The modern prophetic movement has several blind spots that sometimes allow deception. This deception is a big problem in this current season of decision.

1. Nationalism

Loyalty to their nation can sometimes prevent prophets from hearing clearly. Reading the words of the prophets about the US presidential election, I am struck by the arrogance that seeps through. There seems to be a strong presumption that God has to bless the United States, because it is a unique (exceptional) nation and the peace of the world depends on it. The US had done some good stuff in the post, so God must continue to bless it.

Unfortunately, the scriptures do not guarantee the future of any nation, or the church in any nation. The reality is that the United State is a massive mixture of good and evil, so its future hangs in the balance, and only God knows what the outcome will be. Anyone who presumes otherwise has slipped into presumption. Once a nation has had several revivals, it becomes hard to escape from religiosity and receive another. (Britain was special in its time, but its future has massively faded).

A common assumption is that the next big revival will come in the United States. This is arrogant, because the truth is that God can send revival wherever he chooses. The United States has been blessed with revival several times in the past, but each time the impact has gradually faded. There is no reason that has to send revival to the United States again just because he has done it before. Even if he has declared that he wants to send revival, it is conditional on an appropriate response to the moving of his Holy Spirit.

A related assumption is that God will build his Kingdom by sending a revival to the United States that spreads out across the world, but there is no reason why this must be the outcome. God achieved the greatest advance of the gospel ever under the cruel and pagan Roman Empire, so he can work anywhere. The greatest revival last century was in China under a hostile government. God can do his next big work anywhere in the world that he chooses. God does not need the United States to achieve his purposes. The next big advance of the Kingdom of God will most likely occur in places where it is not expected. Assuming otherwise is conceit.

Humble prophets would be more uncertain about the future of their nation. They would not just assume that revival must come to their nation, because their forebears were faithful. Sound prophets do not assume that their nation is so important for God's purposes that the Kingdom of God cannot advance without it.

I am intrigued that most prophecies on the internet are given by people living in the United States. Reading them gives the impression that God is obsessed with the United States and does not care about people in other nations. This is not true. Humble prophets should be listening to see what God is saying about other nations who seem to have fewer prophets.

2. Alligiance to Words

Overstating the importance of their words can be a cause of prophetic pride. This often seeps out through our attitude to intercession. Some people seem to be saying something like,

We have prayed according to what the prophets declared, so God has to do it. We are standing on their words, so God must act.
The statement that God is sovereign means that he will do what he chooses to do. However, it is often made to sound like God has to act because hundreds of prophets have spoken and hundreds of thousands of intercessors and declared their words. What is claimed to be faith often sounds like presumption.

Reading some of the comments by intercessors, there is an assumption that if words of the prophets are not fulfilled, then evil will be victorious in the world. If the wrong president is elected, or if revival does not come, then evil will become uncontrollable and be rampant throughout the world. Everything seems to depend on the prophets being right and the intercessors standing on their words. The assumption that everything depends on the words of the prophets is over-confidence.

Humble prophets would be more uncertain about the accuracy of the words. They would be aware that they are fallible and could be wrong. In a situation where a prophetic word has not been fulfilled as promised by the prophet, I would expect to see more humility. Rather than continuing to push the word, they should wait patiently and leave it to God to fulfil it. Instead, the prophets seem to be pressing their followers to stand firmly on their words. Faith in God has become trust in the words of the prophets. They don't want their words to be questioned, because they believe it allows the powers of evil to undermine them and prevent them from being fulfilled.

Our allegiance is to Jesus. Prophets who are so attached to their words that they cannot admit they were wrong are dangerous.

3. Weak Repentance

When prophets focus more on what they want God to do than what God wants his people to do, they become dangerous. Christians everywhere seem to like claiming 2 Chronicles 7:14 as a way to get God to act, but without checking that it is relevant for their context. They seem to be keener on calling on God to change than they are for their church to change.

Intercession is not repentance.

Repentance is a change of thinking that leads to a change of behaviour.

Intercession often seems like a challenge to God to move, without any need for a change of behaviour by those who are praying. Where are the prophetic voices telling the church what behaviour must change? There are plenty of prophets telling the people of the world that they are bad and need to change, or telling politicians that they need to change the laws to make the people of the world good, but where are the voices calling for a deep change of thinking or a radical change in the what that the church operates.

