If one goes to Youtube, or sometimes to various blogs and websites, one finds that there is an inordinate amount of people who claim to be having visions and dreams from the Lord. In each case, the person is absolutely sure that they are hearing from the Lord, even though the visions and dreams never agree with each other on subjects like the rapture, nor in 99.9% of the cases, do they line up with Scripture. Yet these people would stake their lives,(and in some cases I think they stake their salvation) on the fact that they have been given a special revelation from God. To date, out of a bizarre sense of curiosity, I have listened to or read quite a number of these dreams and visions. To date, I have yet to see one person say that they have applied the tests God has given us to test these things.
The latest revelation that I read was from someone who was commenting on a blog I follow. She declared that God had given her (and her alone) confirmation that the rapture is going to occur seventy-five days before the abomination of desolation, which God has told her will happen on April 10, 2013. This would, I believe place her rapture on January 26, 2013. She “knows” that this was confirmed by God, because God confirms her responses to questions He talks to her by actually moving inside her belly. She said that she feels Him move in different ways and parts of her belly for different messages He intends for her to understand.
I can't even begin to comment on how deceived this woman must be. As much as she might love the Lord, her lack of knowledge of the Scriptures that would tell her this is so wrong, is setting her up for major deception. And it is ruining any testimony she has, for when this does not happen, and it will not according to the Scriptures, she will look like a fool and nobody will take her seriously from that point on.
One thing wrong is her lack of understanding of the seventy-five days, which she put in front of the abomination. She got these seventy-five days from Daniel 12:12 “Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.” The seventy-five days are the difference between the 1335th day, and the 1260 days that encompass the second half of Daniel's 70th week. The entire passage reads as follows: Daniel 12:8-12 “And I heard the man clothed in linen, which was upon the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand unto heaven, and sware by him that liveth for ever that it shall be for a time, times, and an half; and when he shall have accomplished to scatter the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished. And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things? And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. Many shall be purified, and made white, and tried; but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand; but the wise shall understand. And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.”
We know from other Scriptures that there is a period of 1260 days in which the two witnesses will prophecy (Rev. 11:3) and during that same time, for 42 months the city of Jerusalem and temple courtyard will be trampled underfoot by the Gentiles (Rev. 11:1-2). We are also told that the woman will be hid in the wilderness for 1260 days or 3 ½ years (Rev. 12:6,14) and that the beast will reign for 3 ½ years or 42 months (Dan. 7:25, Rev. 13:5). So we know that there three different ways of expressing the time period of the second half of the 70th week of Daniel, in days, months, and years. Then as shown above, Daniel is told there is a further period of thirty days from the abomination that will bring things to a close. Then the person who waits a further period of forty-five days after that will be blessed. The seventy-five days are the thirty days, plus the forty-five days after the 1260 days are complete. The seventy-five days come after the 1260 days are over, not before the abomination. Clearly the first thirty days are tacked on after, as it undeniably states that the counting of these days start at the abomination of desolation. Had this woman even understood this passage, she would have immediately suspected that it was not God speaking to her, for this is in opposition to what the Bible teaches. This is the first thing that should clue someone in to a false spirit. The message is not Scriptural.
As to when the rapture occurs, I have written much on this subject in both my endtimes blog and my Bible conundrums blog. It is not pre-tribulational.
The next problem is with the way she says God tells her these things. He moves in her belly? When it comes to theology, God tells us things via His Word, not via movement in our belly. Everything we need to know about eschatology and what is going to happen was already given in a vision to someone – by Christ Himself. It was given to John. To add anything to that is to risk the punishment that God warned us would occur should we add or delete from the words of His prophecies. Revelation 22:18-19 “For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.”
