Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Do Prophets Exist Today?

From the beginning of creation to the present day, prophets---along with their female counterparts, prophetesses---have been elected by God to be the medium of His prophetic announcements to the human populace. Indeed, it is both a privilege and a burden to bear such responsibility, both in the sight of God and man (Jas. 5:10).

The duties of a prophet are manifold, entailing such things as . . .

1.) Disclosing the whereabouts of missing people and merchandise through heaven-inspired locutions (1 Sam. 10:20-23);

2.) Forecasting both the immediate and distant future by divinely-induced premonitions and precognitions (Acts 21:10-14);

3.) Augmenting decisions and destinies by Spirit-anointed intuition (1 Kgs. 22:5);

4.) Guiding and reprimanding political leaders and sovereigns through prophetic pantomime (1 Kgs. 11:28-40; 20:35-43);

5.) Preparing communities and nations for imminent cataclysmic events by divine foresight (2 Kgs. 8:1,2; Acts 11:27-30);

6.) Prosecuting moral and ethical deviants via empathy with the jurisprudence of the Lord (2 Chron. 20:35-37; 24:17-20);

And a host of other divinely bestowed abilities and requirements too numerous to mention in this brief essay.

Prophets in Ancient Israel
Nevertheless, suffice it to say that, in the Old Testament scriptures there is overwhelming evidence that the ministry of the prophet gained considerable momentum and influence soon after the inauguration of Israel as a nation (Hos. 13:10; Am. 3:7; Jer. 25:4-7).

In fact, so coveted was the spiritual authority and recognition associated with being a prophet that many charlatans arose in the land mimicking the ways of the true prophets of God (Jer. 23:22-27).

Without any shadow of doubt, such widespread imitation served (and still serves) only to verify the integral importance of the ministry of the prophet within the context of everyday life (Eph. 4:8-13 c.f. Ps. 68:18).

Prophets in the Early Church
It is believed by many (albeit, erroneously) that since the initial advent of Christ to the Earth, prophets and prophetesses are no longer necessary since (it has been argued) God now speaks to the human race through the words of His Son, Jesus Christ. This belief is based primarily upon the scripture which says, "God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son" (Heb. 1:1,2).

From this passage of Scripture, one can deduce that God truly does speak to humankind through Jesus Christ. However, this in no way means that the Messiah speaks in exclusion of the prophets. It simply means He speaks in addition to the prophets. If this were not the case, immediately after the completion of Jesus's earthly ministry, why didn't the Father simply suspend the ministry of the prophet, making it altogether obsolete? Yet many years after Christ's resurrection we find men by the names of Judas, Silas, Agabus and many others being referred to as prophets (Acts 11:27-30; 15:52; 21:10,11).

Moreover, the testimony of Scripture shows that Jesus Himself is responsible for placing these prophets in the Earth shortly after taking His place at the right hand of the Father in the heavens (Eph. 4:8-11).

Prophets in Modern Times
Is the God of creation, in this day and age, still speaking through His prophets? Emphatically, yes! For this purpose, He adjures His people to, "let the prophets speak" (1 Cor. 14:29).

Although there is little dispute concerning the existence of prophets during antiquity, there is much dispute concerning the existence of prophets in modern times. The contention is centered around a passage of Scripture which says, "For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away" (1 Cor. 13:9,10).

Many argue that the coming together of the Old and New Testament manuscripts into one volume (which we endearingly call the "Holy Bible") is the fulfillment of this prophecy of Scripture; that since "that which is perfect is come"---the infallible guide for living a godly and fruitful life, i.e. the Bible---then "that which is in part"---prophesying by the prophetic gifts of the Spirit---has been "done away."

This, many claim, makes the ministry of the prophet forever null and void. Yet, this claim is clearly contradicted two verses later by the statement, "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face" (1 Cor. 13:12). It is true that one day the ministry of the prophet will become obsolete. But notice that day will not come until we are seeing "face to face."

What exactly does that mean?

It simply means that the prophet's ministry will continue to thrive in the Earth until the second advent of the Son of Man, after which time people will be afforded the privilege of consulting Him directly "face to face." That is because Jesus Christ will be living and reigning as King of kings in Jerusalem, Israel, and people will no longer have to consult Him indirectly through the mouth of His prophets.

In spite of this, some still insist that if a person needs a specific word of guidance from the Almighty, all he or she need do is open the Bible and read it; that there, within the pages of sacred Scripture, guidance pertinent to any given situation may be found.

At The Prophetic Society we wholeheartedly agree that God does indeed speak to His people through Scripture. Nevertheless, we contend that the Bible does not, indeed, it cannot rule out the need for personal prophetic guidance. We insist upon this by virtue of the fact that, although scriptural guidance is often very specific, for the most part it is rarely particular.

The Pepsi Oracle
An actual case in point is when Jeanette---a school teacher---drove a considerable distance to come to Prophet Barber & Associates, my prophetic consultation and guidance firm. Although she had been exposed to prophetic ministry for quite some time, the concept of inquiring of the Lord through the mouth of His prophets was new to her.

