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False prophets, ‘men of God’ on the prowl

By Rev. Caonon Chukwudm T. Onwuka

shall live by faith, rather than by sight (Romans 1:17 and John 20:29) but in reality evidence is often proof in arguments and verifications, that’s why our law courts work with evidences and exhibits or witnesses.
When we hear “the hood does not make the monk”, it simply means that although monks usually wear hoods, it is not everybody who wears the hood that is a monk, and the monk wears other things as full paraphernalia apart from the hood.
That means much more is required of a person in terms of character, conduct and utterance, for him to be truly a monk.
It is indeed often difficult to differentiate the motor mechanics from madmen in terms of attire or appearance unless we either see them at work or engage them in conversation. These, and not just spanner and screw-driver, are therefore the evidence and or proof.
Many people today, parade themselves with priestly garbs and a number of titles, but are not true pastors, even when they “speak in tongues” or adopt related attendant jargons and register. Some of them are into occultism while others are into bloody rituals and other fetish or diabolic practices with which they deceive and attract vulnerable persons that come their way.
Apart from the afore-mentioned, these false ministers often employ magic or voodoo for signs and wonders, plus of course prophecy with which they get members.
St. Paul at II Cor.11:5 refers to such ministers as “super apostles” not only because they are self-appointed but also because they serve their belly or the devil.
On his own part, our Lord Jesus (at John 7:25 and 26) describes them as being sheep on the outside but ferocious wolves on the inside. And by their fruit you shall know them, just as we know the mechanics.
Similarly, it is not just by outward presentation or habit that Christian believers are identified. According to II Cor.11:14, Satan himself masquerades as angel of light. Even so can his agents put up some deceptive appearance that makes people unsuspicious of them in ecclesiastical assemblies and even at home before they strike.
It is therefore not for nothing that the Bible warns the Christian faithful, not only to be alert always but to also test everything (I Thess 5.21) and every spirit (1 John 4:1) in other to identify the anti- Christ.
Beyond being both physically and spiritually on guard, we equally need discerning spirit because of their counterfeit operational strategies. It is after all, not every building designed with a cross that is a church edifice, not withstanding their robes and forms of music or worship.
These days, evil spirits are known to appear in human forms, well dressed as young ladies without make-up or expensive jewelries, out to destroy their targeted victims in different locations at different times of the day, though they can use substances like perfume, weave-on, and handkerchiefs.
In conclusion, while ensuring our faith in the sovereignty and Lordship of our savior and master in order not to be blown about by every wind of doctrine, Christians must be fervently prayerful as well as spend time on the study of the word of God. It is for these reasons that St Paul at 1Tim.5:22 directed church leaders not to be hasty in the laying on of the hands, especially without first scrutinizing each candidate before the expediency of commissioning or ordination.
Scripture does not contradict itself; and the Holy Spirit shall continue to ensure that the church continues to match on, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Let us keep our faith alive, and at the same time “shine our eyes” in watchfulness. In other words, watch and pray, it is imperative.
While the Sacred Order of Cherubim and Seraphim (Church) and a few other denominations designate some of their leaders as “prophets”, the term “Anointed” is lot more generally used by other denominations of the Church for men and women of God.
In reviewing the Biblical statement “Touch not my anointed, and do my prophets no harm” {I Chron. 16:22 and Psalm 105:15}it would be good to first consider who are the anointed and the prophets.
Beginning with the prophets, there are two main types: those who forth-tell or declare or proclaim the word of God, and those who foretell, predict or forecast future events by divine inspiration, compared with oracular soothsaying by mystical knowledge of seers and diviners.
According to the Bible, the Major Prophets are Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel and Daniel; and there are twelve Minor Prophets. The use of major and minor should however not be taken that their prophecies are either more or less important.
Since prophecy is not the exclusive preserve of men, the Bible also contains names of some female prophets, including Miriam, Deborah, Huldah, Anna and Jezebel who according to Rev.2.20 called herself a prophetess. Her case is used as an epithet for promoting tolerance of evil pagan practices. Jezebel is therefore considered the mother of all who pursue antinomian doctrines.
Some of the Old Testament prophets were usually agitated with violence before or as they prophesied: and they therefore exhibited strange and unusual gestures, utterances and signs as could be illustrated by what happened to Saul, following his anointing as king of Israel ( as predicted by Samuel at I Samuel 10:6 and 10).
It must be noted that it was not only the kings and prophets that were anointed. Ministers were also anointed as priest, to served as mediators and intermediaries between God and the people as Moses did, following the request of the Israelites at Exodus 20:18 and 19.
To anoint somebody is to rub or smear him or her with (olive) oil as unction, consecration or sacred rites of being set apart for religious purposes similar to that of Paul and Barnabas at Acts 13:2. As in the case of prophets, anointing is not restricted to particular sex or age.
Whereas some people take anointing as synonymous with ordination (of priests), others are more liberal in its application. For instance, it was simply because David saw Saul as God’s anointed that he refrained from harming him when he had the opportunity (I Samuel 24:10) not withstanding that Saul wanted to kill him, and Samuel had anointed him Saul’s successor as king of Israel.
Today, many people parade themselves as anointed men and women or charismatic who quake under voodoo cult practices and rituals, as some sects do when they dance with ecstasy and hand bell, as if motivated by the Holy Spirit of God. It is not always that genuine ministration is done under obvious frenzy, yet they are truly inspired by God.
It is not strange that these days, some who do not have the fear of Lord abduct and slay ordained priests as signs of end time. It happened recently again in Imo state and in Rivers state where the carnivorous killer was said to have used the body for pepper soup.
Our Lord Jesus’ warning at Mathew 7:15 should not be ignored especially as the grace period is almost over.  Beware of false prophets who operate in sheep’s clothing although, they are wolves in reality. We are also told (at Mark 13:32) that many false prophets and false Christ will appear, who will perform signs and wonders to deceive the elect where possible.
Shedding human blood is prohibited in God’s commandment; and this covers both first degree premeditated murder and homicide, whether or not they are anointed! (Exodus 20:13).It is not enough to claim and plead ignorance that the victims were anointed men of God. Besides whoever sheds human blood, by man shall his own blood be shed (Gen.9.6).
Who says a person is not anointed man, just because he/she did not go through ordination ceremony or sacrament, since their own call and anointing might be from above and therefore superior? Remember 1Peter 2:9 says: believers are peculiar people, royal priesthood and a holy nation, belonging to God. Therefore whether we kill by the words of mouth, by cultism, by poison, with arms, through kidnapping or for ritual purposes, our Lord Jesus at Matthew 23:35 says, God will require the blood of the prophets and the anointed killed, from Abel to Zechariah; that is, catalogue of the victims of martyrdom, from the killers and murderers, those who assisted them inclusive.
The judgment is unescapable except there is genuine immediate repentance; that is, stop shedding of human blood, confess the one already shed, and ask God for remission.
Remember the blood of Abel still calls for retribution, and justice, while that of Jesus Christ pleads for forgiveness and reconciliation which lead to justification. We must accept Jesus Christ as our personal lord and Saviour for Him to serve as our advocate and redeemer. There is no other name given for man’s salvation expect Jesus Christ. Now is the time of God’s favor and the day of salvation.

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