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ISSUE 407

APRIL 13TH 2011

Prophetic Brief Insight and Analysis for the 21st Century
Prophetic
Brief
Insight and Analysis for the 21st Century
Prophetic Brief Insight and Analysis for the 21st Century New Video Series We are living in

New Video Series

New Video Series We are living in an unmatched time in the earth; a time when

We are living in an unmatched time in the earth; a time when crisis is erupting through natural disasters, political destabilization, and economic meltdown.

Politicians and religious leaders are all weighing in on these events, but they don’t seem to have the answers to a world in intense distress, and are rightly wondering:

What in the World is Going On?

In this series of Prophetic Briefs, Scott Webster addresses questions that are on people’s minds, and brings prophetic perspective to the events happening in the earth today, so that we can stand effectively in a day when so many things are falling apart.

View the first five episodes in the series “What in the World is Going On” at scottwebsterministries.org.

Building a Powerful Church to Thrive During a Time of Crisis - Part 15 Is There Such a Thing as a Bad Word from God? Part 3

I began working with a church nearly 10 years ago when it was in transition. The pastor who led the church into the transition eventually chose to leave the church as he felt God was leading him elsewhere, and there was also a massive renovation of next level leaders, including the appointment of a new Senior Pastor who has done an excellent job in the last decade. However, not everyone in the church agreed with the changes being made, and one guy decided he was a prophet who had to speak against the direction this church was going – which he did one day right in the middle of the new pastor’s message. He walked down to the front and “prophesied” against the pastor and the message he was in the process of delivering. He was corrected and stopped, and later was told that if he had concerns, a public forum on Sunday morning was not the place to deal with them. He left the church and to this day he can’t stand to have it spoken about in his presence. I’m sure this guy felt he was doing God a service but he has gotten bitter and hard, and it is clear that his self-appointed prophetic function was in fact an expression of personal opinion, fleshly interpretation of issues and really a reflection of a heart that was not processed correctly before the Lord.

of a heart that was not processed correctly before the Lord. When I heard about this

When I heard about this incident I wasn’t totally surprised, since I had worked with him and the leadership team he was a part of; the problem was that most of the guys on this leadership team were not deeply spiritual people and their placement on the team was inappropriate. During one of my visits a few years prior I gave a corporate word from the Lord to the church on Sunday morning, and that same evening I sat with the leadership team to discuss it. The Pastor / Senior Elder said a few words and then asked for comments from the leadership team, and for the next 90 minutes what I observed shocked me. Various ones wanted to know why their pet issues had not been addressed by God, others expressed disagreement with what was said or jumped ahead and began to debate how we would accomplish what was said.

The discussion was not reasoned or filled with deliberate and thoughtfully considered spiritual principles – it was riotous and carnal, filled with self- will and so verbally loud and disorganized that at one point the pastor had to raise his voice and say “everyone be quiet, I want to say something.” To my further shock the pastor told me afterwards “I’m really glad you were in that meeting so you could see the quality of my leaders and the lively debate process that characterizes our team.” That secondary leadership team was named the Leadership Assistance Council, and occasionally the new leaders

ISSUE 407 APRIL 13TH 2011 1 Kings 21:27 When Ahab heard these words, he tore
ISSUE 407
APRIL 13TH 2011
1 Kings 21:27
When Ahab heard these words,
he tore his clothes, put on
sackcloth and fasted. He lay in
sackcloth and went around
meekly. 28  en the word of the
LORD came to Elijah the
Tishbite: 29 "Have you noticed
how Ahab has humbled himself
before me? Because he has
humbled himself, I will not bring
this disaster in his day, but I will
bring it on his house in the days
of his son." (NIV)

and I joke that the team: a) was not made up of leaders b) provided no assistance and c) possessed no counsel (you have to laugh or else you will hold your head and cry!). We also joke that the acronym “LAC” was an appropriate naming. We were able to transition that church through excellent response of the new leaders, some of whom had been on the LAC team – there has been much spiritual labor and the help of the Holy Spirit, and the church now stands as one of the core structures in our network.

