What Can We Learn From Suffering? "We learn that even though something bad may happen, in the end, something good will happen," says Elizabeth, 9. "My cousin's parents got divorced, but it turned out to be kind of a good thing because she got to get a kitten." Well, even cat lovers …Read more. What Is the Meaning of the First Commandment, 'You Shall Have No Other Gods Before Me'? "It means to only have one God, which is God. When we find something, we don't go gaga over it. We still pray to God and not to the new thing," says Ashley, 11. For a fuller understanding of "gaga," let's go to Cory, 11: "When the commandment says …Read more. Why Did Jesus Say, 'Don't Cast Your Pearls Before Swine'? "Don't give a smoker money to buy a good meal because he will just buy more cigarettes," says Waymon, 9. The dangers of smoking are well documented, but I don't think Jesus had smokes in mind here. If you're puffing two packs a day, your throat and …Read more. What Will You Do When You See God? (Part 2) "When I see God, he'll make a rainbow for me," says Ally, 5. "He's gonna show me how to make one. He's gonna sit down in the grass and eat an apple with me." Ally's answer is more than cute. It could be insightful as well. Who knows the entire …Read more.more articles
How Can You Tell a False Prophet from a True Prophet?
"You can't tell a real prophet from a false one by whoever sings the loudest and prays the longest," says Kris, 12. "You can even preach the best, but if the heart is not right, God can't hear you. So it is hard to know a real from a fake prophet, but God knows."
False prophets know how to impress people with outward shows of piety. As Kris said, God knows what's going on in the heart.
"A true prophet is nice to others," says Diana, 8.
Paintings and movies often portray Jesus as Mr. Nice Guy. We forget that long before power tools, he worked as a carpenter. He probably looked like he pumped iron. I've never seen a painting of Jesus driving money-changers out of the temple with a whip.
The Bible is filled with stories of true prophets speaking tough words to belligerent audiences. John the Baptist lost his head, the prophet Isaiah was sawed in two and the prophet Zechariah was stoned. It's not always popular to tell the truth.
The problem with false prophets is that they usually tell partial truths. There's a Yiddish proverb that says, "A half truth is a whole lie."
"A true prophet will always tell the truth," says Vicki, 12. "And a false prophet will start telling things that aren't true, once you get to know him. Sometimes a false prophet will even say he is the Messiah."
The Apostle John proposed a test for all prophets: "By this you know the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God" (I John 4:2-3).
Your first question to people claiming to be God's spokespersons should be, "Who is Jesus Christ?" If they don't confess him as fully God and fully man in one person, you can write them off as false prophets.
"A false prophet may seem righteous at first, but he's really not," says Ally, 12. "Sometimes it's hard to tell because they are so disguised and so innocent-looking. You really need to pray about it and ask God to direct you to which person to trust."
Ally probably read what Jesus said about the false prophet wardrobe: "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves" (Matthew 7:15).
Don't expect a false prophet to appear as Darth Vader. Remember the story of "Little Red Riding Hood"? The big, bad wolf disguises himself in grandmother's clothes to deceive Little Red Riding Hood. Don't expect anything less from false prophets. Outwardly, they look as innocent as sheep, but inwardly, they're ready to pounce and devour.
Jesus said you would know false prophets by their fruits. The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22). Jesus also said words flow from a person's inner self, eventually revealing who people are (Luke 6:43-45). Listen carefully.
Think about this: The Bible is our standard for testing anyone who claims to speak in the name of God.
Memorize this truth: "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves" (Matthew 7:15).
Ask this question: Do you know God's word well enough to discern whether someone truly speaks for God?
Listen to a talking book, download the "Kids Color Me Bible" for free, watch Kid TV Interviews and travel around the world by viewing the "Mission Explorers Streaming Video" at www.KidsTalkAboutGod.org. Bible quotations are from the New King James Version. To find out more about Carey Kinsolving and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
COPYRIGHT 2009 CAREY KINSOLVING
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