You prophesy what you have not heard for I have not spoken


Wednesday 02/22/23 

Series: Thru the Bible

Message: You prophesy what you have not heard for I have not spoken

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You prophesy what you have not heard for I have not spoken

A word to the false prophets

Ezekiel 13:1-23,

“(1) The word of the LORD came to me:  

(2)  “Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel who are prophesying. Say to those who prophesy out of their own imagination: Hear the word of the LORD!  

(3)  This is what the Lord GOD says: 

Woe to the foolish prophets who follow their own spirit and have seen nothing.  

(4)  Your prophets, Israel, are like jackals among ruins.  (5)  You did not go up to the gaps or restore the wall around the house of Israel so that it might stand in battle on the day of the LORD.  

(6)  They see false visions and speak lying divinations. 

They claim: 

This is the LORD’s declaration, when the LORD did not send them, yet they wait for the fulfillment of their message.  (7)  Didn’t you see a false vision and speak a lying divination when you proclaimed: This is the LORD’s declaration, even though I had not spoken?  

(8)  “Therefore, this is what the Lord GOD says: 

I am against you because you have spoken falsely and had lying visions.” 

This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.  

(9)  “My hand will be against the prophets who see false visions and speak lying divinations. They will not be present in the fellowship of My people or be recorded in the register of the house of Israel, and they will not enter the land of Israel. Then you will know that I am the Lord GOD.  

(10)  “Since they have led My people astray saying: Peace, when there is no peace, for when someone builds a wall they plaster it with whitewash,  (11)  therefore, tell those who plaster it that it will fall. 

Torrential rain will come, and I will send hailstones plunging down, and a windstorm will be released.  (12)  Now when the wall has fallen, will you not be asked: Where is the coat of whitewash that you put on it?  

(13)  “So this is what the Lord GOD says: I will release a windstorm in My wrath. Torrential rain will come in My anger, and hailstones will fall in destructive fury.  

(14)  I will tear down the wall you plastered with whitewash and knock it to the ground so that its foundation is exposed. The city will fall, and you will be destroyed within it. Then you will know that I am the LORD.  

(15)  After I exhaust My wrath against the wall and against those who plaster it with whitewash, I will say to you: 

The wall is no more and neither are those who plastered it–  (16)  those prophets of Israel who prophesied to Jerusalem and saw a vision of peace for her when there was no peace.” 

This is quite likely what Jesus drew upon and repurposed for His use of the term whitewashed tombs. White wash as used in both places was a cheap and deceptive paint like liquid used to whiten and cover over the outside of unsightly walls (Ezekiel 13:10) giving it the appearance of being maintained and thereby being structurally sound. In its immediate context, it indicates the whitewash representing the misleading message of peace put forth by the prophets where in fact, there was no peace!

This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.

(17)  “Now, son of man, turn toward the women of your people who prophesy out of their own imagination. Prophesy against them  (18)  and say: This is what the Lord GOD says: 

Woe to the women who sew magic bands on the wrist of every hand and who make veils for the heads of people of every height in order to ensnare lives. 

Will you ensnare the lives of My people but preserve your own?  

(19)  You profane Me in front of My people for handfuls of barley and scraps of bread; you kill those who should not die and spare those who should not live, when you lie to My people, who listen to lies.  

(20)  “Therefore, this is what the Lord GOD says: I am against your magic bands that you ensnare people with like birds, and I will tear them from your arms. I will free the people you have ensnared like birds.  (21)  I will also tear off your veils and deliver My people from your hands, so that they will no longer be prey in your hands. Then you will know that I am the LORD.  

(22)  Because you have disheartened the righteous person with lies, even though I have not caused him grief, and because you have encouraged the wicked person not to turn from his evil way to save his life,  (23)  therefore you will no longer see false visions or practice divination. I will deliver My people from your hands. Then you will know that I am the LORD.”

Ezekiel 14:1-23,

“(1) Some of the elders of Israel came to me and sat down in front of me.  (2)  Then the word of the LORD came to me:  

(3)  “Son of man, these men have set up idols in their hearts and have put sinful stumbling blocks before their faces. Should I be consulted by them at all?”

