Saturday, April 11, 2009

"O My People!!"

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8).

The conference was well under way into its third night, with over three thousand in attendance. The worship on this particular evening was rich with a growing sense of God's presence and power. Each song seemed to lift us higher and higher into another realm, until a moment came that was exceptionally memorable.

A holy stillness settled upon the congregation, and a profound silence filled the great room. We stood there filled with such a deep sense of God's presence, waiting for whatever was to happen next. Then suddenly, some sad soul belted out a “prophecy” that was miles off the mark in every way imaginable.

“O My people,” he shouted out in anger, “How long must I bear with you? You draw near with your mouths, but your hearts are far from Me! O, I detest the sound of your music and the noise of your songs! Know ye, therefore that if thou dost not repent, and that right early, I shall surely smite thee with the sword…..yea verily!” (I suppose the King James inflections were added to make it sound more like the Lord.)

Well, as you might imagine, the mood in the room shifted immediately. We went from being a gathering of God-adoring worshippers to a sand-blasted community of bewildered believers…..contemplating murder.

I came so very close to standing up on my chair and shouting out, “Thus says the Lord, ‘That was not Me!’”

According to Scripture the gift of prophecy is to serve the express purpose of helping others grow in grace, by encouraging them and comforting them. This fog-horn of a fellow did nothing of the sort.

Tomorrow, I’ll tell you why.


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