I continue to process the events of the last year, and my reading through Scripture will sometimes call those things to mind. One of those ongoing events involved former President Trump and all the evangelical support he received regardless of whatever he said or did.
There were evangelicals who defended every word and action. Their support was unwavering, and prophets even prophesied that he would be reelected.
Obviously, they were wrong.
The unwavering support and relentless defense of Donald Trump troubled me greatly from before he was elected in 2016. I wrote often about it. The prophecies that he would be reelected troubled me even more.
They didn’t trouble me because of the thought that Trump might be reelected. Whatever God will do, He will do. If God wanted Donald Trump to be President for another four years, so be it. God establishes authorities. (Rom. 13:1)
The prophecies troubled me because Paul says we should not despise prophecy. (1 Thessalonians 5:20) We need to take prophecy serious. In that vein, I was troubled that I could be dead wrong about my assessment of Donald Trump and of what God is/was doing in our time.
I wrote about the Sons of Issachar who “understood the times” in an attempt to think, pray and write through it. The people who were saying that Donald Trump would be elected were claiming to be like the Sons of Issachar. They claimed to know what God was doing, and they were one hundred percent behind Donald Trump who they claimed was God’s man for this time.
I was personally concerned that I had it all wrong. I am not a prophet, and I don’t claim to be one, though I feel sometimes that I have a prophetic bent in me (whatever that really means). I would not, however, and do not call myself a prophet.
I don’t predict things.
Not that predicting things is all the prophetic gift is about. I don’t think it is. I think the prophetic gift is about speaking the mind of God. It may include speaking the mind of God in a particular moment, to a particular person or people, or not. It may include speaking God’s mind and heart generally.
I believe people who preach can be prophetic in their preaching. There are teachers, and then there prophetic preachers.
Prophecy may (at times) be predictive, but I think it is more about speaking God’s mind and heart than the ability to predict things. For whatever reason, though, people are really interested in predicting things and knowing the future.
In fact, we seem to be obsessed with it. The disciples asked Jesus many times about when the end would come. Jesus said it wasn’t for them to know the day or time. Still, they pressed him.
Throughout history are examples of people claiming to know the end times. Though, many people have predicted days and times, they have all been wrong. Of course, someone might someday be right, so people to continue to try.
Not that I think we should. Jesus said we wouldn’t know. I take him at his word.
We see this same kind of preoccupation with wanting to know the future in the Old Testament. I recently read the story of Israel’s King Ahab and Judah’s King Jehoshaphat coming together to attack the City of Ramoth Gilead that once belonged to Israel. This story has something to say to us today, I believe, on the subject of prophecy.Continue reading “What Should We Do When the Prophets Are Wrong”