Testing a prophetic word

mariantitle

In January I gave you a plethora of prophecies to consider for 2016. I encouraged you to read the original manuscripts and listen to the podcasts where applicable and discern for yourselves as to where we stand as a nation and as and where we may be going in the next season. Let me say at the get go, prophesy is not a fortune telling process and neither can it be confined to a specific time frame even though some prophets feel that they can be very specific. Time will tell.

cindyjacobs
Cindy Jacobs.

There is a biblical process of testing prophesy which I thought might be helpful to work through with the prophetic word released by Cindy Jacobs and the Apostolic Council. It’s called “The Year the Tide Turns. The Word of the Lord 2016”. I’m going to take some extracts from it and make comment on some of the areas, especially where it concerns us here in South Africa. After all I believe the prophetic is about building the Body, edifying, comforting and where they have prophetic direction I can’t comment on, I simply won’t. Like the OPEC situation and American politics of which I have no knowledge — I’ll stay right out of that arena.

In Paul’s letter to the Thessalonians (1Thessalonians 5: 19 -21) he encourages us to examine everything carefully; and to hold fast to that which is good. We look at what is said, not at the person so much. The prophetic word presented by Cindy Jacobs and the Apostolic Council has a council of seasoned prophets who have been selected on reputation and gifting and they give all the credit to the leading of the Holy Spirit. When one looks at this word for the nations and the Body of Christ it’s helpful to note that the council is made up of men and women of good reputation.

However, just because they are men and women of high profile, we still have a great responsibility to seek the Lord for ourselves and get a witness as to the accuracy of the prophetic words. In Romans 8.16 it says the Spirit bears witness with our spirit.

We are after all sons and daughters of God who are led by God and have the Lord to lead us as to which way to go.

The Lord did say He would speak to us too and not just through the prophets.

Regarding the timing of the prophecies they have the stance that the prophetic revelations are more seasonal than restricted to a particular calendar year and that some of the outcomes are dependent on the prayers of the saints. (see Genesis 18.17-32 Amos 7:1-6)

I think this is a helpful approach as the Lord says: ‘’ For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. ”Isaiah 55.8. Thus implying there is great mystery in God and He cannot be held in our frames of reference.

HOTSPOTS FOR REVIVAL (ACPE): It’s so encouraging when you read a prophetic word and you know of people who are either being mobilised or are active in various nations mentioned in a prophesy and who are doing the work of the Lord in a significant way. It raises one’s faith to know that we are on the front foot, in time and responding to the call of the Lord. In this particular prophetic word released by ACPE they mentioned Germany, Scotland, India and the Middle East as being hotspots for revival. What a joy it was to know that our very own South African Lindy Ann Hopley is currently ministering in Germany and experiencing the favour of the Lord in a significant manner. Regarding the Middle East region we have had excellent reports of increased souls saved in that region and the favour of God on friends running churches there. What a great confirmation of what was prophesied – ‘’a great harvest of souls will take place in the Middle East as the Lord reveals His love and nature to those who are Muslims” (ACPE — See Joel 3.13, Luke 10.2) We know there is much more in the harvest and in the future.

Andries Pelser
Andries Pelser in India.

In reference to India there have been prophesies about “Philip type” evangelists who will go to areas where no one else wants to venture. My heart leapt with delight as I know of so many Philips who go to India, but I’ll tell of this one outstanding South Africa, Andries Pelser who is well worth mentioning. He has an unashamed manner of preaching the gospel. He is willing to place his life in difficult circumstances just to reach the unsaved. He takes teams into the various parts of India for revival meetings and for their rewards they see the blind regain their sight, the deaf hear again, cripples walk and now the dead are being raised. Thousands upon thousands come flocking to receive Christ as Saviour at their revival meetings. One can only imagine the joy in Heaven as the souls come in. Yet he and the team have prophesies of the later days being greater than the former days. These meetings have been going on for many years already. Andries is one of many of the ‘Phillips’’.

