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Pastors, be Forewarned

One of the most-mentioned laments among those of us who have Bible prophecy as our calling is that seminaries are not teaching prophecy and pastors are not preaching and teaching prophecy today. We refer to the majority of the seminary instructors and preachers who otherwise preach and teach God’s Word as inerrant truth.

Those who view the Bible as merely a book with good suggestions for how to live, but don’t consider it the literal Word of God, can’t be expected to understand the crucial necessity of preaching and teaching the whole Word of God. These pick and choose verses, applicable or not, to put forth their ear-tickling homilies, which by their very nature avoid doctrinal truth. So, we aren’t pointing a finger of admonishment at these.

Sadly, however, this description fits a growing number of seminaries and their graduates. It is getting harder to tell the genuine from the pretenders. More and more the words are sugar-coated, the points supposedly made trailing off into the ether of mumbo-jumbo irrelevance. When one gently probes one or the other of the Bible-believing/preaching pastors with the question: “Do you preach prophecy?” the answers are along the same line. It’s my experience and that of others who ask the question that 95 percent of those asked say something akin to the following:

“Prophecy is just too hard for people to understand.”
“I just don’t know about the subject, because we just barely touched on it in seminary.”
“Teaching people how to live as a Christians is more pressing.”
“It scares people, so I just don’t want to worry them unnecessarily.”
“People have been saying the Second Coming is here for years, and we are still here. We need to deal with the here and now, not pie in the sky.”

And my personal favorite:

“Some preachers are premillennial, some postmillennial, or whatever. I’m ‘pan’-millennial. I believe it will just all pan out in the end.”

I have to tell you–confess, I guess—that this last one always presents a personal test of my temperament. Whenever I hear it, I see red, even though I’ve been as physically blind as the proverbial bat since 1993. Some of these preachers–a few—become a bit defensive and get rather exercised, launching into tirades, arguing that we prophecy types read far too much into the headlines as they might relate to biblical prophecy. And I readily admit that this has and continues to happen more often than it should.

The many episodes of date-settings for the rapture over the years, for example, have done disservice to God’s prophetic Word. Too often I receive formulas from all sorts of angles and configurations that claim to give the precise time of Christ’s coming in the Rapture, or that propose to have the answers to other prophetic events.

Despite the fact that there are those who are overly speculative in their views of Bible prophecy, the following must be said. To the pastors of America who claim the Bible as the inspired, inerrant Word of the Living God but callously ignore its prophetic content—be forewarned. Your excuses/arguments won’t stand the test at the bema–the judgment seat of Christ. You will be held accountable by the very Lord you proclaim you love so much–the same Lord about whom the angel told John: “for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy” (Revelation 19:10b).

That same Jesus gave us the Olivet discourse, during which He laid out general and specific things to come. The Gospel accounts give Christ’s commandment of what to do about the many prophesied things He had just foretold: “And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch” (Mark 13:37). Prophecy makes up at least 27 percent of the Bible. Half of that 27 percent has been fulfilled, with half yet to be fulfilled. Anyone with spiritual ears to hear and spiritual eyes to see is capable of following the Lord’s command: “And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh” (Luke 21: 28).

Certainly, if God calls people to be pastors–shepherds of His flock—He equips them to feed the flock His whole Word, not just the parts the pastor selects as important, while summarily dismissing the other parts of God’s Word. Jesus said to “watch” for prophetic developments. And, spiritually attuned eyes and ears–a condition all pastors should seek to appropriate and maintain—can hear and see that we are at the very end of the Church Age.

The world is in end times rage. The seas and waves of humanity are roaring with distress and perplexity. Violence fills the whole earth.

Israel stands alone in the global spotlight as the most-hated nation on planet earth. The world is in economic chaos, headed for total collapse. All the while, technology is progressing geometrically in ways that will one day provide earth’s last tyrant with the satanically endowed ability to enslave most all people on this fallen sphere.

Yet many pastors of America are into building bigger, more beautiful edifices in order to more spectacularly entertain their audiences. They make claims that they are telling of God’s love. But, they are stressing how to tap into that love in order to gain favor for acquiring material things; they are not teaching how to share the message that Jesus’ love is shown in that He died to save us from our sins. Too many pastors are moving farther from teaching doctrinal truth. One such truth being assiduously avoided is that of Christ’s Second Coming.

