Cindy Jacobs’ Plan for Citywide Revival
A few days ago, Charisma Magazine released an article by Cindy Jacobs entitled “How to Prophetically Lay Siege to a City.”
In this article, Mrs. Jacobs shares what she feels is God’s strategy for defeating satan’s influence in our cities so that the long-awaited revival can finally arrive. Unfortunately, in her zeal for “storming the gates of hell”, she overlooks (and as a result, disobeys) one of the most important commands of the Bible.
“Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it.”
We Must Reject the Message of Those Who Would Lead Us Away from God’s Word
The Word says that, if a prophet (or someone who claims to be a prophet) entices you away from the commandments of God to serve other gods, you are to completely reject their message, no matter how “well-meaning” that prophet might be. You are to do this even if miracles are present! (see Deuteronomy 13)
Modern day false prophets will never come right out and say “hey, let’s go serve other gods” … in fact, they may give lip service to the Word of God and claim it as the “ultimate authority” for Truth. But, through their teaching, you are gradually led away from that Truth, only to race down endless rabbit trails and dead end “half-truths.”
Yes, the “divine inspiration” under which they operate is only a cobweb of flawed terminology and misused scripture.
This kind of misinterpretation (and misuse) of scripture is not uncommon in the “prophetic movement.” In fact, it’s quite prevalent.
The “Prophetic Movement” and Their Words
Terms like “prophets,” “prophecy,” “grace,” and even “love” are all defined according to a modern definition of the word, which conveniently fits into the aspirations of the “Prophetic Movement”. But, if you look at God’s Word, these terms mean something completely different than how the prophetic movement (or the modern day church, for that matter) uses them.
At the risk of going “off topic” a little, please understand something.
If we define scriptural words through the lens of our modern day interpretation, rather than studying what GOD says about these words, we are opening ourselves up for serious deception and error.
Jesus used the “good tree/good fruit – bad tree/bad fruit” analogy in Matthew 7, and He applied this DIRECTLY to false prophets.
By extension, a good tree comes from a good seed. A bad tree comes from a bad seed.
This analogy (and basic logic) should show us that, if a basic term like “prophet” is defined incorrectly, error will be “birthed” into the resulting “prophetic movement”, and error will be the fruit of that movement …. I could write a whole other post on this concept!
Realize …. Jesus pulled no punches …. you can NOT have good fruit from a bad tree, and vice versa.
But I digress ….
Let’s get back to Cindy Jacobs and her plan for “citywide revival.”
Praying for Your City is a Good Thing
What I’m about to write should not be misinterpreted as a denunciation of the practice of praying for God to move in our cities. We SHOULD pray for these things! But using trendy tactics preached by those that add to, or take away from, the Word of God is, at best, a waste of time.
Cindy’s Attempt at Establishing Scriptural Credibility
Let us take a look at the beginning of Cindy Jacob’s article.
“The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it” (Ps. 24:1, NIV).
This powerful proclamation points to the lordship of Christ over the entire earth. In the light of Psalm 24:1, the searching question we ask ourselves is, “Has the lordship of Christ been realized in the life of my own city?”
To know the answer, it is necessary to read our city and its culture in the light of God’s Word. We need to not only read God’s Word, but to view our city in the light of God’s world.
For some, this may be a new concept. Most of us are more used to studying the Word of God for use in our personal lives …. and so we should. However, God’s Word extends to the whole world. The earth is the Lord’s.
Right here is where it starts. The first thing Cindy does is attempt to establish scriptural credibility for the error that is about to follow.
Psalm 24:1 is a great (and True) verse, but Cindy completely ignores the other scriptures that show that “the kingdoms of this world” DO NOT become “the kingdoms of our Lord and His Christ” until the End of the Age, when the Wrath of God is poured out on the world.
“Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, ‘The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!'”
God Subdues Kingdoms at the End of the Age – Not Us
This is something that God does by Himself. Not because of any intercession by His saints, but because He has a Timing for these events to occur, and it will happen when He says so, and not at any other time. After all … He’s the King!
Isaiah 60 is an awesome chapter that speaks of a future date when Christ has set up His Kingdom, and all nations come to Jerusalem. This is the time referred to in Revelation 11:15.
Isaiah 60 ends with:
“I, the LORD, will hasten it in its time.”
Cindy goes on to talk about strongholds, evangelism, revival and “storming the gates of hell” in an attempt to appeal to our desire for the world to come to Christ (for the sake of space, I will just refer you to the article). Some of the things she has to say is true, but, unbeknownst to the reader (and possibly Cindy herself), she’s laying a groundwork of half-truth to support the error that will soon follow.