Double minded – 

“(5) If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.  (6)  But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind.  (7)  For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;  (8)  he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” ~ James 1:5-8

Regarding iniquity in the heart – 

“(16) Come! Listen, all you who are loyal to God! I will declare what he has done for me.  (17)  I cried out to him for help and praised him with my tongue.  (18)  If I had harbored sin in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.  (19)  However, God heard; he listened to my prayer.  (20)  God deserves praise, for he did not reject my prayer or abandon his love for me!” ~ Ps.66 :16-20

Ezekiel 14…

(4)  “Therefore, speak to them and tell them: This is what the Lord GOD says

When anyone from the house of Israel sets up idols in his heart, puts a sinful stumbling block before his face, and then comes to the prophet, I, the LORD, will answer him appropriately. I will answer him according to his many idols,  (5)  so that I may take hold of the house of Israel by their hearts, because they are all estranged from Me by their idols.  (6)  

“Therefore, say to the house of Israel: This is what the Lord GOD says: Repent and turn away from your idols; turn your faces away from all your abominations.  (7)  For when anyone from the house of Israel or from the foreigners who reside in Israel separates himself from Me, setting up idols in his heart and putting a sinful stumbling block before his face, and then comes to the prophet to inquire of Me, I, the LORD, will answer him Myself.  

(8)  I will turn against that one and make him a sign and a proverb; I will cut him off from among My people. Then you will know that I am the LORD.  

(9)  “But if the prophet is deceived and speaks a message, it was I, the LORD, who deceived that prophet. I will stretch out My hand against him and destroy him from among My people Israel.” 

Would God openly and willingly deceive people so that they could not see the truth? If so, why doe He judge them for being deceived if He is the One Who deceived them?

The answer to this is both easy and a little complex. 

I know of at least three scenarios where the Bible goes on record as God blinding people’s spiritual eyes and leading them into deception. In those cases both the reason and the method are made clear.

Those who only love themselves do not love their brethren and so are walking in darkness “But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.” ~ 1Jn. 2:11

By permitting blindness to truth in one who does not want to see it.

“(9) He said, “Go and tell these people: ‘Listen continually, but don’t understand! Look continually, but don’t perceive!’  (10)  Make the hearts of these people calloused; make their ears deaf and their eyes blind! Otherwise they might see with their eyes and hear with their ears, their hearts might understand and they might repent and be healed.” ~ Isaiah 6:9-10  (Which verse is quoted in Mark 4 regarding those who do not have hearts which desire to know and understand truth)

By sending a lying spirit in judgment into the hearts of prophets already devoted to lies as with Ahab

I have referenced this many times and we spent SOME TIME with it when we were in 1Kings in our trek Thru the Bible.

In 1Kings 22 we see King Ahab, though he has been warned by God through the true prophet Micaiah, the King hated him because God;s word to him through this prophet was never good.

Jehoshaphat, King of Judah, had gone to visit Ahab, King of Israel. Ahab was contemplating going to war against Ramoth Gilead and Jehoshaphat was willing to pledge himself to going with the King IF he would first consult the prophets for the word of the Lord on the matter.

Turn with me to 1Kings 22:4-28. I take the time to do things like this in order to answer harder questions which might arise in your minds and offer scriptural examples which help explain things and place them in an appropriate context.

“(4) So he said to Jehoshaphat, “Will you go with me to fight at Ramoth Gilead?” Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, “I am as you are, my people as your people, my horses as your horses.”  

(5)  Also Jehoshaphat said to the king of Israel, “Please inquire for the word of the LORD today.”  

(6)  Then the king of Israel gathered the prophets together, about four hundred men, and said to them, “Shall I go against Ramoth Gilead to fight, or shall I refrain?” 

So they said, “Go up, for the Lord will deliver it into the hand of the king.”  

(7)  And Jehoshaphat said, “Is there not still a prophet of the LORD here, that we may inquire of Him?”  

(8)  So the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “There is still one man, Micaiah the son of Imlah, by whom we may inquire of the LORD; but I hate him, because he does not prophesy good concerning me, but evil.” 