When she arrived at my office for her appointment, as always I had harp music playing softly in the background. Once the consultation was under way, she told me that one of her siblings---a 43 year old gentleman whom I had never met---was in jeopardy due to rapidly deteriorating health. She conveyed how a number of medical doctors were baffled by this because they were unable to determine the source of her brother's illness.

So I asked the Lord to reveal to me the very thing that was plaguing this man's health. And immediately I heard the Spirit of the Lord say one word---"Cola."

I then said to Jeanette, "I heard the word 'cola.' Does that have any significance to you?"

As God is my witness, her eyes almost fell out of her head. Extremely animated by the healing oracle I just gave to her, Jeanette then proceeded to tell me that her brother was a cola junkie, drinking anywhere from one to two cases of Pepsi-Cola per week! In fact, she went on to tell me that, just prior to coming to see me that day, in a telephone conversation with this very same brother, he had asked her to pick up a case of Pepsi for him while she was out and about.

Of course, she was overjoyed at the Lord's answer to her brother's dilemma through the mouth of His prophet. Naturally, I rejoiced with her, charging her to tell her brother to stop drinking Pepsi immediately.

Some time later Jeanette contacted me, informing me about how mystified her brother was when she told him about my prophetic word of guidance for his life. And, praise be to God, he obeyed the prophet, stopping his illicit affair with Pepsi, cold turkey! After that, her brother's health improved markedly, so that within two month's time he was able to move about as healthily as he did before his harrowing ordeal with that toxic abomination to mankind called "Pepsi."

Overcoming B.B. Warfield
Most Christians who do not believe in the existence of prophets in the present era are not aware of the fact that their belief is not based upon what Scripture actually teaches but rather upon what they received---either directly or indirectly---from the teachings of the highly influential 19th century theologian, Benjamin Breckenridge Warfield.

Strangely enough, Warfield was very much like the Pharisees of Jesus's time, vehemently opposed to the demonstration of miracles among the people of God. In fact, Warfield was so against miracles that he devoted a considerable amount of time in an endeavor to persuade as many people as possible that God no longer works miracles as those recorded in the Bible. The Protestant churches at large (e.g. Baptists, Methodist, Presbyterians, Lutherans, Congregationalists, Episcopalians, Church of Christ, Evangelicals and many others) are still reeling from the negative impact of his teachings, especially in relation to the perpetuity of miracles and the legitimacy of the ministry of the prophet in the modern and post-modern eras.

NEWSFLASH: prophets exist today!

Now, suppose if Jeanette's pastor had been like many of today's pastors, parroting what he read B.B. Warfield say instead of what the Bible clearly teaches. Her brother would be dead today because she never would have taken the time to consult the Lord through me--a prophet---because, due to Warfield's erroneous teaching, she would not have believed in the existence of prophets.

If you believe what B.B. Warfield taught about New Testament prophets, know of a surety that you are believing a lie.

Overcoming Harold Horton
In the Pentecostal/Charismatic churches, people outright reject Warfield's teaching---and rightfully so. They believe that prophets do indeed exist today. Notwithstanding, this particular group of Christians are bound by yet another erroneous teaching about prophets, namely, that, unlike prophets of the Old Testament era, prophets of this New Testament era do not prophesy guidance. They believe that prophets of today are only used by the Spirit of God to prophesy what you already know. In other words, they teach that every prophetic word that a prophet gives you will only be confirmation (never revelation) of what God has already told you directly.

This teaching began with the early 20th century Assemblies of God theologian from Britain, Harold Horton, who once said, "Now the Old Testament prophet foretells, and often leads. The New Testament prophet foretells, but never leads." Because of Horton's eloquence, coupled with his vast knowledge of Scripture, this teaching quickly spread like wildfire throughout England and various parts of Europe, eventually crossing over the Atlantic into the Pentecostal/Charismatic churches here in the United States.

Now, notice Horton said that a New Testament prophet "never leads." But is this actually true? As we turn our attention to Scripture, witness with me a group of prophets in the city of Tyre "who said to Paul, through the Spirit, that he should not go up to Jerusalem" (Acts 21:4).

These prophets were unctioned by the Spirit of God to tell Paul to not go up to the city of Jerusalem. This was not their suggestion. Scripture says the Holy Ghost inspired them to tell Paul what not to do. That constitutes prophetic guidance!

Unfortunately, Paul did not heed the prophetic guidance given by these prophets thereby setting in motion a series of events which culminated in his premature death. Shortly before his execution, Paul, looking back over his life, regretted the fact that he did not heed the prophetic leading of the prophets from Tyre. So, in order to prevent others from making the same mistake that he did, Paul wrote in an epistle, "Despise not prophesyings." (1 Thess. 5:20).

These were prophets of the New Testament era endeavoring to lead Paul. Scripture says the Spirit of God told then to do this but Horton said a New Testament prophet "never leads." Either Horton knew something about prophetic guidance that the Holy Spirit didn't know or his point of view is grossly inaccurate.

Now, suppose if Jeanette's pastor had been like many of today's pastors, parroting what he read Harold Horton say instead of what the Bible clearly teaches. Her brother would be dead today because she never would have taken the time to consult the Lord through me---a prophet---because, due to Horton's erroneous teaching, Jeanette would not have believed that I could provide for her brother's health challenge any type of authentic prophetic guidance.

