[Course 41 Index] [Prophetic-School Index] [Mini-Series Index] [Prev Lesson]

-- © GodSpeak International 2007 --
-- Do not republish without written permission from <copyright@godspeak.org> --

Author: Teresa Seputis ts@godspeak.net http://www.godspeak.net

When Should I Accept A Word and When Should I Reject It?

By Teresa Seputis

Lesson 5
Dealing With Potentially Manipulative Words

When I wrote this series, I expected it to be a four lesson series. However the Lord recently gave me an experience that I felt I should turn into lesson five of this teaching series. It is about how to deal with "words" that you suspect are actually ploys to manipulate you into doing (or not doing) something.

Most of us have experienced this at one time or another. Someone wants us to do something for them that we are not willing to do. First they try to persuade us, but we remain unmoved. Then they come back and give us a "prophecy" that basically tells us to do what they asked. Their "word" often carries some type of threat if we don't comply--e.g., we will loose a spiritual promotion, or we will be punished in some manner, or we are displeasing God and loosing our intimacy with Him, etc.

On first glance, this seems so blatant and so obvious that I did not think it needed to be discussed. Most of the time it is not hard to figure out that word wasn't really from God; it was a manipulation ploy. But there is something inside many of us that really wants to be pliable in the Holy Spirit's hand, we want to be open to His correction. That is a good trait, but it can work against us when we receive false manipulative words.

Our God-given common sense tells us the "word" is a ploy of the person to coheres us into doing what they want. It will be obvious to our friends, and should we consult them, they will tell us to listen to our common sense. But there is that deep passion inside of us to yield completely and cooperate with the Lord's correction. Since the seemingly false word is corrective in nature, that desire kicks in; it wants to double-check and assure that we are not somehow missing God or rebelling against His will.

Let me share a passage from 1 John 3:18-22 that sort of describes this: "18 My little children, let us not love in word or in tongue, but in deed and in truth. 19 And by this we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before Him. 20 For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things. 21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence toward God. 22 And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight."

The problem is that at times our desire to yield to God's correction can cause our own heart to wrongly condemn in response to false corrections. God knows all things; He knows that we want to submit to Him and He knows that this word was a false word. If we take the time to soak in His presence and wait on Him in response to this word, He will usually tell us that. The problem is that the accuser of the brethren likes to jump in and try to make you feel condemned. One of his favorite tactics is to accuse you of not yielding to God when you don't receive a false correction. That makes two voices speaking to you and you have to sort out which is God and which is the "accuser of the brethren."

Any time a person gives you a word telling you to do something that you previously told them you would not do, that word is "suspect." Most of the time, if God wanted to send you a word to correct you on that, He would send it via some other person who does not have not a vested interest in your decision or prior knowledge about it. God is not limited to just one prophetic source in your life; He has many people who He could use to deliver a prophecy to you. God is highly ethical and He usually avoids doing things that look like a conflict of interest.

Here is a hypothetical example to illustrate the point. Let's pretend that you have a friend named Mark, and he asked you to do him a favor and you said "No." Mark now has a vested interest in this, and if God wants to send someone to prophetically correct you, He is not likely to use Mark to give you that correction. God is much more likely to use someone else. But God is God and He can choose to make an exception to His guideline any time He wants to, so there is a slim possibility God could send Mark to you with a corrective word.

So how do you determine if God really spoke to you via Mark's word? You have to judge the word, just like you would judge any other word. Here are four questions that are particularly helpful in this type of situation:

  1. What did God say directly to me on this topic?
  2. Is this "word" hitting on one of my blind spots?
  3. Did the person have something to gain by giving me this word?
  4. What is the character of the one giving the word?

Let's look briefly at those four questions.

What Did God Say Directly To Me On This Topic?

Remember the context of receiving this type of word. Someone asked you to do (or not do) something, and you said "No" to their request. You either responded naturally or you consulted God and followed His direction.

Think back to the original request. Did you respond out of your feelings or schedule constraints? Or did God speak to you about it before you responded? Or did their request go against a general policy that God had previously given you? If you involved God in the process of making this decision, then He has already spoken to you about it. If you did not involve Him at that time, then ask Him about it now and see what He says to you about it.

If you are not good at hearing God's voice, you may need to get help. You may want to run it by someone who's hearing you do trust--a spiritually mature friend or a prayer partner or a pastor or spiritual advisor. But if you are good at discerning God's voice, then simply trust your own hearing.

But if you know how to recognize God's voice pretty accurately, then you should trust Him to speak clearly to you when you ask Him about it. Personally, I hear God pretty well, so I tend to trust my own hearing over another person's hearing. If I hear God clearly on something, I am not very likely to receive something as "from God" that contradicts what He already said to me.

