April 9, 2016

1 Kings 13:2 He cried out against the altar by the word of the Lord: “O altar, altar! This is what the Lord says: ‘A son named Josiah will be born to the house of David. On you he will sacrifice the priests of the high places who now make offerings here, and human bones will be burned on you.’ ”

Wow! This prophecy had it all, so to speak. It was bold, politically incorrect, detailed, and as was later born out, accurate. (2 Kings 23:15-16) At the same time, it was at the risk of the prophet’s life, because Jeroboam would have had him seized and probably killed, had the Lord not interfered. (verse 4) It is very interesting that this prophet is anonymous to history even today, despite his faithfulness. He was indeed human and open to deception, as comes out a little later in the story. I think the whole thing points up two important things to remember. The first is that our purpose is to be faithful to God, not to make a name for ourselves. It strokes the ego to have human acclaim, but that doesn’t count for much. Rather, we are to be working for God’s “Well done, good and faithful servant.” (Matthew 25:21) The second is that no matter how obedient we might be one minute, or how dramatically God might use us, we are still in danger of falling the next minute. As Paul said, “If you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!” (1 Corinthians 10:12) Having assurance of God’s protection and power is good, but being cocky and self-confident is not.

I have only been used once in something approaching this for drama and detail. I don’t need to go into detail, but I prophesied something in a small prayer meeting that was not only detailed, it was medically impossible (which I didn’t know at the time). However, it came to pass, in a way that was not at all obvious to those hearing it at the time, and when it did, they remembered that it had been prophesied, and gave God glory. I say that only to point out that God is still in the business of letting His people know what is going on, as they need to know it. Prophecy is to direct, encourage, admonish, and comfort. Genuine prophecy is never for the purpose of inflating the prophet! There are many examples in the Bible of genuine prophecy that did not come to pass, because those hearing it received the warning it contained and mended their ways. As Paul said, we are not to despise prophecies (1 Thessalonians 5:20) but neither are we to swallow them whole, without careful examination. (1 Thessalonians 5:21) Those who insist that valid prophecy ended with the first 12 apostles miss out on a great deal!

Father, I haven’t delivered many overt prophecies for quite a while now, but You have been directive through me from time to time, and the results have been good. Thank You. Help me stay available to You whatever or however You want to speak through me, with no thought of risk to me, social or otherwise, so that Your Word may go forth indeed to accomplish all that You desire, for Your glory. (Isaiah 55:11) Thank You. Hallelujah!


About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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