S: Ezekiel 13:1-7 Then the word of the Lord came to me: “Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel who are now prophesying. Say to the prophets who prophesy from their imagination: ‘Hear the word of the Lord! This is what the sovereign Lord says: Woe to the foolish prophets who follow their own spirit but have seen nothing! Your prophets have become like jackals among the ruins, O Israel. You have not gone up in the breaks in the wall, nor repaired a wall for the house of Israel that it would stand strong in the battle on the day of the Lord. They see delusion and their omens are a lie. They say, “the Lord declares,” though the Lord has not sent them; yet they expect their word to be confirmed. Have you not seen a false vision and announced a lying omen when you say, “the Lord declares,” although I myself never spoke?”
O: God views false prophecy as a very serious offence. These prophets prophesying that all would be well and that the Lord would rescue Judea from the Babylonians were engaging in wishful thinking, misleading the people of Israel. God had allowed the Babylonians to conquer Judah because of their centuries of turning away from Him. The exile was necessary to purify Judaism and bring them back to worship the Lord.
In our Charismatic Christian circles, I have observed wishful thinking claiming to be prophecy. Many a beloved Christian dying has had "prophecies" said over them claiming that they would be healed... and then, when they die, many have lost their faith either partially or altogether.
A: We must not be glib about prophecy. Before you prophecy, you'd better be sure it's from the Lord. If you have falsely prophesied, repent and seek forgiveness both from God and from the persons you have harmed.
For this reason, I am also skeptical of the practice in certain Charismatic circles of telling people to "practice" prophecy. I've been in a crowd where we were told to pair up with some other person and to pray and ask God for a prophecy to speak over him or her. It seems to me that this is a good way to encourage people to make wishful thinking into fake prophecy.
Prophecy is God's prerogative. Its source is God, not man. We have God's written revelation and we can study the Bible and apply it to our lives and counsel others. (2 Timothy 3:16) We must not use "prophecy" that is actually wishful thinking as a short-cut to bypass this process.
Therefore, we must diligently study the Word of God like the Bereans did (Acts 17:11). If God gives you a prophecy, great! But it's His prerogative, not yours.
P: Father, teach us Your Word, Your Truth, and lead us to Your Life. In Jesus' name, amen.
Note: this is using the SOAP method. For more information, see this page (not written by me.)