Most prophetic voices seem to be better at declaring what God must do, while suggesting only minor adjustments to the way that the church operates. God's sovereignty has been changed to God must do what the prophets have declared so that he will not be embarrassed. When humility is used as a weapon to move God, it is no longer humble.


Hundreds, if not thousands, of people in the United States seem to believe that they have been called and appointed to be a prophet to their nation. God seems to have far more prophets than he needs. The result is a multitude of voices all speaking at the same time. And they all seem to have a different message.

This cacophony of voices leads to confusion. Every few moments a couple of new videos with a prophetic message for America will drop into my Facebook feed. Even listening to just a few of them will leave the listener confused about what God is saying. A Christian who subscribes to several prophetic bulletin boards will have dozens of prophetic messages dropping into their inbox every day. The diversity of the messages will usually leave the reader confused. The only solution seems to be select a few voices to follow, and ignore the rest, but that is ignoring the problem.

Anyone who listened to the babble of prophetic voices speaking to America would conclude that God is confused, as he seems to be saying different things to different people. However, God not confused and he does not contradict himself. He words are always clear and true. So, the confusion must be coming from the people claiming that they speak for him.

The problem has arisen because social media and electronic communication enables people who believe they have a word from God to distribute it widely. At times the Israelites were left without a prophetic word. That is a terrible situation to be in. Today we have the opposite problem and it is almost as bad. We have such a prophetic babble that the voice of the Holy Spirit is almost impossible to discern.

Something is clearly wrong. Those who are pushing their words believe that they need to be heard, but they are often making it harder for God to be heard. Maybe it is time for those who believe that they are called by God to speak to their nation to remain silent and stop pushing their words forward and wait for God to raise their words up.

I am glad to see the role of the prophet being restored, but at the present time we seem to have toomany prophets speaking at the national level. I suspect that too many people who are called to intercession have tried to become prophets. Maybe people who are called to be prophets to their nation have been pushed up to soon by their friends, or pushed themselves up before they are ready.

Maybe prophets who receive a word from God should be asking they are the ones that he wants them to share it. A humble prophet might pray that the Lord would give their word to someone else, so there are fewer voices speaking.

The nation urgently needs to hear that the voice of the Spirit. Many big-name prophetic voices, who believe that they need to keep speaking and posting to maintain their popularity might need to be silent for a time, so that they do not crowd out what the Holy Spirit is saying.

5. New Standard of Righteousness

Many modern prophets have introduced a new standard of righteousness, in which abortion is prioritised above all other sins. Consequently, they support a presidential candidate who has committed adultery because he claimed that he would make it more difficult for women to obtain abortions. These prophets claim that the thousands of abortions being carried out each year is preventing God from blessing the United States. They believe that Christians should use their political power to make abortions illegal, so God will send revival again.

This is not an issue of whether abortion is sinful or not, but about prophets prioritising abortion as the great abomination and making it the sole criterion for deciding political issues. Some used the candidate's attitude to abortion to determine their vote and ignored all other issues.

The strange thing about the enormous emphasis on abortion in the American political process is that the Bible is totally silent about it. Abortion is not directly mentioned once.

The Old Testament law gives detailed lists of crimes and specifies the correct punishments, but abortion is missing from these lists. Abortion is not mentioned in the ten commandments; a strange silence.

The prophets challenged Israel with detailed descriptions of the sins that were upsetting God, but they never mention women having abortions as the big obstacle. They never suggested that abortions be banned, so God's blessing could return, whereas they did complain about mistreatment of the poor. The prophets criticised people who offered their children as sacrifices, but these practices were significantly different from abortion, because the perpetrator, the age of the victims, the method and the seriousness of the outcome are all different. Babies and young children were tormented by being burned while alive and the sacrifice was directed towards a false god representing demonic powers, which exposed the nation to their spiritual dominance. Worse still, these sacrifices would usually have been managed by men.

John the Baptist called on the people to repent and turn from their sins, but he never mentioned abortion.

