If you ever receive a forwarded e-mail from an organization called the Elijah List, beware. Steve Shultz — the founder of the Elijah List — is one of the most dangerous false teachers today.
This is a harsh statement. Why do I say it?
The Elijah List e-mails — which are sent to more than 134,000 subscribers everyday — have done more to promote the false prophets and false apostles of the New Apostolic Reformation than just about anything else. And they do this by twisting Scripture beyond recognition.
Take a recent example. Today Shultz sent out an e-mail containing a prophecy from Kim Clement. See it here. The prophecy was about California.
Shultz always introduces the prophecies he sends out with background information about the featured “prophet” or prophecy. In this case, Shultz introduced the prophecy by saying that when he first heard Clement give it live on streaming TV — before Clement even began to speak — Shultz somehow intuitively knew it would be about Los Angeles. Shultz concluded that — because he knew the prophecy would be about Los Angeles before Clement said what it was about — then the prophecy must be true. Then Schultz backed up his bizarre conclusion with a Scripture verse. Here are his exact words:
I am not exaggerating when I tell you I just KNEW he was about to prophesy about Los Angeles, and that was before he said it. The Bible says, “By the mouth of two or three witnesses.” So this is one of those words you can “take to the bank!”
The portion of the verse Shultz quoted — “by the mouth of two or three witnesses the matter shall be established” — comes from Deuteronomy 19:15. Shultz used this verse to argue that — since two “prophets” (he and Clement) agreed with the prophecy — then it must be of God. So Shultz’s followers could trust the prophecy and, as Shultz said, take it “to the bank!”
Yet if Shultz had quoted the full verse — and not just the second half — then it would be obvious to everyone reading his e-mail that it had nothing to do with knowing whether or not a prophecy is from God. Here’s the full verse in the New King James Version (the version Shultz quoted it in):
One witness shall not rise against a man concerning any iniquity or any sin that he commits; by the mouth of two or three witnesses the matter shall be established.
This verse comes from the Old Testament, and it says that a man cannot be given the death penalty based on the testimony of only one person. This law was given by God to the Jewish nation to protect someone from being falsely accused of murder.
We know the verse is talking, specifically, about the death penalty — even though it doesn’t use those words — because the surrounding verses talk about what to do when someone is accused of murder. This interpretation is backed up by other passages in the Old Testament that set forth the same principle in regard to someone who has been accused of murder (Numbers 35:30, Deuteronomy 17:6). We also see the same principle at work in the New Testament regarding Christians who are accused of committing some type of major sin (Matthew 18:16, 2 Corinthians 13:1, 1 Timothy 5:19).
So, the verse Shultz quoted has nothing to do with testing a prophecy. His misuse of Scripture to support Clement’s prophecy is irresponsible and dangerous. It teaches Christians that — any time two or more Christians agree that a prophecy is true — then it is true and they should believe it.
Yet, Scripture gives us at least three tests for knowing whether a prophecy is from God. And they have nothing to do with the number of people who agree.
1) Does the prophecy point people to worship of the one true God or to the worship of other false gods? See Deuteronomy 13:1-5 and 18:20. A close examination of the prophecies given by Shultz and Clement over the years show that the “God” they talk about bears little resemblance to the God of the Bible.
2) Does the prophecy come true? See Deuteronomy 18:21-22. Clement has become notorious for giving prophecies that never come to pass and then attempting to explain away their failure.
3) Does the prophecy line up with Scripture or does it contradict or otherwise undermine Scripture? See Acts 17:11, where the Bereans were praised for searching the Scripture to test new teaching. Shultz, on the other hand, contradicts Scripture by twisting verses such as Deuteronomy 19:15 and giving bogus methods for testing a prophecy.
Besides these three tests for a prophecy, the Bible also tells us we can know whether a prophet comes from God or not by examining the fruit of his or her life (Matthew 7:15-23). The frequent abuse of Scripture exhibited by Shultz is one example of bad fruit.
So, the bottom line is, Shultz and Clement can agree all they want — until they’re blue in the face. It still doesn’t make their prophecies true. Contrary to what Shultz says, by the mouth of 2 or 3 or even 123 witnesses a prophecy is not confirmed.