Sometimes God gives us guidelines to follow and we automatically apply His guideline to the situation. Most of the time we are correct in doing so, but there is always the possibility that this one request was an exception to the general guideline. An example might be when God tells a man to give his wife and family top priority on his time on weekends. A friend of his asks him to help with a church project that will tie him up all weekend away from his family. He remembers God's guideline and says "No." There is the slight possibility that God wanted him to make an exception in this one case. If his friend doesn't take no for an answer and gives him a word to do this anyhow, he can go back and check with God. Why? Because he followed a guideline instead of hearing God speak to him directly on that instance. He can tell the Lord something like, "I said no because You told me to spend weekends with my family. Do You want this one weekend to be an exception to the guideline You gave me?" Then he would listen to what God said to him.

On the other hand, if his friend had asked him and he said, "Let me pray about it and get back to you," then he stopped to listen to God before answering. It is not necessary for him to go back to God for clarification because God already spoke clearly and distinctly to him about that particular weekend.

Is This Word Hitting On One Of My Blind Spots?

It is possible the word is bounding against a blind sport. As I said before, it is very unlikely for the Lord to use someone to give you a word telling you to do something you already told that person you would not do. But you might want to check for blind spots just in case.

The best way to check for blind spots is to run the word past those who know you best and ask them if they feel the word is hitting on a blind spot in your life. If you have an honest friend, they will tell you if you have a blind spot in that area.

Now here is the tricky part: God may be allowing this false word to get you to look at and deal with a blind spot in your life. Let me put it another way: the word may be a false word, but it might still expose a genuine blind spot. The Lord could have prevented that person from giving you a false word, but He may have allowed it because He wants you to struggle with it so that you become aware of your blind spot.

In other words, if the word really does hit on a blind spot, that doesn't automatically mean it is a God word and you should follow the directions in it. You still need to judge the word and validate the directive part via the other three questions. But if a false word does make you aware of a blind spot, you need to present that blind spot to the Lord and allow Him to work on that area of your life.

Did The Person Have Something To Gain By Giving Me This Word?

Obviously, in this type of case they did. Their word is automatically suspect because they have an invested interested in getting you to do something. They may have pure best intentions when they gave you this word, they may had mistaken their own desires in this situation for the voice of God. Or they may have bad motives. They might know that God did not say this and they might just be trying to coheres you into doing what they want you to do.

There is a slight chance it could be a God-word given through someone with a vested interested, but it is unlikely. So if you don't get a conclusive "Yes, this really was Me speaking to you" from God as you judge this word, you should be predisposed to reject the word.

Look At The Character Of The One Giving The Word

In an earlier lesson, I said that we should judge the word and not the person giving it. That is true in general for words, but any time the person giving the word has a vested interest in how you respond to that word, you need to look at their character.

Ask yourself if they are trying to manipulate you through this word, or if they are genuinely trying to represent God and speak forth His message. If you know about character flaws in this person, it becomes more plausible that they are giving a false word for their own gain than giving a God-word.


God does not usually operate by control or manipulation. He values free will and He prefers that you willingly choose to honor Him and obey Him. His character does not change when the prophetic operates, because God is full of integrity and He doesn't change. That means He is unlikely to direct someone to give you a word that intentionally manipulates you.

If you tell a person "no" on something, and they come back to you with a prophetic word that tells you to do it anyhow, that is probably not a God-word. It is probably a word out of the person's own heart or soul to manipulate you. Unfortunately, you can't always reject those type of words, because occasionally God does things in ways that surprise us. However, that type of word is automatically suspect and it must be carefully judged before you can accept it.

You should remember that God has a lot of prophetic resources to choose from. If you say "No" to someone and God wants you to say "Yes," He is more likely to send a corrective word through someone else. If there are not any other prophets in your area, God can direct one to phone or email you, or He can send an angel to speak to you. God is not limited in how He can correct you when you make a mistake, and God is not likely to threaten you the first time that He corrects you. He is much more likely to simply let you know what He wants and then to see if you will obey Him from a wiling heart.

That is why we automatically become suspicious when the person who you said "No" to comes back to you with a corrective word. It is less suspicious of the correction comes from some independent source. We are also be suspicious of words that carry a threat of some type of punishment if you don't comply to it. Finally, if the same person keeps coming to you over and over again with the same corrective word, that probably is not from God--especially when the word is trying to get you to do something for the person who is speaking the word to you.

-- © GodSpeak International 2007 --
-- Do not republish without written permission from <copyright@godspeak.org> --

[Course 41 Index] [Prophetic-School Index] [Mini-Series Index ] [Prev Lesson]