By Femi Aribisala
When God gives a prophecy, He does not allow anyone to exclude himself.
saiah asks: “Who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?” (Isaiah 53:1). Christians have become so self-confident that we procedurally disbelieve the report of the Lord.
Jesus says to His disciples: “All of you will be made to stumble because of Me tonight.” But Peter challenged the report of the Lord. He said: “Even if everybody is made to stumble, I will never be made to stumble.” (Matthew 26:31-33).
And so, Peter not only stumbled, but he also fell headlong. What should he have done? He should have agreed with the report and then asked the Lord for grace so that he would not be made to stumble. Indeed, if it were not for the Lord’s mercies, Peter’s discipleship would have ended prematurely.
Jesus said to him: “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.” (Luke 22:31-32).
Don’t despise prophecies
Christians do not know how to handle biblical prophecy. If the prophecy is about breakthrough, showers of blessing, or prosperity, we embrace it. If it negative, we ignore it saying: “God forbid bad thing.” But did God forbid Noah’s prophecy about the destruction of the flood, or did He establish it?
Jesus says: “All of you will be made to stumble because of me.” This is a word of prophecy, and we must not insist it cannot be applicable to us.
The scriptures say Jesus will be: “As a sanctuary, but a stone of stumbling and a rock of offense to both the houses of Israel, as a trap and a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And many among them shall stumble; they shall fall and be broken, be snared and taken.” (Isaiah 8:14-15).
God then tells Isaiah: “Bind up the testimony, seal the law among My disciples.” (Isaiah 8:16). How then can we say it will not apply to us? Are we Jesus’ disciples or not?
But then we stumble at the word. How can God be so categorical? Why does He say: “all of you will be made to stumble?” Why does He not say: “some of you will be made to stumble, so we can conveniently exclude all of us?”
I am called as a prophet. I wrote a book entitled: “Why Christians Won’t Go to Heaven.” Christians ask me: “How can you have that kind of title?” Why do you not say: “Why Some Christians Won’t Go to Heaven?” Why can you not say: “Why certain Christians won’t go to heaven?”
When God gives a prophecy, He does not allow anyone to exclude himself. He says: “My people perish for lack of knowledge.” (Hosea 4:6). He does not say: “Some of My people perish for lack of knowledge.”
Jesus says: “Many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 8:11-12).
He says categorically the children of the kingdom will be cast out. He does not say some children of the kingdom will be cast out. He does not say certain children will be cast out.
“When evening had come, (Jesus) sat down with the twelve. Now as they were eating, He said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me.’ And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and each of them began to say to Him, ‘Lord, is it I?’” (Matthew 26:20-22).
“The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” (Revelation 19:10). Therefore, O great Christian, go to the Lord and ask: “Is it me?” “Father, help me so I am not the one who betrays you.”
But the Christians of today are made of sterner stuff. I can envisage someone raising his hand today to say: ‘Lord, I am so glad you made that statement. I have been meaning to say so myself, but I was not sure if I should. But now that you have mentioned it, let me say this. The person who will betray you is Kunle. He is just not committed to you.”
And the Lord will give such proud upstart the shock of his life. He will tell him: “You are the one.”
David told Nathan that the rich man who took the little lamb of the poor man should be put to death. But Nathan said to him: “You are the man.” (2 Samuel 12:1-7). In effect, had it not been for the grace of God, David pronounced a death sentence on himself.
Be warned. You are the one. The bible is talking about you.
Jesus says: “All of you will be made to stumble because of Me this night, for it is written: ‘I will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.” (Matthew 26:21).
Who is going to make everyone stumble? God is. Why is He going to make everyone stumble? He wants to see how many will get up.
They told you it was a boxing match, but you thought it was a walk in the park. They told you many are the afflictions of the righteous (Psalm 39:14), but you say many are the showers of blessing. But by the time you got into the ring and your opponent landed some hard blows on your chin, all the prosperity scriptures that you had crammed flew out of your head.
One left hook switched off your light and when you opened your eyes, you saw the referee leaning over you, counting: “One, two, three.” Will you get up or will you be counted out?
When we are made to stumble, we become offended. We cry out: “My God, my God, why have You forsaken me? Why are You so far from helping me? Why don’t You even listen to my groans? I cry out to You in the daytime, but You don’t answer. I cry out to You at night, but I find no rest.” (Psalm 22:1-2).
So, the Lord becomes a stumbling stone indeed. He becomes a rock of offense, and biblical prophecy is fulfilled. Therefore, John the Baptist sends emissaries to Jesus, the same man he witnessed to as the Messiah, asking:
“Are You the Coming One, or do we look for another?” “Jesus answered and said to them, “Go and tell John the things which you hear and see: The blind see and the lame walk; the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear; the dead are raised up and the poor have the gospel preached to them. And blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.” (Matthew 11:3-6).
Blessed is that man who is not offended by what God decides to do and what He decides not to do.
Let us be instructed by the counsel of Isaiah. He says whatever the situation: “I will wait on the LORD, who hides His face from the house of Jacob; and I will hope in Him.” (Isaiah 8:17).