CHILDREN – SAMUEL (ACPE): Upon reading about the children under the age of 12 being used as ‘’Samuels’’ – We were recently out ministering in Bokisi in Limpopo and were training the church on the gift of prophecy. A young boy, no older than 8 years came up to us and described a picture of revival breaking out in their church. Revival and increase had not been explained to them nor illustrated and there was no way they could have got the picture but the essence of revival was so beautifully and simply put, (through a translator) ‘’ I see lots of people coming and walking to the church, lots, lots, lots of people coming here.’’ As simple as that. After that he and his friend joined the groups and prayed for people with simple childlike faith. Straight to the point. These are our “’Samuels ‘’ of this generation who will be accurate in hearing God’s voice as referred to by Cindy Jacobs and the Council.

RUSSIA (ACPE): “A move of God among the Orthodox community will become evident. Cities such as Vladivostok will see the apostolic emerge and will affect the rest of the nation. Moscow will see a move of God among the youth, and large gatherings will take place to pray for the nation.”

This is so encouraging as we know of friends who have been across to minister in Russia last year and came back with great reports of people being hungry for the gospel and hungry for the prophetic. They have promises from the Lord that the Lord will break into this hardened land. This will be such a marvellous delight for the Lord. The last time Noel, my  husband, and I visited Russia it had a sadness about it and I left feeling one of those “Oh no, all those years of intercession to get this wall down and all we have is sadness”. I for one will be overjoyed.

THE REFORMATION OF NATIONS (ACPE): “The reformation of nations is well on its way, and new ideas on how to establish biblical economics on a national scale will be implemented. AFRICA will be a leader in this.” At this point we can only report of business groups calling for prophetic input and Godly counsel, of companies setting aside whole weekends for prayer to seek the Lord’s face for strategy. In James it says if any man lacks wisdom let him ask for it and it will be given to him. Surely God will grant us the wisdom we seek.

However it will be truly wonderful to have whole nations in Africa transformed. Does it take place incrementally, groundswell or is there a supernatural move of God? Let’s trust the Lord for it all.

KINGDOM CHURCH (ACPE): ‘’We also received the word Kingdom Church, as old independent spirits are put aside and new alliances are formed as one to stand for Kingdom purposes against ungodly agendas.’’

‘There will be connections between apostles and prophets that will result in prophetic words not only being released but also implemented to see their fulfilments.’’

For years the ‘I am of Paul and I am of Apollos’ independent spirits have existed in the churches and it has been divisive. It’s of great encouragement to know that that which the South African prophets have been praying for years, for the various streams working together, is on the hearts of the prophets abroad. In some ways we have already formed connections even with our friends through Global Legacy and we enjoy the benefits of the revelation that they bring to the Body. We look forward to so much more of the different streams working together. It’s vital for health and richness in the Body.

I remember back in the 80s when Dr Bill Hamon and his team came to South Africa to train us in the prophetic – there was such a strong emphasis on the apostles and prophets working together, but somehow I think it was due to this awful competitive spirit that we never quite got it right. It’s such a godly approach to work in team, especially with the prophetic and to have an apostle and prophet work together. There is comfort and it’s dynamic. Neither one has to carry the whole load. Best of all when you have a full fivefold team of apostle, prophet, teacher, pastor, and evangelist. Now there is a power team!

LOCAL CHURCH(ACPE): “Pastors will begin to prioritize based on current events. Rather than planning based upon one local congregation, there will be an understanding that there are issues that the Body of Christ, in general, needs to deal with and they will teach and train their people accordingly.

One of the key issues that the Lord prophetically spoke to us was that pastors are to be a major voice to deal with racial divides.

In addition, an admonition to be crisis-prepared and find a way to be the redemptive answer to the needs of society was brought by the Lord as an important issue.”

There are issues world-wide that need to be addressed. The revelation of God and keys to the Kingdom are critical to get the breakthrough in some of what appears ‘common-sense’ or obvious need areas. We have not yet had solutions in certain areas such as alleviation of the poverty mindset, abuse, sexual immorality, crime, racism, sickness — just to name a few. To share internationally really makes a lot of sense.

