Lately I've been struggling with something. It's when I come across believers who tell me they heard from the Lord and He told them to tell me ... "Blankety blank blank".
At the risk of sounding cynical, I have to share. A majority of Christians are walking around acting like a bunch of psychics. Thus saith the Lord, the Lord told me, the Lord showed me, the Lord wanted me to tell you... and on and on.
Now granted, I'm sure they mean well and all... I know I certainly did when I was doing the same. However, the more I read the Bible, the more I realize I was missing the point. We are not suppose to be going around speaking Prophe-Lies. God takes that sort of thing seriously.
In my humble opinion, I believe that the people that go around saying they heard from the Lord, just want to feel important. They want to feel like they are special to God and that they have some unique gift or calling that sets them apart from the rest. That they were hand picked by God exclusively to speak on His behalf. They want accolades, they want recognition, they want to be noticed... but that's all flesh, ego and pride.
You see, I understand this, because I too was one of those people. I've always struggled with my self esteem based on the schmorgesborg of abuses I've endured through the course of my life. So, of course, I was the perfect candidate for the devil. And I lapped it up like a hungry and wounded dog that I am.
The enemy is going to feed on our vulnerabilities and weaknesses. He is the master of lies and deception. Presently, he is using many well intentioned Christian's to carry out his work, not God's will.
I mean, take a look at the majority of our celebrity preachers today... what do you hear? Mostly feel good positive messages... but you hear very little of the Bible... They strategically pick and choose what they are going to focus on and tell you. They pick on one or two character traits of God and purposely leave out the rest. They are very manipulative and cunning. But looking from the outside, it sounds and looks good... as they focus on love... Love is in the air... such positive and inspiring fleshly feel good messages.
So you had sex with your father's wife, so you had sex with your daughter, so you are molesting your nephew, so you are having sex outside of marriage, so you cheated on your taxes (uh oh), so you are committing adultery because you say your wife or husband doesn't understand you... They say, No worries, God loves you and He forgives you (which is true, but only when you repent and forsake the sin, Proverbs 28:13 )... but then they add, You were born for greatness... Thus sayeth the Lord... you will do great exploits for God... you will be a prophet to the nations... So with just a slap on the wrist and feeling pretty good... off they go, right back to their own vomit. (2 Peter 2:22)
Granted, being encouraged or inspired in and of itself isn't a bad thing. However, it is bad when it's just all about that... as you noticed above. Just hearing good and encouraging messages, with no true repentance and forsaking of sin, grieves the heart of God... because He is a holy, righteous and just God.
But I guess it's not in vogue to preach on sin or anything negative. Everything has to be upbeat, charismatic and positive. As they have to keep up their image, popularity and celebrity status. Meanwhile, these jokers are making a mockery out of Christianity. What it truly means to be a true Christian. We have a bunch of hypocrites speaking prophe-lies to people who are on their way to hell. I know these are harsh words, but someone's got tell it like it is, since obviously they won't.
I'm sorry, but there are too many Christians running around saying that the Lord told them to do this or that, or giving you a word. Meanwhile, their lives are a mess, in a shambles, their homes in chaos and they are in blatant sin or rebellion. Their lives do not line up with the Word of God in any way, shape or form. There is no evidence or fruit showing the signature of God is upon their lives, in contrast, only the stench of this world.
But they go through the motions, "acting" pious, attending Church every Sunday religiously, go to bible study, go to conferences and retreats, going here and there looking for some new sensation, listening to this preacher and that preacher. However, they themselves lead very selfish and sinful lives, only gratifying their own flesh and not glorying God whatsoever.
Meanwhile, we as Christians are suppose to be living epistles to this lost and dying world. Our lives are suppose to show evidence that Jesus lives in us and that we are one of His. How can it be that the Church looks more like the world now than it ever did? I don't see much of a distinction between the saved and the unsaved if you ask me.
Just so you don't think I'm casting stones... I'll cast the first stone at myself. I personally do not believe I am exemplifying Christ in my life at all. I also believe that I'm the biggest disappointment to God that ever lived. I'm a moral failure to Him. I'm only here by His grace... that's it. I am insufficient and can offer nothing... only the hope that exists in Jesus Christ. All I can do in my imperfect flawed state, is point people to the all knowing, loving and perfect creator.
I have been walking this walk for a long time and unfortunately haven't shown much for it. I have been stubborn and rebellious and God has had to take me through many, many things, to break me and have me surrender. But yet and still, I continue to grit my teeth of self will despite it.
But simultaneously, I have been a seeker of truth. I've explored many religions and faiths searching for truth. I have been saved for over 20 years, but when I take a synopsis of my life, I have to say I haven't come very far in my growth and maturity as a believer. I think to myself... Would someone who didn't know me, know that I am a Christian just by looking at me? I would have to honestly say, No. And I'm not being hard on myself, this is the truth, I can face the truth about myself as disappointing as it is.
