Can Prophets Be Wrong?

Q. According to 1st Corinthians 13:9, Paul speaks of “prophesying in part” and many people today point to that as justification for the many “prophecies” today being way off or completely wrong.  Personally I don’t see that as being correct, and Deuteronomy speaks specifically of prophets having to be 100% correct or face dire consequences.  Do you see justification for the many “prophets” today being wrong? Can we trust those people to be speaking for God?

A. If 1 Cor. 13:9 can be used to justify prophets being wrong today, then it would have applied to an even greater degree in Old Testament times, since we know more of God’s plan than they did. It would have made Deut. 18:20-22 unnecessary.

The gift of prophecy as described in 1 Cor. 12 & 14 is not the same as the Office of Prophet from the past. The gift of prophecy is meant to help the church with details of God’s plan as outlined by the Prophets of old, the last of whom was Jesus.

Therefore every new prophecy has to conform to His Word, and it’s up to us to see that it does (Acts 17:11) by holding these so-called prophets accountable.  Confirmation from an independent source is a Biblically mandated method.   A matter must be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses (Deut. 19:15).

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