Commentary: Modern Prophets
By Brother Anderson, October 9, 2004
"Puerto Rico will be devastated by a hurricane on October 11!" my wife announced solemnly.
"What?" I said looking up from my dinner plate.
"I got an e-mail today from an Adventist friend. This man saw it in a dream."
"Perhaps he ate the wrong food for dinner." I mused.
"No, he had the same dream three times. He believes God sent him the dream and he's going around warning everyone." she explained.
Well, several days passed and guess what? No hurricane is going to hit Puerto Rico on October 11.
And guess what else? They're already making excuses to cover this "prophet's" failure. They're saying...
"Perhaps the Puerto Ricans repented and God is delaying judgment..."
Perhaps. Perhaps this man is a modern Jonah. Or perhaps God meant October 11, 2005. And when that doesn't happen, perhaps He meant 2006. Then 2007.
Excuses. Explanations. Mental gymnastics.
Why don't they just admit it? The guy is obviously deluded. Why can't they see it?
The answer is one simple word: EGO.
They bought into what this man was saying. They swallowed the bait. They were believers. And then the prophecy failed. No hurricane. Now what?
If they admit this man was wrong, then they're going to look foolish because they believed him and even told others about him. Ego shudders at the very thought, "No, can't admit that! It's far too humiliating!" So what do they do? In order to cover their own mistake, they make excuses and explanations for the prophet's failure.
You know where I'm going. The early Adventists bought into what Ellen White was saying. When some of her predictions failed, they started making excuses. Explanations. Mental gymnastics. Why don't they just admit it? EGO. It's not easy to swallow your pride and admit you were wrong.
I know, because I believed in Ellen White for over 30 years, and even told others about her. When I found out the truth it was a difficult pill to swallow. Who wants to admit they were wrong for 30+ years?
You know the most difficult opponent I ever faced? The White Estate? No. The General Conference? No. My toughest opponent was myself.
Ego told me, "You couldn't possibly have been wrong all those years. There must be some explanation you can come up with! What are your friends and family going to think?" It was a severe struggle. Ellen White was right about one thing: "The warfare against self [ego] is the greatest battle that was ever fought." (Steps to Christ, p. 43)
In true Christianity, Ego has to take a back seat. "If any man will come after me, let him deny himself." (Luke 9:23) It's time to stop making excuses. Cease the mental gymnastics. Lay ego aside and follow the truth wherever it may lead you.
Brother Anderson, Editor