We have carried some things into the new year. I like what someone posted this meme recently.
It kind of says it all huh.
One of the issues that has carried over is one I would like to spend some time on. Part of the chaos that was 2020 was dealing with the constant rumors of what might happen, how the unknown brought about fear and the false prophets out there that become internet famous or as I have heard Mikalyn say, “Instafamous”.
Already in 2021 there has been a video circulating about the threat of Martial Law. This one was a pastor in Texas that came out Sunday at some point. The pastor, Wade McKinney told that Martial Law was imminent and how he had sources that had told him this was going to happen by Tuesday, and we all needed to get supplies and get ready.
This is much like the video by Pastor Dana Coverstone from last year where he shared about his dreams of destruction of America in December of last year.
Now, as a pastor and one who seeks to be a student of the Bible, I am not writing to tear down these men nor judge their hearts, their callings or even their intentions. I promise. That is up to God alone and the Bible is truly clear I am not to touch God’s anointed.
But I do want to speak the truth in love and give Bible that will help us not to be afraid and speak into what they have said and others like them.
Because fear is real right now. And these men in my estimation are spreading fear like grass seed on a spring lawn. What makes it worse, they get people scared and running around and the things they have said have not even come to pass and that makes what they said a false prophesy. I cannot tell you how many of folks I know who love Jesus and believe in Jesus shared Pastor Wade’s video and others text me or sent me the link to watch.
And I do not fault anyone. To be honest I started watching it and I finally said, wait a minute, why am I watching this knowing that fear was beginning to rise in me.
It happens to us all!!
Then, there is the rumors about not taking the vaccine because it might be laced with some type of material that will trace your location and the Gov't can track you. Let me help you just a second on that one. That little devise you hold in your hand, if the Gov't wanted to track you, they would just use that, they don't need a vaccine. Plus, most of us are not on a Gov't watch list. That I know of! = )
These are just a few, there are many, many, many more!!
Again, more fear.
Plus, it does not help when we see people storm the Capital of these United States, watch the President be impeached again, added with the rise in more COVID-19 cases and they keep getting closer to home.
In our humanity, fear is our default. God created us with the ability to fear, but as a defense when faced with danger, the fight or flight effect.
But when fear becomes more and we lose sleep, we can't shut our mind down, when we become paralyzed about the unknown and the things we don't understand. Fear is not about defense at that point. No, it then leads only to depression, discouragement and destruction.
(I know you are glad you clicked the link, but please hang on, the good is coming, promise!)
And when we hear something or see something it can make our heart shake and we can get caught up in the waves of over informed and false information and we are tossed around like a forgotten float in the ocean waves.
The Bible tells us this can happen.
Acts 15 gives us an example. The gentile believers were hearing false teaching and given an agenda that told them they were not worthy to be saved if they were not circumcised and it really caused them trouble in their hearts.
“Because we have heard that some without our authorization went out from us and troubled you with their words and unsettled your hearts,” Acts 14:24
In other words, some went out and took their words and made it the gospel and because it was contrary to what they had been taught by Paul, it troubled them, and unsettled their hearts!
Look at how the original Greek translates this verse (I do not know Greek mind you, but there is an App for that), “In view of the fact that we heard that certain ones of our number perplexed and disturbed you with words, throwing your souls into confusion,”
Souls into confusion!! It really messed with them. These words speak of moving around the furniture in a house to the point of dismantling a house and causing great confusion.
Does that hit home with anyone, it sure does me. For them it was well meaning people giving their agenda and not really having the authority to do so. For us, it can be something we read, see, or watch.
I confess I have felt these same emotions at times, and I am almost positive some of you have as well.
What are we to do with the rumors, the fears and the false prophesies?
For me, all week I have ciphered and investigated God’s word, and I want to share a few thoughts from God’s word and then some practical things we can do as well.
These are not meant to bring shame or condemnation but encouragement and to bring the light of the gospel and speak the truth, knowing the truth will set us free from fear, doubt, and confusion. But will also give us strength and an anchor for our soul so we are not tossed about.
1. Let the Truth be your guide, His word is Truth. This is exactly what Ephesians 4:14-15 tells us to do. Look at several different translations of these verses.
Ø Then we will no longer be little children, tossed by the waves and blown around by every wind of teaching, by human cunning with cleverness in the techniques of deceit. But speaking the truth in love, let us grow in every way into Him who is the head —Christ. HCSB
Ø Then we will no longer be immature like children. We will not be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever, they sound like the truth. 15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. NLT
Ø So then, we may no longer be children, tossed [like ships] to and fro between chance gusts of teaching and wavering with every changing wind of doctrine, [the prey of] the cunning and cleverness of unscrupulous men, [gamblers engaged] in every shifting form of trickery in inventing errors to mislead.
Rather, let our lives lovingly express truth [in all things, speaking truly, dealing truly, living truly]. Enfolded in love, let us grow up in every way and in all things into Him Who is the Head, [even] Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). AMP
I love how the AMP Bible puts it – express truth in all things, speaking truth and dealing truly and living truly. In other words, let our lives be guided by the truth. Paul says, if we do not, we are tossed around like a ship in storm. But, when we live by truth, we have an anchor to the soul.
