There should surely be a reckoning when people who have taken to heart the word of a prophet are faced with the failure of that word to be fulfilled – and that includes the prophets themselves. It has been encouraging to read and listen to the insights of a number of them who have recognised how their words have fallen short.
It has been edifying to read and listen to insights of those prophets who have repented of their wrong prophecies concerning Donald Trump. You might find this post helpful from Kris Vallotton, a leading prophet with the Bethel ministries.
As he says, ‘God gave us a way to judge prophecies because He didn’t expect people to be infallible. God put checks and balances into the body of Christ. In the New Testament, there’s nowhere that says getting a false prophetic word makes you a false prophet. It’s all about the heart! False prophets are people who lead people astray on purpose.
‘When I realized I got the prophetic word wrong about Trump, I asked the Lord what should I do; He told me to apologize, not contend. I had to be true to what I felt the Holy Spirit said to me. I feel like the Lord is cleansing all areas of culture, including the prophetic movement. He’s pruning us to become noble people that live with convictions.’
As somebody replied in the comments, ‘it’s time to love people. When will we be known for this, instead of being recognized for supporting agents of violent insurrection? I’d propose that we can cure the ills of society by simply being people who love other people. My prayer is that God would give us wisdom and insight as we navigate the pandemic, the social justice issues, and the issues of morality. May we leave our children in a better world! I challenge you to pray for your leaders today, to change history by pursuing hearts, and remember Jesus is King and He’s in charge.’
We shared last time the vicious attacks Jeremiah Johnson came under for repenting of having called the election wrongly, even to the point of people withdrawing their support from him and sending death threats. Jeremiah has explored some of the attitudes and wrong thinking that have been exposed by these attacks in this post.
Another prophet who has come under attack for his fulsome apology that we signposted last time is Loren Sandford. His post was particularly enlightening because he analysed how he was taken in by the widespread push from the prophetic movement that foretold a victory for Donald Trump.
That such awful condemnation as these men have faced should to emanate from the Body of Christ is deeply grievous. A terrible blindness and vindictiveness have come upon so many. One English friend of ours told us how she wrote to a long-standing American friend saying how sorry she had been to see the invasion of the Capitol, and how shocked she was that the President had been so slow to condemn it. Her friend wrote back: ’Never contact me again.’
Loren has gone on to record a number of insightful follow-up videos concerning these matters. This is a useful one on ‘Prophecy: Repairing the Damage.’ And we found this one telling: How sick has American Christianity become? He refers here to the pressures his parents, John and Paula Sandford came under in their own pioneering and transforming work for Christ. We ourselves were greatly blessed by times of fellowship with them, when Russ Howell, then serving as the pastor of Hoole Baptist Church in Chester, invited them to come and minister in the UK. Ros and I will never forget their brilliant teaching and the impact that they made – especially an amazing time of prayer we had with them at Russ and Lesley’s house. The presence of the Lord was layers deep. We were at a crossroads in our life, and they very accurately prophesied how the Lord was going to move us from Chester to Shropshire, and the fruit that would come from this. Later on, we were privileged to meet up with John in Idaho.
John and Paula wrote some outstanding books that we would highly recommend you track down and read. I still rate their masterly book The Elijah Task (the original version published in 1977, that is) as the best available on the training of a prophet. There is real wisdom and insight here and, at the right time, it can be not only eye opening but even life changing. Their widely read books on counselling, Transformation of the Inner Man, and Healing the Wounded Spirit, also offer exceptionally helpful insight into many areas of the human soul and spirit. And John’s book, Healing the Nations: A Call to Global Intercession has been pivotal to helping many to a deeper understanding of prayer.
Even where prophets who got it wrong are not repenting publicly, many of them appear to be changing tack somewhat. May the ripples of truth continue to spread far and wide. May we all be humble enough to acknowledge where we get things wrong, so that we may be transformed by the renewing of our minds in Him.