Dumitru Duduman, Part 2
This post continues to explore issues of interpretation of literal prophetic. Dumitru Duduman's group of prophetic words are our classroom. This time we pick up on the problem of detecting hoaxes, the problem of our own world view and then we look at the problem of prophetic packaging. Read on for more.
In the previous blog post I gave a link to a video where Duduman was recorded giving his testimony. If you missed that last post, here is the video again.
Where To Start?
The first round of interpretation involves determining if this is real, or if it is a hoax. It is possible that the entire thing is a hoax. Often times these sorts of prophets are hoaxes, either to draw attention to themselves, or attention to whatever story they tell.
Depending on someone's connections, they might actually know some nefarious plan. Remember the school kids in NYC before 9/11 who boasted to their teachers about knowing the soon fall of the towers? Their community knew full well the plan. Someone could have used that community knowledge and pretended to have a prophetic word. It would really just be knowledge of some actual plan.
So, how do we know Duduman is NOT doing that here?
There are various ways to cut through this, usually involving fleeces. Something that the prophet says or does that comes to pass in the near term so that their long term prophetic words can be trusted.
Stan Johnson, in his introduction to this video, is providing that for us. In fact Stan uses 2 examples, so we as observers can see there are 2 witnesses from outside of Duduman's own words, that can be used to vouch for the man.
The first is when Stan explains how he was asked about the fall of the Romanian Dictator, Nicolae Ceaușescu. Duduman had told Stan this would happen. Stan had told others. When it actually did happen, everyone in on that conversation knew Duduman had predicted this event.
Now of course dictators do fall, and someone from Romania at the time might well have hoped, or known, that this dictator was short lived. Though if you are old enough to remember those days, the fall of all of eastern Europe was something of a surprise across the western world. Remember, it had held fast since the end of World War II, so over 40 years. That fall of eastern Europe happened fast. It happened broadly. It was not easy to predict.
So Stan gives us another example, involving Stan's wife. His wife also wondered if Duduman was real, and she used a fleece. Asking, basically, that Duduman would prove himself by addressing her in a certain way. This came to pass and convinced her that Duduman was at least a genuine man of god with a prophetic gift.
Both of the very prophetic men I mentioned in part 1 of this series on Duduman had to regularly answer fleeces like Stan's wife used with Duduman. They both did so all the time. One of those men would often share particularly private information as his way to prove he was prophetic. Sharing private life details not only proved he was real, it was also his way of giving mild retribution for doubting.
If Duduman was still alive, we could go get close to him and watch in order to answer this hoax question for ourselves. In this case we must rely on the first person witnesses who knew Duduman. Those witnesses vouch that Duduman was genuine. We should not conclude he was a hoax.
Our Biggest Mistakes
Perhaps the most common mistake when looking at someone like this is to carry a world view that says this cannot be happening, and then seek out an excuse as to why. Carrying around strong world views is dangerous. Perhaps there really is a god and perhaps he really does speak? Perhaps he knows the future? Why would you think any other way?
This is one of the main messages of scripture itself. People repeatedly heard Joshua's voice, and acted on whatever they were told. They spoke of what they heard to others, and they wrote it down for us to read later. It is remarkable how many people within religious circles cannot accept this aspect of the text itself. They cannot accept it might still be going on now.
I remember when I was young and in a different denomination, hearing about prophetic words and fulfillments amongst Seventh Day Adventists. How can that be, I wondered. My church says they are wrong, so certainly god will not be speaking to them.
Ditto similar events amongst Catholics. Ditto amongst Mormons. Ditto outside of Christianity itself.
The logical error here is coming from a world view that either does not allow this to happen at all, or which constrains how or under what circumstances god speaks. Don't go carrying around any such world view, it will get in your way.
For a literal, audible, prophetic word to a people or to a nation it must be able to receive an audience. As my evangelist friends reported earlier, the theology of the pastors and theology of the audience gets in the way. So the guest speaker must be extremely careful about what they say in public.
Duduman's encounter with the king exhibits a pattern we need to be aware of. The king must demonstrate acceptable theology in order for Duduman to reach an audience. It is a test of orthodoxy, if you will, that the king is required to pass.
Now, for the pastors and audiences this is a truth test that they think the king passes. For the king this is test of how well they know the theology of the group they are trying to reach. Kings will often prove it by quoting the religious texts involved. To the king it would be like quoting Harry Potter to a Harry Potter fan, with the odd caviat, of course, that some passages in standard Bible texts are inspired.
This is why these sorts of encounters happen across the Christian world without regard to denominational theology. The king can do the same thing if the intended audience was Mormon, or Catholic or Orthodox. The defending scripture stories would be built upon the theology needed to match those various audiences. The king is not defending inspiration.
By the way, there is well established documentation on the prophetic words given to the Spokane tribes before the arrival of missionaries. They certainly were not Christian at the time. Kings are pointing people towards Joshua as best they can within the context of broken theology. Once you start to have a personal conversation with Joshua himself, you won't care much about theology.
So in contrast to symbolic interpretation, where we are trying to FIND the matched scripture story, in literal interpretation we must learn to IGNORE the scripture stories that are used as packaging.
This sounds so strange. But let me use the primary example from the video above. The king tells Duduman that California, as well as many other places, has sinned. Therefore destruction by fire is coming.
The problem is that 'All have sinned, and fall short of the glory of god.'
The king is not explaining why these specific places face fire judgment when other groups of sinners do not. This is a theological rabbit trail to which the end is ultimately solved by finding problems with the text itself.
I am not trying to put words in a king's mouth, but you could imagine a king saying that parts of California have lost god's favor. This buzzword would mean more in certain Christian circles. You could imagine the king saying parts of California have adopted a religion contrary to the true god, and this phrase would mean more in some circles. Again the text selected is the packaging, not the point of this encounter.
Dutch Sheets read a dream where symbols, certain people, were known to him. Those parts of the dream allowed transmission via Dutch to a wider audience. Duduman was given a warning about fire which included allusion to scriptures about sin, certain theologies. These are well known to many pastors. These parts of the literal prophetic allowed transmission via arbitrary pastors to a wider audience.
Said Another Way
Anyone practiced with the Bible can gather a similar list of scriptures as Duduman was given by the king in Los Angeles. It gets Duduman a prophetic audience just as well chosen symbols get an audience for symbolic dreams. Those scriptures are given to Duduman for that purpose.
So the skill in interpreting literal prophetic is to scan for what is not readily knowable. What is the secret being revealed? Is it a secret that California is full of sinners? No, not really. So is most of earth for that matter. Kings do not show up in order to reveal what is well known.
If there is theology given that is well known already, then that theology is NOT part of the prophetic word itself. It is only packaging. This is true of most prophetic of this type.
So to interpret what Duduman was told, we look for things that are being revealed that are not otherwise knowable. With that bit of introduction, next time we will turn to details of Duduman's encounter in Los Angeles.