Thankfully though, I have come to various realizations in my broken journey. I'm glad God woke me up and had me see that there is an abuse occurring within the body of Christ today. People walking up to others and telling them whatever they believe God told them. Meanwhile, it could be their own imagination, their own flesh, and possibly an unclean spirit. We must be watchful, careful and test the spirits. (1 John 4:1) We just can't take things at face value, believing whatever anyone tells us, just because we think they are believers and seem nice or loving. (Matthew 10:16)
We have the Word and the Word is the Final Authority. God speaks through His Word... any word of prophesy you want to know is in the Bible, you don't need to get it from a human being. So please don't run to others for a Word. Christians are not to function as psychics. If you want a Word, just sit quietly before Him and ask Him to reveal Himself and His Word to you. He is God, He formed you in your mother's womb, it's not hard for Him to get something across to you. (Jer. 32:27) You don't need another human being to tell you anything, if you seek Him, He will answer you.
But, people don't want to wait... they want a temporary fix. We live in a microwave society that's addicted to the word "quick". Noone wants to wait on the Lord... everyone wants an answer now. Saul didn't want to wait either, he wasn't hearing from the Lord, so he took matters into his own hands by going to a witch, but things didn't wind up good for Saul by doing that (Read 1 Samuel 28). If you really think about it, modern day Christianity has been cheapened to a circus.
Yes, yes... We have many Christians going around doing a lot of good works, and that's great. But my question is, did God actually tell them to do it? Many just take the steering wheel away from God and drive where they think God wants them to go... Meanwhile, God may not have been in it the entire time. In and of itself, it's not bad to do good works, however, is it really God's will or our want? He may want us to do something entirely different than what we think or believe. It may even be something we are not even interested in doing or going. But because it doesn't line up with our desires, we say, No, this can't be of God.
We have to face the truth... We all want to be our own director and we don't want to submit to an authority. We want to be free agents, start up our own ministries, prayer groups, etc... However, God wants us submitted under an authority, that being a pastor. God is not a God of confusion. (1 Corinthians 14:33) We are not suppose to start our own thing apart from the covering of a church and permission of a pastor. But you have so many Christians that are not accountable to anyone but themselves.
This is what is causing so much confusion... everyone wants to do their own thing and take matters into their own hands, without consulting anyone. Everyone wants a ministry, everyone wants to feel special, everyone wants to be important...
However, God may just want you to sit and do nothing but wait on Him. We are chasing things, doing good works to fulfill ourselves. But instead of chasing all these things... why aren't taking the time to read the Bible, pray and seek the Lord? Instead of doing all of these superfluous activities?
Jesus is our reward and our rewarder. We are not suppose to go to other people for a Word, we are suppose to go to God ourselves through prayer and His Word. We need to learn to seek His face and be satisfied not in good works, our giftings, callings or rewards, but in Him alone.
In conclusion, I'm going to share scriptures that opened my eyes to the truth last October:
"The visions of your prophets were false and worthless; they did not expose your sin to ward off your captivity. The oracles they gave you were false and misleading." (Lamentations 2:14)
"But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him." (Deut. 18:20-22)
"Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart." (Jer. 23:25)
"The prophet which prophesieth of peace, when the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known, that the LORD hath truly sent him." (Jer. 28:9).
"Then said the prophet Jeremiah unto Hananiah the prophet, Hear now, Hananiah; The LORD hath not sent thee; but thou makest this people to trust in a lie. (Jer. 28:15)
Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel that prophesy, and say thou unto them that prophesy out of their own hearts, Hear ye the word of the LORD.(Ezekiel 13:2)
"They have seen vanity and lying divination, saying, The LORD saith: and the LORD hath not sent them: and they have made others to hope that they would confirm the word." (Ezekiel 13:6)
"Whiles they see vanity unto thee, whiles they divine a lie unto thee, to bring thee upon the necks of them that are slain, of the wicked, whose day is come, when their iniquity shall have an end." (Ezekiel 21:29)
"And her prophets have daubed them with untempered morter, seeing vanity, and divining lies unto them, saying, Thus saith the Lord GOD, when the LORD hath not spoken." (Ezekiel 22:28)
Last but not least:
"I can't stand your religious meetings.
I'm fed up with your conferences and conventions.
I want nothing to do with your religion projects,
your pretentious slogans and goals.
I'm sick of your fund-raising schemes,
your public relations and image making.
I've had all I can take of your noisy ego-music.
When was the last time you sang to me?
Do you know what I want?
I want justice—oceans of it.
I want fairness—rivers of it.
That's what I want. That's all I want." Amos 5:21-24 (from The Message Bible)
Dear Lord... Be Thou My Vision... http://youtu.be/5XZ3ja-quhA