Supernatural Biblical Guidance 7
Recognizing Holy Spirit Inspired Prophecy

by Pastor John Hamel

“And the next day we that were of Paul's company departed, and came unto Caesarea: and we entered into the house of Philip the evangelist, which was one of the seven; and abode with him.  And the same man had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy.  And as we tarried there many days, there came down from Judaea a certain prophet, named Agabus.  And when he was come unto us, he took Paul's girdle, and bound his own hands and feet, and said, Thus saith the Holy Ghost, So shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man that owneth this girdle, and shall deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.  

"And when we heard these things, both we, and they of that place, besought him not to go up to Jerusalem.  Then Paul answered, What mean ye to weep and to break mine heart? for I am ready not to be bound only, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.  And when he would not be persuaded, we ceased, saying, The will of the Lord be done.” (Acts 21:8-14)

We have been studying supernatural Biblical guidance.  Recently we have studied dreams and visions.  Much of what we shared about dreams applies to visions and vice versa. 


In this lesson we will study supernatural Biblical prophecy and guidance.  


Prophecy is a completely different manifestation of the Holy Spirit.  We will uncover the Scriptural ways to discern whether or not a prophecy has come forth by the Holy Spirit.  


This study, like all of our other studies in this series, is not exhaustive but merely suggestive.  We are giving you a foundation to build upon during your own personal study time.


Notice in our text Scripture that Philip “had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy.”  There is no indication in the Scripture that any of Philip’s four daughters stood in the Office of the Prophet or Prophetess.  No doubt, Philip’s four daughters operated in the simple Gift of Prophecy.  There was no prediction when these women prophesied.  They simply spoke for the express purpose of edifying, exhorting and comforting the Body. (1Corinthians 14:3) 


On the other hand, we find in verse ten that a certain Prophet named Agabus came and prophesied, or predicted, what would happen to Paul at Jerusalem.  The Scripture reveals that Agabus stood in the Office of the Prophet.  The simple Gift of Prophecy and the Ministry of the Prophet are two separate operations of the Holy Spirit.  Some people have a tendency to believe that the two operations are the same when they are not. 


First Corinthians 14:1 reveals that all Believers should desire to prophesy.  Yet, in First Corinthians 12:29 it is revealed that all cannot be Prophets.  The Holy Spirit in Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians is not telling the entire Body of Christ to seek something they cannot have.  Neither is He contradicting Himself.  The Holy Spirit is referring to two separate operations or manifestations.  Just because God uses someone in the simple Gift of Prophecy, it does not mean that individual is a Prophet.  You must have a very consistent, very regular manifestation of the Revelation Gifts in operation in order to stand in the Office of the Prophet


Some individuals who operate in the simple Gift of Prophecy, after hearing a Prophet operate in the Revelation Gifts, decide, “Wow, I prophesy, I can do that, too!”  They end up giving false guidance that did not come from the Holy Spirit, destroying good Christian people who did not have enough knowledge of Scripture to not listen to such foolishness.  The simple Gift of Prophecy does not give you the authority to go around telling people God’s will for their lives.  You could end up dying prematurely stepping into an office that you are not called to.  King Saul stepped into an office he was not called to, the Prophet’s Office, and it cost him his kingdom, his life and his sons’ lives.  (1Samuel 13:1-14; 31:1-13)  Just because you operate in the simple Gift of Prophecy it does not mean that you can predict future events, as the Prophet Agabus did.  It simply means that you can encourage people through supernatural utterance in the same way Philip’s daughters did.


We will specifically focus in this lesson on how to discern whether a prophecy is inspired of the Holy Spirit when it comes through the Office of a Prophet.  Prophets are imperfect human beings.  The Gifts of the Spirit are perfect Gifts manifesting through imperfect people.  Prophets can make mistakes just like anyone else.  This is why we continue to stress the importance of developing a strong knowledge of God’s written Word and a strong sensitivity to the inner witness


Should a Prophet speak to you in a way that does not confirm what you already know, set it aside.  Should a Prophet speak to you in a way that gives you “unrest” in your spirit, set it aside.  The vast majority of the time, prophecy should only confirm what you already know.  Prophecy should always, always, always be judged by the written Word of God and the inner witness of the Holy Spirit. 


Let us look concisely at how to judge Prophecy that does contain guidance or revelation. 


