Prophets and Prophecy

Who, What, When, Where, Why and How

Over the past 50 years, and especially in the past 20, there has been a tremendous increase in interest by Christians in particular, and the people in general, about the subject of prophecy. The study of the subject, especially of prophecies and predictions from the past, has grown incrementally over the years, and today well over 100,000 websites exist that proclaim to tell "everything" you need to know about it.

Within the Christian church itself, the subject has created great divisions, with one part actively pursuing not just an understanding of prophecy, but seeking out and often creating it's own "new" revelations and predictions. The other part, sadly, because of misunderstanding and reaction to excesses, has chosen to turn a blind eye and deaf ear to any consideration of the subject.

It is our intention with this study to examine, in depth, the who, what, when, why, where and how of both prophecy and prophets in the light of God's written Word. He has not left us in ignorance, nor does He expect us to ignore what He has spent so much time and effort on to tell us about.

Throughout the history of mankind, God has communicated with man in various ways. As Romans 1:20 says: "For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, [even] his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:"

This of course explains that God has put His stamp on creation in such a way that a reasonable and diligent examination of nature itself will prove His existence and reality.

What is a prophet?

God has also chosen to communicate with man on a much more specific level, by using men (and women) to speak about specific issues. In scripture, these people are called prophets, and the very first mention of them appears in Genesis.

Gen 20:7 Now therefore restore the man [his] wife; for he [is] a prophet, and he shall pray for thee, and thou shalt live: and if thou restore [her] not, know thou that thou shalt surely die, thou, and all that [are] thine.

Specifically, this passage is referring to Abraham as being a prophet. There are two words used in the Hebrew for prophet, the primary way being:

  • nabiy' {naw-bee'}
  • 1) spokesman,speaker, prophet
  • >a) prophet
  • >>b) false prophet
  • >>c) heathen prophet
Notice that the generality of the word itself can refer to true, false, or heathen, but in any case it refers to one who "speaks on behalf of."

The other word for prophet is found in Jdg 6:8 That the LORD sent a prophet unto the children of Israel, which said unto them, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, I brought you up from Egypt, and brought you forth out of the house of bondage;

  • 'iysh {eesh}
  • 1) man
  • >>a) man, male (in contrast to woman, female)
  • >>b) husband
  • >>c) human being, person (in contrast to God)
  • >>d) servant
  • >>e) mankind
  • >>f) champion
  • >>g) great man
  • 2) whosoever
  • 3) each (adjective)
In this usage, there doesn't appear to be too much difference, other than being less specific about their being a spokesman for God. Interestingly, though, in this passage the prophet uses the time-honored greeting "thus saith the LORD," certainly indicating beyond a doubt that he (she) was speaking directly for and on behalf of God.

The phrase "Thus saith the LORD" and minor variations begins in Exodus, and ends with Malachi, and was considered by the Hebrews to be the specific "marker" to indicate that the speaker was indeed a prophet, and representing God in his communication.

In the New Testament, the word used is:

    prophetes {prof-ay'-tace}
  • 1) in Greek writings, an interpreter of oracles or of other hidden things
  • 2) one who, moved by the Spirit of God and hence his organ or spokesman, solemnly declares to men what he has received by inspiration, especially concerning future events, and in particular such as relate to the cause and kingdom of God and to human salvation
  • >> a) the OT prophets, having foretold the kingdom, deeds and death, of Jesus the Messiah.
  • >>b) of John the Baptist, the herald of Jesus the Messiah
  • >>c) of the illustrious prophet, the Jews expected before the advent of the Messiah
  • >>d) the Messiah
  • >>e) of men filled with the Spirit of God, who by God's authority and command in words of weight pleads the cause of God and urges salvation of men
  • >>f) of prophets that appeared in the apostolic age among Christians
  • 1) they are associated with the apostles
  • 2) they discerned and did what is best for the Christian cause, foretelling certain future events. (Acts 11:27)
  • 3) in the religious assemblies of the Christians, they were moved by the Holy Spirit to speak, having power to instruct, comfort, encourage, rebuke, convict, and stimulate, their hearers
  • Again, it is apparent that those who claimed to be prophets were claiming divine inspiration for their utterances.

    The upshot of this is that a prophet is one who professes to speak on behalf of God, by divine inspiration. It follows, then, that any person claiming to speak on behalf of God must also be claiming to speak infallibly, or without error, and without confusion, since God Himself is without error or confusion.

