Friday, November 15, 2013

Prophecy - Another Form of American Entertainment

I Pet.4: But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. 

One of the most overt manifestation of the hypocrisy and hollow wind within the church is the evangelical construct of studying prophecy. Imagine a family attends a certain evangelical church which is hosting a prophecy conference with special music and a few noted speakers who have written books and sell CDs and are considered experts on prophecy. The family prepares themselves, gets into their cars, and heads for church. They do not pray or fast together in order to beseech the Spirit to use the conference to change them. They just like all the rest are somewhat excited about hearing exciting theories about the sign of the times and the return of Christ.

So this family arrives at the church and follows the parking attendant’s instructions about where to park their cars. As they walk to the front door they greet friends and fellow members and they find some good seats inside. People are chit chatting about this or that and there is a low grade noise of conversation. At the set hour the pastor welcomes everyone and recognizes visitors and asks them to fill out cards later. The music begins. The speakers present all kinds of what if theories which are very interesting and even thought provoking. An invitation is given and then the service ends. There are many materials on sale written by the speakers.

This family drives home and fixes something to eat in the kitchen and some watch some television in the living room while the teenage kids retire to their own rooms. The next day they all get up and do what they always do on a Tuesday morning. There is nothing special and no change in their lives and only a quickly fading mention of the meeting. And the church maintenance crew readies the auditorium for Sunday morning just as they do every week. No call for fasting; no solemn assembly; no prayer meetings; nothing out of the ordinary.

So as we consider that narrative which is representative of many thousands each year, what are we to make of such a thing? What are we to think when professing believers gather to hear about the soon return of Christ complete with all kinds of signs and events that prove His imminent return and yet people go on living their lives just as they had before? We must conclude that these prophetic teachings are nothing more than Biblical curiosities which believers do not really believe. They provide some ecclesiastical entertainment but no authentic metamorphosis within the body of Christ.

The lip service many professing believers give about “hopefully Jesus will come soon” is another overt sign of our ignorance about what is going to happen when He does actually come as well as being completely ignorant of the condition of the church today. It would be like children who have wrecked the house and disobeyed all the instructions given to them before their parents left but yet as they stand amidst the wreckage they proclaim how they are looking forward to their parent’s return. And without an uncommon passion for the lost that hope for His return is self serving and without a real compassion for those who incur His wrath. Like everything else in this hedonistic culture the voicing of “I hope Jesus comes soon” is filled with a desire to escape any suffering and persecution, and it is more about arriving to a state of bliss rather than being in Christ’s glorious presence.

And at the heart of evangelical prophecy is an obsession with Israel or Zionism which is self righteousness and the overt suggestion that you are on God's side. And when you believe and operate from that perspective then it creates a space in which everything Israel does is approved by God. And although men like Hagee state it openly, much of evangelicalism seems to believe that unbelieving Jews who are antagonistic toward Christ are still favored by God. And the entire theological construct is as most other forms of error that are an amalgam of certain Old Testament passages and certain New Testament passages. For the record I cannot deny that there seems to be hints that there may be an end time gathering of many Jews although that cannot be honestly connected with the secular state called Israel. 

And that theology provides an atmosphere of illogical competitiveness which not only suggests that Israel has carte blanche with God, but that America is "blessed" economically because of its support of Israel. To champion a cause is a thrilling mainstay of the fallen American mindset, and Israel along with a created narrative scratches that mindset just where it itches. It is quite amazing that the same men who hook their wagons to the "reformers" reject their view of Israel and the Jews. Jesus said there will be no sign given except that which mirrors Jonah's experience and yet how many evangelicals believe that 1948 was THE sign of all signs?

It is interesting to note that after 1948 the evangelical community taught with conviction that within 40 years ( a generation) Christ would return. And after 40 years had passed self proclaimed prophetic experts began to create new theories. Next year's blood moons is the latest fad. But it is all just conjecture and fleshly titillation. Perhaps Jesus will return next year. But when will we know people really believe Jesus is coming back at a certain year? When believers are literally consumed with Christ in such a way that the secular news cannot help but report the odd and curious way millions of people are emptying their bank accounts, praying for hours each day, and flooding the streets with their witness. And when church houses are having prayer services throughout the week and preachers are losing weight and looking somewhat spent because they are fasting often and praying into the night watches then we might believe that at least they believe Jesus is coming soon.

Until then prophecy is little more than evangelical water cooler noise which has as much affect upon our lives as guessing who will win the Super Bowl this year.


Anonymous said...

It's true.

I had heard that an OT generation was 40 to 80 years. But, that could be a new claim by someone who has an interest in writing more books on the subject. We can hardly trust anyone anymore when it comes to famous bible teachers or self-claimed prophets or prophetic ministries. There's always a $ sign trailing them. It's sad, but here we are in this day. That in itself, is a fulfilled prophecy.