And Jehoshaphat said, “Let not the king say such things!”  

(9)  Then the king of Israel called an officer and said, “Bring Micaiah the son of Imlah quickly!”  

(10)  The king of Israel and Jehoshaphat the king of Judah, having put on their robes, sat each on his throne, at a threshing floor at the entrance of the gate of Samaria; and all the prophets prophesied before them.  

(11)  Now Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah had made horns of iron for himself; and he said, “Thus says the LORD: ‘With these you shall gore the Syrians until they are destroyed.'”  

(12)  And all the prophets prophesied so, saying, “Go up to Ramoth Gilead and prosper, for the LORD will deliver it into the king’s hand.”  

(13)  Then the messenger who had gone to call Micaiah spoke to him, saying, “Now listen, the words of the prophets with one accord encourage the king. Please, let your word be like the word of one of them, and speak encouragement.”  

(14)  And Micaiah said, “As the LORD lives, whatever the LORD says to me, that I will speak.”  

(15)  Then he came to the king; and the king said to him, “Micaiah, shall we go to war against Ramoth Gilead, or shall we refrain?” 

And he answered him, “Go and prosper, for the LORD will deliver it into the hand of the king!”  

(16)  So the king said to him, “How many times shall I make you swear that you tell me nothing but the truth in the name of the LORD?”  

(17)  Then he said, “I saw all Israel scattered on the mountains, as sheep that have no shepherd. And the LORD said, ‘These have no master. Let each return to his house in peace.’ ”  

(18)  And the king of Israel said to Jehoshaphat, “Did I not tell you he would not prophesy good concerning me, but evil?”  

(19)  Then Micaiah said, “Therefore hear the word of the LORD: I saw the LORD sitting on His throne, and all the host of heaven standing by, on His right hand and on His left.  

(20)  And the LORD said, ‘Who will persuade Ahab to go up, that he may fall at Ramoth Gilead?’ So one spoke in this manner, and another spoke in that manner.  (21)  Then a spirit came forward and stood before the LORD, and said, ‘I will persuade him.’  

(22)  The LORD said to him, ‘In what way?’ So he said, ‘I will go out and be a lying spirit in the mouth of all his prophets.’ And the LORD said, ‘You shall persuade him, and also prevail. Go out and do so.’  

(23)  Therefore look! The LORD has put a lying spirit in the mouth of all these prophets of yours, and the LORD has declared disaster against you.”  

(24)  Now Zedekiah the son of Chenaanah went near and struck Micaiah on the cheek, and said, “Which way did the spirit from the LORD go from me to speak to you?”  

(25)  And Micaiah said, “Indeed, you shall see on that day when you go into an inner chamber to hide!”  

(26)  So the king of Israel said, “Take Micaiah, and return him to Amon the governor of the city and to Joash the king’s son;  (27)  and say, ‘Thus says the king: “Put this fellow in prison, and feed him with bread of affliction and water of affliction, until I come in peace.” ‘ ”  

(28)  But Micaiah said, “If you ever return in peace, the LORD has not spoken by me.” And he said, “Take heed, all you people!”~ 1Kings 22:4-28


“(10)  They will bear their punishment–the punishment of the one who inquires will be the same as that of the prophet–  (11)  in order that the house of Israel may no longer stray from following Me and no longer defile themselves with all their transgressions. Then they will be My people and I will be their God.” 

Now in this upcoming declaration I want you to remember the words of Solomon to God in prayer and God’s response to Solomon found in 2Chron. 7 & 8.

A summarized form of this is found with the same Jehoshaphat we just read about when he was about to be attacked by multiple enemies and his prayer is a near quotation of this and it is found in 2Chron. 20:5-15. It says,

“(5) Then Jehoshaphat stood in the assembly of Judah and Jerusalem, in the house of the LORD, before the new court,  (6)  and said: “O LORD God of our fathers, are You not God in heaven, and do You not rule over all the kingdoms of the nations, and in Your hand is there not power and might, so that no one is able to withstand You?  

