False prophets will not get away without punishment

Jeremiah Bible Background

Old Testament: Jer 29.29–32

To read the Bible in a year, read Jeremiah 29–30 on October 31, In the year of our Lord Christ 2020

By Don Ruhl

False prophets arose during the days of Jeremiah, attempting to counter what Jeremiah prophesied, but since those prophets had not come from God, they always failed.

A priest read to Jeremiah a letter from one of the false prophets and then God had something to say about that false prophet:

Now Zephaniah the priest read this letter in the hearing of Jeremiah the prophet. Then the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah, saying: “Send to all those in captivity, saying, Thus says the LORD concerning Shemaiah the Nehelamite: Because Shemaiah has prophesied to you, and I have not sent him, and he has caused you to trust in a lie—therefore thus says the LORD: Behold, I will punish Shemaiah the Nehelamite and his family: he shall not have anyone to dwell among this people, nor shall he see the good that I will do for My people, says the LORD, because he has taught rebellion against the LORD.”

– Jeremiah 29.29–32

It is not good to speak in the Lord’s name when you do not have the authority to do so. Who is some puny man compared to the Creator of the heavens and the earth? No such man can change what the Creator has said.


  • Have you ever followed a prophet whom you later discovered was not from God?
  • What is the best way to tell whether a prophet is truly from God?

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