Arminian Today

A Jesus-Centered Arminian Blog

Critical Thinking Out Loud

Let me do some critical thinking out loud for a moment.  I am pondering two questions.  First, if God is speaking to us through visions, dreams, personal prophecies, etc., why is it that so often those who receive these visions, dreams, personal prophecies are some of the weakest people I know?  I am not going to lump all charismatics together here as I don’t know all of them of course and that would be unfair but those that I do know who claim God is speaking to them in a dream or a “word” in their spirit are typically not committed to studying the Bible, are often ignorant of basic doctrines, don’t pray too much, are not serious in evangelism, and for the most part are weak spiritually.

Secondly, how can we claim that we believe in the sufficiency of the Bible if in fact we are not making a commitment to study it or apply it to our lives?  This is true for both evangelicals and charismatics.  We have all been guilty in knowing too much and not obeying what we know (James 4;17).  The truth is that we all need to take serious our study of the Bible.  The Bible is the inerrant and infallible Word of God (2 Timothy 3:16-17) and is true in all that it says (John 17:17).  David said in Psalm 119:142 that he would not forget God’s precepts but have we?  Do we know God’s precepts?  I believe the answer is that we know much but obey little and in reality, we don’t know as much as we think we know.  Remember Jesus’ disciples are those who hear His Word and put it into practice (Luke 11:28).  James the Apostle says that is true faith, to put into practice the truth of God (James 2:14-26).

So the bottom line for me is this: people are running around seeking a “word from the Lord” when in fact He has spoken faithfully and truthfully in the Bible.  The Bible is sufficient to teach us the ways of the Lord and we must be faithful to heed His voice in the Bible.  In reality, we don’t need any other voices.  We have a prophet in the Lord Jesus.  We have a king in the Lord Jesus.  We have a rabbi in the Lord Jesus.  We have a faithful high priest in the Lord Jesus.  We have an advocate with the Father in the Lord Jesus.  We have One who died in our place for our sins as our Passover lamb in the Lord Jesus. We have a sabbath rest in the Lord Jesus.  All of this is revealed not by some revelation apart from Scripture but in the Word of God.  We would do well to go to the Bible and hear it (Psalm 119:151).

2 Responses

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  1. Amen!


    02/07/2015 at 1:54 AM

  2. I would ask “how can we claim that we believe in the sufficiency of the Bible” if we deny the ongoing validity of visions, dreams and prophecies, because that very same bible of which sufficiency is claimed makes their ongoing validity VERY clear.

    Of course false prophecy is prevalent- and THAT is why we need to know our bibles – so we can know the false from the true. The reality is, false prophecy is easily recognised by someone who DOES test it according to scripture.

    But equally, I don’t see how anyone can deny the ongoing legitmacy of prophetic gifts if they know their Bibles.

    Trusting in prophecy without taking the time to know scripture (so that the legitimacy of prophecy can be tested) is a very dangerous form of spiritual laziness.

    However the choice to dismiss and reject all prophecy is no less laziness and no less dangerous: Paul gave the command to NOT despise prophecy – but to test it and to accept what is good.

    Both blanket acceptance of prophecy and blanket rejection of prophecy are equally despising of that God given gift and God given means of revelation to His people.


    02/08/2015 at 5:19 PM

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