(7)  Are You not our God, Who drove out the inhabitants of this land before Your people Israel, and gave it to the descendants of Abraham Your friend forever?  (8)  And they dwell in it, and have built You a sanctuary in it for Your name, saying,  

(9)  ‘If disaster comes upon us—sword, judgment, pestilence, or famine—we will stand before this temple and in Your presence (for Your name is in this temple), and cry out to You in our affliction, and You will hear and save.’  

(10)  And now, here are the people of Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir—whom You would not let Israel invade when they came out of the land of Egypt, but they turned from them and did not destroy them— (11)  here they are, rewarding us by coming to throw us out of Your possession which You have given us to inherit.  

(12)  O our God, will You not judge them? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are upon You.”  

(13)  Now all Judah, with their little ones, their wives, and their children, stood before the LORD.  (14)  Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon Jahaziel the son of Zechariah, the son of Benaiah, the son of Jeiel, the son of Mattaniah, a Levite of the sons of Asaph, in the midst of the assembly.  (15)  And he said, “Listen, all you of Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you, King Jehoshaphat! Thus says the LORD to you: ‘Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God’s.”

THAT is what it looks like when this promise was used by those to whom it was spoken. It is quoted correctly, used in accordance with the Old Covenant of which they were a part and God answered! 

What we are about to read is God bringing judgment ON Israel sword, judgment, pestilence, plague or famine BECAUSE of their wickedness and idolatry.

“This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.  (12)  The word of the LORD came to me:  

(13)  “Son of man, if a land sins against Me by acting faithlessly, and I stretch out My hand against it to cut off its supply of bread, to send famine through it, and to wipe out both man and animal from it,  (14)  even if these three men–Noah, Daniel, and Job–were in it, they would deliver only themselves by their righteousness.” This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.  

(15)  “If I allow dangerous animals[pestilence] to pass through the land and depopulate it so that it becomes desolate, with no one passing through it for fear of the animals,  (16)  even if these three men were in it, as I live”–the declaration of the Lord GOD–“they could not deliver their sons or daughters. They alone would be delivered, but the land would be desolate.  

(17)  “Or if I bring a sword against that land and say: Let a sword pass through it, so that I wipe out both man and animal from it,  (18)  even if these three men were in it, as I live”–the declaration of the Lord GOD–“they could not deliver their sons or daughters, but they alone would be delivered.  

(19)  “Or if I send a plague into that land and pour out My wrath on it with bloodshed to wipe out both man and animal from it,  (20)  even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live”–the declaration of the Lord GOD–“they could not deliver their son or daughter. They would deliver only themselves by their righteousness.  

(21)  “For this is what the Lord GOD says

How much worse will it be when I send My four devastating judgments against Jerusalem–sword, famine, dangerous animals, and plague–in order to wipe out both man and animal from it!  

(22)  Even so, there will be survivors left in it, sons and daughters who will be brought out. Indeed, they will come out to you, and you will observe their conduct and actions. Then you will be consoled about the devastation I have brought on Jerusalem, about all I have brought on it.  

(23)  They will bring you consolation when you see their conduct and actions, and you will know that it was not without cause that I have done what I did to it.” This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.”

Ezekiel 15:1-8, 

“(1) Then the word of the LORD came to me:  

(2)  “Son of man, how does the wood of the vine, that branch among the trees of the forest, compare to any other wood?  

(3)  Can wood be taken from it to make something useful? Or can anyone make a peg from it to hang things on? 

(4)  In fact, it is put into the fire as fuel. The fire devours both of its ends, and the middle is charred. Can it be useful for anything?  

(5)  Even when it was whole it could not be made into a useful object. How much less can it ever be made into anything useful when the fire has devoured it and it is charred!  

It is interesting that this is still largely true. The question is what object of usefulness like a tool or a peg could be made from it. Even today, a simple search on the internet will reveal that one of the most useful things one can do with it is burn it. Though it is quickly catching on as a ornament in aquariums due to its high sugar content in the bark. This promotes the growth of a mold which is harmless and is useful as food for certain aquarium life.

But, it is not worthy of use for tools or construction. 