If you believe what Harold Horton taught about New Testament prophets, know of a surety that you are a believing a lie.

Overcoming Kenneth E. Hagin
Those of the Word of Faith circles take comfort in the fact that, more than most Protestant churches, including Pentecostal/Charismatic churches, they walk in an uncommon degree of understanding of the things of God. As a consequence, it is oftentimes even more difficult to break the strongholds within their minds than with most other Christians, particularly in relation to the ministry of the prophet.

Kenneth E. Hagin, the most influential minister of the Word of Faith churches, taught from the mid to the latter part of the 20th century, on into the beginning of the 21st century, that prophets in the New Testament era are not to be consulted for prophetic guidance as they were during the Old Testament era. Hagin argued that the common people in the Old Testament epochs did not have the Holy Spirit but that only the prophets did. And, as consequence, it was only natural that God's people seek divine guidance through the prophets at that time. Hagin continued his argument that, since God's people in the New Testament period have access to the Holy Spirit, that alone equips them to receive guidance directly from God thereby making guidance from prophets in this New Testament absolutely unnecessary. Hagin even takes it so far as to say that it is actually morally wrong and dangerous to seek out a prophet for guidance in this New Testament Age. But is this actually true?

Scripture teaches that, at the age of 15, David received the Holy Spirit, and that "the Spirit of the Lord came upon David from that day forward" (1 Sam. 16:13).

But from the age of 15 to the age of 70, David continued to receive and even seek out prophetic guidance from the prophets, Gad and Nathan, although he himself had the Holy Spirit (1 Sam. 22:3-5; 2 Sam. 7:1-17; 24:10-14). That's a total of 55 years of seeking and receiving guidance from God's prophets although he himself had the Holy Spirit.

If, then, as Hagin taught, receiving the Holy Spirit makes guidance from prophets both unnecessary and morally wrong, why then did he not apply this same standard to David, who was a Spirit-filled believer?

And why on various occasions did God send the prophets, Gad and Nathan, to prophesy guidance to David when He knew full well that David already had the Holy Spirit? Hagin either knew something about prophetic guidance that God Himself didn't even know or Hagin's point of view is grossly inaccurate.

Does having a home security system installed in your home somehow make you exempt from needing a police department in your city?

Does having a fire extinguisher in your home make you exempt from needing a fire department in your city?

Than neither does being the recipient of the Holy Spirit somehow make you exempt from needing prophetic guidance from a prophet.

The fact that David, after having received the Spirit of God, still needed prophetic guidance from prophets, and that the Holy Spirit inspired the prophets of Tyre to give Paul a prophetic word of guidance, is proof positive that consulting God for particular guidance through His prophets is to be an ongoing practice among God's people until the second coming of Jesus Christ (Eph. 4:11-16).

Now, suppose if Jeanette's pastor had been like many of today's pastors, parroting what he read Kenneth E. Hagin say instead of what the Bible clearly teaches. Her brother would be dead today because she never would have taken the time to consult the Lord through me---a prophet---because, due to Hagin's erroneous teaching, Jeanette would not have believed she needed any guidance from a prophet concerning her brother's ordeal since both she and her brother already had the Holy Spirit.

If you believe what Kenneth E. Hagin taught about New Testament prophets, then know of a surety that you are believing a lie.

Arnette's Mistake
Years ago, while attending a weeknight Bible study, I was introduced to a woman by the name of Arnette. When the Bible class ended in prayer, the Spirit of the Lord revealed to me that Arnette was being unfairly harangued by a particular individual on her job. Indeed, by the prophetic gift called "the word of knowledge" (1 Cor. 12:8) I was able to tell her,

1.) the gender of the person harassing her,

2.) the actual position of the person harassing her,

3.) the ethnicity of the person harassing her,

4.) the hair color of the person harassing her, and

5.) even the amount of time this individual had been harassing her.

I then proceeded to tell Arnette, by the Spirit, that she was not to leave that job because God was about to remove this person who was harassing her, and promote Arnette into this very same person's position. Arnette was visibly impacted by the supernatural nature of the things I shared with her. She admitted to the truth of it all, even confessing that she was seriously considering leaving her job because of the intensity of the harassment. Indeed, the Almighty was about to demonstrate to Arnette that "promotion cometh neither from the East, nor from the West, nor from the South. But God is the judge: He putteth down one, and setteth up another" (Ps. 75:6,7).

All of us attending the Bible class rejoiced with Arnette for the things the Lord had spoken to her, then we went home.

Almost three weeks later, I ran into Arnette as I was coming out of the downtown post office. She proceeded to tell me, quite jubilantly, that she quit the very job I told her that the Spirit of God told her not to quit. And when I asked her why she left her job after what I prophesied to her by the Spirit, she insisted that she had made the right move, and that she was much happier at her new job. Of course, I was nonplussed. I then wished her well, and we both parted ways.

See, Arnette had been tainted by teachings similar to Horton and Hagin, which teach that prophetic guidance is not a binding thing in this New Testament era. So, although she accepted everything I said to her prophetically that night at the Bible study concerning her past and present experiences on her job (i.e. by the word of knowledge), she however would not accept the guidance that I gave her about her future (i.e. by the word of wisdom).

