Before our current dispensation of grace, you had better believe that the letter of the law killed before the spirit of the law gave life. There was and there is still no such thing as moral relativism.
Nowadays there are numerous self-proclaimed prophets making prognostications or declaration upon friends, family, or the church community. Clearly there are legitimate illuminations that are authentic utterances which inspires or encourages, however there are quite a few claims that fail to deliver the prerequisites outlined in the Bible.
One irrefutable issue that is a violation of God’s word or character are proclamations that claims one thing one day and change the next. God does not change. There are claims made regarding doing a task, then quitting before the task is compete. God does not quit projects without a viable conclusion.
The standard for a prophet under the old covenant was 100% accuracy, and you did not have the luxury of changing you verbiage on the fly. The occupational hazard of being a prophet was any false or inaccurate saying would result in you qualifying as the main attraction at a rock concert. You can safely wager prophets speaking for God would be extremely mindful of relaying only what God revealed and nothing else.http://www.aloha.net/~mikesch/false-prophets.htm
One of the most revered prophets of old is Moses, a distinguished man of God highly regarded among the Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Raised as a prince of Egypt for nearly 40 years, Moses fled to the desert and dwelled as a sheep herder for another 40 years before God called Moses into service with his burning bush experience.
As one of God’s most important prophets, God spoke to Moses only once during that 80 year span.
This brings us to today and the casual nature people display claiming to be prophets having conversations with God multiple times during the week.
It is understandable and acceptable to be tuned in spiritually and be “led by the Spirit”, but having multiple conversations with God and dispensing directions to other people based on these verbal dialogues is a highly suspect enterprise.
One can be inspired by “what God told you”, but God can just as effectively validate His word by going directly to the person or dispensing an angelic messenger. Using the “prophet” as a second witness is Biblical, but God rarely does the same thing twice unless the person really is a specially anointed vessel.
A distressing tactic of a “false prophet” is for direct somebody to do something one day and give conflicting information later on. http://www.cgg.org/index.cfm/fuseaction/Library.sr/CT/PW/k/1177/False-Prophet.htm
The same confusion could be done by people claiming “God told me” to do something, then the same people claim “God told me” to do something else before the task is finished. Church hoppers seem to be always directed by God to come and go on unsubstantiated whims.
The gift of discernment is a valuable tool for the church body because these pontificating prophets can unleash severe damage if they are allowed to go unabated. Those with discernment can assist the pastor and the church leadership in sorting out what is bogus or legitimate.
Magnificent results will come to pass if truly gifted prophets are allowed to operate, but by the same token devastating consequence will occur if babblers of mischief operate unrestricted.
By their fruits you will know them.