God has often used the grapevine as an analogy for Israel, however, when Jesus came He took this analogy and changed it – bringing it into the New Covenant [John 15]. Now, the grapevine is a family unit. God the Father is both the stock and the vine dresser, Jesus is the vine and we are the branches. For all practical purposes the only thing the branches of a grapevine are good for is BEARING FRUIT!

(6)  “Therefore, this is what the Lord GOD says

Like the wood of the vine among the trees of the forest, which I have given to the fire as fuel, so I will give up the residents of Jerusalem.  (7)  I will turn against them. They may have escaped from the fire, but it will still consume them. And you will know that I am the LORD when I turn against them.  

(8)  I will make the land desolate because they have acted unfaithfully.” This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.”

Ezekiel 16:1-63,

“(1) The word of the LORD came to me again:  

(2)  “Son of man, explain Jerusalem’s abominations to her.  

(3)  You are to say: This is what the Lord GOD says to Jerusalem

Your origin and your birth were in the land of the Canaanites. Your father was an Amorite and your mother a Hittite.  (4)  As for your birth, your umbilical cord wasn’t cut on the day you were born, and you weren’t washed clean with water. You were not rubbed with salt or wrapped in cloths.  

(5)  No one cared enough about you to do even one of these things out of compassion for you. But you were thrown out into the open field because you were despised on the day you were born.  

(6)  “I passed by you and saw you lying in your blood, and I said to you as you lay in your blood: Live! Yes, I said to you as you lay in your blood: Live!  

(7)  I made you thrive like plants of the field. You grew up and matured and became very beautiful. Your breasts were formed and your hair grew, but you were stark naked.  

(8)  “Then I passed by you and saw you, and you were indeed at the age for love. So I spread the edge of My garment over you and covered your nakedness. 

I pledged Myself to you, entered into a covenant with you, and you became Mine.” 

This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.  

(9)  “I washed you with water, rinsed off your blood, and anointed you with oil.  (10)  I clothed you in embroidered cloth and provided you with leather sandals. I also wrapped you in fine linen and covered you with silk.  (11)  I adorned you with jewelry, putting bracelets on your wrists and a chain around your neck.  (12)  I put a ring in your nose, earrings on your ears, and a beautiful tiara on your head.  

(13)  So you were adorned with gold and silver, and your clothing was made of fine linen, silk, and embroidered cloth. 

You ate fine flour, honey, and oil. You became extremely beautiful and attained royalty.  

(14)  Your fame spread among the nations because of your beauty, for it was perfect through My splendor, which I had bestowed on you.” 

It was the presence of the Lord and His glory that beautified them. 

  • Psalm 149:4, “For the LORD takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the humble with salvation.”
  • Isaiah 28:5, “In that day the Lord of hosts will become a beautiful crown And a glorious diadem to the remnant of His people;”
  • Isaiah 33:17, “Your eyes will see the King in His beauty; They will behold a far-distant land.”

This segment is rather graphic but is all metaphorical using sexual lust and prostitution as examples of idolatry. God often refers to our love of ANYTHING other than Him as adultery!

This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.

(15)  “But you were confident in your beauty and acted like a prostitute because of your fame. You lavished your sexual favors on everyone who passed by. Your beauty became his.  

(16)  You took some of your garments and made colorful high places for yourself, and you engaged in prostitution on them. These places should not have been built, and this should never have happened!”  

Probably the actual high places which nearly every king failed to tear down. 

“(17)  You also took your beautiful jewelry made from the gold and silver I had given you, and you made male images so that you could engage in prostitution with them.  

(18)  Then you took your embroidered garments to cover them, and set My oil and incense before them.  (19)  You also set before them as a pleasing aroma the food I gave you–the fine flour, oil, and honey that I fed you. That is what happened.” 

This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.  

(20)  “You even took your sons and daughters you bore to Me and sacrificed them to these images as food. Wasn’t your prostitution enough?  (21)  You slaughtered My children and gave them up when you passed them through the fire to the images.  

(22)  In all your abominations and acts of prostitution, you did not remember the days of your youth when you were stark naked and lying in your blood.”

Like in 2Peter 1:9 they had forgotten. 

