Personal prophecy and prophetic events

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morbo3000
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Personal prophecy and prophetic events

Post by morbo3000 » Fri Nov 20, 2015 7:40 pm

My church is holding a "prophetic weekend" event involving 3 couples with prophetic gifts coming and prophesying over members. While my church is charismatic, it's generally not very whack-a-doodle. And one reason I am in the church is because I believe (or want to) in God revealing himself supernaturally. But the idea of scheduling an event, having people sign up to be spoken over, creating an atmosphere of worship for prophecies to happen borders more like divination

I've just started listening to Steve's lectures on prophecy. In true Steve fashion, it'll be 3 hours.

In the meantime, if Steve could answer... What do you think of this? Anyone else's input is also encouraged. But especially helpful, people with both charismatic experience, or openness to miraculous demonstrations, tempered with wisdom. I already know the cessationist arguments.

Thanks!

Here's the link to the event.
http://www.graceharvestchurch.org/the-voice/
When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.
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steve
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Re: Personal prophecy and prophetic events

Post by steve » Sun Nov 22, 2015 6:36 pm

Hi morbo3000,

I think it does resemble divination, more than the biblical charima of prophecy, to pre-plan prophetic sessions, or to pre-plan any supernatural phenomenon. When Saul wanted a word from the Lord, he first approached the "normal" channels of God's communication to Israel—namely, the prophets, the Urim and Thummim, and dreams—which God did not choose to do on that occasion.

Not content to allow God to speak on His own schedule, and on His own terms, Saul then visited a medium. This might be seen as evidence that the person who demands God to speak to him, on the inquirer's terms, is motivated similarly to the occultist—and may merely be viewing God as the "fortune-teller" of first resort.

I believe that the supernatural acts of the Holy Spirit are not that predictable. They come when and if God wishes for them to come. Paul and his team certainly had prophetic giftings among them. Yet, at a time that they were needing guidance from God, it apparently did not come at their beck-and-call (see Acts 16:7-10). They set out, experimentally toward Mysia, but were prevented by the Holy Spirit. Finally, one of them received a prophetic dream, directing them to Macedonia. It seems they would not have had to make a false start into Mysia, if they could have merely "conjured" a word from the lord at will.

It is also unpredictable through whom God may wish to speak. Paul stayed for a while in the home of Philip the Evangelist. This man had four daughters there who were known to prophesy. Yet, when God had a word for Paul, He by-passed these resident prophetesses and spoke through the visiting prophet Agabus (Acts 9-11).

I think it is a mistake to assume that the Holy Spirit will work predictably through anyone in particular, at any given time. Of course, if these visitors have genuine prophetic gifts, it also cannot be predicted that God won't speak through them!

If they are the real deal, they will be able to discern whether or not the first impressions they receive are not the word of the Lord. Even such a prophet as Elijah, had to wait for a real word from God, and, while waiting, had to discern that intervening phenomena were not God's voice. "The Lord was not in the wind," nor "in the earthquake," nor "in the fire." Eventually, the Lord was in the "still small voice" (1 Kings 19:11-13). I think there are many prophets who would have been looking for the message in the wind, the earthquake and the fire, and would have missed the still small voice.

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Jepne
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Re: Personal prophecy and prophetic events

Post by Jepne » Sun Nov 22, 2015 11:38 pm

Once I got in line to be prayed over by a prophetess and God spoke through her of his love for me in a way that I was overcome - I had not even in my mind anything related to this word from Him. I will never forget it.

However, I agree with what Steve says. I pray God give you wisdom how to walk among your brothers and sisters with this skepticism in your heart and give you the discernment how to 'chew the meat, spit out the bones'.

Who knows, there are so many things 'out of order' in the Body, yet it seems in some cases that God still has room to work in spite of us and all our schemes and bright ideas. Bless you.
"Anything you think you know about God that you can't find in the person of Jesus, you have reason to question.” - anonymous

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morbo3000
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Re: Personal prophecy and prophetic events

Post by morbo3000 » Mon Nov 23, 2015 8:51 pm

Thanks Steve and Jepne

I chose to not participate in the event, because on too many occasions, I have had people prophecy blessing and open doors on my ministry, only to be met by the complete opposite. This has been extremely discouraging, and at times caused great anger at God. I didn't want to put myself in a position where someone would do that again. And specifically, the event involved people up front with a microphone. I told the leaders "If anyone has anything to speak to my life, I'm more than happy to sit down with them over coffee or in someone's office." An "event" and "prophets" adds a level of anticipation or expectation that what is said is truly of God that I couldn't bear.

On the other hand, my wife did. And a ministry of healing was proclaimed over her. That she would be known for God answering her prayers over people to be healed. This would certainly be an edification of the body, and testimony to unbelievers of God's power. So I have no doubt that God would want that, and could have her in mind for this type of ministry. She is a health care worker, so it's already in her DNA.

It was interesting to sit down last night and get feedback from people who are new to our church, were curious about what they would experience by attending the event, and open to the possibility that God would truly speak. They also had their guard up, to discern. They noticed that each of the prophetic ministers seemed to have their own specialty. When one prophesied, there seemed to be a lot of calls to mission fields. The other, seemed to prophesy ministry to children over a lot of the participants. And they were unanimous that the whole thing went on way too long. When one of the ministers got the mic, he would go on and on about some things.

The craziest thing of all though, is personal. I'm not prophetic at all. On Sunday morning, the older guy in his late 60's early 70's, the one who would go on and on, was the speaker at our service. He is highly esteemed by our leaders and within our church network "minister's fellowship international." In the pre-service prayer time, people were praying over his health, and I noticed this 20-something guy with him. A tiny little asterisk pinged in my head. At the service, he got up and spoke some words, and clear as day I thought: "You are gay." Then, when the older minister was sharing, I heard part of his testimony which was sexual abuse by an aunt and resultant fall-out in his life. And I connected dots, and wondered: "I wonder if these two guys are together." Something about what I sensed pointed to stereotypes of these types of ministers having hidden things going on. In other words, the idea isn't crazy, because we've seen it time and time again. Older esteemed minister. Young, mentored man. As you know, I'm liberal regarding same-sex committed relationships. But I'm not liberal when it comes to abuse of spiritual power. Weirdest thing ever. I wasn't looking for it. Did not have a critical attitude towards his ministry. Plain as day, though... "this minister has an inappropriate gay relationship with this younger minister." I can't imagine saying anything about it to anyone but my wife. Though it's an odd juxtaposition to welcome prophecy, and yet, when the skeptic sense something from God, the mere idea would be horrendous.

Thanks.
When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.
JeffreyLong.net
Jesusna.me
@30thirteen

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