“I’m warning you that not everyone who professes to be sent by Me belongs to Me. When I have given you instructions I expect you to carry them out to completion. Do not be swayed by someone who uses My gospel for their gain. Find the answers from Me. In relationship with Me. I will reveal the deep mysteries that are hidden for My chosen. Come and find my buried treasure. Do not seek the answers from a man when you can learn them from your Father.”
The Lord took me to a passage of scripture found in 1 Kings 12:30 that helps to explain this word. In the passage, a man of God came from Judah to Bethel, on behalf of God, to speak to King Jeroboam. As instructed by God, the man (who remained nameless throughout the story) prophecies that a future king Josiah would restore righteousness to Israel and the temple of God. This man of God was instructed specifically by the Lord not to break bread (fellowship with)or drink water, but just to deliver the word from the Lord and leave, taking another road than the one he traveled in on. And he followed the Lord’s instructions, partially. But partial obedience is still disobedience in the eyes of God.
Next in the story, The Lord tells us (verse 11), “there was a certain old prophet living in Bethel, whose sons came and told him all that the man of God had done there that day. they also told their father what he had said to the king. Their father asked them, “Which way did he go?” And his sons showed him which road the man of God from Judah had taken. So he said to his sons, “Saddle the donkey for me.” And when they had saddled the donkey for him, he mounted it and rode after the man of God. He found him sitting under an oak tree and asked, “Are you the man of God who came from Judah?” “I am,” he replied. So the prohpet said to him, “Come home with me and eat.”
The man of God said, “I cannot turn back and go with you, not can I eat bread or drink water with you in this place. I have been told by the word of the Lord: ‘You must not eat bread or drink water there or return by the way you came.'” The old prophet answered, “I too am a prophet, as you are. And an angel said to me by the word of the Lord: ‘Bring him back with you to your house so that he may eat bread and drink water. ‘” (But he was lying to him.) So the man of God returned with him and drank in his house.
While they were sitting at the table, the word of the Lord came to the old prophet who had brought him back. He cried out to the man of God who had come from Judah, “This is what the Lord says: ‘You have defied the word of the Lord and have not kept the command the Lord your God gave you. You came back and ate bread and drank water in the place where he told you not to eat or drink. Therefore your body will not be buried in the tomb of your fathers.'”
When the man of God had finished eating and drinking, the prophet who had brought him back saddled his donkey for him. As he went on his way, a lion met him on the road and killed him, and his body was thrown down on the road with both the donkey and the lion standing beside it.”
The Man of God and The Old Prophet
The passage reveals that the old prophet was once a man who could prophesy for God, but something (the bible doesn’t indicate) interrupted his prophetic flow and relationship to receive the word of the Lord. Prophecy is about giving away encouragement, hope, and authoritative counsel. Prophecy isn’t used for personal gain by prophets. It’s meant to strengthen and mature the body of Christ.
Older Doesn’t Mean More Anointed
The Man of God, while he was obedient to deliver the word wasn’t mature enough to carry out the full instruction of the Lord. Perhaps he doubted. Perhaps he saw the old man as someone to be respected and followed. After all, the old prophet identified himself as a prophet but he lied saying an angel spoke to him. I believe there’s a takeaway here for all of us, and that is, you aren’t obligated to share everything the Lord spoke directly to you concerning you. It’s your instruction, not someone else’s . And when you share that openly, you also potentially open yourself up to manipulation. The Bible tells us that we are being sent out like sheep among wolves and that we are to be shrewd as snakes and innocent as doves, meaning we should be hyper-vigilant and sharp when it comes to handling the instructions given to us by God. Be street-smart but in a godly way.
If God gave you an instruction, keep it to yourself and carry it out just as he said. Watch out for wolves. He’ll be faithful to do the rest.
Matthew 24:11 tells us that, “in the last days, many false prophets will arise and deceive many.”
In 2 Timothy 3, verses 13-15 say, “while evil men and imposters will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you have learned it, and how from infancy you have known the holy scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Jesus Christ.”
Test The Spirits
As I am writing this, I hear the Lord say, “Test the spirits,” and I am reminded of a passage of wisdom in 1 John 4 that says: “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. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.”
If you have a relationship, albeit possibly a relationship that needs strengthening with Jesus, you have the key to unlocking the understanding and wisdom of God that you need to do life in this world. I hope this word encourages you to believe what God said to you, whatever that is. I hope that you will develop your roots deep in Christ so that no matter what anyone tries to convince you of, you KNOW what God said and you carry it out to unwavering completion.
While some people have good intentions, they are not God-intended for your life. When faced with a situation that doesn’t match what you heard the Lord say to you, PAUSE and PRAY. Test the spirits, and don’t make a move until you’re certain. Be confident in what the Lord spoke directly to you and go to him for confirmation in his word and in prayer. He is faithful to show us the path to take and to keep us from being snared by those who might be sent to thwart the call on our lives. Be wise. Be discerning. Keep your growing relationship with God at the forefront of your life, and he will illuminate your steps.