Due to erroneous teaching, Arnette no doubt believed she was following the Word of God by rejecting the prophetic guidance I gave her. If only she really knew what the Word says about prophetic guidance because, some months after, while shopping in town, I ran into Arnette yet again. However, instead of being her usual congenial self, she was quite curt when I attempted to speak with her. And with a scowl on her face, she passed me by and kept on going.

A few weeks later, I saw a sister in Christ who knew Arnette and I voiced my concern about my abrupt encounter with Arnette just a few weeks prior. This sister then proceeded to inform me that Arnette's newfound bitterness was the consequence of her having been terminated from her new job a few months before and not being able to secure another job.

Now, think about that: God, because He is omniscient, foresaw that Arnette would be in this very predicament if she left the job she was already at. And that is precisely why He sent me---a prophet---to that Bible study a few months prior so that, through the power of prophecy, I could head off Arnette's future ordeal with unemployment before it ever occurred.

Unfortunately, many Christians, like Arnette, fail to take heed to the account in Scripture which records, "And a certain man of the sons of the prophets said unto his neighbour in the word of the Lord, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man refused to smite him. Then said he unto him, Because thou has not obeyed the voice of the Lord, behold, as soon as thou art departed from me, a lion shall slay thee. And as soon as he was departed from him, a lion found him, and slew him. Then he found another man, and said, Smite me, I pray thee. And the man smote him, so that in smiting he wounded him. So the prophet departed" (1 Kgs. 20:35-38).

Here we see a man was actually killed by a lion simply because he trivialized the importance of prophetic guidance, whereas another man continued living his life in peace because he properly honored the blessing of prophetic guidance.

Months later, because she failed to heed the career oracle I dropped into her lap by the Spirit of God, Arnette was devoured by the lion of unemployment.

Prophets do indeed exist today. And so many preventable problems in the lives of God's people would be avoided if they would simply follow the example of Jeanette (not Arnette) and ignore the erroneous teachings of Warfield, Horton and Hagin concerning the ministry of the New Testament prophet. By doing this, they would be taking the limits off of God, allowing Him to lead and guide them through green pastures and by still waters, in this day and age as He did in the days of old, through the mouth of His servants, the prophets.



It is written in the ancient Manuscript, "Come, and let us go to the seer: for he that is now called a Prophet was beforetime called a Seer" (1 Sam. 9:9).

The prophet is a premonition; an oracle; the living intuition of God.

The prophet is a sacred bridge between Heaven and Earth.

The prophet is your golden link from a mundane present to a dynamic future.

That is why, if and when you have met a true prophet of God, you cannot afford to break your divine connection with that prophet. For it is written, "Believe His prophets, so shall ye prosper" (2 Chron. 20:20).

It didn't say, "Believe His apostles, so shall ye prosper."

It didn't say, "Believe His pastors, so shall ye prosper."

It didn't say, "Believe His evangelists, so shall ye prosper."

It didn't say, "Believe His teachers, so shall ye prosper."

It didn't say, "Believe His bishops, so shall ye prosper."

It didn't even say, "Believe His first ladies, so shall ye prosper."

Yet, apostles, pastors, evangelists, teachers and bishops are constantly trying to make this scripture apply to themselves although it is clearly and exclusively talking about the ministry of the prophet! By this, they end up making the same blunder as King Uzziah, intruding into an particular office that God did not call them into (2 Chron. 26:16-23).

In a prophecy about the 5-Fold Ministry of the last days, given by the prophet, Joel, he prophesied, "they shall march every one on his ways, and they shall not break their ranks: neither shall one thrust another; they shall walk every one on his path: and when they fall upon the sword, they shall not be wounded" (Joel 2:7,8).

However, this prophecy has yet to come to pass because the present-day 5-Fold Ministry constantly thrusts one another, breaking their ranks by trying to function in another's office instead simply being satisfied with doing what God called them to do, and walking in the particular "path," that is, ministerial office which God anointed them to walk in! And if they find out that another minister fell upon the sword, that is, had some kind of lapse in his/her morals, they rejoice instead of trying to nurse that minister back to a state of good spiritual health.

How soon they have forgotten the exhortation of Scripture which says, "Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted. Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ" (Gal. 6;1,2).

For some reason, the one office out of all the 5-Fold Ministry offices that those in the other offices keep intruding into more than any other office is the office of the prophet.

God smote King Uzziah with leprosy for intruding into the priest's office. Likewise, today God is smiting various ministries all over the world with a kind of spiritual leprosy because they keep intruding into the office of prophet.

If those who walk in any of the 5-Fold offices would just be content to do what God has called them to do, then the world will rise up and take notice at the new and unprecedented manifestation of the wisdom and power of God being demonstrated through "the house of God, which is the Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the Truth" (1 Tim. 3:15).

Again, the Scripture says, "Believe His prophets, so shall ye prosper" (2 Chron. 20:20).

NEWSFLASH: your prosperity in life is connected to the ministry of the prophet!

That is because prophets and prophetesses are the stockbrokers of the Kingdom of God.

But where do prophets come from? And how did they get to be the way they are? And what is their divine purpose on Earth?

Actually, it is a question of species.

In the animal kingdom, there exist different species such as fish, fowl, feline, canine and the like.

