[Course 14 Index] [Prophetic-School Index] [Mini-Series Index ] [Prev Lesson]

-- © GodSpeak International 2000 --
-- Do not republish without written permission from copyright@godspeak.org --

Teresa Seputis ts@godspeak.net GodSpeak International [http://www.godspeak.net/]
Michael Gerner MGerner@aol.com
Editors: ALison Bowling, Teresa Seputis

Prophetic-School MiniTraining Series

Judging Prophetic Words

by Teresa Seputis

Part 5

A Case Study In Judging Prophecy

I received an email on Dec 10, 1999 that appeared to be a rather strong "prophetic" rebuke, in response to my "latest mail out". When I read that email, I had no clue what post the person was referring to.. as I had probably sent out about 100 posts and private email replies in the last 48 hours to many different individuals and email lists.

Of course, I immediately brought this to the Lord and asked Him about it. I definitely would not want to ignore God if He were rebuking or correcting me. I went through a process of judging this "corrective word" with the Lord. I arrived at a conclusion as to whether or not this was something God was indeed saying to me.

Then the Lord told me to use this is a teaching example.. to share the word I received and the process with you that I went through in judging it. I hope you will find it helpful when you have to judge a word...

% Date: Fri, 10 Dec 1999 03:48:50 -0800 (PST)
% From: Night Mare <nightmare1900@yahoo.com>
% Subject: Your latest mail out!
% To: TeresaS@ncal.verio.com
% Teresa
% Quit lifting yourself up. You should lift up the Lord.
% You are only interested in being recognized by man.
% Humble yourself or you'll find chastisement.

My first response

My first response was confusion, because I had no idea what email message the person was referring to or what action I was accused of being prideful in. I was not aware of any pride in my life, but then, something like pride would be a blind spot.. something I would not be aware of. There was no inner witness of the Holy Spirit.

Taking it to God and asking Him

So, I asked God if this was from Him and what He thought about it. I invited Him to examine my heart with me and bring to light anything that needed to be dealt with. I asked Him to speak to me.

Evaluating the word In terms of how God usually communicates to me

The very first thing God to me said was, "Teresa, is this the style I use when I correct you?"

"No Lord, it is not your usual style."

Then He asked me what His usual style was, so I reviewed it with Him. First, God is very specific with me. If I do something that displeases Him, He calls it to my attention and speaks specifically to me about it. In fact, God and I have a habit of reviewing my day on a daily or near daily basis to see where I have pleased Him and where I have missed it. Not only is God specific (as opposed to broad and general) but He is very gentle and loving with me.. almost never harsh. And whenever He desires to speak something corrective into my life, He always does it through someone that I am in relationship with, through someone who I know has my best interest at heart. There are many people this would include such as my pastor, one of the GodSpeak board of directors, a few that I look to for mentoring or even those I work with regularly in ministry, such as members of the prophetic school leadership core. God did not use any of these to speak to me. When He speaks correction to me, He prepares my heart and usually deals with me on the same issues very shortly before the corrective word arrives... and then gives a strong witness to my spirit when I am receiving His word. Finally, God's correction is always life-breathing, leading to restoration and increased moving forward in Him. That is how God usually deals with me. I did not see any of these elements in this word.

Is it scriptural?

Then I reviewed it from the perspective of, "Is it scriptural?" I had to admit that it certainly is scriptural, for God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. There is definitely a scriptural precedence that those who fall into pride will be humbled.

Does it line up with what God has previously spoken to me?

Then I reviewed it from the perspective of how it matches with other things that God has said to me in the past. God reminded me of the first prophetic rebuke I ever got, on Nov 11, 1997. This came because I had this fear of falling into pride that used to keep me from moving forward when God said "go". Every time God would try to lift me up or put me in a position of responsibility I would disqualify myself. God sent a prophet from the leadership core to telephone me and gently rebuke me for not acknowledging His call on my life. He told me to settle within myself that He has called me and decide whether or not I would accept His call on my life. So the problem God addressed was not pride, but a near-crippling fear of accidentally falling into pride.

Later on God made a covenant with me.. My part was to move forward in obedience and faith when I believed He commanded me to do so. His part was to lovingly and gently correct me should I begin to fall into error... either in action or in attitude. The hard part of that covenant had been trusting that He would be faithful to gently correct up front, rather than letting me fall into error and then clobbering me for it. It took me literally months to begin to walk in confidence that God would indeed gently and lovingly correct me rather than let me fall into pride, assumption, arrogance and the like. He in fact did gently correct me a few times when I would begin to misstep or "miss it". That is how I realized I could trust Him and was able to begin stepping out in faith, knowing He would be faithful to keep His end of the covenant.

So, this "word" did not line up with what God has previously said to me, both personally and through various other prophetic words. God promised He would gently point out attitude sins and help me correct them, rather than threaten to clobber me for them.

