Prophets and Dreamers from Deuteronomy

February 26, 2018 at 8:49 AM 9 comments

I’m putting the finishing chapters into the next book currently in-progress that deals mainly with my own involvement in the Charismatic Movement from years ago and today’s New Apostolic Reformation movement (or NAR), which is really an offshoot of the earlier Charismatic Movement. Within NAR, there are those who firmly believe that God has raised prophets and apostles with the authority equal to the prophets and apostles of old. I disagree that God is doing this, but it makes no sense arguing about it. People have their reasons for believing what they believe. For me, it is most important that what I believe aligns with what is revealed in God’s Word; nothing more and nothing less. That’s a full-time job for me. It is the same with you. If we disagree over this issue, let’s continue to do so in a mature manner, one in which the Lord is glorified. Let’s do our best to keep our flesh and sin nature totally out of the picture.

At any rate, one thing we should be able to agree on is what is revealed to us in the opening verses of Deuteronomy 13 and also in Deuteronomy 18 dealing with false prophets. In fact, it’s fascinating and demands our attention and contemplation. Let’s look at Deuteronomy 13 first.

1 “If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder, 2 and the sign or wonder that he tells you comes to pass, and if he says, ‘Let us go after other gods,’ which you have not known, ‘and let us serve them,’ 3 you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams. For the Lord your God is testing you, to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. 4 You shall walk after the Lord your God and fear him and keep his commandments and obey his voice, and you shall serve him and hold fast to him. 5 But that prophet or that dreamer of dreams shall be put to death, because he has taught rebellion against the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt and redeemed you out of the house of slavery, to make you leave the way in which the Lord your God commanded you to walk. So you shall purge the evil from your midst. (Deuteronomy 13:1-5 ESV)

Let’s look very carefully at the words of Moses in the above passage. First, Moses offers a warning to the Israelites about “prophets” or “dreamer of dreams.” He’s not talking about daydreamers here. He’s speaking about people who receive information that could only come from sources outside of themselves. They either see in their mind’s eye a vision of sorts or while they are sleeping, they have a dream that purports to be from some external supernatural force or being.

Notice, Moses is not saying that this would never happen. In fact, Moses is warning the Israelites that it most likely would occur and they needed to be ready when it came. Second, Moses indicates that if someone comes to them who claims to be a prophet or dreamer of dreams and what he says comes to pass, the people of Israel need to be very wary. Why? Because in the case of a “false” prophet or dreamer of dreams, the ultimate goal would be to direct Israelites away from Jehovah to another “god.” This is also true of Christians today and the many voices out there claiming to be prophetic. I’m not going to tell you who is and who is not “from” God. You’re supposed to use your own knowledge of God’s Word, discernment, and prayer to help determine it.

Moses provided the Israelites with a way to discern reality behind the prophet. Moses says prophets and dreamer of dreams would come to them and foretell events that may in fact come to pass. That alone would dazzle most people, wouldn’t it? Clearly then, the test for veracity is not whether the prophesy or dream did come to pass. Moses is saying if some prophet/dreamer of dreams comes to them, foretells something and it does comes to pass…that’s a given that there is a possibility it will come to pass. Simply because it comes to pass is no indication that it squares with God or is from God.

So, if the test is not in the fact that the prophesy or dream comes to pass, what is the actual test that Israelites could use to determine the veracity of the individual making the prophesies or sharing the dreams? The test for that individual is found in the God/god that they point Israel toward. This is extremely important, not only for Israel in the Old Testament but also for the Church (the spiritual entity, or Bride of Christ) today!

Today, there are many, many prophetic voices speaking to people. I’ve lost count of them, while other websites do their best to catalog them all and keep their “prophesies” up to date.

Many “prophets” are in absolute contradiction to one another. We have people today who claim to have been anointed as prophets and apostles, ostensibly by God through some human agent. These individuals and those who follow them firmly believe that what they speak as prophets/apostles is literally God-ordained or “God-breathed.” This is very clear from them. It stands to reason that if God is speaking through them, then what is being stated has just as much authority as His written Word, doesn’t it? Regardless of how God speaks, whatever the venue, His authority is active.

But Moses tells the people of Israel that even if some prophet or dreamer comes along and says something that turns out to be true, the actual test of his character, integrity, and veracity is not to be found there. It is found in what he teaches about God and how he directs the people either to or away from Jehovah! This is so important it cannot be emphasized enough especially in today’s climate of emotionalism that has pervaded mainline denominations and Christendom itself.

Moses then reveals why a prophet or dreamer of dreams might come to the Israelites and appear to be speaking truth. Verse 3 states, “…For the Lord your God is testing you, to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul.

