There have been many prophets and prophetesses of God, look in the Scripture and you will find a list of them. Abraham (Genesis 20:7), Miriam (Exodus 15:20), Moses (Deuteronomy34:10), Deborah (Judges 4:4), Samuel (1 Samuel 3:20), John the Baptist (Matthew 11:9; Luke 1:76) Yeshua (Jesus) (Deuteronomy 18:15-18; Matthew 15:37; John 6:14). There were others, such as David, Nathan, Ahijah, Jehu, Elijah, and Elisha. We have the books of the Prophets: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, …Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi.
But what about today; are there true prophets of God out there? If so how can we tell?
Remember, one gift of the Spirit is prophecy. There have been prophets since the resurrection of our Messiah. Prophecy is for the church today.
1 Corinthians 12:28 And God has appointed in the church, first apostles, second prophets, third teachers… (NAS unless specified)
What are the primary responsibilities of God’s prophets?
Jeremiah 35:15 "Also I have sent to you all My servants the prophets, sending them again and again, saying: ‘Turn now every man from his evil way and amend your deeds, and do not go after other gods to worship them. Then you will dwell in the land which I have given to you and to your forefathers... Acts 15:32 Now Judas and Silas, themselves being prophets also, exhorted and strengthened the brethren with many words. (NKJV)
Scripture warns about false prophets, however we can identify them by applying the message of a true prophet to any proclaiming to be a prophet. Here is a clue in identifying false prophets, Lamentations 2:14 Your prophets have seen for you False and foolish visions; And they have not exposed your iniquity So as to restore you from captivity, But they have seen for you false and misleading oracles.
We have these sure promises from YHVH’s ( the LORD’s) Word for today:
Amos 3:7 Surely the Lord GOD does nothing unless He reveals His secret counsel To His servants the prophets.
Malachi 4:5 "Behold, I am going to send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and terrible day of the LORD.
Somewhere out there are prophets of God showing us our sins, calling us to repentance. They are encouraging us that we might be freed from the bondage of sin so that we might enter into life and the soon coming Kingdom of God.
Can we trust what has been written by the past prophets?
Matthew 5:17 "Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill."
We can. Their words stand sure, witnessing about Messiah, and His loving kindness; giving us a sure word of prophecy.
Acts 7:52 "Which one of the prophets did your fathers not persecute? They killed those who had previously announced the coming of the Righteous One…"
Acts 10:43 "Of Him all the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins."
Paul, the one who told the Church about the gift of prophecy, says to us:
1 Thessalonians 5:20 "do not despise prophetic utterances."
In light of the recent worldwide calamities, man-made and natural, should we be asking, "Is this the hand of God?" Is He trying to get our attention? If so what should we do?
Here are some recent writers that may help us make sense of the calamities we are experiencing both in our lives and the lives of others world-wide.
"What is the Lord telling us through natural disaster? The answer is found in Christ's words uttered in the face of the tragedy that killed 18 persons when the tower in Siloam fell upon them: "Unless you repent you will all likewise perish" (Luke 13:5). Christ did not spend His time arguing about who was to be blamed for the tragedy. Instead, He reminded His listeners that tragedies are a wake up call to repent.
" The present intensification of natural and man-made disasters must be seen as clear signs of God's final warning to mankind of the impending divine judgment. These disasters tell us that, as in the experience of ancient nations, God will not allow human rebellion and wickedness to continue much longer (Gen 15:16). Soon Christ will come to bring an End to the colossal crises that are engulfing our fragile planet (Rom 8:19-22). Since these things are about to happen, "What sort of persons ought you to be in lives of holiness and godliness, waiting for and hastening the coming of the day of God"? (2 Pet 3:11:13).’"
(Samuele Bacchiocchi; ENDTIME ISSUES No. 140: www.biblicalperspectives.com)
A Word from God?
"Perhaps a better biblical parallel to Katrina is the collapse of the tower in Siloam (Luke 13:4-5). Jesus said that the eighteen who died there were not worse sinners than others, but "unless you repent you will all likewise perish."
"Since the serpent tempted Adam and Eve in the garden, God’s world had included forces of evil and destruction, both man-made and natural. To a great extent, the people of God suffer right along with everyone else. The difference is that they know God and trust Him to bring ultimate good out of evil. To wit: The ultimate disaster - the murder of the Son of God by human beings He’d created – turned out to be the means of ultimate victory over sin, death and the Devil…
"For His children, God is all-powerful and all-loving. Nothing happens to them that doesn’t first pass by His throne and that won’t be used for our ultimate good and His glory!"
(Richard A. Wiedenheft; December Bible Advocate; www.cog7.org/ba).
A Christian’s Response To Calamities
"So, let me ask you: as a Christian, what do you think about all these things coming upon the earth? Is this what Jesus referred to when he warned, "Men’s hearts will fail them for fear, at those things coming upon the earth"?
If you believe the Bible is God’s eternal Word, then we must believe what Peter has said: "God spared not the angels that sinned…" (Read) 2 Peter 2:4-6.