SECULAR CALLS ON THE PROPHETIC (ACPE): ‘’Major media outlets and secular business will call on prophets for insight and direction, instead of calling on mediums and psychics. A new level of visibility is coming to God’s leaders that will influence the secular fields.’’

As I mentioned earlier, we know of many businesses that call on the prophetic for direction and also for input for their staff. Several banks in Johannesburg such as Standard Bank, Rand Merchant Bank and Nedbank have prayer meetings either weekly or bi-monthly for any staff wanting to attend. Various prophetic ministers address the staff and minister to individuals.

The full prophesy from Cindy Jacobs and the Apostolic Council of Prophetic is available on http://www.generals.org/articles/single/word-of-the-lord-for-2016/

In conclusion here are some pointers for you when discerning a prophetic word:

  • Prophecy is like a road map – apply diligence
  • We have a free will, but God would love to partner with us
  • Read through the whole prophecy, take notes, what is the Holy Spirit highlighting to you?
  • Use the Word of God as the guide for your life
  • Write out decrees for yourself and your family in response to the prophesy
  • Prophets judge prophecy not the prophets. 1 Thessalonians 5. 19-21
  • A word is made up of revelation, interpretation and application
  • Apply Faith – without faith it’s impossible to please God Hebrews 11.6
  • The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit Romans 8.16
  • 11 Chronicles 20.20 “Believe and hold steadfast to God and His prophets and you shall prosper.
  • Apply patience whilst you inherit the promises of God Hebrews 6.1
  • Do not grow weary of well doing, for in due season you will reap your reward.
  • Be wise and pray for wisdom on how to respond to the word of God spoken to you. James 3.171
  • “ This charge I commit unto thee Timothy, according to the prophecies which went before on thee, that through by them might wage a good warfare” Timothy 1. 18
  • Build yourself up in your most holy faith, praying always rising higher and higher like an edifice – Jude

5 Comments

  1. Brilliant article! Feeling encouraged to continue to align with heaven, because if these happens man we will be overjoyed and so very very strong!

  2. Awesome … God is looking for a people hungry enough,ready and being equipped on a journey to be able to contain this revival. We put our structures in place with God, and the muscle and tendons will grow on it. The dead bones arise all around as we journey with HIM…Thank you for the reminder!!Be blessed Marian and family

  3. Thanks, Marian, for this summary of the Original “The Year the Tide Turns” Prophecy. I was privileged to have read the full prophecy. Thanks for your comments on how to DISCERN between true and false prophecies. May I add another three Pointers for Discerning a Prophetic Word?
    1) A true Prophet’s predictions will come true, but a False Prophet’s predictions will fail (Deuteronomy 18:20-22).
    2) A true Prophet will live an exemplary moral life-style, and the effect of his/her prophecies will be a better moral life-style among those who obey these prophecies (Jeremiah 23:9-40).
    3) A true Prophet will speak in harmony with the Scriptures – “the teachings and the testimony” (Isaiah 8:16,20).
    Can we trust a prophet who twists Scripture to say what it does not say? For example, that 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21 teaches we should only judge prophecies, not the prophets who speak them. Yet Jesus warns not to separate the prophecy-fruit from its prophet-tree (Matthew 7:15-20).
    Also, Cindy Jacobs and her apostolic elders end their 2016 prophecy by saying “Jeremiah 27:18 states ‘If they are prophets, and if the word of the Lord is with them, let them now entreat the Lord of hosts’” and they then comment: “Prophets do not only pronounce the word of the Lord; they in turn pray the revelatory promise back to the Father in Jesus’ name!”
    Anyone who reads the context would realise that the true prophet Jeremiah is NOT endorsing the quotation in v18. Rather he is challenging the false prophets for their false predictions. Twice he says “If …” in ways that throw doubt on the possibilities he describes. He consistently prophesied God’s judgment on the nation’s sins. The false prophets contradicted him with predictions of an imminent freedom from Babylonian oppression. Yet Cindy holds up these False Prophets as if they teach the truth! If she cannot discern the difference between true and false prophets in objective Scriptural prophecies, should we now trust her subjective prophecies?
    I say this with no malice to her and her team, for I am sure she writes with the most noble motives, believing that she is God’s mouth-piece. On my side, I’m trying to obey the many warnings in Scripture not to be deceived by false prophets. If I’m mistaken, please correct me.
    (I am not raising these questions behind Cindy’s back. I wrote to her on 8.2.2016 and again 16.2.2016 asking for her response to my critique by 18.2.2016, so that I could include this in this Gateway comment. Neither she nor her colleague Dave Shulz have replied, so I can only assume they agree with me, or considers themselves above criticism.)

