There's an instance in the history of one church in particular where it's held that one man had genuine visions from God, but that at a later point in his life after having been excommunicated he continued receiving "visions". The members of this church will genuinely hold that his earlier visions were true and his later visions were false.

I'm curious if this sort of story has an precendence. Obviously the later lies of visions would normally put into question any of his previous visions, in my estimation - if he shows a proclivity about lieing about visions now, why would God reveal things to such a dishonest man earlier? If his visions previously were genuine, what could make a man capable of receiving genuine revelations turn into such a dishonest man?

I'm thinking there could perhaps be some clues in similar stories from the Old Testament (or in Christianity I suppose), so I'm searching for similar stories.

  • Can you provide references to primary sources about the story you allude to in the first paragraph? Aug 1 at 15:36
  • @SpiritRealmInvestigator I would like to avoid tainting the question with bias, since this is an active religion which many people feel strongly about, both for and against. If you want to PM me about it, I'd be happy to give you details in private.
    – TKoL
    Aug 1 at 15:39
  • I would recommend that you scope the question to that specific denomination, so that they can explain their beliefs and actions. This will also make the answers more objective because they can cite primary sources of that denomination and not have a bunch of different denominations all chiming in and creating a popularity contest.
    – user32540
    Aug 1 at 16:54
  • @4castle there's a reason that I'm not asking that, and that is because I know what the result of that line of questions would be. I know what THEY think - they think his earlier visions are valid, and his later visions are not, and whatever argument they can think of to justify that, they will use, because that is the nature of apologetics - you start with your conclusion and work backwards.
    – TKoL
    Aug 1 at 16:57
  • So I'm curious in a non-denominational specific way if this has ever happened before.
    – TKoL
    Aug 1 at 16:58

The name of Jonah comes to mind. He didn't receive a vision, but God told Jonah,

Jonah1:2 Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for their wickedness is come up before me. (also 3:2).

So when Jonah finally got there he proclaimed,

3:4 And Jonah began to enter into the city a day's journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.

Maybe he wasn’t lying, but he didn’t get the story straight either. He spoke presumptuously. (Deu 18:22) Anyway, the warning worked and the people repented.

3:10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, that he had said that he would do unto them; and he did it not.

It says that God repented of what He said, but I don’t find 40 days anywhere. What’s going on here? Anyway, Jonah wasn’t happy.

4: But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he was very angry.2 And he prayed unto the Lord, and said, I pray thee, O Lord, was not this my saying, when I was yet in my country? Therefore I fled before unto Tarshish: for I knew that thou art a gracious God, and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repentest thee of the evil.3 Therefore now, O Lord, take, I beseech thee, my life from me; for it is better for me to die than to live.

It would seem Deu 18:22 applies. That’s the way I understand it. A more direct example of false prophets is Hananiah.

Jer 28:10 Then Hananiah the prophet took the yoke from off the prophet Jeremiah's neck, and brake it.11 And Hananiah spake in the presence of all the people, saying, Thus saith the Lord; Even so will I break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all nations within the space of two full years. And the prophet Jeremiah went his way.12 Then the word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah the prophet, after that Hananiah the prophet had broken the yoke from off the neck of the prophet Jeremiah, saying,13 Go and tell Hananiah, saying, Thus saith the Lord; Thou hast broken the yokes of wood; but thou shalt make for them yokes of iron. 14 For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; I have put a yoke of iron upon the neck of all these nations, that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; and they shall serve him: and I have given him the beasts of the field also.15 Then said the prophet Jeremiah unto Hananiah the prophet, Hear now, Hananiah; The Lord hath not sent thee; but **thou makest this people to trust in a lie.**16 Therefore thus saith the Lord; Behold, I will cast thee from off the face of the earth: this year thou shalt die, because thou hast taught rebellion against the Lord.17 So Hananiah the prophet died the same year in the seventh month.

Jeremiah had received God's message, but Hananiah contradicted it.

  • 1
    I'm not sure I'm understanding the argument that Jonah lied about his vision. In fact, verse 40 says "When the true God saw what they did, how they had turned back from their evil ways,f he reconsidered* the calamity that he said he would bring on them, and he did not bring it." So... did Jonah lie about it?
    – TKoL
    Aug 2 at 14:35
  • 1
    I don't have the context for what Jonah wasn't happy about or why he wasn't happy.
    – TKoL
    Aug 2 at 14:35
  • 1
    Did Hananiah transition from a true prophet to a false prophet? Or was he/she just a false prophet the whole time?
    – TKoL
    Aug 2 at 14:36
  • Like I said, maybe he didn't lie. I think he just talked presumptuously. (Deu 18:22) Aug 2 at 17:21
  • I guess he just felt humiliated for being wrong. Maybe he realized he was a false prophet. I'm speaking presumptuously here. Aug 2 at 17:23

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