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A friend of mine just invited me to an "Extreme Prophetic" conference. I told him that I'd think about it as I'm not so sure that I want to be involved in anything that calls itself "extreme".
What is "extreme prophecy" anyway and how does it doffer from just regular old prophecy? Is this like the Harold Camping thing where you prophecy really bizzarre stuff? Is this "extreme" because the people talk really weird and jerk around when they prophesy? Is the judging of the prophecy also "extreme"? When I hear the word "extreme" tied to anything I think of the really weirdo wings of the political parties. Is this anything like that? Or is the term "extreme" some sort of marketing gimmick to try to draw in young kids?
I did ask my friend some of these questions and he was kind of evaisive. Makes me suspicious.
Based on my previous experience with prophetic conferences in my fully charismatic days, I'm really leery of these sorts of evens. All too often there is no judging of the prophetic utterance. I found out that a long time ago, unbeknownst to me, I actually attended an "Extreme Prophetic" conference. If it was the one that I'm thinking of, I was, along with some friends of mine, pretty unimpressed with it all. Lots of very sincere folks trying very hard tomake it what it wasn't--exciting. Very undisciplined, too. Pretty much an "anything goes" event. I'd be much more impressed if one of these conferences would require prophets to submit their prophecies to a judgement group before the conference. At least then you'd know that someone had taken the time to decide whether what is being said is sense or nonsense. You are right, in a local church setting something like this is done much, much better than it can be in a conference. At least then you know the person prophesying and you know their background and you have a pretty good idea if they are on the money or blowing wind or jsut need some attention.
I am with you on this. I do believe that we can receive solid training around the prophetic ministry and gift. But some of these 'conferences' are over-done with too much hype and maybe no weighing of what is being said. So I do understand. This is why my life, our church and the churches we work with are mainly giving open doors to those with whom we have a solid relationship. That is foundational in all ministry, whether apostolic, prophetic, evangelistic, teaching or shepherding.
Unless you have actually been to one of their conferences, I don't see how you can say they have a "circus-like" quality. The extreme prophetic conference I attended was not remotely like what you describe. Nor are they saying, "Come and see REAL prophecy!"
These are just prophetic saints who are pursuing their anointing to the limit of their faith, which is what we are all supposed to be doing!
As for judging prophecies, your description of the process is not even biblical. Nowhere in the bible does it say that a prophetic judging board should consider and release a prophecy perhaps some days or weeks later. In 1 Cor 14v29 it says, "let the others judge". This, in context of the "everyone" of verse 26, clearly means let the body judge, not the leaders. Sadly in most churches these days, the body is an emasculated lump of people who wait for their pastor to do everything for them.
Jim Zeirke said:
I too believe that the prophetic is real and for today. However, these conferences seem to have more of a circus-like quality to them "Come and see REAL prophecy!". Like Francis Drake says above here, most prophetic utterance is at the local church level and is pretty pedestrian when compared to what is said at these conferences. At the local church level it is also judged--something that is very much lacking in the few prophetic conferences that I've been at. At one church I know of, their prophetic judging board can take days, if not several weeks, to judge a prophecy. But that prophecy will not be presented to the church before that board judges it authentic. As I've heard the pastor relate it they find that only about 50% or less of the prophecies pass judgement.
Francis, I DID attend an "Extreme Prophetic" conference, as you can see in my post directly above. And I accurately report what I found: a lot of earnest people seeming to try to make the event exciting when it was not. There is no direct command in 1 Cor. 14 as to how judging of the prophetic is to be done. It just says that it should be done which leads me to believe that prophetic utterance is not to be the freeforall that happens in not just a few church settings today.. In this conference if reference, and other charismatic events that I attended back in the day, there was no judging whatsoever. The church that I referenced that has a prophetic judging "board", for lack of a better term, is pastored by a leader of the charismatic movement today--Sam Storms. The board is not made up of the leadership of the church although I'm sure that there are leaders of the chuch on the board. It is made up of folks who have a gift of prophecy. My point is that with all of the prophetic conferences out there, how many actually judge the prophecies that are given? I recall meeting a gal at one I attended about 15 years ago. She would write down every prophecy she heard there because she seemed to think that they were pertinent to her life. Perhaps some were, but ALL of them? And how did she know if the ones that were genuinely pertinent to her were true and faithful because no prophetic utterance at that event were, to my knowledge, judged by anyone.
Also, do any of the big names of the prophetic conference circuit actually submit their prophecies to judging by anyone?
Sorry Jim. I was going by the original post. I didn't read your additional comment because I was half way through doing my comment, and being over the pond in the UK, I suspect it appeared whilst I was asleep!
I am sure we both believe that the prophetic ministry should be part of the church today. My concern is that the judgmental attitude that appears against, it only serves to stifle it rather than mature it.
I happen to believe that church should not be hierarchically controlled. The church is a body with Jesus as the head, not an academic intellect. That is how I read the NT. 1Cor14 and especially v26 onwards gives a good overview of the subject.
v26. What is it brethren. When you come together, everyone of you has a psalm, has a doctrine, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edification.
To me, this speaks clearly against front led hierarchical meetings. This is about the spirit of prophecy being liberated to speak in his various manifestations via all those there. This is not about academically qualified pastors knowing what to do to conduct a captivating meeting of the saints.
Paul's intention here is that all learn to move in the things of the spirit together. I am sure that it was a little disordered as people grew and matured. However they did grow. They didn't sit and watch someone else do it all from the front according to virtually the same plan as last week, and the week before.
Having put forward that everyone participates in making a meeting, Paul gets specific with prophecy. v29 Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the others judge.
Who are these "others" that are supposed to judge? I believe that as no hierarchy is shown to be conducting these meetings, the others are merely the assembly itself. They should all take responsibility for what they chose to believe as being from the Lord.
It also shows that prophecy was not the domain of an elite few. v30. If anything be revealed to another that sits by, let the first hold his peace.
ie. Let everyone participate rather than the one person dominate a meeting like today.
v31 For you all may prophesy, one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted.
This makes it clear that from God's perspective, prophecy is supposed to be a main part, if not THE main part of an assembly. If we take such an aggressive approach to that ministry, it will never grow into maturity like the scriptures expect.
v39 Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy..............
I think this says it all!