As a family engagement influencer, I speak my truth as it relates to my mission to ignite family engagement within the family unit, in education, and within the global community. As I do so as a writer, I am committed to presenting perspectives that may not be popular, appreciated, nor valued. Such opinions are often avoided by others. Nonetheless, I share my viewpoint.
I am a Christian. I believe everything that is written in the Holy Bible. Jesus is my Savior and Lord. I listen to the still small voice that I often hear within my heart because I know that the Lord is leading and guiding the steps that I take and the decisions that I make. My love for the Lord is stronger than anything else is my life.
Lately I have been very troubled by something that has become widespread within my Christian community. I actually feel as though it is almost pervasive.
Some individuals, but certainly not all, who have positioned themselves as leaders and have devoted followers within my faith have declared themselves as anointed prophets. Many prophets are humble servants of God who communicate the heart and purpose of the Lord with accuracy. They do not allow themselves to be over shadowed by their self-will.
Unfortunately, there are some Christian leaders who have allowed themselves to become filled with arrogance and pride. They have superimposed their self-will over the will of God. In doing so, they have established a powerful personal agenda to get what they want. Despite the separation of church and state that is a legal principle in the United States, some have also established a bold political agenda for the same purpose. Whether it is the desire for notoriety as well as popularity, increased wealth, to obtain a coveted position, or to throw an election or re-election in favor of their political candidate of choice, some religious leaders have become very cunning and crafty.
This article accentuates my concerns that I have with these individuals.
A person who exercises their power over others by controlling their ability to use their free will or to make their own decisions is a manipulator.
Christian leaders who identify themselves as prophets make spiritually based predictions about current and future events. If they prophesy about things that are exclusively consistent with their unique needs, wants, and desires but blanket their words by stating that they come from the Lord, they simply engage in mind control. Additionally, if these leaders only predict things based on the capacity of their followers to react and adhere to instructions and heed warnings so that they will reap exclusive benefits, I consider such people false prophets. Furthermore, if any prophecy presented to others fails to manifest or come true, such leaders must be classified as fake.
Those who follow prophets must weigh the forecasts with what is written in the Bible. If they do not align, there is no reason for followers to continue to follow them.
Here is a powerful example.
Jesus spoke the following words as recorded in Mark 12:31:
“Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”
If a Christian prophet declares how much they love God yet share prophesies that celebrates and advocates for individuals who have hearts filled with hatred and bigotry against the powerless, I consider such leaders as false.
Another example follows.
The Ten Commands Read:
“You should have not other gods before Me.
You should not make idols.
You should not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.
You should remember the Sabbath day and keep it holy.
You should honor your father and your mother.
You should not kill.
You should not commit adultery.
You should not steal.
You should not bear false witness against your neighbor.
You should not covet.”
If a Christian prophet makes excuses for other leaders and authority figures in society who openly violate any of the rules of God but instead promotes their position during their prophetic utterances, I consider them to be phony.
The End Result: My Conclusion
Misleading prophets confuse other Christians who may not be strong in their faith. Such people are likely to be gullible because they have not yet developed their ability to determine spiritual truth.
While unity should prevail in the Christian community, false prophets are divisive. They breed discord and animosity. Christians who have developed their capacity to be discerning are able to determine that fake prophets promote lies. The followers of such prophets may challenge the level of faith of those who oppose the predictions made by their leader. Sadly, this results in discord, alienation, and schisms.
Ultimately, false prophets causes the true mission of the Christian faith to be derailed and abandoned.
Individuals should not be quick to embrace the predictions made by those who call themselves prophets. Instead, they should use wisdom.
That means that they must make sure the prophecy reflects Godly principles that encompass the love of Jesus. It also means that prophets are believable if what they say really happens.
Followers must avoid allowing religious leaders to control their minds by manipulating them.
“Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
1 John 4:1, New International Version Bible
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Dr. Deborah M. Vereen is a retired educator. Her website is www.Drdeborahmvereen.com and her YouTube channel is https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCS1DPhBeA29UlybU9jzDkdQ.