(23)  “Then after all your evil–Woe, woe to you!”–the declaration of the Lord GOD—  (24)  “you built yourself a mound and made yourself an elevated place in every square.  (25)  You built your elevated place at the head of every street and turned your beauty into an abomination. 

You spread your legs to everyone who passed by and increased your prostitution.  

(26)  You engaged in promiscuous acts with Egyptian men, your well-endowed neighbors, and increased your prostitution to provoke Me to anger.  

(27)  “Therefore, I stretched out My hand against you and reduced your provisions. I gave you over to the desire of those who hate you, the Philistine women, who were embarrassed by your indecent behavior.  

(28)  Then you engaged in prostitution with the Assyrian men because you were not satisfied. Even though you did this with them, you were still not satisfied.  

(29)  So you extended your prostitution to Chaldea, the land of merchants, but you were not even satisfied with this!  

(30)  “How your heart was inflamed with lust”–the declaration of the Lord GOD–“when you did all these things, the acts of a brazen prostitute,  (31)  building your mound at the head of every street and making your elevated place in every square. But you were unlike a prostitute because you scorned payment.  

(32)  You adulterous wife, who receives strangers instead of her husband!  

(33)  Men give gifts to all prostitutes, but you gave gifts to all your lovers. You bribed them to come to you from all around for your sexual favors.  

(34)  So you were the opposite of other women in your acts of prostitution; no one solicited you. When you paid a fee instead of one being paid to you, you were the opposite.  

(35)  “Therefore, you prostitute, hear the word of the LORD!  (36)  This is what the Lord GOD says

Because your lust was poured out and your nakedness exposed by your acts of prostitution with your lovers, and because of all your detestable idols and the blood of your children that you gave to them,  (37)  I am therefore going to gather all the lovers you pleased–all those you loved as well as all those you hated. 

I will gather them against you from all around and expose your nakedness to them so they see you completely naked.  

(38)  I will judge you the way adulteresses and those who shed blood are judged. 

Then I will bring about your bloodshed in wrath and jealousy.  (39)  I will hand you over to them, and they will level your mounds and tear down your elevated places. They will strip off your clothes, take your beautiful jewelry, and leave you stark naked.  (40)  They will bring a mob against you to stone you and cut you to pieces with their swords.  

(41)  Then they will burn down your houses and execute judgments against you in the sight of many women. I will stop you from being a prostitute, and you will never again pay fees for lovers.  

(42)  So I will satisfy My wrath against you, and My jealousy will turn away from you. Then I will be silent and no longer angry.  (43)  Because you did not remember the days of your youth but enraged Me with all these things, I will also bring your actions down on your own head.” 

This is the declaration of the Lord GOD

“Haven’t you committed immoral acts in addition to all your abominations?  

(44)  “Look, everyone who uses proverbs will say this proverb about you: Like mother, like daughter.  

(45)  You are the daughter of your mother, who despised her husband and children. You are the sister of your sisters, who despised their husbands and children. Your mother was a Hittite and your father an Amorite.  (46)  Your older sister was Samaria, who lived with her daughters to the north of you, and your younger sister was Sodom, who lived with her daughters to the south of you.  

(47)  Didn’t you walk in their ways and practice their abominations? It was only a short time before you behaved more corruptly than they did.  

(48)  “As I live”–the declaration of the Lord GOD–“your sister Sodom and her daughters have not behaved as you and your daughters have.  

(49)  Now this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had pride, plenty of food, and comfortable security, but didn’t support the poor and needy.  (50)  They were haughty and did detestable things before Me, so I removed them when I saw this.  (51)  But Samaria did not commit even half your sins. You have multiplied your abominations beyond theirs and made your sisters appear righteous by all the abominations you have committed.  

(52)  You must also bear your disgrace, since you have been an advocate for your sisters. For they appear more righteous than you because of your sins, which you committed more abhorrently than they did. 

So you also, be ashamed and bear your disgrace, since you have made your sisters appear righteous.  

(53)  “I will restore their fortunes, the fortunes of Sodom and her daughters and those of Samaria and her daughters. I will also restore your fortunes among them,  (54)  so you will bear your disgrace and be ashamed of all you did when you comforted them.  