Look at the Prophet's Fruits Not Their Gifts


“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. …Wherefore BY THEIR FRUITS YE SHALL KNOW THEM.” (Matthew 7:15,20)


People have a tendency to see signs, wonders and miracles and assume that everything about the miracle worker is of God.  Satan can perform counterfeit miracles to confuse the Body. (Mark 13:22,23)  Do not be duped by someone telling you that you are to give them money because they perform miracles, have a television program or receive the accolades of man. 

Look for the fruits of humility, love and obedienceRebellion, pride, dishonesty, a lack of submission, boastfulness, arrogance, merchandising the ability to set people free, alcohol, drug and tobacco addiction, multiple marriages, terrible home life, rotten children, berating and chiding employees, etc., are not Fruits of the Spirit.  God may allow these things for a season, but judgment always comes. (1Corinthians 11:32)  When you see such behavior in a “Prophet,” reject it.  Do not allow Satan to tell you, “You’re just being judgmental.”  You are to judge such behavior as wrong according to the Bible. (1Corinthians 5:12,13)  Do not open yourself up to anyone who displays such rebellion no matter who it is, even a “big name” Minister.

Who Does the Prophecy Magnify?

If the prophecy magnifies the one doing the prophesying or the one being prophesied over, you have trouble right out of the starting gate.  Jesus said the Holy Spirit would only magnify Him, no one else. (John 16:14)  I always look for the degree to which the Prophet involves Jesus. (1Corinthians 12:3)  There better be a whole lot of talking about Jesus and His Blood going on before I am going to open myself up to anybody.  If the prophecy is intended to scare me, exalt me or the Prophet, confuse me or lead me away from the Bible in any way, I very simply do not buy it.  This is where false prophets like Jeanne Dixon, Edgar Cayce, John Edwards, etc., blow it.  You will never hear of them exalting Jesus or His Blood.  A strong word of advice concerning these individuals and others who mimic them.  Walk away.  Better still, run away.  Their teachings are not something to be set aside lightly.  They are something to be thrown away forcefully. 


 Is the Actual Prophecy in Line with the Bible?


The Apostle John, by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, said that the Father, the Word (meaning Jesus, see John 1:14) and the Holy Spirit are always one in purpose.   This is why it is absolutely essential for all Believers to acquire an excellent knowledge of the written Word.  Without this you simply cannot discern between right and wrong prophecy. (Hebrews 5:12-14) 


Some individuals are truly called by the Holy Spirit into the Prophet’s Ministry but they themselves remain ignorant of the Scripture.  This will often cause them to speak in a way that is not in line with the Bible.  This does not mean that they are of Satan, it simply means that they are handling their calling in a highly irresponsible manner.  How are you going to know if someone is speaking in a way that is out of line with the Bible if you yourself are ignorant of what the Bible says?  Prophecy will always line up with the Word.  Otherwise, it did not come by the Holy Spirit. (2Peter 1:20,21)


Does the Prophecy Actually Come to Pass?


The Bible reveals that if a “Prophet” continues to speak forth things that do not come to pass, it is not the Spirit of the Lord speaking through the “Prophet”. (Deuteronomy 18:20-22)  Ask around about the Prophet.  Are they regularly producing evidence that their prophecies are of the Holy Spirit?  If they have a track record of unfulfilled prophecies, just ignore them.  A “Prophet” with a history of unfulfilled prophecies is nothing more than a hot air balloon looking to sell you a ride. 


Jeanne Dixon, the author of the book, “A Gift of Prophecy”, is a perfect example of a false prophet with a horrible track record of unfulfilled prophecies.  She predicted a woman President in the 1980’s, a comet striking the Earth in the 1980’s resulting in the worst tidal waves and earthquakes of the Century.  She predicted that Lyndon Baines Johnson would become a great elder statesman after his Presidency.  She also predicted many “finding the Lord” through psychic phenomena and ESP, which the Scripture absolutely forbids. (Leviticus 20:6,7)  Yet in spite of her horrendous track record, she was sought after by politicians and the wealthy the world over.  Somebody once said, “Well, what about her prophecies that have come to pass?”  That brings us to our next point.