Likewise, in the angelic kingdom, there exist various species of angels such as cherubim, seraphim, ophanim, nephilim and shedim.

Notwithstanding, although prophets and prophetesses are undoubtedly members of the human race, it is not commonly known to the contemporary mind that they are a certain kind of sui generis in their own right.

In reality, prophets and prophetesses are a unique genus of homo sapiens which the ancient Hebrews called "nevi'im" (pronounced NEH-VEE-IM).

Nevi'im are a species of men and women who were born for the sole purpose of being the living oracles of God in the Earth. That is why no one can just simply decide to be a prophet or prophetess. Indeed, he or she must be born such! For a person to up and one day decide to be a prophet would be as ludicrous as a man one day deciding that he wants to be a woman. No matter how many shots of estrogen he receives or how ever many surgeries the man goes through, God says he is still a man!

Likewise can no person simply choose to be a prophet or prophetess. He or she must be born such.

Since childhood, people always told you that you were overly sensitive. They were right. The Lord made you that way while you were still in your mother's womb so that, after being twice born (i.e. of the flesh and of the Spirit), you could easily flow with the prophetic move of the Spirit of God.

For this purpose, the Almighty said to the son of Hilkiah, "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations" (Jer. 1:5).

Although not every prophet is a "prophet unto the nations," every prophet and prophetess has been genetically prepared during the embryonic and fetal stages of development for their prophetic vocations in life.

God forms the nervous system and emotional makeup of prophets and prophetesses during the prenatal stages of life similar to the way a musician tunes the strings of a guitar or piano. The Lord does this in order to make prophets and prophetesses into "high strung" individuals, that is, extraordinarily sensitive people.

Unbeknownst to many, this hypersensitivity makes it virtually impossible for prophets and prophetesses to have what are considered "normal" relationships with other people. When they attempt this, they find themselves often reacting in a hypersensitive fashion to situations and circumstances that do not move the average person in the same way.

It would be like a tabby cat trying to run the jungle with lions, tigers, cheetahs and lynxes. Although they are all feline, tabby cats are a different kind of feline.

As observed in this classic book, The Prophets, Abraham Joshua Heschel wrote, "The prophet is a person who suffers from a profound maladjustment to the spirit of society."

Undoubtedly, it would soon open a whole new realm of scientific research for anthropologists and biologists if they knew about the reality of a separate and distinct species within the human species called "nevi'im."

Jeremiah, as a result of his prenatal development as a prophet, was so hypersensitive he spent much of his time crying, earning him the distinction "the weeping prophet."

Elijah, as a result of his prenatal development as a prophet, was so hypersensitive he was quick to call down fire from Heaven to devour those who agitated him in even the slightest way.

Elisha, as a result of his prenatal development as a prophet, was so hypersensitive he constantly lost his temper, often exploding in anger.

Jonah, as result of his prenatal development as a prophet, was so hypersensitive he sulked and pouted profusely, throwing prophetic temper tantrums both before and after his mission to the Ninevites.

And so it is with all the prophets and prophetesses of the Lord.

This prenatal gift---extraordinary sensitivity---which the Lord intended to be an asset to His prophets and prophetesses can, in truth, become their handicap, even leading to their own undoing if they do not properly adjust their domestic and social environments in a way that is conducive to their genetic predisposition.

In no way does being a part of the nevi'im make one better than others; it simply makes one different.

And the divine purpose of this difference is so that prophets and prophetesses can effectively serve their generation by the dropping of prophetic oracles.

Because of the specificity of the prophetic Word of God as opposed to the generic nature of His inscripturated Word, it seems that our nefarious foe spends his time in nothing else but that he should stop prophets and prophetesses from doing what they do best---prophesying.

The books of the Bible are the written oracles of God, whereas nevi'im are His living oracles.

Be astonished by the fact that God has made prophets and prophetesses to be the Urim and Thummim of the Church Age in which you now live; indeed the "lights" and "perfections" of this Dispensation of Grace.

For too long multitudes have gazed into the crystal ball of the psychic. This is none other than the fault of the prophets and prophetesses of the Lord. Instead of making themselves available to the needs of the people through their prophetic giftings, many of them have opted to stand on the sidelines as spectators, leaving innocent lambs to the mercy of ravenous wolves.

They spend their days prophesying fluff behind the four walls of the Church instead of displaying their prophetic wares in public for all the world to see.

It is hypocritical to see prophets and prophetesses reprimand those who consult spiritualists and psychics when they themselves will not come to the public forefront with their prophetic gifts!

The Lord doesn't grant prophetic gifts for the sake of entertainment.

Prophecy is no plaything!

All over the world there are countless people whose lives will go down in ignominious defeat if they do not receive a crystal clear, prophetic word from the Almighty.

That is why it is the responsibility and privilege of today's prophets and prophetesses to be open and available channels through which God's holy Spirit can bring particular wisdom and guidance to those in need.

Scripture can tell people what kind of individual to marry but prophets can tell them exactly who they should or should not marry.

Scripture can tell businessmen what kinds of business practices are commendable but prophet can tell those businessmen where and with whom they should or should not practice business.