Cherie c. said...

Perhaps what you say is true. No, I will come right out and say it, you are correct in your post. Prophecy has become the new money maker. But... if it wasn't for that prophecy conference at my old church, I would not be in my walk that I am today.

Like you with Billy Graham, my life changed that day. Most Christians would say for the worst, but even with what I deal with, I am blessed.

For the longest time I was afraid to read Revelation. Why? Because I wasn't really regenerated.

I thought I was saved, tried to live right, but I wasn't at all and through that two day conference, I was saved, and I thank God for that.

It has been three and a half years of struggle, and correction, and joy, and tears, and loneliness, and isolation, and love like I have never had before in my life, and I wouldn't trade my life now for all the world or the American Christian's version of "my best life now".

Psalm 119:143
Trouble and anguish have taken hold on me: yet thy commandments are my delights.

The Spirit has turned my household upside down and to God be the Glory. When the Spirit fills you, you become a different person. When my family looks at me, and talks with me, and sees the change in my life, it confuses them, angers them, and I think convicts them. How? Not by me. The Word has never been opened this much in my household in all the years we claimed to be Christian. As best as I can I am living the life the bible teaches, and of course I need to do better, more prayer and fasting, but the desire to do so is there like never before. I am not who I was even three years ago. And although I want Jesus to return, it is my hope, I still hope and pray that my family and all those I know turn around because once He does return, it will not be to save but to judge.

So you see Pastor Rick, I believe what you say is correct, but God used a construct to reach me and I am grateful for that. I helped Mrs. DeYoung sell the CDs and books and other materials. But as my interest in the DeYoung ministry continued after that conference, I soon learned that he is in error, such error that even he says he might face judgment on it. The wrath of God is what I fear most, not people. And as my walk continues, the changes the Lord brings to my life continue. I am in the process of leaving the occupation I spent thousands to be credentialed in and reduce my presence in the secular world as the world describes I should be in it. I still strive to serve the Lord and will do so in the role He put me in. Teaching younger women about the true Word of God as it pertains to our role in this life. I have been a professional woman for years, my children have suffered through it and I can see when I look back, the carnage from it, why? Because of Christmas, to please others, to survive. I left home when I was 17 with my pregnant twin sister to escape my father. Someone had to support her and someone had to protect her. That job was mine since we were old enough to speak. I am not great, in fact I was angry with her a lot because of the situation she was in, but she still had to be cared for. So that "survival" mode stuck with me. Now, I so repentant of it. The ifs come from time to time, but I must work with what I have now.

My older son is talking to me again and I take as much opportunity to speak the Lord to him as he permits. But I do it anyway knowing that he might shut me out again, but someone has to do it in this household, and well, that falls to me. Any progress in this area is all the Lord's and I am blessed to do it.

Cherie c. said...

I will never forget that conference when I opened up the book, The Revelation of Jesus Christ and was born again. The Word became life that hour and ever since it hasn't stopped. Praise God for His Mercy and Grace, without it I would perish.

Has prophecy been the new in vogue topic of the visible church, yes, to the shame of those who use it that way. But prophecy has changed my life, and saved it too. The Gospel saves many, but the Revelation of Jesus Christ opened my eyes and the Gospel gave me hope. How odd to some it would be, to look back at three ahd a half years and see the struggle and say to me, "you consider that a blessing?" Absolutely. If what I live with is the worst persecution I ever receive, then it is a gift from God that I certainly do not deserve and those brothers and sisters in prison deserve so much more of a place in Glory. I will be happy with the hem of His garment or the crumbs on the ground.

To borrow a phrase from Dr. DeYoung, "keep looking up....until"

I would like to add, keep looking up, repent, and be in the Word and prayer....until.

Psalm 22:19
But be not thou far from me, O Lord: O my strength, haste thee to help me.

Psalm 27:9
Hide not thy face far from me; put not thy servant away in anger: thou hast been my help; leave me not, neither forsake me, O God of my salvation.

Psalm 28:7
The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.

The Book of Revelation

1 The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him, to shew unto his servants things which must shortly come to pass; and he sent and signified it by his angel unto his servant John:

2 Who bare record of the word of God, and of the testimony of Jesus Christ, and of all things that he saw.

3 Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

Even so, come, Lord Jesus

your sister in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Rick Frueh said...

Yes, Cherie, thank God He uses almost everything He can to draw us to Christ!

Cherie c. said...

Pastor, I do not want to detract from you post, it is so vital to know what is happening with prophecy today, but this can also be an opportunity to teach, don't you agree? Well, the passages of Revelation have also been grossly misused, misrepresented, misinterpreted so I have a question. The next verse in Revelation where the Word speaks of the seven spirits before God; what are the seven spirits? Are they spoken of anywhere else in the Word? This verse particular I have heard and read things as to its interpretation and the way it is presented does not sit right with me. I have no idea what this passage is referring to, but the way I have seen it presented is not correct either.