Jesus challenged the behaviour of the people listening to his preaching, but he never criticised any of the many women that he met for having had an abortion (although either the woman at the well with six husbands or the well-known sinner who anointed his feet quite likely had). Jesus did not condemn the sins of ordinary people, because he expected them to sin, and he knew his death and resurrection would be a solution to the mess they have made of their lives. He got stuck into the people who claimed to know God's will, but passed judgment on other people while continuing to sin themselves. Christian prophets should take note that God is far more upset by the sins of the church than by the sins of the world.

Paul gave detailed lists of behaviours that would keep people from entering the Kingdom of God. In 1 Cor 6:9-10, he mentions adulterers, thieves and drunkards, but he does not mention women having abortions, although they would have been common in Corinth. A final list of people who cannot enter the Kingdom of God is given in Revelation 21:8. Cowards, sorcerers and fornicators are listed, but there is no mention of women who have had an abortion.

It is odd for prophets to make abortion the worst possible sin when it is never mentioned in the Bible (not once). If God hated abortion as much as the church does, you would expect Jesus, the prophets, and the apostles to have frequently condemned it. Modern prophets get around this problem by describing it as murder. They speak frequently about "baby murder" even though that expression is not used in the Bible.

The problem with this is that the Bible defines murder quite precisely. We cannot claim that any death at the hand of another human is murder. Killing a thief who has broken into a house during the night is not murder (Exodus 22:2). People who kill soldiers attacking their community are not guilty of murder. God put clear boundaries around what constitutes murder, so we cannot decide a murder has occurred without reference to his standards.

Since abortion is not specifically mentioned in the scriptures, it can only be defined as murder by a deductive process that people can disagree about. If abortion is the sin that offends God more than any other, we would expect him to have specified it more clearly in his definition of murder.

A prophet with a distorted Pharisee view of sin will often get a distorted understanding of what God wants to do in the world. If they put too much emphasis on a particular sin of the people of the world, they can become obsessed with using law to eliminate it, when God is far more concerned about the sins of the church that are hindering the gospel and disrupting the advance of his Kingdom.

Prophets with a confused view of sin get agitated about abortions that send unborn babies straight to the presence of God, but don't seem to care about the millions of civilians who have been killed or had their lives wrecked by America's continuous, but pointless military adventures. They seem to be more concerned about unborn children in their own nation than they are about the suffering and deaths of people living in other nations, which is hypocritical.

The irony is that abortion is the outcome of other sins. Most abortions are the consequence of adultery or casual sexual relationships. I am sure that God is more concerned about the men who engage in careless adulterous or casual sexual activity than he is about the unloved and abandoned women who choose to have an abortion because they believe their situation is desperate. Condemning people who have messed up their lives, or had their lives messed up by irresponsible men, makes Christians seem callous and undermines the witness of the gospel.

The huge pressure to tighten the abortion laws does not deal with the underlying problem caused by the social and sexual revolution. Using law to deal with a social and moral problem is pointless. I am not in favour of abortion, but I understand that trying to ban it is dealing with the symptoms of a deeper underlying problem. It is a sad reflection on the state of our society and communities that so many women do not want to carry their babies, but trying to eliminate the problem by passing laws is just papering over the cracks.

People who think that legally banning abortion would bring the Kingdom of God closer do not really understand the nature of the Kingdom of God. God wants people to freely do his will because they love him, not because they are forced to obey with threats of retribution. Using threats of punishment to prevent abortion is not the way of God's Kingdom.

The Kingdom of God will only come when parents no longer see pregnancy as a disaster due to their faith in Jesus and hope for the future inspired by the Holy Spirit. It will come when men and women freely stop engaging in irresponsible sexual activity because they love Jesus and walk in the love peace and joy of the Spirit. Abortion will only disappear when every pregnant woman feels loved and supported by a husband and a wider community. The best way to bring about these changes is to preach the gospel of Jesus. This will not be helped by condemning women who have abortions or trying to ban them.

Prophets who have elevated abortion into the great abomination, contrary to the scriptures, will have difficulty hearing God's voice clearly. God is more concerned about the sins of the Church than about the sins of the world. Sinning is normal for people of the world but the failure of the church to fully obey Jesus weakens the gospel and holds back the advance of his Kingdom. Prophets should be asking if their wrath against abortion has prevented them from the hearing about what really frustrates God?