Ezekiel Is a Sign, not a “Battle Plan”
Ezekiel 4: A Prophetic Pattern: The army of God is on the move and ready for battle strategy. A new breed of watchmen is emerging across the nations. This breed is ready to lay siege to its cities.
Ezekiel 4 gives a prophetic pattern for establishing the lordship of Christ in your area. Ezekiel was called of God to perform an intercessory act over the city of Jerusalem, much like Joshua when he was called to march around Jericho. Ezekiel’s prophetic intercession provides a model … with principles found throughout the Word of God … on how to intercede for a city against spiritual strongholds
Here, we see that Cindy Jacobs is attempting to equate a SIGN performed by a real prophet to the doomed people of Israel to some sort of spiritual “battle plan”.
In Truth, Ezekiel is showing Israel what was going to happen to them because they disobeyed the law of God, turning to idols and forsaking the Way God had laid out for them.
This is NOT a prophetic act of intercession. It is God talking, through Ezekiel, about what is going to happen to His people because of their disobedience. Ezekiel wasn’t interceding for the people, or even praying at that time! He was obeying God!
Due to the blatant error at the onset, the rest of Cindy’s “battle plan” is fatally flawed, but let’s go ahead and check out the rest of it anyway.
Cindy Jacobs Shamelessly Adds to God’s Word to Support Her Idea
As you read Ezekiel 4, you will find these principles, which can help you develop a strategy to discover Satan’s strongholds in your area:
1. Make a Map
“Now, son of man, take a block of clay, put it in front of you and draw the city of Jerusalem on it” (Ezekiel 4:1).
God desires to reveal strongholds to His intercessors concerning their area. Ezekiel was told to make a map. This concept, called “spiritual mapping,” has been largely uncovered by recent pioneers in spiritual warfare such as George Otis Jr. Otis says we need to strive to see our cities and our nations as they really are, not as they appear to be.
From historical study, Ezekiel most likely made cylindrical maps, which were placed at the corner of temples depicting not only the geography but the history of the kings and nations. Ezekiel did warfare over the iniquities of the generations using these maps of history. In other words (either by natural knowledge or revelation from God), he researched the strongholds in Jerusalem and mapped them out.
Wow! Talk about “adding to” the Word of God!
Ezekiel took a block of clay and drew the city of Jerusalem on it …. nothing more, nothing less. All of this talk about “spiritual mapping”, “researching strongholds”, and “doing warfare over the iniquities of the generations” is putting Words in God’s mouth.
It’s at this point that our “false prophet meter” should be going off the charts.
Cindy Jacobs Lays Siege to the Word of God by Identifying with the Wrong Army
2. Set an Intercessory Strategy
“Then lay siege to it: Erect siege works against it, build a ramp up to it, set up camps against it and put battering rams around it” (v. 2).
The spiritual mapping of a city can be used to develop a strategic plan to tear down the strongholds of the enemy. Ezekiel was instructed in verse 2 to “lay siege walls” against the city. These were movable watchtowers that were placed near the walls or strongholds of the enemy to spy out, research and weaken the besieged stronghold.
Watchmen were placed in these towers to give information for strategy. These watchmen harassed the enemy from a high place that was purposely built for war. The Lord has placed His watchmen throughout the world whom He has anointed to spy out, research and harass the enemy through intercession.
Again, Cindy is grasping at straws here. Apparently, she doesn’t notice that it is ISRAEL’S enemies that are being portrayed as the attackers. It is NOT the righteous Army of God laying siege to the enemy.
When God gave Ezekiel this Word, He was showing the children of Israel how they would be attacked by the opposing army. Again, this was due to their lack of repentance.
Unlike our false prophets today (which includes Cindy Jacobs and her ilk), Ezekiel (a True Prophet) was showing the children of Israel the consequences of their sin and hardened hearts.
Intercession (“prophetic” or otherwise) still doesn’t enter the picture.
Cindy’s “Strategy” May Work Against God’s People
3. Implement the Strategy
God told Ezekiel to build a ramp or earthen mound against the walls. He was also told to build camps and lay battering rams against it (v. 2). Today this is accomplished through unity in prayer with pastors and leaders, prayer in local churches and the formation of “camps” of prayer groups for the city. These groups pray the prayers that are the “battering rams” against the gates of hell in the city.
This is just more adding to the Word of God …. but I think there may be a hint of irony here.
Cindy Jacobs is “likening” these prayer groups, who are expected to implement these intercessory tactics (as well as other “prophetic” deeds promoted by this movement) with the “camps” and “battering rams” used by the enemy to come AGAINST God’s chosen people because of their sin.
Could it be that these “prophetic deeds/tactics” actually be working AGAINST God’s people? They’re obviously formulated in the minds of those who cannot read the Word for what it is and are given over to the spirit of error …. Selah.
