May 11th – Telling the future



I once heard a woman say, in a church worship session of open praise, that she had a word of prophecy. She gave it and it was on the level of: ’so and so need not worry, her lost cat would come home’. It was more like a spiritist reading tea cup leaves than prophecy-more like being at a village fete at which a self-made gypsy tells that ‘You will meet a tall dark stranger’.

Prophecy is not knowing an odd detail of the future good or bad fortune. Such localised words of so-called prophecy trivialise one of the most wondrous gifts of God to his people.The great prophets of Israel spoke as with the voice of God to the world. They were humble enough to subject their prophecies to the judgement of all. It grew out of the soil of knowing God through obedience.Out of roots nourished by the word of God.It did not grow out of knowing the future, but knowing God, and how he works in his cosmos.The gift was not a ghostly foresight into the unknown future, but an insight into God’s present which, if men and women did not change their hearts and minds, and sometimes even if they did, God was about to act in a certain way.

The prophets of Israel were a unique breed. Long before the philosophers of Greece tried to define justice – long before the mathematical approach was born, these men spoke of justice and truth as with the voice of God with whom they walked daily.Knowing Him was to know His mind, and His cosmos, and His ongoing purposes.In fact, the Bible itself makes a clear distinction between fortune telling and prophecy. Personal awareness of the living God leaves no room for fortune telling. (Formerly in Israel, if a man went to enquire of God, he would say “Come, let us go to the seer,” because the prophet of today used to be called a seer.) I Samuel 9:9
See how the gift of prophecy grew from such humble beginnings into a mighty phenomena -the Prophets of Israel who spoke ‘This is what God says’.

A Prayer:
It is an old hymn that sings our prayer for today: ‘The distant scene I do not ask to see – one step enough for me’.
Is it true for you?

Now read the whole story in I Samuel Ch.9. It is the beginning of centuries long saga.

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Thought 4 The Day

Faith is not an achievement, it is a gift. Yet it comes only through the hearing and study of the Bible. (Martin Luther)

Through the year calendar

May 2016
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Click on any previous date in the above calendar to read the relevant Through The Year post
Believe it or Not
Sometimes you just can't believe it's true!
A Word in Time
Life has a funny way of connecting us all!
Cooke's Tour of The Bible
Frank Cooke's journey through the Old and New Testaments
Take 2
Some useful life lessons
Mind Stretchers
An open mind is a healthy mind!
Bible Bloopers
Even the Bible has its funnies!