    God clarifies this situation in Deuteronomy, when He gives instruction to the Hebrews about prophets. In Deu 18:22 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. We see the first test of whether or not a prophet is indeed a true prophet of God, and that is the occurance, or coming to pass, of whatever it is that the prophet spoke. The division is very clear; if what a prophet speaks does NOT happen, then the prophet is false, and to be disregarded. Further, the passage states emphatically that the person speaking is "presumptuous," which means overstepping bounds, taking liberties, speaking falsely.

    However, in Deuteronomy 13:2, God also clarifies that sometimes, He will ALLOW something to come to pass that a FALSE prophet has spoken, placing an additional burden on those who hear the "prophecy" to examine the prophecy in detail. God says that if the prophecy spoken leads to following after and serving "other gods", then that prophet is also a false prophet.

    Unfortunately, most throughout history, and particularly in todays church, do not apply or consider this second level of examination to determine the validity of a prophet, simply stopping at the first consideration....did it happen. Even more unfortunate is that most, today, don't even consider that requirement, and just accept without question anyone's claim to be a "prophet".and also simply accept that a prophet can "miss the mark" in their prophecy, or the prophecy is vague enough that just about ANY thing will satisfy the requirement of "fulfillment."

    What Is Prophecy?

    God, in using the vehicle of prophecy, and the personage of a prophet, had several things in mind to accomplish His purpose. As we can see in multiple passages of scripture, prophecy was designed to do several things, on a multitude of levels.

    First, God intended to tell us of things to come. This is the "fore-telling" aspect of prophecy, and we see it starting in Genesis, and ending in Revelation. Every book of the Bible contains a prophecy that contains future aspect of fulfillment. In most instances, the future aspect also contained the possibility of multiple fulfillments, with partial fulfillment being found in various times. The best example I can think of is that given in Daniel, where we are told of a time that will come when a person, better known as anti-christ, will rise to power and desecrate the Temple in Jerusalem. A partial fulfillment of this prophecy can be found in the person of Antiochus Epiphanes, who in about 167 BC destroyed Jerusalem, and slaughtered a pig in the Temple. This action partially qualified as the "abomination that causes desolation." The primary reason for considering that it was not the complete fulfillment, though, is that Jesus, some 180 years LATER, spoke of the same abomination that Daniel spoke of, but in the FUTURE TENSE..."when you see..." (Mat. 24:15, Mark 13:14).

    On other occasions, however, the prophecy is so specific that it can ONLY be fulfilled once. One example is the destruction of Babylon foretold by Jeremiah. In Jer. 51, we read that there will come a time when Babylon is destroyed so utterly, that it will be devastated to the extent that it shall NEVER rise again, and neither man nor beast shall be able to live there. While Babylon itself has been "destroyed" a number of times over the millennia, parts of it have not only continued to exist, but in recent years has been "resurrected." Much of the original stonework of the old Babylon was used by Saddam Hussein to pave various parts of Baghdad, and he also began a rebuilding program to bring Babylon back. Currently, it exists as a small city southeast of Badhdad, and is populated. However, Jeremiah says that the day will come when it shall be "utterly" destroyed.

    The second aspect of prophecy is that of "forth-telling," which is a mechanism whereby a prophet brings to our attention something that God has ALREADY said, and we are reminded in various ways of what that is. On occasion, forth-telling would also contain fore-telling. We find most of this in the writings of the major and minor prophets, where they would rehearse to their listeners things that God had done and said in the past, and the issue a warning to the people. Usually, these warnings were conditional, in that IF the people would mend their ways, and return to what God had told them in the past, then they would be ok....but if NOT, then dire consequences would fall upon them.

    In the NT, we see a good example of this in the sermon delivered by Peter on the day of Pentecost (Acts 2), where he spoke to the people about things that God had previously said (Joel), and then gave gave them instructions as to WHAT to do. The instructions were conditional, in that if the people did NOT do them, they would NOT be saved, but if they did, they WOULD be saved.

