Today’s Passages – Jeremiah 26 – 29; Proverbs 21
(Second Milers also read – Acts 21 – 23; Memorize Philippians 4:6)
“The prophet which prophesieth of peace, when the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known, that the LORD hath truly sent him.” – (Jeremiah 28:9)
“Then said the prophet Jeremiah unto Hananiah the prophet, Hear now, Hananiah; The LORD hath not sent thee; but thou makest this people to trust in a lie.” – (Jeremiah 28:15)
“Send to all them of the captivity, saying, Thus saith the LORD concerning Shemaiah the Nehelamite; Because that Shemaiah hath prophesied unto you, and I sent him not, and he caused you to trust in a lie:” – (Jeremiah 29:3)
In chapters 28 and 29, we see two false prophets that were preaching to Israel, refuting what the true prophet, Jeremiah, had been telling them. In chapter 28 we see Hananiah who was telling the people of Israel that God had told him that their problems with Babylon were only temporary: that God was going to rescue them in two years from the captivity that they were enduring. When Jeremiah first heard what this man had to say, he was skepticle yet optimistic. He hoped that what this man was saying was true, but he was careful to warn the people standing by that this man could be a false prophet. His suspicions were confirmed when later God revealed to him the truth about Hananiah. He was a false prophet. He was lying to the people and the peace that he was promising would not come to pass.
In chapter 29, there is another man, Shemiah the Nehelamite, that was also lying to the people. Jeremiah also exposed this man for the fraud that he was. It must have been difficult for the people, however, to discern who was telling them the truth. Jeremiah told them how they could know in verse 9 of chapter 28. They could determine whether a person was a false prophet or not simply by examining the proof of his claims. If what he predicted became true, he was a true prophet; but if what he said did not come to pass exactly as he said he would, he should never be trusted again.
Today it is a lot easier for us to tell whether a preacher is telling us the truth. We have the Word of God, and we know that the Bible is truth. If a preacher is telling us something that is contrary to the teaching of the Bible, we know that that person is a false prophet. Recently there was a man on the radio that was forecasting a date for the return of the Lord. He had already done this back in the 90’s and was wrong then also. A lot of people were deceived by what this man told them. Some had even sold all their possessions and had given the money to this man so that he could spread his lies further. However, if they had just read their Bibles they would have known that “of that day and hour knoweth no man”. We can only know the truth through the Word of God. Don’t take any man’s word for it. Search the Scriptures to make sure that what the preacher is preaching lines up with the Bible and is in fact the truth. You cannot completely trust any man, but you can trust the Word of God. There are a lot of false prophets out there, some within the church and some outside of the church; but you can know the Truth, and the Truth will make you free.
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