The Hidden Voice of God
[To those like myself, committed, but deeply frustrated with prophetic movementism.....]
The more I hear and read of the present utterances and writings referred to as prophecy in our time, the more convinced I’m becoming of a Voice of the Lord that does not resonate in the words of prophecies themselves, but is Hidden beneath their surface and between their lines—discernible only to a certain kind of heart. As you read the following thoughts, I hope that that is the Voice you too will hear more clearly beneath these words.
My own difficulty stems from my inability to see in today's prophetic movement what I see in Scripture. In the Scriptures, my heart is attracted to the reality that the prophetic word of the New Covenant was committed to one and only one clearly identified group of men, hand-picked by none other than the Lord Himself. These apostles formed the standard around which the Lord's mind was to crystallize for generations to come.
I find assurance and comfort knowing that when I open up my Bible, I will hear the authoritative word of a certain group of men, chosen by God, affirmed by the Spirit. I am assured that every time I open that Book, it is the same men and only those men who will be speaking and to whom I am obligated to listen.
As the present prophetic movement has mushroomed in our generation, I have expected to be able to find in today's men of God what I find in the Scripture's apostles. My heart has sought for a clearly defined and evident worldwide eldership of prophet statesmen who carry the same authoritative ring as the first apostles—an eldership to whom I know I should listen because "they" have the word of the Lord for our generation. I have been listening for this and listening for this and listening for this....
But instead, I have only grown discouraged when, in movement after movement and stream after stream, I have found nothing but an increasing multitude of non-authoritative voices competing for a hearing in a proverbial "prophetic marketplace." Voices are crying aloud on every street corner—writing articles, sending out e-messages, publishing websites, holding conferences.
Some truly are prophets. Some are not. Some are true prophets, but they are immature. Others are mature, but somehow don't come up to biblical-class stature. Some are true prophets, but their words are polluted with strands of humanism inherited from movements preceding us and effects surrounding us.
In short, as the prophetic outpouring continues, there is an unharnessable spectrum of true, false and mixed; of mature and immature—in which it is impossible to discern a standard for the openly true authoritative voice and mind of God to the body of Christ. I must of course include myself in this non-authoritative panoply, though I may be persuaded of the authority behind my own vision! (Do Note: I am not ridiculing anyone merely for being obedient to put forth their word into the open "marketplace," nor do I wish to dissuade anyone from obeying the unction to put forth their word.)
But as the Lord has taken me apart personally, and I’ve watched the worldwide prophetic currency become virtually debased through lack of objective standard for measuring its veracity and applicability, I have increasingly perceived a Hidden reality and dimension to the Lord’s Voice—one that does bear the kind of universal authority as found in the Scriptures which my heart eagerly yearns. But in this reality, God is not revealing His Authority through a visible, vocal uniquely handpicked set of men for us to follow as He did before.
Instead, having released this indefinable anointing called “prophecy,” He is revealing His one true mind by contrast against and underneath this audible revelational stream. He is revealing Himself through the silences between the multitudes of anointed (or not so anointed) voices. He is revealing His authoritative mind between the lines of what is being prophesied. He is revealing His real authority by what He is not "saying."
At the Lord’s first coming, there was a clear visible set of men to follow. But at His second coming, He is to be discovered and followed between and underneath and outside the overwhelming multitude of human voices that are bearing His anointing. And to be truly heard and followed in a present Scripture-class level of authority, He must be heard by a certain kind of heart in an entirely different realm—one for which the prophetic movement provides only a noisome if necessary backdrop.
The VOICE Beyond the Voices
What I am saying is not new or weird. The fact is that many sincere and earnest prophetic people (some of you!) have been writing in a groping fashion to define a distinction between "anointing" and "Anointing," between an apparent anointed spirituality and a deeper indefinable anointed Spirituality.
I laud every one of you who have been wrestling to articulate this distinction! I hear your struggle to find the words for this as I read your writings. None of us wants to stand guilty of denying the prophetic anointing as from God. We know better. Yet we also deeply know that this "anointing" just isn't cutting it!
In this article, I’m merely taking this same awareness many of us share, and bringing it to a greater level of significance and implication.
There are certain threads from Scripture I believe help bear witness to what I am saying. Some are titled below. Consider them briefly.....
- Take Heed How You Hear
When Jesus spoke, He was not satisfied to know that men had "heard" Him speak. He repeatedly said, "Take heed how you hear." There was hearing, and then there was hearing.
In other words, even beneath the level of His own anointed words, Jesus was calling men to hear something deeper, something of the Father. There was a Voice of the Father underneath and between the lines of what Jesus was saying by prophecy that He Himself knew men must grasp in the inner being. And He knew that that is where the real authority was which in turn bore witness to Who He really was.
- Among the Candlesticks
In the Book of Revelation, Jesus describes Himself as One who walks among the candlesticks (churches). We are told later that the real dedicated followers of the Lamb follow Him wherever He goes. This means they too follow Him among the candlesticks.
What is this saying? It says there is a speaking of the Lord between what He is saying by prophecy to the churches, and that those with ears to hear follow that Voice between the prophetic voice(s) as they are spoken IN the churches. Selah.
- Like a Thief
When He comes, the Lord says He will come "like a thief in the night." A thief breaks into a house silently. A thief accomplishes what He does in a house, not by what He announces of Himself to all the House, but by what He does not say.
Again, what does this tell us? It says that when the Lord comes to His House, He will come and be perceived by those who have heard and follow His silent Voice as it is not revealed in the daylight of open prophecy in the House (of the Lord). Only those who have perceived and followed Him beneath all the prophecy will be ready to meet Him and will be taken as jewels (see Mal. 3:17 KJV)
- “Through” the Holy Place
Many of us have sung the song "Take me past the outer courts, and through the Holy Place..... pass me by the crowds of people, the priests who sing their praise" This song is one more example that says so well what our inner hearts know. The real mind of God is not revealed in the holy place of prophecy. It is revealed beyond the Holy Place. It is past the priests. It is also past the prophets in a realm of intimate communion into which prophecy may not ascend.
As the prophetic movement swells, and the words become increasingly "meaningless" and "numbing," I encourage you to tune your heart to listen for the real Voice beyond the prophetic.
This is not to discourage anyone from issuing forth the words or visions that God burdens you with and as He moves upon you. I myself will continue to do so as the Lord enables. It is part of the discipleship required of us. Personally, I have a number of things I am burdened to write about most earnestly and will do so as released. We must be faithful to our prophetic ministry as it does have its limited place in revealing God to us.
But let none of us who are earnest and distressed over the amorphous state of today's prophetic ministry be discouraged—either because we feel unable to see our own words count for anything against such a sea of unmeasured prophetic utterances, or because we ourselves can’t seem to find that one pure thread of Scripture-class authoritative prophetic ministry which, if we could just find it and God would validate it, would settle everything and lead us to eternity!
At least at this time, that does not appear to be what God intends. Indeed, to walk by faith, means there is a walk beyond the "sight" of prophecy, and a righteousness that exceeds it also.
Blessing to all my closer friends, and to all my at-large readers as well.
[please see the follow up article to this: The Stenciled Word of the Lord and the Branded Heart]
Riverside, Rhode Island
First Love Ministry
- a ministry of Anglemar Fellowship
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Page created May 7, 2004 / updated May 11, 2020