2008 / 5768 A Year of New Beginnings?

Intercessors for Canada

Mid-Month Notes - January 2008



I believe in prophets and the gift of prophecy and following the scriptural exhortations 'not to despise prophesying' but rather to 'earnestly desire to prophesy'. We are also exhorted to test the spirits and to use the gift of discernment of spirits. Prophets and those who prophesy are accountable to others. I Corinthians 14:29 says:

'Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others weigh what is said.'

Below is my discernment of a current popular prophetic word and an expression of my concern of a drift toward numerology.


I feel constrained to weigh the spreading belief that by virtue of the new year, 2008, ending in an 8, we as Christians are in a special year of new beginnings. A well known prophet may have started it, Charisma e-mails popularized it and now the 'Apostolic Council of the Prophetic Elders' (ACPE) are reporting on it.

My concern is that the foundation for this prophetic insight seems to rest on a very questionable method of interpretation of Hebraic numerology. My spirit is troubled as I search my heart and the scriptures and ask, did the Lord Jesus or the Apostles use this method to prophesy?

I came across this insight at the start of 5768! The presentation was impressive, but I just did not get it! To quote:

"It has been a long time since in the history of the earth realm that we have been in a time like this … two seasons overlapping … In the new Hebraic year of 5768, a 7 year war season ends, and a new season starts"

I have since surfed the web and found that there is great interest in a supposed 7 year season of war ending, which means that the next number is a new beginning: 8! But this season ending coincides with the Hebraic year, 5768, that ends also in an 8. And it overlaps with 2008, ending in an 8. This is thought to be of great significance.

A 'prophetic' insight on 'Gates' is explained by referring to the Hebrew number system where numbers are linked to words, pictures and sounds. Again to quote from a recent flyer:

"Since the Hebraic alphabet is pictorial in origin, the number eight is actually depicted by the letter chet. This character pictures a wall, fence, gateway, door or gate, and shows us prophetically that in the midst of every wall or blockage that the Lord has a great opportunity for your new beginning".

So the prophetic inspiration for 'Possessing the Gates' comes from the shape of the letter chet and the association of 8 with new beginnings. The theme of beginnings then leads to Genesis as the book of beginnings, and teaching is extrapolated as prophetic emphases from the main themes of Genesis - creation, dominion, and creative miracles. This does not feel like real prophecy from the Spirit, more like creative human logic. Several have said that 8 is always associated with new beginnings but it takes artistic license to form a doctrine out of scattered passages.

In this teaching 2008 means new things and lots of change and there is a warning that, if we resist change, then we will be seven times worse off for the things that did not change. This is a very serious warning and I am alarmed as it has the implications of a curse. I would be interested in others' discernment on this matter. If I accept this insight but fail, will I really be in a demonic mess in 5769?

8 is special, so are all the other whole numbers! 7 was special last year and remember how great 12 was until we found the G12 did not work in Canada. But what about the Hebraic and Gregorian calendars? These are of course not absolute in their accuracy. Christ was almost certainly not born 2008 years ago. The Hebrew year 5768 is based on the calculations of a second century AD Rabbi, Yossi be Halafta, for the date of creation. The Hebrew date could be a long way out, both are approximate at best. My point is that using a date that is not precise is putting the power in the number itself rather than the significant exact date. Does this faith in the inherent power of whole numbers stray into the area of numerology? I think it does but please help me.

(Note Wikipedia description: Today, numerology is often associated with the occult, alongside astrology and similar divinatory arts. The term can also be used for those who, in the view of some observers, place excess faith in numerical patterns, even if those people don't practice traditional numerology.)

It is so interesting that the ACPE claim in their report for '2008 and Beyond', that …

"This year the Holy Spirit keyed off of the number 8 to us."

Is the Holy Spirit really leading the nations Prophets to prophesy out of the sound and shape of the Hebraic numbers? Should we all organize our events on August 8th this year?

A well known prophet has also written:

"Heaven and Earth are aligning. New councils of rulership are being formed in the earth. The councils are developing strategies to bring in the Harvest. The councils will know how to decree a thing and watch it happen. That is why decrees about the transfer of wealth are so important… "

I could say more about the teaching on the transfer of wealth, but this statement above on the councils being formed feels more like the 'Externalization of the Hierarchy'. It quite frankly scares me to hear of councils forming that could decree a thing and watch it happen. What if they got it wrong? There has to be a balance between top down corporate consensus and the individual also hearing the voice of the Lord.

I discern that these prophetic insights and declarations are not prophetic in the true sense of the word, but empirical deductions from an association with the number 8. This method is clearly available to anyone and is not particularly spiritual in its discernment. It certainly does not mean a particular impartation to believers just because the year has an 8 in it! For example, it is always true, every year, that Elisha did twice as many miracles as Elijah, so why should this particular year be one of double power? A real red flag went up for me in September when it was said,

"You don't understand it with your mind. You declare it, you step into it."

Forgive me, but isn’t this a recipe for deception?

Another caution I have is when seasons are announced for various virtues that are actually available to us all the time (today) by repentance and faith and through the blood of Christ. See Hebrews 10: 19-21

Therefore, brethren, since we have confidence to enter the sanctuary by the blood of Jesus, by the new and living way which he opened for us through the curtain, that is, through his flesh, and since we have a great priest over the house of God, let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith …

Canada needs the Prophets to stand up and declare the anointed word of the Lord. Since a major sign of the last days is deception, we should have our spiritual radar on all the time. If we subscribe to a deception we invite more deception until we have lost our discernment completely.

I must stop now. So how do we pray?

  • Let us draw near to the Lord Jesus in worship and adoration. Let us enter the Sanctuary by the power of His blood.
  • Let us repent for not desiring or using the gifts of the Spirit, in particular, the gift of discernment of spirits. 1 Corinthians 12: 10
  1. Let us seek the Lord for revelation of any deceptions or deceptive areas in our personal or church life.
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