A question came to me that had me think many years back in my own experiences of walking with God in the prophetic ministry. A senior minister/prophet who I looked up to told me to start practicing my prophetic gift on different people whenever I was out some where. He told me that sometimes I would be right and other times I may even get it wrong. I was a bit taken back because what he was telling me to do didn't seem right and kind of like the things that those with "familiar spirits" practice; aka "psychics". He wanted me to try discerning people's names, birthdays, and prognosticate (predict or forecast) events and other details in their personal lives. I was in shock and disbelief, but either out of respect or purely being stunned I froze up at that moment and didn't say anything. I rationalized in my head who he was, who I was compared to him, and then decided to accept what he was saying because of his experience and my trust in him; believing that he would not lead me astray. Many days went by and I couldn't bring myself to do what he had told me because it felt so wrong in my spirit, and I couldn't find one biblical precedence to validate what he was teaching me as being from YAH. Yet, there was something else within me that wanted to do it to prove my own prophetic prowess which the LORD revealed to be ungodly pride. Needless to say I didn't follow through on what he told me, and I let him know my position on that. Surprisingly, he actually listened and seemed convicted and corrected by what I said. He had also been taught what he had told me by someone he trusted years before. I still love him as a brother, we are still friends, he has never shown me in anyway that he wasn't a moral man of God, but on this particular issue I could not agree and we no longer discuss these types of matters. Here is the question below I mentioned in the beginning:
EXPLANATION: JOHN 16:13-14; "Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. 14) He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you."
In the above scriptures Yeshua the Messiah tells us that the Holy Ghost (Spirit of truth) himself will guide us into all truth and will show us the hidden things of Christ. It's mission is to glorify Christ and not those to whom he is to come by their ability in the Spirit. We are recipients of the Holy Spirit that Christ Yeshua may be glorified in us by the Spirit. It is quite clear that there are things the Lord would have us to know that only he himself will and can teach us. He has not left these particular things of his Spirit up to other human beings or even angels to instruct us in. These things are reserved for him by him to be taught to us as revelations directly from him and no other. The apostle John in his first epistle to the Church begins to discuss the anti-Christ. 1st JOHN 2:18; "Little children, it is the last time: and as ye have heard that antichrist shall come, even now are there many antichrists; whereby we know that it is the last time." He goes on to say that there are many other anti-Christs already in the world presently who are operating within or came out from the Church and have continued to teach false doctrine. He informs the Church that the anti-Christs teach doctrines that deny Christ. It is of no doubt that denial of Christ Yeshua as the Savior, Lord and God of the universe is blasphemy by those who believe, and ignorance by those who believe not. However, this passage of scripture is clearly addressing those who believe for he says in verse 19 that these anti-Christs went out from them which indicates that they got their start in the Church, and are more than likely leaders in the ministry. 1st JOHN 2:19; "They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would no doubt have continued with us: but they went out, that they might be made manifest that they were not all of us." These who went out had done so with their own vain ambitions, wrong ideas, and secret motives for how things in the Church should be done. This begs the question, how does one become anti-Christ?
1st JOHN 2:22-23; "Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son. 23) Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: he that acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also."
The word "denieth" used in the above passage of scripture in 1st JOHN 2:22-23 is from the greek word "ARNEOMAI" (ar-neh'-om-ahee), which means: "to contradict, disavow, reject, abnegate, deny, refuse, to deny one’s self, to disregard his own interests or to prove false to himself, act entirely unlike himself, not to accept." As we can see there are several definitions for this one word and in this case each definition applies in context as it is used in these particular scriptures. This is very unusual because often times a biblical word with many definitions doesn't mean in the passage of scripture every thing the word itself could possibly mean. The first definition given is the word "contradict" which means to go against or be opposite of something in a manner that disagrees. This first defining word carries the strongest contextual agreement with the passage out of the rest of the above definitions listed. By committing this one act as it relates to Christ and his doctrine the person becomes guilty of all other aspects of the term "ARNEOMAI". To be anti-Christ doesn't always mean one must openly deny and oppose the Lord Yeshua as God, but that they can be anti-Christ by teaching things contrary to the Word of God as contained in the Holy Scriptures and refusing correction. Doing so is a direct challenge to the position of Yeshua as the Christ (the anointed one of YAH), and the sovereignty of God as the absolute and supreme authority in all things. Knowingly teaching such doctrine contrary to God's Word is to make one's self a "christ" as an equal or superior authority to Yeshua the Christ which is also the same as doing so to God the Father as Satan once did in his rebellion that resulted in his permanent expulsion and condemnation. The scriptures in 1st John chapter 2 are addressing Christian conduct and obedience to God's Word as well as false teachers. The apostle John, now in his elderly years, writes to the Church as a true spiritual father full of wisdom with experience and tells them they have an "unction from the Holy One"; meaning they have the "anointing" (Spirit of truth) as a special endowment of power from God at work in them. 1st JOHN 2:20; "But ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things." His reason for saying this was to make them aware and remind them to trust in the leading of the Holy Spirit by the Word of God so they would not be led astray by these anti-Christs. John is telling them to put their greater confidence in the Lord Yeshua rather than in man. The Holy Spirit as God knows all things, and if it is truly in the believer then they have access to the knowledge and understanding of those things according to their faith. The Holy Spirit will never contradict the Word of God.