This incident was just one more example of a wrong view of the prophetic; these experiences – and they are many – are an attempt by darkness to stain the prophetic and pollute people’s minds in order to get them to reject the true voice of God that does bring adjustment, correction and occasionally rebuke. In addition to these bad experiences, there are associated issues and philosophies held by many which serve as the basis for a wrong belief that God could never speak a hard word to us: a) the demand for blessing in the church and b) humanistic standards.

e Demand for Blessing

We must deal with another issue which twists the context of prophetic operations, and that is the demand for blessing that exists within the wider church. Back in the early 1980s we didn’t start out trying to build a “bless me club”, but over a period of time people came to expect that they could get in a line to receive a good word from God. A big part of this was God restoring the prophetic to the church and personal prophecy was a predominant manifestation of that, but as I said it degenerated in many places to a carnal demand for blessing.

An extreme example, but true story, serves to illustrate this very well. A colleague of mine was traveling into churches and he had a heart to come alongside pastors and help them build the people under their care. At one church he spoke with the pastor before the service and asked him if there was anything he could teach that would strengthen the church at that particular time. The pastor refused to answer and just said “whatever you feel led to do” and the visiting prophet pressed him for an answer so it went back and forth several times. Finally the pastor became exasperated and declared: “Listen, I don’t care what you teach tonight. In fact, I don’t care if you get up and read names out of the phonebook for 45 minutes. As long as when you finish, you prophesy over every one of my people.” That context made it very difficult for a prophet to function correctly within the

God can speak “hard words” to us, but the true word of God is always intended for our good and it points us toward a redemptive process which brings us closer to Him. We have a right to reject the alleged prophetic words of those who are unseasoned or warped due to the distortion within their own heart, but we have no right to pick and choose from among what the Lord is actually saying and keep only what we evaluate as “good”. If Ahab the notoriously wicked king could receive a hard word from God and repent to the point that it got God’s attention, then every believer today should learn from these examples and open their heart to the voice of God – no matter what He says!

ISSUE 407

APRIL 13TH 2011

ISSUE 407 APRIL 13TH 2011 body of Christ, and the demand for blessing also manifests in

body of Christ, and the demand for blessing also manifests in a wrong view that God will only say positive things about a person, church, or nation; and that any other prophetic utterance is wrong.

Humanistic Standards

The second factor which supports the false premise that God could never speak a “hard word” to a believer is the imposing of a humanistic standard upon the church which wrongly connects love and acceptance to not being offensive because the most important thing is someone’s self-image. In this frame of mind there is almost a desperation for people not to feel badly about themselves and to know they are loved and accepted based on human affection.

I was running some errands with Kathy the other day and we passed two

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churches with sayings on the marquee. One said “It is important to be nice”, and a few miles down the road another one declared “It is better to light a flame than to curse the darkness.” Kathy and I drove along, talking about the philosophy behind the statements which clearly put a

premium on being positive, socially acceptable and only saying “nice” things. In the last newsletter we dealt with God cursing man and Elijah pronouncing death to Ahab, both of which were redemptive and filled with true love.

I guess neither God nor Elijah would be accepted into these churches, and I honestly wonder how churches like

this deal with parts of the Bible which are direct, straightforward and not “nice” by their definition. I guess they just ignore these parts and thereby twist the Word of God, presenting a false Christ that is similar to the twisted perception of God behind the man’s public rebuke of the pastor mentioned above. Darkness doesn’t really care how God gets twisted up in people’s minds, as long as they don’t find their way to the true God who brings life and redemption. Too angry and condemnatory or too nice and politically correct – either one works for satanic purposes.