What? Moses is actually stating that when a situation occurs where a prophet/dreamer of dreams comes along and prophesies something that comes to pass, but his theology where God is concerned is shaky at best and simply wrong at worst, this individual has been allowed/sent by God for the purpose of testing the Israelites! Moses is not saying that God allows this to tempt the Israelites, but to test their resolve and commitment. God is proving their hearts. Are Israelites sold out to Him or not? Will they be swayed by words that appear to come to pass in spite of what the prophet believes about God? This is tremendously important and applies to Christendom today because of the many voices that are all claiming to speak words of wisdom from God.

The big question then is what does that particular prophet or dreamer of dreams believe about God? Is he/she trying to move you away from accurate truth about God? Are they trying to pull the wool over your eyes to help you believe that you are a “little god” yourself because of your connection with God in Christ? What does that person actually believe about God? What is their theology? This is extremely important and this also means that Christians are required to study God’s Word so that we can better understand God. This doesn’t happen with any amount of regularity though does it? Too often, Christians rarely crack open the Bible. They listen through a sermon on Sunday but tend to rely on their leaders to tell them what to believe and what the Bible means. They don’t take the initiative and study for themselves to show themselves “…as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth,” (2 Timothy 2:15 ESV). Christians will be held accountable for that at the BEMA Judgment Seat of Christ.

But in Deuteronomy 18, we have the flip side of the coin that also needs our attention and is also very much applicable for us today. Here is Deuteronomy 18:20 (ESV).

But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die.’

That type of prophet was supposed to be put to death by the people of Israel. This was rarely done. That prophet spoke in the Name of God but without His authority and without His truth. In other words, the prophet said that God “told me” but in truth, God had told him nothing. In this case, his words did not come true and it made God appear as a liar. In truth, the prophet was simply spreading his own lies likely for self-aggrandizement. The text goes on to tell Israelites how to know if God is speaking through a prophet.

when a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the Lord has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him. (v. 22)

This is referring to someone who heard nothing but pretends he has heard from God and announces it like that. He credits God with speaking to/through Him so that the people will not disobey. In that case, God has not spoken through the prophet and the people do not need to be afraid of not listening to him. That alleged prophet is to be taken outside the camp and stoned to death to purge the evil from the camp.

Let’s be clear here. America is not a theocracy. We exist as a Constitutional Republic under the Constitution. We cannot stone people to death because they are false prophets. This is part of the reason there are so many who claim that position because they know they are safe from death. Paul explains what our attitude toward these false prophets should be.

17 I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. 18 For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive. (Romans 16:17-18 ESV)

We are to note these false prophets and avoid them. We are to also tell others to do the same. These individuals are “smooth talkers,” con men who seek their own self-aggrandizement and gain. They are only in it for what they can gain from it.

So we learn that there are two categories of false prophets/dreamers. The first in Deuteronomy 13 is the one whose prophesies come to pass but his intent is to drag people away from the living God to error by worshiping other false gods. The second in Deuteronomy 18 speaks of the false prophet who prophesies falsely – what he declares simply does not come to pass. In both cases, we are to avoid that person. We should “mark” them in our minds – make a strong mental note about them – and warn others as well. If we warn others and they do not heed our warning, it is on them.

Folks, I implore you that you would immerse yourself in God’s Word. Study it. Show yourself approved that through it you might come to know God Almighty better. The more you understand about God through His written Word, the less chance you will be taken in by false prophets/dreamers.

If someone tells you that a person you follow or whose books you read is a false teacher or false prophet, don’t simply disregard that. At least be willing to do your own research into things. That person telling you may be wrong, but don’t ignore them simply because you “like” the person you follow. You “enjoy” how they preach or what they teach. Does it all thoroughly square with God’s Word or not? That is the only deciding factor, not how “likable” or “sincere” they might be.

Entry filed under: christianity, Cultural Marxism, Demonic, emergent church, Emotional virtue, eternity, Judaism, Political Correctness, Politically Correct, Religious - Christian - End Times, Religious - Christian - Prophecy, Religious - Christian - Theology. Tags: , , , , , , .