    A third aspect of prophecy, and the one that seems to be the most popular today, is that of "personal" prophecy, wherein a prophet speaks to individuals about personal things. Scripturally speaking, we can find two particular examples in both the OT and the NT. First is the account in 2 Kings 20 where Isaiah was sent to Hezekiah to tell him that he should set his house in order, for he about to die. Before Isaiah left Hezekiahs house, the LORD had Isaiah return to Hezekiah and tell him that He would allow Hezekiah 15 more years, plus deliverance from the Assyrians. Interestingly, this was also a conditional prophecy in that Hezekiah had to place a "lump" of figs on his boil. To prove to Hezekiah that Isaiah had indeed spoken the word of the LORD, a sign was given by making a shadow on a sun dial move backward by 10 degrees.

    In the NT, we find in Acts 21:10-12 that a prophet by the name of Agabus gave a prophecy specifically to Paul about how he would be imprisoned and delivered into the hands of the Romans.

    In general, however, we see that the basic purpose of prophecy is that God wants to communicate with mankind about His ideas, His plans, His intentions, and how and where man is missing it!

    Who is a prophet

    Determining who is a prophet, to a large degree, depends on who you're talking (or listening) to. Some would have us believe that a prophet is anyone who preaches, and some would maintain that only those who have been to a "School of Prophecy" can be a prophet. And still others would hold that there is no such thing.

    Scripture brings us some valuable lessons as to who was, is, or can be a prophet. Some of this we've already learned just in determining what prophecy is, and what a prophet does.

    As we look at scripture, certain things become pretty evident. A prophet is one who is called by God to deliver a message from God, and does what he is supposed to do in a diligent and faithful manner....regardless of training, regardless of stature, and regardless of how his message is received.

    Who are some of our examples. First, there is Moses. Educated, raised as royalty, but most certainly not "trained" to be a prophet, he nonetheless set his heart and mind to listen to, and be obedient to God.

    Then, there is someone like Isaiah. Probably of royal lineage, he was believed to be a cousin of the king. Not a levite, he still apparently adhered to, and had an abiding and deep reverence for God in his heart. He apparently did not receive any "training" in how to be a prophet.

    Another example is Amos. Neither a prophet, or the son of a prophet (according to himself), or a priest, Amos was a "herdsman and dresser of sycomore trees," and considered himself to be "among the shepherds of Tekoa." In other words, lowly of stature, and uneducated. Still, he spoke the Word of God with power and conviction, and often found himself at odds with the priestly structure and the King.

    How about Haggai, of whom we know next to nothing. We don't know when he was born, or where, or what he did for a living. What we do know is that he came forth, delivered his message, and disappeared. He had 4 separate messages, and delivered all of them between August and December of the same year, and that was the end of that. Again, neither a priest or a trained prophet.

    Considered to be the greatest of all prophets, Elijah was a Tishbite, and little else is known of him concerning his past, or his lineage. His pupil and successor, Elisha, was found plowing a field.

    Ezekiel, though, was of the priesthood, and was one of the Jews taken captive to Babylonia, where he ministered for many years.

    While we could go on about all the prophets, there seems to be a consist pattern of selection throughout all of the known prophets....and that is that there was no consistency according to birth, place, age, occupation, or tribe. What is consistent, though, is that each of the prophets selected was known (at least to God) to be devout in their faith in God, resolute in carrying out what God commanded, and impervious to threats, bribes, pleading, education (or lack thereof), and death. They also to a man were distraught over the condition of Israel in its relationship to God, and desired more than life to see that nation correct itself and get right with God.

    Why were there prophets?

    While the most exciting, and most often studied portions of scripture pertain to the "fore-telling" aspect of the prophets messages, there remains the oft-overlooked reason for prophets to have come on the scene. Throughout the history of Israel, there were periods of decline in the moral and religious fiber of the nation, and it was during these periods that prophets were called to deliver pointed and exacting messages. Without fail, all of the prophets brought to the people, priests and kings a message that consisted of pointing out how they were "backsliding" in their attention to God and His revealed will. Specific examples of what they were doing, how they were doing it, and how it affected God were pointed out.

    Just one of those examples can be found in the first chapter of Isaiah, where God comes straight to the point. He calls Israel a sinful nation, laden with iniquity, corrupters, and more stupid than donkeys or oxen. He points out that they are sick, diseased, and uncaring, from the lowliest of all peasants all the way to the top, the king and priests. He states specifically that He is sick and tired of their false professions of faith and belief, and the inadequacy of their religious posturing.

    But, as God always does, He then points out how they can overcome their lack. In this case, He tells them to "learn to do well, seek (righteous) judgment, stop oppressing others, and help the fatherless and widows...in other words, exercise mercy, just as He is merciful.