Thankfully, this Laodicean model doesn’t apply to all megachurches in America today. Some genuinely preach and teach truth from the Bible, although most, I’m sorry to have to say, continue to push aside Bible prophecy in favor of sticking exclusively to life-lesson theology. The responsibility to “watch” must, by the Bible’s very definition of the word “preacher,” fall first and foremost on those who are called to shepherd God’s people. The Word of God warns specifically about keeping the flock informed, and about those commissioned to do so who fail in that responsibility: “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me” (Hosea 4: 6a,b). Paul’s admonition applies to pastors and teachers even more, perhaps, than to those whom they shepherd and instruct.

“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2: 15). These are perilous times, dear pastors and teachers. Bible prophecy at this juncture in human history isn’t frivolous or an elective to be chosen according to the pastor’s whim. The hour is late, and God’s people haven’t a clue. It is critical that you begin giving them biblically prophetic nourishment.



  1. Marilyn says:

    Right on Terry James and thank you for pointing this out.

  2. Kevin says:

    This message is just what our church leaders need to hear! Please start to preach this from the pulpits before it is to late.

  3. PJ says:

    This is why it is so terribly hard to find a good church to attend! Thankfully there are good Bible-based churches online; ones where the pastor preaches the WHOLE Word, undiluted. Thanks again Terry for a very timely message and one I hope is heeded.

  4. Dawn Street says:

    Thank you for your ministry. We have found a church that does preach the Gospel. So far (and we have only been attending a few months) I have not heard much on prophecy. But Sunday, there was acknowledgement of the attack in Paris and its significance to the Christians.

  5. Rena Nichols says:

    As every God-fearing, Bible-believing, Spirit-filled disciple of Christ Jesus knows, confusion doesn’t come from God, including the confusion over the timing of our Lord’s Appearing. If so many were not under the influence of deceiving spirits this confusion would not exist. Abba Father, deliver Your Body from the deception of the lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life.

  6. This is very timely! We as Pastors need to understand what our calling is. God calls certain men and ordains those men to feed and protect the people He has placed under them! This is the highest calling, what a privilege and great responsibility.

  7. It is very difficult to find a Bible based church and a pastor preaching the whole word. Thanks, Terry. I read your articles weekly.

  8. I attend a small church in my community and we have a new minister since little over a year ago. I see that he is becoming stronger in his voicing of strength for this church and our community. Not a lot of prophecy at this point but we did have acknowledgement of the horrific incident that occurred last week in France with prayers given for the people there. It is a case of either knowing someone there or of someone related to a church member. I give you a prayer that God will continue to strengthen you in your belief and allow you the words to speak and or write for us to hear. I believe what we say or write is given to us by the Holy Spirit from God Himself and we are to speak the knowledge we receive to others. Keep up the work that God has given you to do as it does much good on helping to bring more to the Lord. May God bless you with the words for us for a long time or until He comes for His children. Thank you for your dedication and desire to share the word of God to whomever will listen.
    Sincerely D. Smith

  9. Drgold says:

    Dear Ptr Terry
    God’s people are indeed destroyed for the lack of knowledge, as prophetic knowledge has been rejected by many pastors and leaders Hos4:6. We are living in the End-Times when the apostle Paul prophesied of a great ‘falling away’ of once believers 2Th2:3!

    I recently wrote a post Dear Pastors: Feed My Sheep. This is it https://drgoldsite.wordpress.com/2015/06/01/dear-pastors-feed-my-sheep/

    Thank you and God bless you!

  10. Evelyn says:

    Churches that do not teach about end time events in the correct biblical way are leading their people to among the foolish virgins. I thought that I was in such a church that I joined 4 years ago after leaving one that was “seeker friendly- as in watered down gospel. But recently some of the teaching I started to hear alarmed me. It is from a preterist view. After reading everything I could find on this I know I can not accept this teaching – It is so wrong. This may become yet another church that I will have to leave and rely more on sites like this one for God’s truth being rightly taught..

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