Brokers can tell investors where to invest their monies but prophets can tell them with unmistakable precision when it is wise to invest and when it is wise to pull out.

Did President Ronald Reagan---a professed Christian---consult often with a psychic astrologer for guidance because he was on a mission to defy the Word of the living God? Or, being overwhelmed by the need for supra-human guidance, did he succumb to the temptation of the Adversary because of the widespread delinquency of today's prophets and prophetesses?

King David had a court prophet named Gad whom he could consult for political oracles at any time (1 Chron. 21:9-14). Should any president, monarch or prime minister ascribing to the Judeo-Christian ethic be without the same?

If the seated president of the United States of America knew he had the moral right to access divine guidance concerning the administration of this country through the mouth of God's prophets and prophetesses, the present economic recession would be turned around, virtually overnight.

On February 1, 2003, Lt. Colonel Richard D. "Rick" Husband, age 45, and Lt. Colonel Michael P. Anderson, age 43, both died in the infamous Space Shuttle Columbia explosion.

Colonel Husband left behind his wife, Evelyn, and their son and daughter while Colonel Anderson left behind his wife, Sandra, and their two daughters.

One of the saddest things about this tragedy is not only the fact that Husband and Anderson were both Spirit-filled Christians who both attended the same church (Grace Community Church of Houston, Texas) but that this church claims to believe in the reality of the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

In their Statement of Faith (which can be found on their website), Grace Community Church professes:

"We believe in the present day manifestation of all the gifts of the Holy Spirit in the Church."

That's absolutely wonderful. But just believing in the reality of the gifts of the Spirit (one of which is prophecy) is not enough. If it were, Michael P. Anderson and Rick Husband would be alive today.

You see, God's people have the moral right to consult God's prophets and prophetesses at any time, anywhere, about any major decision they're going to make with their lives, so as to be sure that they are moving in "that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God" (Rom. 12:2).

As it is written, "Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but that He revealeth His secret unto His servants the prophets" (Am. 3:7).

Indeed, the Almighty reveals secrets about the past, present and future to His bondslaves, the nevi'im.

That is because prophets and prophetesses, having been divinely equipped to stand in the intersection between Time and Eternity, have the ability to see in three tenses.

Nevi'im are the eyes of the Body of Christ! Therefore, by agency of the Spirit of God, they can inspect, prospect, retrospect and circumspect simultaneously!

Before going out to battle with the king of Moab, the kings of Israel, Judah and Edom wanted to know whether or not God considered it wise for them to do so. So they consulted with the prophet, Elisha, in order to attain the mind of God on the matter. And only after they had the green light from God to go forward did they go out and win the battle against the king of Moab (2 Kgs. 3:4-27).

Likewise, before Colonels Husband and Anderson decided to be a part of the Space Shuttle Columbia's mission into space, as children of God they had a moral right to first consult with a prophet or prophetess of the Lord so as to determine whether or not God foresaw any potential problems with Columbia's up-and-coming flight. Had they done so, they would have been warned by that prophet or prophetess not to go on that fatal flight. But being that their church was under the direct or indirect influence of Harold Horton's erroneous perspective on the ministry of the prophet, Husband and Anderson didn't know they had the moral right to consult a prophet or prophetess as to the safety of their up-and-coming mission into outer space.

The eerie thing about it all is that, when asked about how he obtained his position as commander of the Columbia, Colonel Husband said, "I think a lot of it has to do with being in the right place at the right time." Obviously, Husband's untimely death is proof positive that he definitely was not in the right place at the right time. But he could have been simply if his church would "let the prophets speak" (1 Cor. 14:29) as Scripture adjures every pastor to do, and stop minimizing the importance of the ministry of the prophet.

Weeks before going into space, the Space Shuttle Challenger accident of 1986 had to come to the minds of Husband and Anderson, even for a brief moment. And, because they were in covenant with the Father through their relationship with Jesus Christ, they had a moral right to consult a prophet or prophetess of the Lord as to whether or not God foresaw anything similar happening to the up-and-coming flight of the Space Shuttle Columbia.

Although the Space Shuttle Columbia had previously flown 27 flights, Almighty God, by His foreknowledge, knew that---while returning from space on its 28th flight---Columbia was going to disintegrate in mid-air upon its reentry into the Earth's atmosphere, killing Husband, Anderson and the rest of the seven crew members on board.

Of course, the Father wanted to forewarn them about the disaster but He could not simply because Husband and Anderson (due to their ignorance of their moral right to access God's foreknowledge through prophetic consultation) made no consultation with any of the Lord's prophets.

Grace Community Church even has what they call a "School of Leadership Development" where they train men and women to operate in Bible teaching, evangelism and pastoral care. Yet they provide no training for men and women to operate in the prophetic. If they did, it is highly likely that Michael P. Anderson and Rick Husband---two precious followers of Jesus Christ---would be alive today.

Indeed, in the Day of Accountability the Lord will blame these two astronauts' pastor for their premature death!

And why is that?

"For the priest's lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at His mouth: for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts" (Mal. 2:7).

A pastor, by divine design, is the presiding priest of his local church. Wherefore, it is imperative that he be full of the knowledge of God.

And why is that?

Because it is written, "For I have not shunned to declare unto you all the counsel of God" (Acts 20:27).