    Gods pattern in prophetical utterance continues with the next stage....the carrot aspect, where He entices the people to get it right so that they can do well; "IF you are willing AND obedient, THEN you shall eat the good of the land."

    Followed immediately by the stick (a mighty big one, too); "BUT if you refuse and rebel, THEN you will be devoured by the sword..." and immediately sticks His exlcamation point on the whole thing; "the mouth of the LORD has spoken it!!!"

    In all of the writings of the prophets, both "major" and "minor," the same procedure and theme can be found. God has a problem with the way the people are acting, and He sends a prophet to (1) detail the problem, (2) ask the people to consider and reason, (3) offer a solution with reward, or (4) suffer the consequences.

    Each and every time God called forth a prophet, the content was the same, even though the details varied. Sometimes, but not every time, God would have the prophet give a very explicit rendition of the consequences, and this is where most of the "fore-telling" came into view. Often associated with the dire details of the consequences, though, would be a tidbit of exhortation that "all was not lost"; ie: there would be a remnant, there would be a regathering, there would be a Messiah, there would be ultimate deliverance.

    Where were there prophets

    Easy....wherever there were people who were not doing right by God. It didn't matter if they were in Jerusalem, Samaria, Babylon, Ashkelon, or Lebanon. Place was not as important as was the simple fact that a group of people were doing wrong in a mighty way. Sometimes it was a matter of chasing after the gods of the pagan nations, or it might have been a matter of oppressing the poor and hungry, or dispensing justice with partiality, or lying to others for gain...but whatever it was, it was something displeasing to God in a mighty way, and it was always something that the people, the priests, or the leaders KNEW was not right...but they did it anyway.

    New Testament prophets

    Under the new covenant of grace, there were some minor changes in the role of the prophet. As the writer to the Hebrews put it, God " Hath in these last days spoken unto us by [his] Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; Hbr 1:2"

    Jesus Christ introduced the final words, the words of grace and mercy, and proved the validity of those words by giving His life on the cross and then being resurrected. His apostles and disciples made known to everyone who would hear of that grace and mercy, and their message was essentially the same as the OT prophets....you're in sin (you're doing it wrong), listen to this important announcement (come, let us reason together), God's way is the only way (trust and obey), and if you obey you'll have eternal life....but if you don't, then here's the consequences.

    In the course of dispensing this message of grace, many things that were "typed and shadowed" in the OT, things that the OT prophets did not fully comprehend, but sought after anyway, began to come clear and take shape...and this is where the NT prophets fulfilled their primary duties. By understanding what the types and shadows of the OT spoke of in the person of Jesus Christ, they were able to explain clearly to the people HOW Jesus fulfilled so many prophecies, HOW He was able to atone for their sin, and WHY God chose to do it the way He did...through the cross. The end result is that the primary function of the NT prophets was one of explaining and establishing the bedrock doctrine of grace through Christ Jesus. Along the way, though, there were some nuggets of information that fell into the "foretelling" aspect of prophecy, most notably passages in First and Second Thessalonians, Second Corinthians, Second Peter, Jude and Revelation.

    Some hold to the theory that the NT prophets were nothing more than exhorters, or edifiers. Some hold that when Revelation was finished, so was prophecy. And others hold that the NT prophets were all "personal" prophets, giving personal messages one-on-one (or in front of a group), and that this was completely unique to the NT age.

    Interestingly, we are told very little about prophets and prophecy in the NT. Only a few are mentioned by name as being prophets, only one is actually called by name, and only in two instances is specific information given about the message delivered. Agabus, in Acts 11:28 gave a general prophecy (fore-telling) about a "dearth" (famine) that would come about over the entire world. In Acts 21:10, we find that Agabus traveled from Judea to Caesarea for the sole purpose of delivering a prophecy to Paul about how he would be imprisoned and delivered up to the gentiles. Certainly that one was "personal."

    Other than Agabus, the only prophets we hear about are the daughters of Phillip the evangelist, and there are no details whatsoever about what they said.

    Oh....and then there are two others we do hear of classed as a prophet. One was a sorcerer, a FALSE prophet called bar-Jesus (Acts 13:6), and the most famous (or infamous) one of all....the false prophet of Revelation, who spits out unclean frogs, and other such stuff.

    Can a prophet be wrong?