    • Hugh, thanks for your thoughtful and Biblically-based contributions. I would like to respond to your point 1 as it has practical implications about our attitude to prophecy today. Yes, as Deuteronomy 18:20 – 22 makes clear there was no room for prophetic error under the Old Covenant. However, I believe that under the New Covenant we have freedom to make mistakes while learning to use the gifts of the Holy Spirit, including prophecy. Like kids learning to ride a bicycle we learn through trial and error and our Heavenly Father is pleased when we take risks in faith with a desire to lovingly serve people using the spiritual gifts He has given us for that purpose. Scripture (1 Cor 14:1) tells us to ‘Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy’ and (two verses later) to ‘strengthen, encourage and comfort’ people through prophecy. Shaun Bolz (author of Translating God which is reviewed in Gateway News this week) comes to mind. His seemingly effortless stream of accurate Words of Knowledge during public prophetic ministry is amazing. But he says behind his successes there have been and still are many failures. In his example and his teaching he emphasises God’s love as the key to authentic prophetic ministry. Other successful pioneers of charismatic ministry come to mind, like John Wimber who testified to many discouraging failures when he first started pursuing healing ministry. Eagerly pursuing the gift of prophecy does invite the risk of making mistakes. But not pursuing it because of a belief that only 100% accuracy is acceptable leads to missing God’s best. Rather like the servant who buried his talents in fear of his stern master. Love and faith trump performance. We will not get it 100% right anyway — until we see Jesus face-to-face (1 Cor 13:12). But prophecy is a wonderful gift that can bring people and communities and nations back to God’s purposes. And we all can prophesy. Let’s develop cultures where people can risk and learn in love to grow in using, administering and stewarding the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

  4. Thanks, Andre, for your comment. I apologise for giving the wrong impression that I am against all Prophecy. Forgive me for not being clear. My starting point on this subject is a basket of relevant Scriptures: Deuteronomy 18:18-22; 1 Samuel 3:21, 4:1; Jeremiah 23:9-40 esp v18; Matt. 7:15-23; 1 Corinthians 14:1; 1 Thess 5:19-22; 1 Tim 4:11-16.

    Paul warns me not to “despise” prophecy, but commands me to “test” prophecy. And this is Marian’s topic: “Testing a Prophetic Word”. I am pro-prophecy, and am simply trying to obey the frequent command of Christ and the apostles to beware of false prophets (Matt 7:15; 4:11,24; Luke 6:26; 2 Peter 2:1; 1 John 4:1).

    Can we apply the analogy of “children learning to ride a bicycle = believers learning to prophesy” to “General” Cindy Jacobs and her “Apostolic Council of Prophetic Elders”? The imposing title seems to imply a high level of Prophetic Authority which does not leave room for a tentative learning process. Rather it invites public trust and confidence that is beyond questioning.

    So, without malice, I simply ask the “testing” question: If a New Covenant Prophet is unable to discern between the True and False Prophets in the Bible, and actually contradicts Jeremiah’s prophetic word (while endorsing the word of the false prophets), can that Prophet be trusted?

    Let’s love and pray for the ACPE, and all who claim to be Prophets of the Most High and Holy God. Their influence and responsibility is great.