“Beware of False Prophets”
Lead us, O Lord, to prophets—to preachers and teachers—who bear fruit that befits leaders who lead in the ways of Jesus because they follow the ways of Jesus.
Help us, O Lord, to look for the right kind of fruit in our preachers and teachers—fruit like grace, faith, mercy, forgiveness, humility, service, sacrifice, peace, and love; help us to follow leaders who show such fruit in their own lives and who help other people produce it in theirs.
Protect us, O Lord, from whatever it is in us that will allow us and even cause us to follow leaders who do not lead in the ways of Jesus, who do not produce the fruit that comes from following Jesus, and who lead in ways that are more for their gain than for the good of the Kingdom.
As for those of us who are prophets, who are teachers and preachers—Lord, have mercy; Christ, have mercy; Lord, have mercy.
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? In the same way, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will know them by their fruits.” (Matthew 7:15-20)