This woman is just one of many, many people who have these sort of “interactions,” for lack of a better term, with an entity which they believe to be God. A dear friend, or I should say former friend for she no longer talks to me, emphatically declared to me that God had definitely confirmed to her that the rapture was happening on May 25, 2011, as predicted by Harold Camping. I told her that when this did not happen, she should realize that whoever might be speaking to her, it was not God. This is why she is now a former friend. She was not pleased with what I had to say. And as I predicted to her at the time, the rapture did not occur on May 25. I knew my Scriptures, and I knew Camping was wrong. While she admitted that she did not know the Scriptures all that well, rather than consider the Scriptures I laid out for her, she chose to believe a false prophet and an entity that was not God.
I saw one Youtube video where a girl was saying that God had given her either a dream or vision, I cannot remember which, in which He confirmed for her that the rapture was going to happen sometime last spring. I also told her that it was not going to happen, and that when it did not, she should realize that it was not God speaking to her. The day after the predicted date, she yanked her video from Youtube.
In all of these cases none of these people ever questioned the spirits and made them make the confession that is required for us to believe them. 1 John 4:1-3 “Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: And every spirit that confesseth not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God: and this is that spirit of antichrist, whereof ye have heard that it should come; and even now already is it in the world.”
Another way to test the spirit is to see if the vision or dream comes true. If it does not, then obviously it was not God speaking. Any prophecy from God is always going to be true. And even if it does come true, one has to judge, is it in line with Scripture? For Satan and his minions will give prophecies, then go about making sure they come true. It must not only come true, it must be Scriptural.
Deuteronomy 13:1-5 “If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and giveth thee a sign or a wonder, And the sign or the wonder come to pass, whereof he spake unto thee, saying, Let us go after other gods, which thou hast not known, and let us serve them; Thou shalt not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the LORD your God proveth you, to know whether ye love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul. Ye shall walk after the LORD your God, and fear him, and keep his commandments, and obey his voice, and ye shall serve him, and cleave unto him. And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the LORD your God, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the way which the LORD thy God commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.”
Deuteronomy 18:20-22 “But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.”
Notice above that when a prophet speaks something that might even come true, if it is against God's Word, such as the above where he told them to go after other gods, one must realize that it is not a word from God, but a test from God to see if you love the Lord with all your heart and will follow Him alone. This is what these people are not understanding. God is allowing them to be tested to see if they really love Him and His Word, or if they have itching ears and want to think they have been specially singled out by God for new revelation. They love pride more than they love Him. They are ignorant of His Word and have no discernment to realize they are being duped. And they do not test the spirit to see if it confesses Christ, as a godly spirit would.
God has told us that we need to be studying His word for several reasons. The first being able to know what is true doctrine and what is not. 1 Timothy 2:15 “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” The second is to be able to defend yourself against those who try to teach false teachings and to explain to people who are seeking answers why Christ is the way. 1 Peter 3 :15 “But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.” The third is to instruct, reprove, and correct others. 2 Timothy 3:16 “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” 2 Timothy 2:24-26 “ And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.”
Lastly studying God's Word brings knowledge, wisdom, and discernment. Hebrews 4:12 “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Hebrews 5:12-14 “For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat. For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness: for he is a babe. But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.” Proverbs 1:7 “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.” Proverbs 9:10 “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.” Psalm 111:10 “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.”
There are also consequences for not knowing God's word. Hosea 4:6 “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.” The consequences are more far-reaching than just affecting the person who is not studying. The consequences are passed on to the children. This may be seen in the results of people who have followed these false prophets and charlatans. Their children, seeing their parents' error, turn from the Lord and go the way of the world. They reject the faith of their fathers, (and mothers) because they see that their fathers believed lies. Their fathers believed lies, because they did not study the Scriptures.
Does this then mean that all dreams and visions are from the devil? No, not at all. We are told in Acts 2:17-18 “And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy.” This quote is also found in Joel. In the last days before Christ's return, God will pour out His spirit and there will be prophesying and dreams and visions. What is important is to verify the source, and to check everything against Scripture. So far I have only come across one prophecy that I found to be most likely true. It was completely Scriptural and the person giving it had a humble spirit that was not looking to be special, but was overwhelmed with grief at the message. This too will probably be a mark of a person who has been given a true vision or dream.