Does it line up with what I know about myself?

Could this word fit me based on what I know about myself and upon recent inputs from others? I don't believe I am prideful.. in fact I still have this fear of falling into pride.. It used to cripple me and keep me from moving forward when God said "Go". But on the other hand, if I had a blind spot of pride, I would not know it because it would be a blind spot. Still, based on my fear of pride, it is not as likely to be a blind spot in my life as other things would be.

I have a daily prayer where I invite the Lord to examine my heart with me and to help me to have pure motives for Him. I invite Him to rework the desires of my heart to line up with the desires of His heart. This is a usual practice of mine, but I am particularly mindful of it and careful to do in these past couple of weeks because it is the focus of our whole church at the moment. In fact, I spent about two hours of prayer (3:00 AM til 5:00 AM) crying out to the Lord in this area on Wednesday morning and examining my heart with Him. Again, this was an area of prayer for about an hour yesterday morning. There have been areas in my heart that God is exposing and dealing with.. He has been showing me some unforgiveness in my heart towards three people from long ago that I did not realize was still there. He has been showing me how I misjudged someone and how I sometimes make assumptions of what He means when He speaks to me based on my understanding of the circumstances around me.

God has not been calling pride to my attention or addressing it with me in any manner. If this were a rebuke from the Lord, I believe He would have been preparing my heart to receive it in the same manner that He prepared my heart to realize/repent about unforgiveness in my heart toward three individuals and to deal with it.

Furthermore, input from those who are close to me is always in the area of encouraging me to step out in greater confidence. None of them has ever approached or rebuked me on the area of pride, but they have on areas that would tend to be contradictory to pride.. such as being hesitant, not exuding a great level of confidence, etc.

What do those who speak into my life say about this word?

I telephoned a couple people who I work closely with, who I look to for mentorship or guidance in my life/ministry. One of them I just asked if they had noticed anything prideful or arrogant in my ministry or in my dealings with them.. they said no. The other is someone who I have worked closely with for over 3 years. I shared the "word" with and asked him if maybe I had a blind spot in this area. He said that he felt this word was totally off-base considering what he knew of my life and character and behaviors.

So, the "word" was not validated based on input from those who know me well and who have permission to speak into my life.

What do I know about the character of the person who gave the word?

This word came anonymously from someone I do not know. I don't even know what post the person was responding to because they did not identify it. I am always leery of "anonymous" prophecies or corrections. I believe that if the Lord speaks through someone, particularly a corrective or directive word, that it is important for the person to be accountable for their word.. e.g, identify themselves.

The person appears quick to condemn and does not appear to know anything about me personally. Also, the "from address" of "Night Mare " sounds a bit inappropriate for someone who claims to be speaking for the Lord.

What God said to me about it

After all this evaluation, I reached the conclusion that this was not a word from the Lord to me. I asked the Lord if I'd reached the correct conclusion.. asked Him to verify it or to correct it... and He did.. through a dialogue with another prophet. But the Lord also told me something interesting.."Teresa, do you wonder what I want you to do with this word? What I want your response to be? This is what I want you to do, use it as an example and turn it into a teaching.. show people what steps you went through to evaluate this word.. because there are some people out there who need to see an example of how to judge prophecy. So use this experience as an example for them."


This is the basic process I went through. I evaluated the word as follows:

My first response - was there any inner witness?
no there was not.
Taking it to God and asking Him
God did not confirm it when I asked Him directly. He began asking me questions to evaluate the word instead.
Evaluating the word in terms of how God usually communicates to me
the word was not consistent with how God usually speaks this type of thing (correction in this case) to me.
Is it scriptural?
Yes, it was. There are scriptures that support the message of this word, but that doesn't necessarily mean it applies to me personally.
Does it line up with what God has previously spoken to me?
No, it contradicts what God has previously spoken to me.
Does it line up with what I know about myself?
No it does not. However, if it were addressing a "blind spot", I would not be aware of that fault in my life, so I need to explore with others who know me whether or not I have a blind spot.
What do those who speak into my life say about this word?
They did not see this as an area in of my life that I have a problem with.
What do I know about the character of the person who gave the word?
Very little, and their character seems questionable based on the little I know.
What did God say about my conclusions?
He said they were correct, that this was not a word from Him. And then gave me direction to turn this into a teaching example that might be helpful to others who need to judge prophecy.
Did God provide confirmation/correction?
Yes He did. He confirmed through a prophet friend that this corrective word was not from Him.

I hope that you will find it helpful to see the process I went through in judging this word. Many blessings to you!

[Please Note:
This is intended as a discussion series. Please feel free to send your discussion (comments or questions) to prophetic-school@godspeak.net. ]

-- © GodSpeak International 2000 --
-- Do not republish without written permission from copyright@godspeak.org --

[Course 14 Index] [Prophetic-School Index] [Mini-Series Index ] [Prev Lesson]