All of a sudden, it seems, we are being deluged with the words of prophets - AND prophetess's.
I have to wonder why and I have come to this conclusion. If you scan as many news sites as I do and are as interested in the future as I am, I have to believe you have probably noticed the same phenomenon. The question has to be, are they serious or just getting paid well for their thoughts?
Before examining some of the thoughts being expressed by these folks, I went to the dictionary first, to examine its definition. The best home dictionary I have ever found, the Encarta, a world English dictionary is sitting next to me. It says: "Someone who interprets divine will" and the definition is applicable to both sexes. A further reference names Muhammad Muhammad, the founder of Islam and Joseph Smith, the man who established the founding the Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints. That Church is still headed by modern day prophets, The Bible, of course, is loaded with the prophetic utterances of those who our history professors has proved to be, actually, prophets.
I had attended church for decades before I ever heard of the word being used among my contemporaries. I was so intrigued, I accepted a gathering of modern day prophets, hoping to learn something.. That was in the late 70's and I came away, deeply disappointed as I heard nothing that could not be traced to the fears or expectations of contemporary columnists,
So, I must admit. Aside from those who have followed Joseph Smith - I must acknowledge that I am a member of the church and those I have heard from them recently, are merely referring to the passages in scripture regarding the lives of members, primarily. There are no "gloom and doom" utterances that I can recall, only thoughtful recommendations for the faithful to follow.
Let us now consider, some vthe "prophesies" we hear being offered by these modern day prophets or prophetess's. Lifetime, the TV production, has four of the latter ilk on their schedule. Belinda Scott, a "major" prophetess, predicts child births and specializes in the in blessing the wombs of barren women. The others are touted to be"Queens of the Church" and each has a different style and their own special way of delivering God's message. All are "united" in their love of the Lord, the producers say. Belinda has a protege who grew up as a Muslim who had never seen a woman in the pulpit and acknowledges that she will have "challenges".
There is another - Linda Roark whose "specialty" is delivering people from the street and bringing them to God. Oh, I would love to meet her. I spent two and half years working directly with"street" people and two years on the staff of a Rescue Mission. I have seen dozens of such prophets and only a couple of prophetesses, but they had no real Biblical knowledge and you can always trace the "conversion" to the fact the "renewed" one now had a place to sleep and a few meals to enjoy as a result. Move on to the next town and you are likely to meet the very same people, kneeling before the "Man (or woman) of God" in search of "deliverance" - aka, something to feed their bellies. I used to be very concerned about such people "using " God and the Bible, but then I also used to attend churches where the same process was part of the plan.
Charisma magazine recently asked the question, "Where is America in Bible prophesy?' I had to read it as my mind had not yet been cleared of the sights I have just mentioned. They start with their claim, "America is the greatest crisis it has ever been in". I hear that a lot these days, but ask all of those who will listen, were you there in 1929 when I was born and 60 days later, men were jumping out of office windows to their death because of the great "Stock Market crises" Were you there on December 7, 1941 when we became a party to World War II and lost thousands of our young men defending the rights we have to talk nonsense, if we so please. I wish they had been there when I overheard an Air Force commander - during the Korean war, order his pilots to strafe civilians because some were known to be carrying bombs to kill those whose only purpose was to get them out of harms way. Great crisis. Let me ask the author of that quote, "Would you care to let us know your wages, compared to your fathers at the same age.?"
We have problems, yes we do, but nothing like those faced up to by previous generations. They faced insecurity because some prophesied that Russia was willing to engage us in a nuclear war.
Greatest crisis? Please do not suggest that in the name of God. We don't "understand" the present dangers.? Yes, we do, proven by the fact that little more than a third of our eligible voters even vote on election day. "We, the people..." have but one essential obligation to our nation and that is to reflect our voice on election day, but when we are asked to believe political news releases rather than the heart felt conviction of those who pledge their lives to represent us, we obviously no longer want to get into that game. We have other interests.
I would agree with the second claim, that there is a LONG list of of sins committed by the church and our nation. Those responsible appear to ignore the message that Jesus sent that caused me almost to convulse, realizing I did not really understand His words, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand". They brought me to my knees and that will be forty years ago, next week. They still are with me. Especially in my times of weakness. I pray that they will reverberate in the hearts of all who dare to represent us. It is no easy task, we know that. What we do not understand it their laying the blame on others. Yesterday, as I was writing and praying as I reflected on the words I had used, He reminded me that we all have mirrors. We seem to have forgotten how to use them, effectively.
Now I note their writer had upped the ante. Earlier it was - the depth and danger, now it is our peril.
He or she believes that the fact that we are - in their opinion, ignoring the prophetic timeline and I am hear to remind then - and everyone who lives, we are to live - believing ..."the day of the Lord will come just like a thief in the night."
Are you asking us to believe in people we do not even know for certain that their readers exist, compared to the God who rescued us from the pits we had dug for ourselves?
It does not matter when Jesus saved the soul who now has a pen in his or her hand. It does not matter what supernatural vision they believed was from God, except of course that it caused them to repent - as God did for me forty years ago.
And now, we come to the bottom line, the author of those words is a prophetic expert. Well, since I have experienced the presence of God in my life, many times, it was never for me to "go preach" as I have often asked Him to empower me. It was always, "Follow me,"
In doing do, I believe I am called to help the next person I meet - as I am prompted by God and if the term help is not applicable, I know that I am directed to pray for them.
Perhaps, if we would all follow Him and love others, rather than fear some others, there would be no need for the gift of prophesy in the age in which we are privileged to live.