More here.

6. Poltical Power

Faith in political power is a blind spot that trips up many prophets. Fascination with political power can prevent prophets from seeing what God is trying to do. They tend to get obsessed with getting the right people into power, because they fall or the deception that the next election is the most important in their nation's history, which is a political lie, designed to enhance political power.

If prophets come to believe that the Kingdom of God is established from the top-down, they tend to get infatuated with political power. This leads them to focus on changing the political leaders of the nation in the false hope that this will bring the Kingdom of God closer. Unfortunately, these efforts to bring political change usually lead to disappointment.

During the fifty years that I have been following politics, leaders and parties have come and gone, but elections have bought very little change, except when the situation got desperate and change was forced upon reluctant leaders. The big changes have been brought about by cultural shifts within society. The biggest change within my experience was the social and cultural revolution of the 1960s. Politicians had very little to do with starting it; they could not stop it; so were carried along by it. The same was true of the arrival of the "get rich" phenomena that arrived towards the end of the century. Politicians did not know where it came from and could not stop it, but it had a far-reaching effect on the way we live.

The greatest social and cultural change in my father's lifetime was the great depression. It gave his generation an entirely different attitude to money and security that forcefully shaped their lives. Politicians did not understand how the depression started, and did not know how to stop it, but society was utterly changed.

The big changes that transform society have very little to do with which party is in power and who is the Prime Minister or President. They are usually left struggling to keep up with changes that have already become inevitable.

A huge religious, cultural and social transformation is currently well underway in the United States, and politicians of all stripes are struggling to come to terms with it. They will find it almost impossible to shape it or turn it back, because they will get distracted by a few irrelevant symptoms, and misunderstand the deeper causes that are driving it. One side will try to ride it, and the other will swim against it, but both will be swamped and swept along by it, because they do not understand the season that they are caught up in.

The main reason that most political efforts fail is that all nations are controlled by government-spirits in the spiritual realms (principalities and powers). An election does not affect their position of power, so when a human government changes, everything carries on the same. Nothing changes, because the same spiritual powers are pulling the strings.

The prophets in the United States should stop fighting about who will be president and start worrying the warring, violent and deceiving government-spirits that have had control of their nation for a long time. Whoever wins the presidential election will further consolidate the power of these well-entrenched spirits. The prophets still need to learn that political power is the greatest obstacle to the Kingdom of God, as it amplifies the power of government-spirits that control the nation, and they are not removed by shouting at them.

The Kingdom of God is not established from the top, so God is not really interested in changing governments, unless there has been a massive change of heart in the people of the nation. The Kingdom of God is established from the bottom and then spreads out through society. The Holy Spirit prefers to work amongst two or threes to change their lives by the gospel in the power of the Spirit.

As more and more people are touched, the kingdom expands outwards. When the culture of the nation has been transformed, one heart at a time, the political leaders will find themselves out of touch and have to either change their minds, or walk away. The government-spirits that control them will find that their power has evaporated.

We live in the age of political power. The power of human governments (and the government-spirits that controlled them) is at greater than at any time in history. However, Jesus is not interested in political power. He refused to use political power to impose his rule on unwilling people, because he knew that his kingdom will come when people respond to the good news of his victory on the cross by freely choosing to love him and serve him in the power of his Spirit.

If they were honest, many Christian prophets would realise that they are sometimes more influenced by the culture of our political age than by the Holy Spirit. The current prophetic confusion has arisen, because they have bought into the lie that God needs a win in the presidential election. Once the shouting is finished and the dust from the election has settled, the prophets will discover it was not worth all the clamour and confusion. They will repent of stirring up a fake political hope and wake up to the truth that, despite their zeal, God did not care who won the election, because the president is mostly irrelevant to the fulfilment of his purposes.

The true prophets will realise that the Kingdom of God comes through the preaching of the gospel in the power of the Spirit. They will hear God calling his people to form Kingdom Communities under the radar of political power in the places where they live. The prophets will get on with the more important task of telling them how God wants this done and encouraging them to pursue the task with zeal and love for each other.

7. Love of Military Force

Too many of the people who claim to be prophets are excessively fascinated with military power. The scriptures warn against the dangers of trusting in military power, but they refuse to see it.