A Wall of Separation is not a Wall of Protection
4. Build a Wall of Protection
“Then take an iron pan, place it as an iron wall between you and the city and turn your face toward it. It will be under siege, and you shall besiege it. This will be a sign to the people of Israel” (v. 3).
Ezekiel was instructed to take an iron pan and place it as a wall. This wall offered protection against the fiery darts of the enemy from the besieged stronghold. We can build a wall by claiming the protection of God in our lives (Ps. 91). To withstand Satan’s counterattack, we need to keep these walls in a state of repair through personal holiness and right relationships with God and man.
Although Jerusalem might have been a “stronghold,” this aspect of the city was not mentioned in this passage. God was speaking to His People in a city steeped in sin. Cindy just emphasized the “stronghold” to support her error.
It was a picture of the enemy attacking Jerusalem, not believers attacking “strongholds.”
You Can’t Know Truth by Allegory or Making Everything “Spiritual”
This is a tactic used by most prophetic people, they take a piece of Old Testament scripture and twist it (either through allegorization, “spiritualization” or just outright taking it out of context) to suit their ideas, claiming that they heard this from the “Spirit of God.”
I’m sure that they heard it by a spirit … but it wasn’t His Spirit. If it was by HIS Spirit, it would have been accurate and indisputable. Unfortunately, people will absorb this error into their paradigm, because it appeals to their itching ears.
Iron is Symbolic of God’s Judgement
The purpose of the iron pan (or “iron wall”) mentioned in verse 3 is further explained in verse 4 and 5 (which Cindy Jacobs doesn’t really mention). Let’s take a look at these verses together.
“Moreover take thou unto thee an iron pan, and set it [for] a wall of iron between thee and the city: and set thy face against it (the city), and it shall be besieged, and thou shalt lay siege against it. This [shall be] a sign to the house of Israel.Lie also on your left side, and lay the iniquity of the house of Israel upon it. According to the number of the days that you lie on it, you shall bear their iniquity.For I have laid on you the years of their iniquity, according to the number of the days, three hundred and ninety days; so you shall bear the iniquity of the house of Israel.”
God is telling Ezekiel “set his face against” the city (the model of Jerusalem) and to “lay iniquity on” the House of Israel as he (Ezekiel) lays on his side for 390 days. As a prophet, Ezekiel was pronouncing judgement upon the House of Israel. After the 390 days, he laid on his right side and pronounced judgement on the House of Judah.
The iron pan was a sign of God’s judgement against His people. Throughout scripture, iron was used as a symbol of strength. Ezekiel, as God’s representative, set up an iron wall (a strong barrier) between God and His people.
Ezekiel, fulfilling his role as a true prophet, pronounced the Judgement of God upon the sinful city. In effect, he besieged the city (Jerusalem) through His Words and Actions.
The idea of judging sin or pronouncing the judgement of God upon a city is repellent to modern day prophets. They are much more comfortable with speaking “soft words”.
Many would say “But prophets don’t do that today! They preach ‘grace’ and ‘love’ and encourage everybody!”
You will not find that anywhere in scripture.
Many use 1 Corinthians 14 as a proof text for their erroneous teaching that the role of a prophet has changed. Read my post entitled “New Testament Prophets and Prophecy – Echoes of the Old Testament” for further explanation on this error.
The Conveniently Overlooked Prophet’s Duty
Please don’t misunderstand me …. I’m all for speaking “encouraging things” to people, but, when sin abounds, this is not the job of a prophet.
Yeah, I said it …
Blessings always come upon the obedient … in fact it overtakes them! But speaking “encouraging things” is not the job of a prophet when sin saturates a society and disobedience is rampant.
Unfortunately, prophets pronouncing judgement on anything is unaccepted by the churchgoing masses (even though it is abundant in the Word), and the real prophets are scared.
“Prophets” are Scared
The bottom line is, of the very few people in the prophetic movement who are actually CALLED to be prophets, most are afraid of losing their following and the resulting income.
Yes. The Fear of Man is hindering God’s True Word from coming forth.
“The fear of man brings a snare, But whoever trusts in the LORD shall be safe.”
A Final Note
Cindy ends her article with the following …
It’s the release of Satan’s captives. It’s the evangelization of the world. As we lift up the cross of Christ and tear down Satan’s standards, surely the power of the blood of the Lamb will heal our lands and draw all men to His lovely name.
Yes, Cindy Jacobs. But release, evangelization, and healing can only come through the knowledge of the Truth, not the vain wishful thinking of a trendy prophet.
Cindy, please read the Word and accept it’s Truth.