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“Believe His prophets, and you shall prosper.” (2 Chronicles 20:20 NKJV)
Hi my name is Dean Smith and in this podcast I want to talk about a verse in 2 Chronicles 20:20, that reads, “Believe His prophets, and you will prosper” and how this verse was misused by people prophesying that Donald Trump would win a second term as US president.
In my previous podcast, I spoke of the dozens of prophecies that have been given over the past few months, declaring that Donald Trump would win re-election.
But when that didn’t happen and Trump lost on Nov 3, 2020, many of them doubled down stating that the election result would be overturned before Joe Biden’s inauguration on Jan 20, 2021. And when that didn’t happen, some tripled down stating that God will somehow miraculously return Trump to the presidential office in either February or March.
For the record, I don’t believe this is going to happen, which means I believe these are all false prophecies.
Now I don’t believe giving an inaccurate prophecy necessarily makes a person a false prophet. I know some are referring to them as false prophets. Because the Bible differentiates between a person who speaks presumptuously and one who is deliberately trying to lead people astray.
But along with their prophetic words about former President Donald Trump, many of these individuals also cited that verse from 2 Chronicles telling us that we need to believe the prophets, implying that we need to believe their prophecies.
I actually watched one person state that God is keeping a list of everyone who did not believe her prophecies and others.
Well, she can add me to her list, because God doesn’t have one, as I don’t believe the US 2020 federal election will be overturned.
Nevertheless, these warning about believing God’s prophets had an impact. During the past few months, people believed they were somehow failing God if they struggled to believe these Trump prophecies, particularly after Trump lost the Nov 3 election.
I know of one person who said she wanted to pray for Trump’s victory, but every time she tried, she sensed a block. And then felt horribly guilty because she couldn’t pray for these prophecies to come to pass.
But when these individuals cite 2 Chronicles 20:20, telling us that God want us to believe their Trump prophecies, I feel this verse is being horribly misused.
Before I discuss the verse in 2 Chronicles, we need to understand a fundamental principle that governs many in today’s prophetic movement. Most believe that New Testament prophets can make a mistake or prophesy inaccurately and still be considered a prophet.
Back in 2018, a popular prophetic website released a video of a prophetic word of how the Republican Party would sweep the Senate and the House of Representatives in the 2018 US mid-term election.
Of course that didn’t happen so the website re-interviewed the prophet about his very public, but failed prophecy. To his credit, he agreed and admitted he had been wrong, but then added he felt his timing was off and believed the prophecy was intended for 2020, which again didn’t happen.
But at the end of the interview, the host told the young man to just “keep on prophesying,” even though he had made a major prophetic blunder on the national stage.
Why did the host do that?
I believe it was due to a fundamental belief that New Testament prophets are allowed to make false prophecies. And the young man did continue prophesying, predicting Trump would also be re-elected in 2020.
But things were very different for the Old Testament prophets. In 1 Samuel 3:19, we read that the Lord was with Samuel and God let none of his prophecies “fall to the ground.” In other words, all of Samuel’s prophecies came to pass.
And this is where the conflict begins with the verse in 2 Chronicles 20.
The backstory of this passage involves a warning King Jehoshaphat received that Moab, Ammon and Meunites were planning to attack Judah.
Jehoshaphat immediately turned to prayer and a prophet by the name of Jahaziel delivered a prophetic word that the upcoming battle was God’s, not Judah’s (2 Chronicles 20:14-15).
In response to Jahaziel’s prophetic word, Jehoshaphat told Judah to “Believe the prophets, and you will prosper,” and the next day the king sent his praise and worshippers into the conflict ahead of the army.
In the battle that followed, Judah’s army never lifted a sword as the Lord sent ambushments against the three enemy nations, who ended up fighting each other.
But does this verse apply to today’s prophets?
I don’t believe it does.
The prophets in the Old Testament had an incredible burden to bear. They had to be 100% correct, 100% of the time. They could not make a single mistake. One inaccurate prophecy, and they were done (Deuteronomy 18:22) and if the Jews thought they were intentionally leading people astray, they were labelled false prophets and stoned.
There were huge risks associated with being a prophet in the Old Testament. You didn’t enter this ministry lightly. It was serious business.
With every prophetic word he delivered, Jahaziel’s ministry and reputation was on the line. He was only as good as his last prophecy. But he had a proven track record and learned how to separate his own personal opinions and feelings from God’s prophetic voice.
This is why King Jehoshaphat trusted him.
And this is also why I have a problem with modern prophets citing this verse while believing they can make mistakes. They are not being held to the same standard as Jahaziel, but are claiming the same authority and anointing.
When they cite this verse, they are using his reputation as a 100% accurate prophet to prop up their prophetic ministry. They are hijacking Jahaziel’s accuracy and claiming it as their own.
God’s word tells us to believe the prophets. But this verse does not tell us to believe false prophecies, nor is it telling us to believe the false prophets. Nor is referring to prophets who are right seven times out of 10, because there would always be a lingering doubt on whether their latest prophetic word was accurate or not.
Perhaps, what we see unfolding today in the prophetic movement will bring a much-needed reform and added clarity to who are true prophets.
There is a difference between the office of a prophet and a person with the gift of prophecy, both in accuracy, calling and authority.
More in this series:
Disturbing reaction to Jeremiah Johnson’s apology on Trump prophecy