2. How then do we apply this in our lives when it comes rumors, fears, and false prophesies?
Let me share a few thoughts.
· When you hear, read, or watch something that brings some concern and fear and it is something that could be real or life changing like Pastor Wade’s claim and Pastor Dana’s dreams, before you share it or let fear grip you – take the claims to God’s word. What is the truth? What is God saying about it?
· For instance, Pastor Dana, when looked at from the Bible, did not line up with Matthew 24-25 or the book of Revelation about the future events.
· Pastor Wade shared he had gov’t sources and quoted them and gave all these supposed details. However, you know what he did not do, at least for the 10 minutes I watched him, he never gave a single Bible passage or Bible verse to back up what He was saying. If I or anyone else tells you something is going to happen, or they heard from God – there better be some truth to back it up. Check everyone, including me, by God's word!!
· If God does speak to someone, it will also go along with the Bible never against it. In other words, I hear what you are saying, but what does the Bible say.
3. Jesus said there would be many rumors and false prophets in the end. We must again, look to Jesus and His word when they come.
Jesus said in Matthew 24, “Watch out that no one deceives you. 5 For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and they will deceive many. 6 You are going to hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, because these things must take place, but the end is not yet. 7 For nation will rise up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these events are the beginning of birth pains
11 Many false prophets will rise up and deceive many.
23 “If anyone tells you then, ‘Look, here is the Messiah!’ or, ‘Over here!’ do not believe it! 24 False messiahs and false prophets will arise and perform great signs and wonders to lead astray, if possible, even the elect. 25 Take note: I have told you in advance. 26 So if they tell you, ‘Look, He’s in the wilderness!’ don’t go out; ‘Look, He’s in the inner rooms!’ do not believe it.
· We must expect these things. But we must not fall prey to them. Again, take everything to the word of God before anything else.
· Plus, do not be fearful that we see these things happening, be encouraged, Jesus is coming soon!!
4. 1 John tells us we are to test the spirits to see if they be of God or not. One of the ways we can do that is go by the test laid out in scripture to see if a prophet is speaking from God or not.
It is found in Deuteronomy 18:21-22. It reads, You may say to yourself, ‘How can we recognize a message the LORD has not spoken?’ When a prophet speaks in the LORD’s name, and the message does not come true or is not fulfilled, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him. HCSB
But you may wonder, ‘How will we know whether or not a prophecy is from the LORD?’ If the prophet speaks in the LORD’s name but his prediction does not happen or come true, you will know that the LORD did not give that message. That prophet has spoken without my authority and need not be feared. NLT
In other words, God gives us a test to go by. And if they do not line up with God’s word, then we are not to be afraid!! Let me lay it out in simple terms.
1. He must speak in the Name of the Lord, not another God.
2. His message must be in accord with God’s revealed truth in scripture
3. His predictions of future events must come true exactly as predicted.
And when this are not met, we need not be afraid!! Amen, what a great word.
Let’s look at the two I have mentioned. The Martial Law was to go into effect Tuesday. It is Friday, it has not happened. And all that was told what would happen in December, did not. Therefore, we do not have to fear!
Please know I am not saying these men and others like them do not have good intentions and are sincere in what they are sharing. But, again, does it back up with this right here and does it back up with scripture. If not, do not be afraid!
Now there are true false prophets that do have an evil agenda and that is to subvert the word of God and tear down Jesus. I did not sense that in these men, I just think they got led astray in their passion and seeking to help they ended up confusing and causing fear.
5. Practical Things we can do to help our fears in what we see, hear or watch.
Ø Make sure you are spending time in God’s word every day. Before you click on social media, open God’s word. His word is truth, and we need to be anchored in truth as we face these uncertain times.
Ø Pray. Bring your fears and worries to Jesus. Ask Him to give your courage, wisdom, and discernment of the times we are in.
Ø Maybe for a season, limit what you see and watch on TV News or on social media. Keep enjoying your families and friends posts and post some stuff of your own and let it be lighthearted or things that encourage. But stay clear of videos or those who have a “word from the Lord” or have it on good authority. Again, I do not mean any disrespect to Pastor Wade, but so many believed him, and his video is shot in his truck and he can’t give you a single name, just unnamed sources. You can stop fear in its track if you do not give it place.
Ø Stay informed yes, but do not get caught going down every rabbit hole or keeping your TV on the news 24/7. Its good to watch some Andy Griffin, Wheel of Fortune, and Family Feud. At least that is our line up most nights!! =)
Ø Trust the Lord above all. Isaiah 12 has sustained me in this season. It is a good reminder when fear grips us with the unknown. It says to us, “I will trust the Lord and not be afraid. The Lord is my salvation, my song and my strength!”
In these days, let us all lean into Jesus. Trust in His nail scarred hands. Know that many of the things that are happening, Jesus has said they must happen. So, stay in His word, stay on your knees, keep serving and begin looking up, because the more of these things that happen, the closer we get to Jesus coming back and taking us home with Him.
Get ready Child of God. Do not be afraid, soon our redemption draweth nigh. Until that time, let us bring every fear, every rumor and every prophesy to Jesus and His word and find comfort and peace to settle our unsettled heart.
Hope this helps.
Love you all.