"Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them." Acts 13:1-2 KJV
"...there were in the church...certain prophets and teachers..."
As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.
What that means is many are called but few are chosen to carry on certain tasks. In actual fact "the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them" Acts 13:2.
When they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away. These were not false prophets, but soon after they had gone, "they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew, whose name was Bar-jesus" Acts 13:6.
A false prophet is hard to detect, he is like tares, he is a Jew also. "...the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil..." He makes them undetectable, we’ve many among us too. You can tell one is a false prophet by his/her fruits out there. Elymas or Bar-Jesus‘ assignment was to interfere and urge people to pay no attention to the true gospel. By so doing he kept people from the faith.
But Paul saw it, ”And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord?" Acts 13:10.
A false prophet is "full of all subtilty and all mischief." He’s a son of the devil, an enemy of all righteousness, is there only to pervert the right ways of the Lord. Lately, the church witnessed the rise of such false prophets whose rose up to firm by perverting the right ways of the Lord. Jesus once said, "Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it." John 8:44
False prophets have no single truth in them, except to lie and the lust/kill and like their father the devil they will do.
I love this scripture Matthew 7:15-20;
"Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. [Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them."
Is there anyway you can beware of a false prophet?
The clues and hints are in what Jesus said above;
- a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit, no way you will "gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles."
Simple Gospel Summation