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I was just curious, who are the prophets that are being mentioned in Lamentations 2:14, Jeremiah 23:33-40, and Zechariah 13:2-6? Why are these verses condemning the ability of prophecy but yet there are still prophets that are revered to a high extent. Lastly how long can a prophecy last? Ezekiel 12:27 indicates that prophecy seems to be short, and long term prophecies are looked down upon. How does this relate to long term prophecies by Daniel? Thanks.

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God makes a distinction between your (the people to whom the prophecy is directed) prophets (e.g. 1 Ki 22:23, Jer 27:9, Jer 27:9, Ezek 13:1-7) and my (God's) prophets (e.g. 1 Chr 16:21-23).1 God's prophets are the only true prophets. The others are false prophets (e.g. De 13:1-5, 2 Ki 18:19, 1 Ki 22:1-28, Jer 2:8, Jer 5:31).

Regarding Ezekiel 12:27

Ezekiel 12:27-28 (NASB)
“Son of man, behold, the house of Israel is saying, ‘The vision that he sees is for many years from now, and he prophesies of times far off.’ Therefore say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “None of My words will be delayed any longer. Whatever word I speak will be performed,” ’ ” declares the Lord GOD.

There isn't sufficient reason to understand this as applying henceforth to all prophecies from all prophets. There were certainly prophets who came after Ezekiel (e.g. Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi, possibly Daniel), some of whom foretell things about John the Baptist and Jesus (who came 400+ years later).

It is sufficiently plausible to understand the words of this passage as being a specific description of how God will behave in the short term regarding these people who are skeptical of Ezekiel's message. The alternative would seem logically inconsistent within the context of the entire Bible.


1 More frequently, people speaking/praying to God refer to them as your prophets. (e.g. 1 Ki 19:10, Neh 9:30)

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It doesn't matter if the prophecies are short or long term; the only thing that matters is if they are truly speaking the word that God gave to them:

Behold, I am against them that prophesy false dreams, saith the LORD, and do tell them, and cause my people to err by their lies, and by their lightness; yet I sent them not, nor commanded them: therefore they shall not profit this people at all, saith the LORD. [Jeremiah 23:32 KJV]

Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart. [Jeremiah 14:14 KJV]

There were true prophets and there were false prophets. It is not the ability of prophets to prophesy but the source.

The time between a prophecy and its fulfillment doesn't matter to God. The promise of God to Adam and Eve (actually directed to the serpent) of her seed crushing the serpent's head, was fulfilled by Jesus on the cross 4000 years later. Many prophecies made 1000 years before Christ's first coming will not be fulfilled until His second coming; at least 3000 years. Or a prophecy could be fulfilled the next day, such as when Isaiah's word from God to Hezekiah that the massive army outside the gates of Jerusalem would do them no harm; and overnight an angel of the Lord slew 185,000 Assyrian troops:

Now it came to pass in the fourteenth year of king Hezekiah, that Sennacherib king of Assyria came up against all the defenced cities of Judah, and took them. And the king of Assyria sent Rabshakeh from Lachish to Jerusalem unto king Hezekiah with a great army. And he stood by the conduit of the upper pool in the highway of the fuller's field. [Isaiah 36:1-2 KJV]

And it came to pass, when king Hezekiah heard it, that he rent his clothes, and covered himself with sackcloth, and went into the house of the LORD. ... Then Isaiah the son of Amoz sent unto Hezekiah, saying, Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Whereas thou hast prayed to me against Sennacherib king of Assyria: [Isaiah 37:1, 21 KJV]

Therefore thus saith the LORD concerning the king of Assyria, He shall not come into this city, nor shoot an arrow there, nor come before it with shields, nor cast a bank against it. By the way that he came, by the same shall he return, and shall not come into this city, saith the LORD. For I will defend this city to save it for mine own sake, and for my servant David's sake. Then the angel of the LORD went forth, and smote in the camp of the Assyrians a hundred and fourscore and five thousand: and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses. [Isaiah 37:33-36 KJV]

This is a very condensed version of the passage. Please read all of chapters 36 and 37. You will be blessed; it is one of the greatest examples of "trusting in God" in the Bible.

Short term or long term; it doesn't matter, so long as it is from the Lord!