Friday, July 23, 2010

The Role of Prophetic Warnings

It is clear from the writings of the prophets in the Bible that God raises up watchmen who are called to warn of impending problems.  Prophets "dishonour Me,' says Yahweh, if they spare those who ought not to live.  (Ezekiel 13:20.)  There must be a prophetic warning.

Any prophet (pastor, counselor, elder) who misleads God's people by failing to warn and expose, are themselves subject to judgement.  Such a false prophet fails God by encouraging the wicked "not to give up their wicked ways." (Ezekiel 13:22.)  God's response is to "rescue my people from your clutches."  There must be a prophetic warning.

You are familiar with the phrase: "peace when there is no peace."  It is from Ezekiel 13:10. It is misleading the people to say "no problem" when there is a problem.  It is misrepresenting God to say "Mercy, mercy" when sin has not been confronted and is defiling many.  There must be a prophetic warning.

God's word from God's council will turn men away from sin.  "Had they been present at my council, they could have proclaimed my words to my people and turned them from their evil way and from the wickedness of their deeds." Jeremiah 23:22. There must be a prophetic warning.

Now is not the time to turn away from Yahweh in favour of Baal.  That is what the false prophets do according to Jeremiah 23:27.  I know that God's word was spoken to Ralph Rutledge while he was still at Queensway Cathedral.  Men of God spoke the oracles of God from his pulpit - words of warning, prophetic warnings.

God loves Rutledge and does not want him to perish; did not want the flock to be scattered.  (Many were dismayed when their beloved pastor fell.)

But ultimately God must turn against those who do not repent, against those who scatter the flock.  Yahweh promises to "take care of" those shepherds who do not take care of the flock.  Jeremiah 23:2.  But first there is a prophetic warning.

If the prophetic warning is delivered, then the blood is not on the hands of the prophet.  He can leave and 'wipe the very dust from that town from his feet.'