1st JOHN 2:26-27; "These things have I written unto you concerning them that seduce you. 27) But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him."
Here John is not telling them they don't need teaching or preaching, but what he is telling them is that there are things of the Spirit of God that no man can teach you. Those who attempt to do so are misleading you with seductive doctrines that appeal to your "soulish" (intellect & emotions) and fleshly (natural senses & pleasure centers) being in opposition to your regenerated spirit (conscious & will) in Christ. They seduce you into believing lies that contradict and deny the Word of God which is considered by scripture as anti-Christ; meaning against Christ. As human beings we are always subject to error which is why we must study and correct ourselves as we learn better. A human instructor is necessary, but can only take you so far in the Spirit. They can share their experience in the Spirit, teach you the principles of access to the Spirit, and how to discern the operation of the Spirit, but they cannot teach you how to actually operate in the Spirit. Only the Holy Spirit itself can do that. The lure of anti-Christ doctrine is to grant you some kind of fascinating (bewitching) solution which satisfies your carnal curiosity and pride. Apostles & Prophets are not made overnight, and neither is their focus to demonstrate acts of power and prophecy but to preach the gospel. They must be called and developed by the Lord Yeshua. When you start trying to prove yourself rather than let the Lord prove himself then you are being led by your flesh and not the Holy Spirit. Ungodly pride and arrogance leads people to believe they can teach you the very things that God Almighty has reserved for himself to teach you. This is rebellion and denying Christ akin to Adam & Eve's desire for the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil; it is forbidden! The apostle James tells us in his epistle that those who are wise should show so by their behavior (conversation) with a lifestyle of meekness in godly wisdom. This means they seek no personal glory or to prove themselves by any demonstration that would glorify them in anyway. He further tells us not to have bitter envying and strife in our hearts which often leads to the pursuit of such vain glory, and into false doctrine against the Word of God to justify one's self. This is not of God but from the carnal nature of man in imitation of the Devil himself.
JAMES 3:13-15; "Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. 14) But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. 15) This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish."
The Old Testament prophets and the apostles of Christ learned the disciplines required of their calling and lifestyle such as love, faith in God, a consistent prayer habit, humility, soundness in the word of God, living a holy lifestyle, and understanding the mysteries of God by the Word. These basic things are what enables one to operate in the prophetic and the apostolic without crossing into the psychic demonic realm which makes one an anti-Christ. If you spend time with God he will teach you what man can't and you'll become more seasoned, accurate, and powerful at what you do for the LORD. If you practice to enhance yourself in the prophetic or in spiritual gifts then you are practicing witchcraft, and will open yourself up to other spirits that will imitate the Spirit of truth but will lead you into error and the demonic realm. It's good to desire spiritual gifts for the glory of YAH and the advancement of the Kingdom of God in the earth, but don't pursue power or prophecy. Pursue truth in love above all things for this is the "more excellent way" spoken of by the apostles and prophets of Christ in the Holy Scriptures. 1st CORINTHIANS 12:31; "But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way." In the afore mentioned passage of scripture to "covet" means to have a feeling of warm affection and zeal for the things of God with the right focus and motive. LOVE is the best of all gifts because it is the foundation for all the gifts and even faith itself needs love to work. GALATIANS 5:6; "For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love." We need to focus on being better at loving like Christ loves than at prophecy or spiritual gifts. If we become more powerful in love then we will automatically become more powerful in the offices and gifts of the Spirit. Loving and pursuing the truth in the things of God keeps us focused on what is most important in life, which is to be a witness for the Lord Yeshua to win souls to him for their salvation. Prophets and prophecy is an office and operation to be used as tools the Lord has given us to accomplish that goal. Keep the "main thing the main thing". ~ I.J. West
1st CORINTHIANS 13:1-2; "Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity (LOVE), I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. 2) And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity (LOVE), I am nothing."