    Among a large portion of modern evangelical Christianity, there is a group that places great store in prophets (the office) and prophecy. Many of them claim that the offices of prophets and apostles are being restored to the church, and it is their function to lead the church into worldwide dominion in all aspects of society...economics, politics, religion and law. In the process of "restoring" the office of prophet, there have been a number of schools opened where people can go to be trained on HOW to be a prophet. And, if one should happen upon a gathering of those who believe in these prophets, you're almost guaranteed to hear something from someone that is prefaced with the words "thus saith the Lord," or "the Holy Spirit is telling me...:, or "God is revealing something to me about..."

    All of these various phrases basically mean the same thing....the person speaking is claiming to be speaking on behalf of God....therefore, they are "prophesying" just as did the prophets of old.

    God makes clear in His word that there will be prophets in the world...some true, and some false. To reiterate what was covered in the first section, we see: Deu 18:22 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.

    Two things of note here. One, that if it doesn't happen, it wasn't from God. Two, that the prophecy came from the will and mind of the prophet (presumptiousness), and NO ONE is to be afraid of that prophet, or what he says or has said. One of the things that often arises when a modern prophet speaks, or is being introduced, is a "warning," ususally a recitation of Psalm 105:5, which says "touch not mine anointed, and do my prophets no harm." Often accompanying this are "reports" of actual events (supposedly) where someone ignored what a prophet said, or spoke against the prophet, and subsequently was "struck down" with: 1.heart attack; 2. stroke; 3. run over by a (car, train, truck, reindeer...take your choice), 4. struck by lightning; 5. hair turned white overnight; 6. developed a stutter or was struck dumb; 7. stricken by (aids, cancer, liver disease, esophageal reflux disease, crick in the neck....); 8. struck blind; and so on and so on. All of this to instill in the hearer fear.....fear that if the prophet is ignored, then something bad will happen. Fear that if one dares speak against the prophet or what was said, then something bad will happen. Whatever the reason, the simple fact is that fear is NOT from God, for He said: 2Ti 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

    Today, a great deal of credibility has been given to a group called "the Kansas City Prophets." According to these "prophets," God himself has changed the standard for New Testament prophets, thus allowing them to be wrong as much as 60% of the time, and still be "true prophets." Unfortunately, I can't find any scripture at all that would support this contention, and we have only their word for it that God changed the rules. This attitude of laxity has infiltrated the ministries of many televangelists and preachers, and it is not uncommon today to go to a revival or service, and hear prophecies that sound good, create excitement, but have no basis in fact, and are never fulfilled.

    One example is a prophecy made by Ruth Ward Heflin (dec'd.) to Benny Hinn, where Heflin told Hinn that Jesus Christ had told her that He would be appearing "live" with Hinn in one of Hinn's crusades very soon. So far, it not only hasn't happened, such a comment is in complete contradiction to Jesus' own words in Matthew 24:24-27. Hinn has also repeated this "prophecy" a number of times on television.

    In 1989, Hinn prophesied that Fidel Castro would die in the 90's. On the same night, Hinn also prophesied that the homosexual community in America would be "destroyed by fire" sometime during the mid-90's. In both instances, Hinn stated specifically that the "Spirit told me..." or that "God told me to tell you...", thus claiming "thus saith the LORD."

    Hinn also prophesied that Israel would consumate a peace treaty brokered with Syria's Hafez Assad. When Assad died about a year later, Hinn said on TBN that "...it was Gods plan for it NOT to happen, really." Apparently Assad's death took God by surprise.

    There have been many others....none having come to pass. It appears that Hinn doesn't even make the 40% right grade.

    • Bill Hamon, one of the leaders of the Third Wave movement, aka Dominion Now, prophesied in 1997 that God would bless America and show mercy until the end of 2003, at which time He would remove His protection if "the Church" had not risen up and taken control. On Sept. 11, 2001, over 3,000 people perished in the WTC terrorist attack, plus over 200 more in two other incidents the same morning. In the same prophecy, Hamon asserted that God told him that the European Community would be the first to be attacked and overthrown.
      He also predicted that the Gospel would be preached in all Islamic nations, and that those nations would be set free from Islam....all of this to occur sometime between then (1997) and 2006.

    • In 1997, Hamon also prophesied that the state of Florida was going to be "shaken," and that all of the devil's strongholds in that state would be destroyed.