If you cannot at this time, perhaps another. Again, I do not want to detract from the importance of this post.

your sister in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Anonymous said...

This is possibly the weakest article I have ever read by Rick Frueh. The Lord wants us to be interested in prophecy. When are you going to accept His challenge?



Rick Frueh said...

This post is not about minimizing prophetic portions of Scripture. It is about the church's lack of corresponding action and passion when we consider the profound implications of prophecy. If you believe that Jesus is coming soon then why is your life not a dramatic epistle which dramatically conflicts on every level to this hedonistic culture. prophecy is now just a doctrinal curiosity that which does not interfere with our settled lives.

Shannon said...

We need to understand what the word "generation" means from the original Greek it was written in.

*In Greek, it only means one thing, it means a race of people, a kind of people, a type of people who have been generated. It is the Jewish people, the Hebrew race of people.

In context, for example, what does the word "generation" mean in these verses?:

Matthew 24:34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
Luke 11:29 And when the people were gathered thick together, he began to say, This is an evil generation: they seek a sign; and there shall no sign be given it, but the sign of Jonas the prophet.
Mark 8:12 And he sighed deeply in his spirit, and saith, Why doth this generation seek after a sign? verily I say unto you, There shall no sign be given unto this generation.
Acts 2:40 And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.

Shannon said...

Notice verse 30 the word "generation" defined as "race" of people, in context:

Mark 13:5-37
And Jesus answering them began to say, Take heed lest any man deceive you
Mark 13:6
For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
And when ye shall hear of wars and rumors of wars, be ye not troubled:for such things must needs be; but the end shall not be yet.
For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom:and there shall be earthquakes in divers places, and there shall be famines and troubles:these are the beginnings of sorrows.
But take heed to yourselves:for they shall deliver you up to councils; and in the synagogues ye shall be beaten:and ye shall be brought before rulers and kings for my sake, for a testimony against them.
And the gospel must first be published among all nations.
But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate:but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye:for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.
Now the brother shall betray the brother to death, and the father the son; and children shall rise up against their parents, and shall cause them to be put to death.
And ye shall be hated of all men for my name's sake:but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.
But when ye shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing where it ought not, (let him that reads understand,) then let them that be in Judea flee to the mountains:
And let him that is on the housetop not go down into the house, neither enter therein, to take any thing out of his house:
Mark 13:16
And let him that is in the field not turn back again for to take up his garment.
But woe to them that are with child, and to them that give suck in those days!
And pray ye that your flight be not in the winter.
For in those days shall be affliction, such as was not from the beginning of the creation which God created unto this time, neither shall be.
And except that the Lord had shortened those days, no flesh should be saved:but for the elect's sake, whom he hath chosen, he hath shortened the days.
And then if any man shall say to you, Lo, here is Christ; or, lo, he is there; believe him not:
For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.
But take ye heed:behold, I have foretold you all things.
But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light,
And the stars of heaven shall fall, and the powers that are in heaven shall be shaken.
Mark 13:26
And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.
And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.
Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and puts forth leaves, ye know that summer is near:
So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors.
VERSE 30: Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done.
Heaven and earth shall pass away:but my words shall not pass away.
But of that day and that hour knows no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.
Take ye heed, watch and pray:for ye know not when the time is.
For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch.
Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house comes, at even, or at midnight, or at the cock-crowing, or in the morning:
Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping.
And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.


Shannon said...

Note verse 34 the word "generation" defined as "race" of people, in context:

Matthew 24:32 Now learn the parable from the fig tree: when its branch has already become tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near;
Matthew 24:33 so, you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, right at the door.
Matthew 24:34 Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.
Matthew 24:35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.

Rick Frueh said...

This is NOT a post about [prophecy. It is about how the church can toss it around without be considered fanatics in life. It amazes me how people can read my posts and go right into their own doctrinal mantra. I will now delete all those kinds of comments. I give wide latitude with comments but I will notice repeat offenders.

Shannon said...

Think you are misunderstanding me.
I am in complete agreement with you. My point is that people are "fanatical" about prophecy, for instance, because they do NOT have proper understanding of the Word of God, in proper context.
Doctrine is very important is it not? The Word of God is a Book of Doctrine! But there is only ONE Doctrine which is True Doctrine.
As 1 Timothy 6:3 states "If anyone advocates a different doctrine and does not agree with sound words, those of our Lord Jesus Christ, and with the doctrine conforming to godliness,"
there are many different doctrines and different gospels, Galatians 1:6,9

Anonymous said...