The reason people feel that a prophetic word must only say “good things” is because the body of Christ generally is spiritually soft and non-governmental. This lack of correct spiritual government has produced realities which are killing the Church across the earth, including:

a) When leaders engage in gross sin they are swiftly forgiven because after all, who are we to judge. There is usually no public rebuke and no true process of the person moving back to correct relationship with God. The primary act of restoration is to get them back in ministry, when what is really required is to secure their relationship with God. It is not their gift that is most important; it is their soul and their eternal destiny.

b)People are unwilling to change because “God loves me just the way I am.” There are countless people who may be genuinely saved, but they are convinced that feeling loved is the most important thing. Therefore, the call to change is rejected as harsh and lacking acceptance. The problem with this is that the Word of God declares a changed person to be the primary indication of relationship with Christ (2 Cor 5:17, Mt 3:8, Jude 12), so this stance is unbiblical and it produces a very shallow church which lacks spiritual mass and which is completely unable to change the world around it because it is in largely the same spiritual condition they are.

ISSUE 407

APRIL 13TH 2011

c) Sin is generally not dealt with because it is not a “positive message” and rebuking people turns other people off. It is a sad reality that within scores of churches people live in blatant sin that is never dealt with correctly by leaders. Many (most) things can be dealt with privately and a public rebuke is only needed in occasional situations – but neither private or public measures are taken in numerous churches which simply refuse to confront those who impose their carnal lifestyles and thus rob the church of purity.

Example: How to Respond to a “Hard Word”

In 2007 a team of our prophets conducted personal ministry within a related church – these events are scheduled opportunities which have a follow-up process included so people know how to respond to the speaking of God. One man, a Secondary Leader in the church, had been saved about 7-8 years and radical changes had occurred in his life since that time. He and his wife had spent the previous 20+ years as professionals, and a few years before receiving this prophecy they sold the successful business they had built up, left their well established careers and moved geographically to be a part of this church.

Now, God was dealing with their internal development and the prophetic word hit strongly on that: “You built life to be safe. Your life was about being safe. And then God upset your nest, and He is making life for you unsafe. And that is God. Your life is meant to be unsafe. He said perilous times will come, unsafe times will come. And the solution is not to run away from the times - the solution is to find confidence in God. Your departure from your career and moving across the country is simply an outward sign of the radical transformation that is taking place inside. A lot of the stuff that served you in the former incarnation is not going to serve you in the same way now.”

His response to this word was very good and can serve as a practical example of how to respond to what some might call a “hard word”.

“When I heard the word unsafe, something crunched inside. I knew that meant insecurity, shakiness, some type of loss of what was previously built. I had a sense of dread. When I received this word I could identify with it very quickly and I had a sense of the safety we had built. It was what the world told us we should do – get a degree, make money, (the more the better), save for the future, plan on retirement – it was considered the responsible thing to do. When God spoke these things to me I had a realization that I had not built the right foundation, and I knew my world was going to be turned upside down.

Many things became “unsafe”: finances, job, demand in areas never touched before (leadership, marriage, serving). Yet I see change inside of me, I see greater understanding of God and what He considers maturity. There is a component of liberation inside of all this. I look back and think about how worldly safe everything used to be. I also see how easily shaken it all was, and that I stand in a position of much greater strength and solidity because my confidence in Him has grown.

I had no idea the extent of this word, I just knew it was not going to be easy. At the same time I heard the redeeming side, or the purpose behind these words….i.e. what God was after…“the solution will be finding confidence in God”. What I could not have imagined was the process that lay ahead. After 4 years, I have sight of what confidence in God looks like and feels like. I am still in the midst of this word, but I see what it has done and how a word has power to be long lasting; it does not depart until it has accomplished what it was purposed for.

The example of our brother – shared with his permission – and his excellent response to the word of the Lord reinforces the premise that there is no such thing as a bad word from God. If it truly comes from the Lord it is filled with life, even if it is Jeremiah declaring captivity to Israel or Elijah prophesying death to Ahab. God is redemptive at His core and His speaking is designed to bring people to a place of correct standing before Him. People have to be taught and led into a correct posture from which to hear God. It is a time of God speaking in the earth, and we MUST correctly hear Him and respond appropriately!!

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2778 Cumberland Blvd Suite 163 Symrna GA 30080 Tel: 678.302.3052

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Releasing The New Prophetic Dimension • Activating The Capacity To Build • Obeying The Command To Finish