It is a pastor's responsibility to keep His church current with "all the counsel of God," not just bits and pieces of it. This is so that the fullness of God's blessings can operate at that local house. If a pastor is not doing this, he is in delinquency of his God-given mandate in life.

For this purpose, the son of Buzi thundered, "Thus saith the Lord God unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks?" (Ezek. 34:2)!

Yes, it is many of today's pastors who are the number one hindrance to the rise and demonstration of the fullness of the ministry of the prophet!

That is why, if you are divinely called to the office of prophet or prophetess, I ask you:

Do the sands of time find you, at this moment, entrapped "in the fell clutch of circumstance," immobilized in a sort of prophetic gridlock because of pastoral rubbernecking? Then shout at everyone of those passersby, one by one, with true Petrine disdain, "Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God" (Acts 8:21)!

Disregard the myriad of sanctimonious platitudes which they belch and flatulate in the name of "maintaining a balance" and "protecting the flock." They lie! Truth be told, they envy the prophetic mantle upon you, given you by the Father, for it is your "coat of many colours" (Gen. 37:3).

Pay attention and you'll readily recognize that hardly a one of these pastors (so-called) seem content to "abide in the same calling wherein he was called" (1 Cor. 7:20). That is why you constantly see them trying to silence the voices of God's prophets all the while endeavoring to act the role of a prophet themselves, constantly giving out over-generalized and sophomoric "prophecies."

They are more concerned with preventing you from outshining them with the luster of your prophetic giftings than they are with joining together with you (as the Lord would have it) in actuating the redemption of the human species!

Indeed, many of today's pastors have become extraordinarily adept at hiding their controlling tendencies under the outward veneer of a humble piety. Notwithstanding, like Diotrephes of old, you will often find them behind the scenes "prating against us with malicious words" (3 Jn. 9, 10).

Ignore, then, these unprincipled opportunists and don your coat of many colors with dignity and authority for, unlike Joseph, there is no pit for them to throw you into!

At the moment of conception, you were inculcated into a magnificent succession of history's greatest mystics. Then, some time after your entrance into this world, at a moment deemed appropriate to Providence, you were infused with the Spirit of the living God, thus beginning an epic adventure in prophethood.

What, then, pray tell, could possibly distract you from abandoning yourself to so great an honor?

You are not a "Madea" or a "Ragin' Cajun." Be it far from you! The salvation of the human species is far too grave a thing for you to be engaged in such juvenile behavior.

You are God's prophet, God's prophetess---a redeemer, a benefactor, indeed a savior of sorts, clothed upon with the same mantle of power that long ago parted the waters of Jordan hither and thither, and animated the Tishbite to inaugurate the ultimate overthrow of the Omrite dynasty!

Wherefore you march to the sound of a different drummer!

Stop kowtowing to spiritual narcissists who open churches (so-called), not because they genuinely care anything about Kingdom values or the eternal themes of righteousness and redemption, but in order to make a name for themselves!

It is high time for you to buckle down, in the Spirit, and (along with other nevi'im) take upon yourself the regeneration of the world!

So nevermind this, that and the other! Simply step back, take a deep breath, pause for a moment, then with all thy might prophesy to the four winds of Eternity until humanity's blighted condition gives way to the genesis of "a new Earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness" (2 Pet. 2:13).



To date, the prophet, Moses, had one of the greatest prophetic ministries the world has every known, second only to Jesus Christ. Wherefore, if anyone should know about the logistics of the nature and operation of prophecy, Moses undoubtedly would.

And here is what the Almighty inspired him to record about prophetic predictions:

"And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the Lord hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the Name of the Lord, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously" (Deut. 18:21,22).

Mose emphatically stated that a prophet's prediction failing to come to pass is clearly indicative of a word which the Lord "hath not spoken."

Whence, then, this modern day tendency to blame failed predictions on those who do not "war" with their prophecies?

Moses insisted that all predictive prophecy---personal or otherwise---is unconditional.

This truth is accentuated by the fact that predictive prophecy is disclosure of the future not advice for the future. Consequently, the actions of an individual cannot determine the outcome of an event already foreseen and affirmed by God.

For example, if the Lord foresees that a particular individual will not run for the presidential election ten years from now, would He then inspire a prophet or prophetess to predict that that individual will run for election in ten years?

Of course not.

But and if God does indeed tell a prophet or prophetess to prophesy that a certain individual will run for election ten years from now, it is because---by His foreknowledge---the Lord has already foreseen that particular individual running for election.

According to Scripture failed predictions have absolutely nothing to do with a person not "warring" with his/her prophecy (as is commonly believed in most prophetic circles today). It has everything to do with a prophet or prophetess giving forth false prophecy!

Presumptuous Prophets
Perish the thought that false prophecy can only come from false prophets, for even true prophets of the Lord, by being what Moses calls "presumptuous," can give forth false prophecy.

Presumptuous is synonymous to the word "overconfident."

True prophets and prophetesses often blunder and give forth false prophecy by being presumptuous. That is, they become overconfident in their ability to speak an accurate word of prophecy without having first prepared themselves to prophesy.

Yes, that is correct---without having first prepared themselves.

I've seen many prophets and prophetesses blunder in this fashion.

