God told him not to go and not to curse Israel. (Numbers 22:12)

A short time later, Balak sent more distinguished men and more money to try and entice Balaam to come and curse the Israelites.  Balaam was tempted, but he sought God again on this matter.  Money and men have a way of clouding God’s instructions.  God told him to go, but do only what He instructed him.  This led to the incident where Balaam’s donkey talked to him and warned him about the Angel of the Lord who was waiting on the way to kill him!  God’s mercy and justice are evident here in this tension.

Balaam goes to curse the Israelites and as he stands to act, a spirit of prophesy comes on him.  Each time, he blesses God’s people instead.  These blessings speak of Jesus Christ and God’s desire to bless his people.  Numbers 23:6-10 records the first blessing and verses 18-24 the second blessing.  God has blessed his people, who can curse them?  When God speaks a promise, no one can change it by sorcery!  (Numbers 23:20,23)

The final prophesy of Balaam is recorded in Numbers 25: 14-24.  In this prophesy, Balaam warns Balak of what the Israelites would do to his people in the days to come.  He sees a vision of the Almighty.  This vision is of a star coming out of Jacob and a scepter out of Israel.  It was not now and not near, but would surely come.  He would crush the head of Moab and conquer Edom.  This ruler is Jesus Christ, the star out of Jacob and the one who holds the ruler’s septer!  Jesus would crush the head of the serpent as prophesied in Genesis 3:15!

The tradgedy of Balaam is what he did later.  He evidently figured out a way to help out Balak.  He told them to send in the women and seduce the Israelites and get them into idolatry.  That would bring a curse from God on the Israelites as a consequence of their own sins. (Numbers 31:15-16)  Balaam was a false prophet who met a tragic end! (Numbers 31:8) We must be on our guard!  Our enemy Satan is always trying to seduce us! (Revelation 2:14-16)

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