Fulfillment Does Not Always Mean the Holy Spirit Has Spoken


Once again we turn to the Bible for wisdom.  The Bible reveals that a prophecy being fulfilled does not necessarily mean it came from the Holy Spirit.  If the fulfilled prophecy results in the one being prophesied over turning away from Jesus or the Bible, it did not come from the Holy Spirit. (Deuteronomy 13:1-5) 


Again this is the problem with Jeanne Dixon.  Many of her prophecies have come to pass, such as the assassination of JFK, RFK, M.L. King, Mahatma Ghandi and Marilyn Monroe’s suicide.  But how do prophesying nothing but negative tragedies edify, exhort and comfort people?  When God shows us such things, it is so we can take authority and stop them from occurring.  Jeanne Dixon never moved to prevent one of these tragedies.  She always moved to sell such prophecies to the trashy tabloids, hoping in her heart that they would be fulfilled so that she could be glorified. 


Jeanne Dixon never refers to the Blood of Jesus in any of her books, writings, tabloid articles or prophecies.  Yet, she always referred to her psychic, demonic abilities as “the talent the Lord has given me.”  She believed that all psychic phenomenons came from God, when they do not.  Satan is a supernatural being, too, and he disguises himself as an Angel of light. (2Corinthians 11:14


Jeanne Dixon received her gift during a vision where a snake wrapped itself around her.  When she looked in its eyes she received the “wisdom of the ages.”  She has used every form of revelation condemned by Scripture.  Jeanne Dixon is what I call a “Buckshot False Prophetess.”  Anyone who has ever fired buckshot knows it sprays in every direction and is bound to hit something.  Jeanne Dixon has sprayed in every direction so much prophecy about so many things that she was bound to hit something.  This does not mean that the Holy Spirit is speaking through her. 


There are many more just like Jeanne Dixon coming in the days ahead.  Many have already arrived on the scene.  Already satellite, cable and the Internet are bringing false prophets, sorcery, familiar spirits and doctrines of demons into hundreds of millions of churches, schools, businesses and homes worldwide.  Will you be ready for them with knowledge of the Scripture?  To be forewarned is to be forearmed. 

Does the Prophecy Produce Liberty or Enslavement?


You know the drill by now.  Anything that causes unrest in your spirit or confusion in your mind is not to be “set aside lightly.”  IT IS TO BE THROWN AWAY FORCEFULLY!  If a prophecy scares you, produces hopelessness, fear or turmoil, it is wrong.  


The Bible says that where the Spirit of the Lord is in manifestation, there is liberty, never enslavement. (2Corinthians 3:17)  Whenever dreams, visions or prophecies are in manifestation for the purpose of guidance, warning or revelation, they will always be full of solution.  


Even if God is showing you where you are missing it somewhere, it is so you can repent and change it.  Hezekiah turned his bad news prophecy into a good news prophecy by taking the correction and repenting.  This is what God wanted him to do. (Isaiah 38:1-6) 


The false prophetess, Jeanne Dixon, always insisted that her negative prophecies could not be reversed because “They were the will of God.”  This reveals her horrible ignorance of not only the Word of God but the love nature and will of God as well. 


Remember, look at the Prophet’s fruits, not their Gifts.  Stop and think about whom the prophecy is magnifying.  Is the prophecy in line with the Holy Word of God?  Does the prophecy come to pass?  Even if it does come to pass, if it does not meet the above criteria, it is just buckshot prophecy.  Some false prophet just got lucky.  


If the prophecy produces enslavement as opposed to liberty, you can know of a surety that it did not come from Jesus, the One Who came to set the captives free. (Luke 4:18)


Never allow anyone to condemn you, bind you, intimidate you or extract money or material goods away from you with Prophecy. (2Kings 5:1-27; 2Corinthians 11:20)  You have a responsibility to judge everything that is spoken over you. 


Someone said, “That’s being judgmental.”  To which I said, “Yes, indeed!  That’s exactly what the Apostle Paul told us to do when it comes to Doctrine and behavior.”  (1Corinthians 5:12,13)


The Body of Christ has a great responsibility in these days to grow up spiritually.  Charismatics, above all, have a tendency to be misled and deceived by the operation of the false Prophet.  


This is because we have yearned for so long to see that Office restored in the Earth that many are accepting counterfeit operations of that precious Office.  


We must become familiar with both Scriptural and counterfeit forms of supernatural prophecy and guidance.

Be blessed … John and Barbara Hamel



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