*Update on the woman above who believed the rapture would occur on 1/25-26/13. The morning after the dates passed with the rapture not occurring, the woman posted to the website where I had first read her claim of knowledge of this event. I am happy to report that she behaved in a way that shows that while she may have been deceived in all this, that she truly has a heart for the Lord and was willing to humbly admit that she had been deceived. This takes enormous courage. She has not, as some before her have, tried to rationalize her mistake and twist Scripture even more (like Camping) to try to cover her error and say that she was still right, but that misunderstood how the event would occur. She simply readily admitted that she was wrong and had been deceived. She does not understand why or how this happened, although as listed in the problems above, had she been a more mature Christian (years of study and analysis), she might have had the discernment to realize she was being duped by Satan, but she is seeking to understand why and has a heart open to correction, which is the most important thing. We all make mistakes along the way, especially as we are first learning. Even after years of study, we still make mistakes. It is just important that we acknowledge them (as she has done) instead of defending them, so that God can teach us through our mistakes. I have had to change my understanding and interpretations many times over the decades that I have been studying. I have been wrong myself.
This is a powerful lesson to all of us. It does not matter how much we love the Lord, we are all open to deception, and to not think that you are is the first open door that gives Satan the means to deceive you. If you think you are above it and that God will not allow it, think again. These are the tests He allows to separate the chaff from the wheat. How you respond to that test is very important. Nobody is so secure that it is impossible for Satan to find a way to deceive them. We are all vulnerable. The only available means to avoid this is to study, study, study God's Word and check everything others tell you against it, praying for wisdom, discernment, and the truth. One thing that I had not mentioned above was that she was approached in a parking lot by a man who apparently told her, or insinuated in such a manner so that she would draw the conclusion, that he was Elijah, and then he spouted a lot of Scripture at her. She unfortunately took this as a sign that God had singled her out, never questioning this guy's veracity, because he was giving her Bible verses. This is a common deception that Satan uses. He can also quote Scripture very well, and he does so to deceive. She did not stop to think about that. A lot of people don't. They think if Scripture is being used, it must be from God. Not so. Satan tried to use Scripture against our Lord Himself when he tempted Him.
This incident right there should have made her question things, for Elijah is coming to Israel, (not some other country) within a few days, or on the day of, the Abomination of Desolation according to Scripture. Had she understood the Word better, she would have immediately dismissed this guy regardless of the Scriptures he was quoting. While I do not believe her idea that the A of D will be in April, (because again that is not according to Scripture) even if it were, the fact that this guy was showing up months before he should, and in the wrong place, for he should appear in Israel, should have clued her in to the fact that there was something wrong. And as I also said above, God does not speak to us through our stomachs, He speaks to us through His Word, through other godly people, and sometimes through circumstances (although one must analyze the circumstances to determine that). There is nothing Scriptural about the idea that God would speak to someone through their stomach. This very idea shows that she needs to spend much more time in the Word, learning how God does speak to us.
Also, I noticed from her comments that she often spiritualizes Scripture, completely disregarding the literal meaning of it. While many passages may have a secondary level of understanding in a spiritual sense, we should always begin with the literal interpretation and then layer the secondary level over that to be sure that it is in agreement with the literal interpretation. After all, remember that the first method of deception Satan used was to make Eve question that God literally meant what He said. "Yea, hath God (really?) said?" He wants us to question that God literally means what He says, for once we do that, Satan can twist the Scriptures to mean anything he wants us to believe. We must always take God at His word and believe He means what He says.
She seems to have a heart open to correction, and a great love for the Lord and His truth, so hopefully God will be able to show her where she went amiss and she will mature in wisdom and discernment. Unfortunately Satan does go after those who are not mature in the Word, (which unfortunately does not necessarily have anything to do with how long they have been saved) for they are so much more easily deceived. That is why we are told to disciple new Christians, to prevent this very thing.