The worst manifestation of this blind spot occurred during the period leading up to the US invasion of Iraq in 2003. Although it was a disaster for the Iraqi people and the US military personal who were killed, maimed and emotionally crippled, the prophets who supported it have never shown any contrition.

Warmongering prophets and military power often go together. It is often hard to tell which came first. Confidence in military power opens prophets to a warring and violent spirit. The words of a prophet who loves military power are often welcomed by their political leaders. Political leaders are drawn to these prophets because their words feed their desire from more and more power.

The United States seems to have a problem with prophets that love war. The nation has such immense military strength that some prophets get dazzled with it and fall in love with war. This makes them dangerous at this pivotal time for their nation.

This love of military power is a blind spot that prevents many prophets from hearing clearly.

8. State of Israel

A serious blind spot for many modern prophets is their attitude to the modern nation of Israel. God's promise to bless those who bless Abraham and his descendants has been twisted into a belief that the state of Israel can do no wrong, and that anyone who questions its activities is opposing God. The scriptural teaching on Israel is much more circumspect. It recognises that Israel is often presumptuous and attempts to manipulate the fulfilment of God's promises. I discuss this issue more thoroughly in Nation of Israel.

Israel is not a Christian nation and most of its leaders are not followers of Jesus. That means that it still functions under the old covenant. Many of the decisions and actions of the Israeli government are contrary to the requirements of their nations covenant with God.

Actions that break the covenant are denying the people of Israel access to the blessings that it promised. Unfortunately, many Christian prophets assume that Israel can continue in the blessings of their covenant without obedience. They just ignore the clearly-spelt out consequences of disobedience to the covenant.

God will fulfil his purposes for Israel as promised in the covenant, but he will not do it through political manipulation, military weapons and political alliances.

Successive Israeli governments have been emboldened in their actions by the unconditional support of all United States governments. Most US-based prophets have closed their minds to the injustices perpetrated by the Israeli government with their nation's military, financial and political support. They seem to assume that everything that Israel does has God's blessing, so they should bless it too. If Israel does bad things, they assume that it is justified.

Worse still, these prophets seem to assume that blind support for Israel will force God to bless the United States. They assume that sins of the United States do not matter to God, because their nation's unconditional support for Israel has earned God blessing on their nation.

If God is speaking to these prophets about what Israel is doing, they have chosen not to hear. This complicity with injustice and evil creates a blind spot for many prophets.

9. Second Coming

Many prophets grew up with a teaching that Jesus is going to return soon. Some still hold this teaching. This clouds their understanding of what is happening around them.

Christians in almost every age have believed that the second coming was near, but they all proved to be wrong. Modern prophets should be careful that they do not make the same mistake. The second coming of Jesus may not necessarily be as close as many believe.

We should always be ready for the return of Jesus, but assuming that it will occur in our time will often cause us to misunderstand what God is doing in the world. Once the Kingdom of God is established by the Holy Spirit through his church, it may continue for thousands of years. Therefore, the second coming of Jesus might be a very long way away.

A problem with the belief that Jesus is coming soon to establish his kingdom is the corollary belief that Jesus will do with violent power, punishing all those who do not accept his rule. The implication is that the Holy Spirit has efforts by the Holy Spirit to bring the kingdom using the suffering, service and love of the church will not succeed, so Jesus will have to come with his angels to forcibly clean up the mess in the world.

Unfortunately, the belief that Jesus will return and establish his rule using brutal force against all who oppose him reinforces the idea that Christians are justified in using military force to advance his kingdom prior to his coming.

The Jesus-is-coming-soon-blind-spot can prevent prophets from hearing clearly. (More at Times and Seasons).


This the end of my series of blinds spots. On their own, most of these blind spots might not be that serious. The problem is that one leads to another and they tend to reinforce each other. For example, those blinded by a love of war, will find it difficult to be impartial about Israel, because they will be impressed by the ruthlessness and power of the Israel defence forces. Likewise, those who believe that Jesus needs return and establish his rule using angelic force will tend to justify the use of military force to advance his kingdom.

There are probably many more blind spots that those I have discussed. I am not aware of them all, because I am probably affected by some of them without being aware of them.