    • C. Peter Wagner prophesied that "10 million Japanese will come to Christ by the year 2000," and also claims that he prophesied, and then prayed out Manual Noriega (I thought it was the US military), lowered the crime rate in LA (it's higher today than ever before) and broke the power of demons over Japan (they still worship demons). He has also prophesied that the persecution of Jews in Russia would escalate during 2000 (hasn't happened). He also stated that signs and wonders accompanying his Third Wave movement would be raising the dead (uhhhhh......??????).

    • Kim Clement claims that "you can be a wrong prophet and not be a false prophet..." Clement also prophesied in reference to Pope Francis that "�This man has been appointed to join the hearts of Protestant faith � Catholic"...�And I have chosen Pope Francis as one of the voices that will speak, and he will command, and they will try and assassinate him three times. They will try within to damage him.� God says, �they will even try to poison him, but his voice will not be stopped,� says the Lord. �I will cause people to run to the cross, people to cling to the cross. Many souls shall come.�

    • John Kilpatrick (Pastor, Brownsville AoG) prophesied that "within 90 days the Holy Ghost is going to bring you down" against Hank Hanegraff for Hanegraffs criticisms of the Pensacola Revival. He later claimed that he was "not speaking as a prophet," even though he had specifically said that "...he was going to prophesy to you..."

    Space does not permit a complete listing of all the modern "prophets" and what they have said at various times, but we can go on to consider whether they are, or are not, true prophets of God.

    The first line of consideration is whether or not what is prophesied comes to pass. If it does not, then according to the Word of God, that person is a false prophet, and has spoken presumptiously, or of their own will. The second point to consider, is that according to the Word of God, if a person is a false prophet, then they are to be ignored. While in the OT that person was to be stoned, the NT tells us we are to mark them (let it be known who they are) and to avoid them (stay away from them) Romans 16:17. That would necessarily also mean stay away from what they teach and preach.

    Now what if what they say DOES come to pass. Here we must apply another consideration, and that is...what exactly does what they have said lead us to? In today's prophetic circles, we must look beyond a lot of what appears on the surface as "scriptural," and delve deeply into the "end result."

    Within the prophetic movement, there is a particular thought (doctrine) that comes to us in many forms. In some, it appears to be an exhortation to the Church to "stand up and be counted," or to "take control of your situation and the world around us," and this can be done by realizing the power that has been granted to the church and to the individual. In some other forms, the exhortation is to recognize the "fact" that with Christ being in us, we are then Christ!

    In both instances, the end result is that we (the church, the redeemed, the born-again believer) ARE Christ, and ARE the ones responsible for establishing Gods Kingdom ON THIS EARTH. By doing this, we elevate ourselves to a position of equality with Jesus Christ, and become, in our own eyes, God. This is in direct contravention to the words of Deut. 13:2, where we are told that a false prophet is one who would lead us away from worshiping the ONE true God, and into worshiping "other" gods. When we elevate ourselves to a position of equality with God, then we become our own god.

    It appears to me that the answer to the final question, "can a true prophet be wrong" is an unequivocal and resounding NO!! God cannot be wrong. He never has been, and He never will be. He is omniscient (knowing all things), and cannot be "caught by surprise" by some turn of events. He is also absolute Truth, and therefore will NEVER tell a falsehood. What HE says comes to pass...period....end of the line.

    There is no margin of error available for ANYONE who claims to speak on behalf of God, or says that the "Spirit told me," or uses ANY combination of words to indicate that he is speaking the heart or mind of God or relaying His will.

    To summarize, we find that:

    • WHO means anyone who is truly sold out for God, and is willing to die to speak His word.
    • WHAT means the message, and it has always revolved around a call to repent, to return to the LORD and His ways. It will ALWAYS point to Jesus Christ, and nowhere else.
    • WHEN means ANYTIME that a group of peoples (church, city, region, state, nation) is acting in a manner that is consistently opposed to God and His will.
    • WHERE means anywhere....in the streets, churches, meeting halls, town councils, halls of government...it matters not. From peasant to king, from street people to Presidents, the message that God has WILL be delivered.
    • HOW means by the medium of the voice of the prophet...spoken, written, and/or acted out (see Ezekiel for this one!).
    • WHY is a repeat of the WHAT with an added emphasis, that being that God is offering His mercy and grace with a spelling out of the consequences...both good and bad.
    • Can a true prophet be wrong? Absolutely NOT.