NOTE: Below are some replies that Terry Somerville collected after his provocative article on the state of the Prophetic movement: REPLIES to "BALAAM & the PROPHETIC MOVEMENT" -by Terry Somerville. (Note: Some letters have been abbreviated, or had names removed -Ed.) Marja writes: ...Nowhere else could a Prophet get away with as much as in North America. In any other country the Spiritual leaders would speak up and say... enough! But, not here.. North America is everyone's Promised Land and as mentioned in the Newsletter...yes...services are on hire for enough money. You sort of wonder... Can we buy INTEGRITY, too ? Kenn writes: My name is Kenn Parker - I now live in Victoria. I have traveled in apostolic/prophetic ministry for many years now. I have been and still am involved with some of the major apostolic/prophetic voices and ministries in Canada. I am part of a national apostolic movement led by Mel Mullen out of Red Deer. I only give you this info to introduce myself to you and possibly lend a little credence to my comments on the article linked to this email. Like you, I gave up on most of the websites and bulletins connected with the prophetic movement years ago. Like you, I have become very concerned about some of the observations you have made concerning the prophetic movement in North America. I have found myself more and more "out of sync" with a lot of the things that many others seem to be captivated by. At times I have wondered if I am somehow missing what God is saying or up to in the last few years. Every year there are all the prophecies at the beginning of the year speaking of the main priority of God for that year. Apparently 2008 is to be the year of "New Beginnings" (I could make a number of cynical remarks and conclusions of such a "profound" revelation, but I will refrain). It seems that there are more and more "obvious" things that are being dubbed as prophetic. There also seems to be more and more emphasis on various manifestations and angelic visitations rather than on the word of the Lord connected with the visitation or manifestation. I have also felt somewhat guilty of seemingly being "out of sync". It seems to me that the Lord is clearly speaking to the church to grow up, to have mature attitudes towards trials, suffering, difficulties, etc. And also to grow up into maturity concerning spiritual disciplines and the practice of them. As you have mentioned, the emphasis is increasing on the Kingdom of God. I have said that the Lord is teaching us the difference between the practice of Christian spirituality (of which the kingdom is directly connected) and the Christian practices. I was not saved to go to church!!! I say all this to say that I wonder if there is something more that should be done about the concerns. I wonder if there is a way that we can sound the trumpet louder or with more clarity or both? I wonder if some of our prophetic friends would hear the concerns and be accountable without being overly defensive? I just spent some time with ............... and he was grieving over the attack of criticism that seems to be directed at the prophetic movement. I wonder if "the faithful wounds of a friend" would carry less sting and more weight. I am concerned that there may be many of us feeling the same way and all are feeling that they are the only ones and are "out of sync" with the others. I wonder if we would be better to take more brave steps as you have in even writing the article? I wonder if we would be better to be more specific (behind closed doors?) with some of our friends and major Canadian prophetic voices? I fear that if something doesn't shift, there will be an even greater credibility issue with the whole movement. I, like you, am grateful for the things that the Lord has done through the prophets and the movement around them. I would hate to see the work of God in this area eroded due to credibility issues as well as a lack of accountability amongst those with "like faith" and "like vision". Thanks for your boldness in writing what you have. I just wanted you to know that you are not alone in your observations and I think it may be more serious than it looks.... Unknown writes: ... I am so blessed as I just came across your article "Balaam and the Prophetic movement." I can hardly believe somebody finally wrote this article and I am having an even harder time believing it got posted on a prophetic forum! Andre and I have been concerned about the "Balaam factor" for some time now, and we've also been bewildered as we've seen most every christian we meet run in that direction without thinking twice..... Earlier this year or last I actually took down notes from the Lord about how Balaam was manifesting in the prophetic movement, and hoped to write an article about it also...but so much to say, and write, I don't always get time and energy to do it! So, it's great you have. I really appreciated the way you were able to speak forthrightly but also without the judgmental and cutting edge some of the "prophets" use who speak against these things in the church. I see that your heart is for the church, and you are addressing the sin itself without condemning the sinners, but rather calling them to think, rather than ramming them for missing it. I so appreciate that Terry, and I find it rare in many of the words/teachings out there these days. It seems people gravitate to one extreme or the other - either all love and grace, OR correction but with a heavy and critical spirit. Sigh. I have felt the same thing re. the gold dust etc. It makes no sense to me. In the bible, all the signs and wonders were unto something. I did a study on all the verses I could find re. signs and wonders and every time Jesus speaks about them it is in the context of reaching out to the lost! There was a PURPOSE. They testified of Jesus. The miracles in the Bible also benefitted those to whom they were given - people were healed! These signs of gold dust etc. seem to be like things that are tempting people to go oo and ahh at the supernatural - but as you wrote, there is no focus coming from it on the Lord Himself. False Christs and False apostles - Jesus did say they would come. Thank goodness there are still some who are true and who are discerning the times and the spirits. Kimberley writes: Right now most prophetic leadership I know is fully supporting this whole "signs and wonders movement" as a thing in itself. You helped me to understand what I was trying to articulate in this regard - antichrist REPLACES something. This is what I see in the prophetic culture I've been exposed to. ... I know there are many out there who have seen and discerned things, but there voices get drowned out by the church's mindsets which keep them from receiving truth. I guess when one has been immersed in the noise of all the hoopla for so long, the real thing actually looks like an intruder. But I do wait in hope to see how the Lord will reveal HIMSELF in the midst of where the prophetic has gone astray. We have so much to learn...thank goodness the Lord never stops reaching out to help us come back to the Centre when we stumble. Marja writes: My daughter used to go to the YOUTH in ----. She finally had to pull out. It was going too far. Lot of it. One guy would come to Town from time to time and say in his Crusades... real Signs are happening ! To me.. the greatest sign and wonder is Changed Life ! That is the kind of sign God is after.. But, he said, when he preached...he would have BLOOD come out of his hands. The people were screaming and swooning. I said to my daughter that is OCCULTIC in origin. That is old Stigmata from the Roman Catholic Occultic Camp. We do not go there. She said...how do you know it is bad ? I said...ask God.So,she did and God said...they are asking for SIGNS and I give them a sign of Jonah ! .... So, that is one reason,why she pulled off the whole Youth Group in --- . Then right after... they went to drugs... drinking, sex and lots of boys are into homosexuality. What I am saying is...that many of these young people are ignorant. Not purposely foolish. They actually do NOT know,what to think and believe. If we focus on experiences...yes...we can all get lost in some never-never land ! That is the problem. Ria writes: The prophets of the Bible gave warnings and encouragement. The two always went hand in hand. There were never any promises of a good life, a bright future, the windows of heaven pouring mega-bucks into my bank account, blessings galore, without very stern admonishment of sin and a warning to be obedient NOW. A friend told me just before the end of last year one of the pastors of a church in Soweto prophesied to his congregation that in the new year God will give them all BMWs..... ~SOURCE: "Totalchange.org"