The Apostle Paul wrote to the Thessalonian believers that they should "not despise prophecy", but should instead- "hold fast to the truth, and test everything."
1Th. 5:20 Do not despise prophecies,
1Th. 5:21 but test everything; hold fast what is good.
The same is true today. God can give prophetic words through people, but the church should not naively accept every prophecy without 'testing' it first. When I heard of this particular prophecy about Tasmania being destroyed by a tsunami, I wondered how many others would blindly accept this 'prophecy'? If they tested this particular prophecy they might discover that several things don't quite add up.
PROPHECY TEST #1, DOES IT CORRESPOND WITH THE TRUTH?
For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: Do not let your prophets and your diviners who are among you deceive you, and do not listen to the dreams that they dream
"Do not let 'your prophets' deceive you..." declared the proven prophet Jeremiah. This demands that any prophetic claim be tested against the truth. Therefore, when an alleged prophet gives an alleged prophecy, the details of this prophetic claim should be tested for its truthfulness. Let's examine this particular alleged 'prophecy' to see if it corresponds with the truth.
Firstly, the 'prophet' identifies the target of the tsunami as being the "island of Hobart" (the video editor tries to correct this with a graphic of Tasmania showing that Hobart is the capital city). Secondly, he says that the earthquake will come from 'the ocean' between Australia and the Island of Hobart. There is no ocean between mainland Australia and the Island of Tasmania. Thirdly, for a Tsunami to come from Bass Strait and swamp Hobart it would have to travel nearly 300 kilometres over land! (The 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami traveled, in places, just a few kilometres inland.)
PROPHECY TEST #2, DOES IT CORRESPOND WITH THE REALITY?
when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him.
Scripture gives a very simple and easily applicable test for any prophetic claim. If a prophet says something will happen and it doesn't happen, the prophecy is not from God. Therefore, this particular prophecy is very test based on the principle in Deuteronomy 18:22. If this prophecy does not come to pass, that is, if it does not correspond with reality, then it is not from God.
Even if none of these facts persuade the naive, there is of course the test of reality. In this case, the reality test is a simple one: the prophecy implies that this tsunami will hit Tasmania soon, if it doesn't, it fails the reality test. (This particular prophecy was first given in the third quarter of 2010.) All too often, so-called prophecies are so vague that their proponents then stretch their appeal to include historic details to validate their prophecy. But this claim is very specific. It is not a prophecy of a severe storm hitting Tasmania and destroying Hobart from Bass Strait - it is the claim that a Tsunami will come from Bass Strait overland to destroy Hobart.
There are other tests of a prophecy, like- Does it correspond with Scripture? Has the person giving the prophecy ever given another prophecy which has been undoubtedly fulfilled? The next time you hear of prophecy warning of some doom, or even of some coming "revival", you might like to apply these prophecy tests.
28th December 2010