Just as a surgeon cannot walk off the street directly into an operating room and begin performing surgery but must first prepare himself to operate, so, too, a prophet cannot just begin prophesying without having first prepared himself to prophesy.

If a surgeon performs surgery without first properly preparing for the operation (i.e. by washing his hands, putting on a sterile mask and scrubs, etc.), he naturally runs the risk of infecting the patient with germs and bacteria. Perhaps, even with a life-threatening virus.

Likewise, if a prophet attempts to prophesy without first properly preparing himself to drop that oracle, he runs the risk of infecting people with false prophecy.

Although the giving forth of false prophecy is taken lightly in many prophetic circles today, it remains a grave thing in the sight of the Lord. I was physically present at that fearful gathering when Bishop Kirby Clements (not the bombastic, Kim Clement), under a mighty and sobering anointing, denounced to a company of prophets and prophetesses that one can actually die prematurely by uttering prophecies in an irreverent and haphazard manner. To his words the Scriptures agree, recording the death of the prophet of God, Hananiah, for presumptuously proclaiming a false prophetic word to the people of Israel and Judah (Jer. 28:1-17).

Yet in spite of these warnings, it is painfully evident that irresponsible prophesying is actually on the rise throughout the Church.

Pay For The Damages
If a doctor's prescription is inaccurate he has committed medical malpractice and must, in some manner, pay for the damages.

Likewise, when a prophet's prediction is inaccurate he has committed prophetic malpractice and, if he is ethical, he will---in some manner---not only apologize to the victim of his malpractice, but also seek to make amends for the damage.

If, perchance, he is unable to locate that individual or compensate for the resultant damage, he must then, with all due humility, sincerely ask God to forgive his presumptuousness, then take the necessary steps to avoid a repeat occurrence.

At first, such an high and exacting standard may seem a bit intimidating but only to juvenile prophets because it exposes their spiritual immaturity, and to false prophets because it checkmates their deceitful intentions.

Mature prophets (possessed as they are with a strong spirit of justice) celebrate integrity.

Therefore, if today's prophets and prophetesses would simply adhere to the ethical guidelines that preclude prophetic malpractice, the line of demarcation between true and false prophets would become more distinct and pronounced for all to see. As proven by the ministries of the prophets of ancient Israel, 100% prophetic accuracy is both essential and attainable for all those called to the prophetic office.

This reminds me of an incident that occurred in the ministry of a particular prophet. One evening while holding a revival meeting at a certain church, he stood up to prophesy but could not tap into the prophetic flow of the Spirit. At that very moment he panicked, knowing within himself that he could not prophesy that evening simply because he had not adequately prepared himself earlier in the day. So instead of performing in the flesh in order to impress the people or to get an offering that night (like certain prophets and prophetesses would have done), he immediately shut down his meetings and returned home to repent with godly contrition. He was deeply sorrowful before the Lord for allowing himself to be distracted by causal fellowship throughout the day instead of remaining sequestered in his hotel room, spending the preparatory time necessary for giving forth accurate prophecy. That's integrity!

Achieving Devekut
According to Scripture, in order to ensure the accuracy of their prophecies, prophets and prophetesses must enter a state of consciousness called devekut in the Hebrew tongue (i.e. spiritual ecstasy through intimate communion with God) before prophesying.

Certain spiritual disciplines were used by the ancient prophets in order to achieve devekut. These disciplines are clearly revealed in Scripture, and the individual who attempts to prophesy without having first exercised these prophetic disciplines is being presumptuous about his/her prophetic abilities, engendering the risk of doing great harm to the people of God through false prophecy.

Woe be to the prophet who seeks to impress others by pretending he can accurately prophesy---any time, anywhere---by the Spirit of God without first having to utilize the prophetic disciplines of Scripture to do so!

Prophets and prophetesses must be mature and responsible people, and cease blaming those to whom they prophesy for not warring with their predictions if and when those prophecies fail to come to pass. This form of blameshifting is characteristic of juvenile prophets who seek to make light of their superficiality, and of false prophets who endeavor to conceal their artificiality.

I have seen people overjoyed and completely elated about bright and promising prophecies they received concerning their future, only to see these same people years later, downcast and dejected, morbidly blaming themselves for failing to somehow properly "war" with those prophecies which failed to come to pass.

However, their depression was grossly unfounded simply because they believed the lie that failed predictions was their fault. If only they knew to lay the blame squarely where God lays it---upon the presumptuous prophets and prophetesses who are guilty of committing the unthinkable act of prophetic malpractice!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Prophet William Marrion Branham

Prophetic Savior

At the moment of conception, you were inculcated into a magnificent succession of history's greatest mystics. Then, some time after your entrance into this world, at a moment deemed appropriate to Providence, you were infused with the Spirit of the living God, thus beginning an epic adventure in prophethood.

What, then, pray tell could possibly distract you from abandoning yourself to so great an honor? You are God's prophet, God's prophetess---wherefore you march to the sound of a different drummer!

So never mind this, that and the other. Simply step back, take a deep breath, pause for a moment, then with all thy might prophesy to the four winds of eternity until humanity's blighted condition gives way to the genesis of "a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness" (2 Peter 2:13).