False prophets deliver false promises. It is not that what they say won’t come true, but that they are false promises because they are built on false premises. Things are of little value if they are not of lasting value. The things they are aiming at cannot ultimately deliver any true satisfaction.
As a contrast to the way of the Word, the way of the world may seem like the lap of luxury as compared to the promise of pain. Oh, but true prophets are so because they have true spiritual eyes, they can see into the future, and they know that they must live for today by having an eye for tomorrow. Jesus is their guide, and now His Word has been revealed. Do you see it here?
Jesus had taught them that true disciples will be blessed, but they would have to go through the pain to get to the promise (Acts 14:22). Now Jesus calls us to see into the future of the false, and realize that the promise of earthly prosperity is fleeting and failing. Their money is a counterfeit comfort, and their fullness will turn to famine (James 5:1-5). Their laughter will turn to lamentation (James 4:9). Their approval is the sign of apostasy (James 4:4).
The Bible’s “woe” is also our “whoa”, as in “hold your horses!” If all we want to do is to ride off into the sunset of success with the same dead dreams the world has we aren’t seeing straight. Yes we can use and steward some of those things in this life, but that is the point, they are to be used, not abused, and they are not to be our focus (Matthew 6:19-34 / 1 Timothy 6:17-19).
Do you value the vision of Jesus?