Donald Trump, the Bible, and the End Times, Pt 2 Behold Your God: Before All Things and Holds All Things Together

9 Comments

  • […] standards. Fred Deruvo, in his Study – Grow – Know blog offers Biblical counsel about Prophets and Dreamers from Deuteronomy that should sharpen our discernment […]

  • 2. john  |  February 26, 2018 at 5:21 PM

    Sorry
    Using a phone.
    “Ages in caos”

    • 3. modres  |  February 26, 2018 at 6:13 PM

      Thx

  • 4. john  |  February 26, 2018 at 12:56 PM

    Hmmmm, let me start by agreeing with the point being made. IF it doesn’t align with the Word of The Lord, it trash not fit for the dung Heep!!!
    I do believe there will be prophets in these end times though. There are also a few people who today have a greater gift of understanding the prophecy that already exists and one of them is James Lloyd at christian media network. He has the Holy spirit guiding him, of this I am sure!!! I am sure because I have checked his work and books with a KJV bible and a Strong’s concordance. The end is near and much of prophecy that 90% of Christians are looking for has already happens. Because they have somewhere in their learning excepted false doctrine, they have compounded errors on top of errors and have lost all concept of the Real gospel that Jesus and the prophets before Him taught!!! Do Not get caught up in what some pastor or book taught you, read it for yourself and pray for guidance and understanding Ask Jesus for His help!!! You will amazed at what can come to Light!!! Amen. Also remember the Israelites were terrible at judging prophets, as they murdered most of the True prophets of their days. Seek an you shall find, knock and the door will be opened!!! Amen

    • 5. modres  |  February 26, 2018 at 1:27 PM

      Hi John,

      Your comments are certainly reasonable. While there will be prophets in these last days, there will also be plenty of false ones AND false Christs as I’m sure you recall from our Lord’s own words in Matthew 24, Mark 13, and Luke 21 (Olivet Discourse). If more people would do what you suggest – reading, studying His word – there would likely be a great deal less error in the church. Unfortunately, too many within Christendom have adopted the “if it feels right to me, it must be right” doctrine checking system. It’s absurd.

      I have, at times, named a few names of people with whom I take issue. I try not to do that too much because it actually tends to keep people from doing their own research. Others are more comfortable doing that because they spend a great deal of time comparing teachings to God’s Word and have a sort of apologetics ministry.

      If you stop to consider it, there are so many people naming names these days that it loses significance. Christians need to learn to grow and utilize God-given wisdom and discernment to prove or disprove the teachings of everyone – myself included.

      You are 100% correct about the Israelites. They were a rebellious and stiff-necked people. I don’t believe God is done with that nation yet and will cull a final remnant at some point in the future. But yes, it is tragic at how often they vilified and even killed the prophets God sent their way. I cannot imagine having been a true prophet of God during that time.

      Thanks again.

      • 6. john  |  February 26, 2018 at 3:11 PM

        Thanks
        I’m not here to knock heads with anyone, but I have spent 22 years of in depth study of the bible, real history and the mechanations of the people running our country and the world. Believe it or not it all started in eden, when eve secomed to Lucifer’s Lies and Adam fell because of his desire to please eve!!!
        I suggest you look into dean goutchers work on the diaprax or Hegelian dialectic. Also concerning the physical Jews of today, they have only ONE opportunity just like the rest of us, except the savior GOD sent us or remain fallen cursed people.
        There is only 1 way , through Jesus Christ.you can Not climb up to heaven some other way period!!! I am here to help but I do not condone false doctrine. There may yet be a small remnant of Jews that come to Christ and I pray that there is, but if you look at that the state of physical Israel they are still a stiff necked and rebellious people and have more or less taken on the roll of The Antichrist!!!
        I know this is a hard saying and nobody wants to hear it, but it is the Truth!!!
        Also yo help stabilize your personal understanding of real historical timelines I suggest Immanuel velikovskys work “ages in case” love your blog and really enjoy your stuff on Q hope this has helped someone one, because that is my goal!!! Amen
        Also remember one the prophets stated that because of there continued backsliding and worshipping other gods. The One True God said” I will not pass by them again” referring to physical Jews.

      • 7. modres  |  February 26, 2018 at 4:52 PM

        Thanks for your recommendations. I’m very familiar with Hegelian Dialectic.

        I fully agree that there is INE path to heaven and that is through Jesus, period. There is no other way.

        Regarding Israel today, each Jewish person must be saved to gain eternal life. Paul alone makes this patently clear in Romans 9-11 alone.

        It is my belief based on my understanding of Scriiture that there will be a remnant of Jews who come to faith in Christ. Again there is no other way to be saved.

        The Q stuff is very interesting. It has helped me understand the importance of prayer. We will certainly see how things work out.

  • 8. LW  |  February 26, 2018 at 10:59 AM

    I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. 18 For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive. (Romans 16:17-18 KJV)

    I don’t think this is KJV…

    Anyway, agree wholeheartedly. We spent some time in charismania as well and I understand and agree with a lot of what you’re saying. Keep up the good work!

    • 9. modres  |  February 26, 2018 at 12:36 PM

      Thx. I’ll get reference corrected. It’s ESV I believe but I’ll double check. Thx for your comments.


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