(55)  As for your sisters, Sodom and her daughters and Samaria and her daughters will return to their former state. You and your daughters will also return to your former state.  

(56)  Didn’t you treat your sister Sodom as an object of scorn when you were proud,  (57)  before your wickedness was exposed? It was like the time you were scorned by the daughters of Aram and all those around her, and by the daughters of the Philistines–those who treated you with contempt from every side.  

(58)  You yourself must bear the consequences of your indecency and abominations”–the LORD’s declaration.  (59)  “For this is what the Lord GOD says: I will deal with you according to what you have done, since you have despised the oath by breaking the covenant.  

(60)  But I will remember the covenant I made with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you.  

(61)  Then you will remember your ways and be ashamed when you receive your older and younger sisters. I will give them to you as daughters, but not because of your covenant.  

(62)  I will establish My covenant with you, and you will know that I am the LORD,  (63)  so that when I make atonement for all you have done, you will remember and be ashamed, and never open your mouth again because of your disgrace.” 

This is the declaration of the Lord GOD.”


Hi my name is Mark and though I am opposed to titles, I am currently the only Pastor (shepherd/elder) serving our assembly right now.

I have been Pastoring in one capacity or another for nearly 30 years now, though never quite like I am today.

Early in 2009 the Lord revealed to me that the way we had structured our assembly (church) was not scriptural in that it was out of sync with what Paul modeled for us in the New Testament. In truth, I (like many pastors I am sure) never even gave this fundamental issue of church structure the first thought. I had always assumed that church structure was largely the same everywhere and had been so from the beginning. While I knew Paul had some very stringent things to say about the local assembly of believers, the point of our gatherings together and who may or may not lead, I never even considered studying these issues but assumed we were all pretty much doing it in numbers right?! Boy, I couldn't have been more wrong!

So needless to say, my discovery that we had been doing it wrong for nearly two decades was a bit of a shock to me! Now, this "revelation" did not come about all at once but over the course of a few weeks. We were a traditional single pastor led congregation. It was a top-bottom model of ministry which is in part biblical, but not in the form of a monarchy.

The needed change did not come into focus until following 9 very intense months of study and discussions with those who were leaders in our church at the time.

We now understand and believe that the Bible teaches co-leadership with equal authority in each local assembly. Having multiple shepherds with God's heart and equal authority protects both Shepherds and sheep. Equal accountability keeps authority and doctrine in check. Multiple shepherds also provide teaching with various styles and giftings with leadership skills which are both different and complementary.

For a while we had two co-pastors (elders) (myself and one other man) who led the church with equal authority, but different giftings. We both taught in our own ways and styles, and our leadership skills were quite different, but complimentary. We were in complete submission to each other and worked side-by-side in the labor of shepherding the flock.

Our other Pastor has since moved on to other ministry which has left us with just myself. While we currently only have one Pastor/Elder, it is our desire that God, in His faithfulness and timing, may bring us more as we grow in maturity and even in numbers.

As to my home, I have been married since 1995 to my wonderful wife Terissa Woodson who is my closest friend and most trusted ally.

As far as my education goes, I grew up in a Christian home, but questioned everything I was ever taught.

I graduated from Bible college in 1990 and continued to question everything I was ever taught (I do not mention my college in order to avoid being labeled).

Perhaps my greatest preparation for ministry has been life and ministry itself. To quote an author I have come to enjoy namely Fredrick Buechner in his writing entitled, Now and Then, "If God speaks to us at all other than through such official channels as the Bible and the church, then I think that He speaks to us largely through what happens to us...if we keep our hearts open as well as our ears, if we listen with patience and hope, if we remember at all deeply and honestly, then I think we come to recognize beyond all doubt, that, however faintly we may hear Him, He is indeed speaking to us, and that, however little we may understand of it, His word to each of us is both recoverable and precious beyond telling." ~ Fredrick Buechner

Well that is about all there is of interest to tell you about me.

I hope our ministry here is a blessing to you and your family. I also hope that it is only a supplement to a local church where you are committed to other believers in a community of grace.

~God Bless!