15 Then Jeremiah the prophet said to Hananiah the prophet, “Listen now, Hananiah, the Lord has not sent you, and you have made this people trust in a lie. 16 Therefore thus says the Lord, ‘Behold, I am about to remove you from the face of the earth. This year you are going to die, because you have counseled rebellion against the Lord.’” 17 So Hananiah the prophet died in the same year in the seventh month.
Jeremiah 28:15-17 NASB
For all sakes and purposes, Hananiah looked and said things that would make people think he was a real prophet of God. The problem though, is that he was not anything of the sort.
Although we are not sure of his true motivation (money, power, fame), when someone speaks in the name of the Lord…”thus says the Lord,” we should never take it lightly.
What he claimed never came true. And although Jeremiah prophesied correctly that he would die that year, this false prophet did a lot of damage. Jeremiah said he made the people trust in a lie and counseled rebellion against God!
If you were living in Jeremiah’s day, could you tell which prophet was the true prophet of God? Would you want to follow Hananiah because he prophesied a positive message? Or, would you see the world around you, know enough of the Word of God, put into effect spiritual discernment and know that Jeremiah was the true prophet of God?
What is different today? Some things never change. You can look out towards the Church today and see all kinds of “messages” being portrayed. Which one is correct?
In order to discern correctly, you need to know God’s Word. It is our standard! The Bible is His Word to us. You can imagine like Jesus is across the table taking to you as you read it. That’s how much you should understand that it is His Word.
Our problem today is that no one really reads their Bible. They don’t know the Word of God. They rather watch a movie, watch a YouTube video, listen to a song that touches them or live their spiritual life dependent on social media memes. I will tell you, there is no substitute for knowing the Word of God.
Make a plan to read the Word and stick to it! We have so many resources available to us today that people just a few years ago would have loved to have!
Your ability to discern false prophets, false religion, false anything that says “thus says the Lord,” is dependent on your knowledge of the Word and being led by the Holy Spirit.
Are the things of God important enough to you?
Lord, help us to read, study and know Your Word like never before. Give us a love and hunger for Your Word that is unsatisfied. Help Your Word come alive in us. And help us, through the Holy Spirit, under what You are saying to us in this time, the time in which we live.