“And all the prophets prophesied so and said, ‘Go up to Ramoth-Gilead and triumph. The Lord will give it into the hand of the king.”
(1 Kings 22:12)
When you read this story and the context around this verse, you realize that these prophets are false prophets. They are prophesying lies. They are saying, “Go up and take this land. The Lord will give it into the hand of the king,” when it’s not true. This is a lying spirit in the mouths of prophets. It is a keen reminder of something we see over and over again. Not just in the Old Testament, but in the New Testament as we are warned to watch out for false prophets. Jesus says this, Paul says this over and over again, “Watch out for false prophets.” First John warns against this. Teachers in the church that are prophesying falsely, that are not speaking the word of God, people who claim to be representing God but are not proclaiming his truth.
When you are in a church gathering, at a conference, or reading a book, test what you hear. If it does not align with God’s Word, do not believe it.
I want to encourage you to let First Kings Chapter 22 be a reminder to you to test everything you hear by the word of God. When you are sitting in a church gathering, when you are sitting in a conference, when you are reading a book, whatever you hear, a message always tested by the word of God. Open The Bible, look at it for yourself, and make sure that what you are hearing aligns with God’s word. If it does not align with God’s word, do not believe it. Watch out for this in the church. You think, “Well, that’s a safe place.” But even Paul, when he was with the Ephesian elders in Acts Chapter 20 reminded them. He warned them. He said, “There will be some from among your midst,” he’s talking to these pastors, “Some of you who will speak falsely.”
We’ve got to be careful. We’ve got to be careful. There is so much teaching today that is cloaked as from the Bible, that is cloaked as Christianity, that is cloaked as the gospel that is not the gospel, that is not Christian truth, that is not biblical faith. Test everything you hear by the word of God. God, we pray. We pray for fidelity to your word, for faithfulness to your word, for your word to lead and guide and form our minds, our thoughts, and the words of those who claim to teach your word. God, please help me as a pastor. I pray for every pastor. Help us to proclaim your word truthfully, faithfully, not falsely. God, I pray that you would give discernment in your church to recognize false teaching and to run from it. To put out false teachers from the church, whether that’s on a stage on a Sunday morning in front of a large group of people or that’s in a small group meeting in a home. God, we pray that you would give us discernment to recognize false teaching and courage and wisdom to guard your church against it.
God, I pray for this. My own life and the church that I pastor, I’m a part of. I pray for this in every one of our lives as we listen to this. Please help us to know your word and filter everything we hear through it. Then God, we pray. We pray for all kinds of people all around the world who are believing false teachings. You would open their eyes to the truth. We pray today, especially for the Sasak people in Indonesia. Over three million of them, almost every single one of them Muslim, believing the teachings of a false prophet. God please, please cause the truth and the grace and the love of Jesus to be made known among the Sasak people in Indonesia. God, we pray for that today and we pray for that in thousands of other people groups, where the gospel is not being proclaimed, where the truth of your word is not being proclaimed, where false teaching is being proclaimed. God, we pray for your truth to reign in your church and your truth to reign in the world as it is proclaimed among the nations. For your truth to reign we pray in our hearts and our families. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
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