I’ve said it many times, you can’t separate a prophet from prayer any more than you can separate an evangelist from preaching the Gospel. It’s just part of the prophet’s DNA. Not all intercessors are prophets but all prophets are intercessors.
Let’s look at the Message Bible translation of Abimelech’s revelation and God’s instruction in Genesis 20:6-8.
God said to him in the dream, “Yes, I know your intentions were pure, that’s why I kept you from sinning against me; I was the one who kept you from going to bed with her. So now give the man’s wife back to him. He’s a prophet and will pray for you—pray for your life. If you don’t give her back, know that it’s certain death both for you and everyone in your family.”
“But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night, and said to him, Behold, thou art but a dead man, for the woman which thou hast taken; for she is a man’s wife.” — Genesis 20:3
The first time dream is mentioned in the King James Version of the Bible, it was when King Abimelech took Abram’s wife for his own. The Lord gave him a dream to warn him of his precarious situation.
Abimelech was not part of the Abrahamic covenant. So does that mean God can give prophetic dreams to sinners? What does the Bible say about this topic? What is the pattern? There are other instances of God giving so-called ’sinners’ prophetic dreams. We’ll take a look at some of those in upcoming posts.
More ministers that attended Canadian Evangelist Todd Bentley’s Lakeland Outpouring in Florida are speaking out with concern. Since God TV televised the Lakeland Outpouring worldwide, and many are just as interested in news following the demise of Evangelist Todd Bentley as they were about the nightly meetings in the southern state.
Canadian Todd Bentley filed for divorce from his wife Shonnah, resigned from Fresh Fire Ministries and stepped down from ministry for an undermined length of time because of moral failure.
John Kilpatrick, former pastor of Brownsville Assembly of God church in Pensacola, Fla., along with Evangelist Steve Hill, are both familiar with revival controversy. From 1995 to 2000 they led “The Pensacola Outpouring.” Now Kilpatrick has issued the following statement of “major concern” regarding Todd Bentley’s doctrine:
“Those that know me know that I love revival, but I also place great emphasis on doctrine and integrity. In fact, I make decisions of support of people and their ministries based on these two qualities. That being said, in the very early stages of revival, I went to visit Todd Bentley in Lakeland, Fla. My purpose was to champion revival, and I had great hope that it would be one that would sweep the world.
At that time, I didn’t know much about Todd or his doctrine, but had some concern. Over the last two months, it has become a major concern to me. I have some strong doctrinal issues with his extra-biblical views.
Peter Wagner, founder of the International Coalition of Apostles, is offering a lengthier statement on Canadian Evangelist Todd Bentley’s break down.
The statement reads as follows:
I was in the San Francisco airport on my way to Singapore and Indonesia when the news of Todd Bentley’s separation from his wife became public on August 12. When I arrived back home last week, I found that Doris had received and replied to around 1,700 emails and the stack of correspondence on my desk was unbelievable. It took me the rest of the week to catch up!
During the week I was gone, a major watershed occurred regarding the Lakeland situation as most of you would know. We are now on a new playing field. Lakeland Outpouring I, in which Todd Bentley was the main figure, is now history. Lakeland Outpouring II, in which Stephen Strader of Ignited Church is the main figure, has begun. The Outpouring started in a local church, went to a tent, and now is back in the local church. My suggestion is that we no longer use the term “Lakeland Outpouring” but rather distinguish between Lakeland I and Lakeland II because they are very
Let me talk a bit about the present, then revisit the past, then project the future.
Dutch Sheets is finally speaking out on Todd Bentley and the Lakeland Revival, and offers an apology.
Sheets says he was asked numerous times to write his position on Lakeland while it was happening, but always felt checked by the Lord. The waters were too muddy and emotions too high. Now that Bentley’s personal issues are being exposed, Sheets is speaking out.
“It will be arguably one of the greatest risks of my ministry to date, but one I feel must be taken. Fathers, when given the voice to do so, bear the responsibility of giving correction and wisdom. I hope mine qualifies for the latter. I assure you I have spent many hours praying and thinking through the situation. The risks are broad: with some of my dearest friends and co-laborers, I risk harming those relationships; with many in
the charismatic body of Christ, I risk appearing to be an arrogant, “self-appointed” spokesperson for them; to the “I told you so” crowd, I risk the accusation of “spinning” the situation.”
Sheet says his purpose and sincere prayer in writing the statement is three-fold: to see healing begin for the body of Christ; to initiate a process that can remove the reproach brought to Christ and the Church; and to do these things while preserving and honoring his current relationships.
The following is the bulk of Sheets’ official statement.
The pressure was on. Jesus had been arrested and the disciples scattered. Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard of the high priest and time after time people tried to connect him to Jesus. You know the story. Peter denied knowing Him.
But it was the third question that stands out. A bystander came up to Peter and said, “Surely you too are one of them; for the way you talk gives you away” (Matthew 26:73).
Think about it for a minute. The way Peter talked gave him away. Yes, some translations say it was his accent that gave him away. But let’s ponder this New American Standard translation for a moment in light of Peter’s surprising response.
The bystander said the way Peter was talking gave him away. The way Peter was talking identified him as one of Jesus’ disciples. How would one of Jesus’ disciples talk? Perhaps a little like Jesus?
I recently received a question from a prophet in a local church in America. The question went something like this:
What do you do when there you are discontent in your local church? Although I am in an apostolic/prophetic church, I still see so much that makes me want to run. In fact, I believe in being a part of a strong local assembly, but have been so badly wounded by people who know better but are themselves struggling to come into that new place. I just feel “STUCK” in this “PLACE” that I now feel I am “man-pleasing” and going through ritualism just to STAY IN CHURCH!!”
While we don’t understand the total situation of this prophet, there are some guidelines for safety that might help us avoid making the wrong decision about leaving a church God intends for us to stay in.
If it’s a dead church where the Holy Spirit isn’t hanging out, get out. If the transition of a church is slow, that’s normal. No church is perfect.
The devil always tries to get us to unplug and run from where we are really supposed to be. The devil will always try to drive a wedge between the prophets and the apostles/leaders. The devil will always find plenty of people to agree with what’s wrong in a church.
Heart faith is the creative force behind our confession.
The Lord shared this with me this morning while I was studying faith. As I pondered this, I thought of one translation of Hebrews 11:1 that says: “Faith is giving substance to things hoped for.”
Think about it for a minute. Your faith is giving substance to what you are hoping for. In other words, your faith is making it real. Your faith is bringing your hope out of the spiritual realm and into the physical realm.
That’s biblical because Jesus told some, “Thy faith hath made thee whole.”
Faith makes. Faith gives substance. Faith is evidence, assurance, the title deed. But remember, it’s heart faith, not mental ascent.
Heart faith is the creative force behind our confession.