Over the past twenty-five years, I have been but one small voice among many that have repeatedly warned of a worldwide shaking to come. Yet I believe most of these messages, mine included, have made virtually no impact whatsoever on secular society…
When I can rest through storms, when I have cast every burden on Christ and I hold my faith position, then I have obtained a "good report." And I am becoming a beacon of hope to those around me. Those who watch my life at home, at work, and on my block may not respond openly. But they will know there is hope and redemption available to them…
As calamities increase, and the world falls into greater distress, the believer’s response must be a testimony of unwavering faith."
(David Wilkerson; November World Challenge; www.worldchallenge.org)
Micah, Prophet of God
Micah, his full name is Micaiah, signifying, Who is like Jehovah (YHVH)?- prophet of the tribe of Judah served in the work of the Lord concerning Israel (Samaria) and Judah (Jerusalem) sometime between 757 and 699 B.C. during which time Isaiah and Hosea prophesied.
He declares the destruction first of one kingdom (Samaria, Northern 10 tribes of Israel), and then of the other (Jerusalem, Southern kingdom of Judah), because of their manifold wickedness, but chiefly because of their idolatry. And to this end he notes the wickedness of the people, the cruelty of the princes and governors, and the allowing of the false prophets… Then he sets forth the coming of Christ, his kingdom, and the felicity (well-being) of it.
Micah was raised up to support Isaiah, and to confirm his predictions, while he invited to repentance, both by threatened judgments and promised mercies. A very remarkable passage, Micah 5:1-15 contains a summary of prophecies concerning the Messiah.
Chapter 1:1-7 The earth is called upon, with all that are therein, to hear the prophet. God’s holy temple will not protect false professors... If sin be found in God’s people he will not spare them; ... When we feel the smart of sin, it behooves us to seek what is the sin we smart for. Persons and places most exalted, are most exposed to spiritual diseases. What they gave to idols, never shall prosper, nor do them any good. What is got by one lust, is wasted on another. (What are your idols, your gods?)
I. To convince sinners of their sins, by setting them in order before them, charging both Israel and Judah with idolatry, covetousness, oppression, contempt of the word of God, and their rulers especially, both in church and state, with the abuse of their power; and also by showing them the judgments of God ready to break in upon them for their sins.
II. To comfort God’s people with promises of mercy and deliverance, especially with an assurance of the coming of the Messiah and of the grace of the gospel through him.
(Excerpts taken from Matthew Henry Commentary, emphasis added)
If you think there is nothing to repent of in your life, consider this article:
Is There More than One God in Your Life?
It is a curious thing that God would give a king a great victory, only to have him bow down at the altar of the vanquished foes’ idol. That’s what one ancient king did. In the name of the God of Israel he conquered the enemy of his nation, then gave honor to the gods of the people whose gods could not protect them (2 Chronicles 25:14-15).
Some scholars point out that many in Israel viewed their God as just one of many gods, each of whom had their own little territories where their power was the greatest. The God of Israel, so they thought, had preeminence only in their little corner of the world, whereas Moloch or Chemosh would be the powers in their special neighborhoods. Because they accepted this little deception, it took no big leap in logic to "adopt" other gods in order to have a little insurance policy.
I am not about to go into Moab and bow down to Chemosh, but I must admit that I do have my own personal set of gods that I have accumulated just in case God is off sleeping somewhere when I might need him.
Your god is what you look to for your security and support. You might look to the government, or your job, or your investment portfolio, or even yourself. If so, you might have an auxiliary god along with the God of Israel.
Your god is what you think about most of the time. I can profess my faith and trust in the true God, but I might be obsessed with money. I might spend my waking hours worshipping the gods of the National Football League, or maybe I’m busy building a career or reputation, or maybe I find myself navigating the internet or other places in search of the latest porn star.
Your god is the source of your values. Many people try to decide for themselves their own perception of right and wrong. Others look to "society" as the source of values.
By these measures most of us have more than one god in our lives.
Many years ago a prophet named Elijah challenged the people of Israel to choose between the God of their forefathers and Baal, the god of the Phoenicians, "How long will you falter between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him" (1Kings 18:21). Our idols today might not be made of wood and stone, but Elijah’s advice is still valid.
(Lenny Cacchio; Sabbath Morning Companion; as reprinted in The Sabbath Sentinel; www.biblesabbath.org)
There are prophets of God today – they should be warning us of our sin and preaching repentance. Their message must align itself with the Word of God, including the prophets of old. It should be a message of hope and encouragement in Yeshua (Jesus). We should be examining our lives to see if we have other gods which blur and confuse our vision of our future in Messiah. The way we live must be a testimony of our faith in the living God of Israel.
What shall we do?
Micah 6:6-8 With what shall I come to the LORD And bow myself before the God on high? Shall I come to Him with burnt offerings, With yearling calves? Does the LORD take delight in thousands of rams, In ten thousand rivers of oil? Shall I present my firstborn for my rebellious acts, The fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness (mercy), And to walk humbly with your God?
Revelation 22:9 "... I am a fellow servant of yours and of your brethren the prophets and of those who heed the words of this book. Worship God."
Sinner and saint alike – repent, turn to God; humbly accept Yeshua as the Master of your life. Then stand firm in the face of all crisis, trusting Him to accomplish His will in your life. Blessed be His Name!
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