Prophecy is Christ , He's the revelation , He's the Promise
Of Our God the Father,the Holy Spirit gives light to His bond servants , he grants us ears to hear what he is saying to the churches, to come out, repent, obey, He desires Over comers, by The Blood Of The Lamb,
Word of our testimony, love not our live unto death
Christ defeated satan on Calvary, , daily we have the privilege to execute His Victory He won by taking up our cross daily, and we too can over come as He .
The sequence of events to come don't interest me anymore, signs , from the weak to the strong, great or small, stumbling and bumbling we are at times
He's faithful, let us remain in Him and when He comes we will not draw away, Bless You Lord Jesus

Rick Frueh said...

Yes, anonymous. If we need signs to love and serve the Lord Jesus than our faith is very small.

Anonymous said...

Cherie, when we learn about the perfection of Lord Jesus' spirit we see that He has the seven spirits and as we love God He blesses us with these very same spirits so that we can bring Him great glory.

Isaiah 11

1 And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse, and a Branch shall grow out of his roots:

2 And the spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear (reverence) of the LORD;

God bless you!


michael said...

Well Rick, I for one see the irony of your post, or at least I think so?

The irony is the stated purpose for prophecy is to accomplish the Will of God in a world bearing a fruit that is not God's Will but rather the will of God's enemies. The gifts of the Spirit are to separate from the unbelieving making us easy targets because we are now His light shining out of a darkened evil world!

I'll quote two portions from Scripture, one from Psalms first, which seems to me is dull and not thought about much precisely because we do not see the second portion of Scriptures I'll quote from, from Romans, are actively at work today in most Christian gatherings.

From Psalms:

Hear my prayer, O Lord; give ear to my pleas for mercy! In your faithfulness answer me, in your righteousness! Enter not into judgment with your servant, for no one living is righteous before you. For the enemy has pursued my soul; he has crushed my life to the ground; he has made me sit in darkness like those long dead. Therefore my spirit faints within me; my heart within me is appalled. I remember the days of old; I meditate on all that you have done; I ponder the work of your hands. I stretch out my hands to you; my soul thirsts for you like a parched land. Selah Answer me quickly, O Lord ! My spirit fails! Hide not your face from me, lest I be like those who go down to the pit. Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul. Deliver me from my enemies, O Lord ! I have fled to you for refuge. Teach me to do your will, for you are my God! Let your good Spirit lead me on level ground! For your name’s sake, O Lord, preserve my life! In your righteousness bring my soul out of trouble! And in your steadfast love you will cut off my enemies, and you will destroy all the adversaries of my soul, for I am your servant. (Psalm 143:1-12 ESV)

Now instead, as I have seen among fellowships across the nations I've been to, rarely is there a gathering to lift up in full accord and one voice a heart cry to Heaven for the Spirit to lead us from our will to His Will thereby seeking the destruction of the adversaries of our soul!


michael said...

Here's the second portion from Romans:

For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads, with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, with cheerfulness. Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:3-21 ESV)

We are being dumbed down by the false church to the effectual Grace and Power that backs us up daily when we rise up and are led by the Spirit's power not the Will of man!

I believe the charade is about to be exposed by the Might and Power of God as He moves upon the hearts of nations and men setting people's hearts on fire with the Glory of Christ!

Cherie c said...

James, thank you for your effort, but I still don't understand who or what the seven spirits are.

Anonymous said...

Lord Jesus is blessed with the fullness of wisdom, understanding, counsel, might, knowledge and the fear or reverence of the Lord. His Spirit is the Spirit of the Lord and He desires us to thank, praise and worship Him for being a gracious giver of these attributes of God.



Kelli Baker said...

Hi Cherie
Hope this helps:

Revelation 1:4
John to the seven churches which are in Asia:Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne;

Revelation 4:5
And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices:and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
Revelation 5:6
And I beheld, and, lo, in the midst of the throne and of the four beasts, and in the midst of the elders, stood a Lamb as it had been slain, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven Spirits of God sent forth into all the earth.

Seven-fold Spirit
Eyes of God

Zechariah 4:10
For who hath despised the day of small things?
for they shall rejoice, and shall see the plummet in the hand of Zerubbabel with those seven;
they are the eyes of the Lord, which run to and fro through the whole earth.
(seven eyes of Christ)

Cherie c. said...

So, the seven spirits are eyes?

I'm trying here, really. Just not getting it. =/

Sorry. Perhaps there is mention of it in another area of the Word?

Thanks for the help.

your sister in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Kelli Baker said...

Hi Cherie,
I sent you an email in which I think will help you in the seven Spirits explanation.

In Him,

Cherie c. said...


I checked and there is not email. Where did you send it?

your sister in Christ Jesus,
Cherie c.

Kelli Baker said...

Hi Cherie,
I sent it to:

Is that correct? I could resend my email.


Cherie c. said...

=D you left out the c. Thanks.

Kelli Baker said...

Sorry left out the "c" as I didn't "c" it. Where are my glasses? lol