Made up Rules about Prophesying …

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Link Hudson |


Made up Rules about Prophesying: Part 1: It Must be Confirmation.

I spent my teen years in the A/G and I often heard prophesying, tongues, and interpretation from the congregation during the church meeting. A typical prophecy sounded like various scriptures strung together, directed toward the situation in the church. One message answered a question I’d just thought in my heart. It went along the lines of ‘You have said in your heart….’, repeated my question, and gave me an answer.

But I did not see a lot of ‘personal prophecy’ directed to an individual in this particular church. One of the deacons once said once, in a converation at one of the members’ homes, that if someone gives you a prophecy about your calling that isn’t confirmation, to be very careful about that.

I heard a more extreme version of this from someone at a kind of independent Charismatic or Third Wave church, that if it isn’t confirmation, it’s junk. I disagreed with that when I heard it. Why? Because I read the Bible.

Is there any indication at all the Saul had any inkling that he would be king before a prophet prophesied it over him? That is most unlikely. We don’t know if David knew his calling to be king before Saul anointed him. There is no hint that Jeroboam or Jehu experienced a private ‘calling’ experience before they received prophecies through prophets. Samson wasn’t even born yet when prophecies were made about him.

John the Baptist’s father prophesied about his calling right when he was born. He’d heard an angel talk to him about it before he was conceived. And how many prophecies were made about Jesus before He was born?

Some people will say, “That’s Old Testament.” Sure, it is, but where does the New Testament teach that you have to hear from God first before you hear from God through a prophecy? It doesn’t.

In real life, when someone gives you a personal prophecy, a lot of times, it may be confirmation, but part of it may be confirmation and part of it may not be. Someone prophecies about your gifts, stuff you know, but there may be something new that you haven’t thought about. And the Spirit may say something about His plans for you that hasn’t ever occured to you through a prophecy.

The phrase ‘personal relationship with Jesus Christ’ shows up in American evangelical sermons, but it isn’t in the Bible. In the Bible, we see that we are all parts of the body of Christ and that we are to minister to one another. God ministers to one part through another part. If the Holy Spirit communicates to you through another member of the body, that’s still the Spirit communicating. We should have our senses developed to recognize and discern when the Spirit is speaking, and other members of the body of Christ can help with this as well. That is an advantage of hearing a prophecy in a church setting, or should be.


  • Reply April 10, 2017

    Scotty Searan

    I agree with this very much. I have had two messages given to me personally from another individual, but they did not share them with the whole church. There was a message in tongues, but when the minister gave the interpretation, he cut his microphone off and came close to my ear and whispered what God gave him. The words did come to pass. This may be what I concluded as a message in tongues,interpretation, prophecy and word of knowledge in the two messages. But I do have trouble with people prophesying over an individual publicly, whee all can here. I believe what is given to one to instruct and individual should be given privately.

  • Reply April 10, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    The bapticostal in you speaketh yet again!

  • Reply April 11, 2017

    Nathan Glenn

    These “rules” I agree are not specifically biblical but that does not mean they are not useful or needful in the body. Abuse of gifts and misteaching concerning them have misled and damaged many people. Not heeding the confirmation “rule” has caused many people to be hurt & disillusioned by the gifts. If a well meaning young minister prophesies to me today that I am called to sell everything and move to Africa to preach I will not be packing my bags or selling my house the next day. God will have to confirm & convince me of this before I will make a major life decision like that. For others however, a well thought of preacher or Evangelist might miss it and cause them to make unwise life choices that ultimately cause them to become disillusioned when these specifics don’t come to pass like the person thinks they should. Many extra biblical ideas are wisdom which were given by God to protect His people. Remember; many of our ideas concerning the gifts, offices, roles and purposes of the gifts are man made theology & not necessarily Scriptural fact. Where did our definitions concerning gifts & offices & functions come from? No specific definitions are given scripturally for many of these things, they also vary among groups. Practical rules of operation I feel are very helpful in the operation of gifts in the body. Lack of teaching on gifts in the Church has made them often times today unuseful and even destructive to many people. I recall a very talented & gifted young worship leader lady years ago being prophesied over by a very impressive but immature young evangelist. He told her with specifics that she would be married & have children which was very moving & touching in her life & caused her to be touched emotionally. Those things were never given a timeline but she assumed they were coming quickly & immediately. After several years these things never came to pass ,she was eventually damaged & completely backslid from the faith. Some 20 years later now she is still backslidden but oddly enough is married with children. The young evangelist actually did get it right but the person was damaged by the gift even though it was not intentional. If the young lady had been taught the “confirmation rule” this would not have happened. Also, if the young evangelist had been taught not to be quiet so specific with this very personal matter this same thing could have been avoided. This is much of the reason why so many groups have abandoned the idea of gifts over the centuries. There is certainly a soft median somewhere between these two extremes.

  • Reply April 13, 2017

    Varnel Watson

    @ Link Hudson From what I hear neither prophesying nor interpretation is prominent in our AG churches anymore. Can any AG member remember when was the last time they have heard tongues interpreted in their regular services?

  • Street Preacherz
    Reply July 14, 2017

    Street Preacherz

    Thank you for changing the photo. Discretion is the better part of valor.
    It appears to be unchanged in the link??? I don’t think it’s fair to associate this article with T.B. Joshua.

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