Please read this carefully and with thanksgiving, and experience what is real.
Having briefly looked at the Prophets during this tour of the Scriptures, let us pause and consider the person of the prophet, and the place of “Prophetic Ministry.”
There is a great need for Prophetic Ministry – men who hear from God and speak what God wants them to say – and today we hear a lot about Prophetic Ministry – but much of what we hear as ‘Prophecy’ is nothing more than ‘wishful thinking’. ‘ – or people who want to bless you with some encouragement.
An important difference between Old Testament and New Testament prophecy is that in the New Testament people judge whether the Word is from God or not.
When a prophet speaks, you have a choice: 1 – Change – or 2 – Kill the prophet.
Luke chapter 11 verse 52. The prophet is the key to what God is doing, and what God is doing He reveals to the prophets.
Sometimes it will be to share immediately; at other times, the prophet may have to keep quiet about that word for weeks or months.
There is a need for a clear trumpet sound, and the prophet is regarded as the voice or trumpet of God.
Now there can be false prophets: the teller at the bank can feel a false ‘fiver’ without looking at it. He doesn’t even have to look at it, all he has to say is, “Excuse me, sir.” He has been so trained. And you DON’T walk in with a coin and the kid is a £5 note – you make it as real as possible.
Luke chapter 7 verse 14. That’s a prophetic word. In a miracle, several gifts of the Holy Spirit may be at work at the same time.
Verse 16. Jesus is referred to as a ‘great prophet’.
These are real men in this Book: Jesus, Peter, Paul, Moses, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and all the rest. The pants are put on one leg at a time.
Verse 39. Religious people do not recognize prophets.
Verse 40. This is called confrontation.
Jesus continues to teach – verse 45 – don’t miss what God is doing. It is so easy to be doctrinally correct and miss what the living God is doing.
Verse 37. The alabaster box was part of the prostitute’s equipment.
A prophet can penetrate and pierce and shock the entire religious world.
Luke 24 verse 19. Jesus – A prophet in word and deed.
Being a prophet, being prophetic, is NOT a 9 to 5 job, it involves your whole life. God touches everything: work, car, home, finances, everything.
The prophet is an oracle – a mouthpiece – someone who acts as a mouth for God – His Words in your mouth. You almost bypassed his brain, sometimes you have to, or you
I would never say the words.
So the prophet has to be sure that God has given him the Word.
Don’t say, “The Lord told me so,” when he didn’t!
I have met very few people who have heard the voice of God and received the word of God to speak prophetically.
Larry Christenson explaining to a group of us at a Leaders’ Conference in Germany: “I decided to go to the Conference in Kenya. Others might say, ‘The Lord led me to go to that Conference in Kenya.'” Now of course both can be true, but balance is needed.
In prophecy, when prophesying, when the Lord stops speaking, that’s what two of you should do. How many times has there been a Word of Prophecy – and when the Word of God is finished, the prophet continues to speak.
When God chooses a prophet, when he’s raising up a prophetic ministry, he chooses someone in the Body of Christ, and most of the time that person is very reluctant.
He is a prophet or an impostor. The Church judges.
God calls a man – gives a prophetic gift to the body of Christ – and the body recognizes him.
In the ‘Didache’ – when a prophet comes among you – let him stay two or three days – do not let him speak – then he prophesies. They needed two or three days to discern.
That’s what we need to exercise sometimes, in this whole area of prophetic ministry: discernment.
A prophet cannot bear – idolatry – injustice – formality – false weights.
Moses and the golden calf – the prophetic Moses – was concerned with the moral character of God – and the character of God’s people.
Jeremiah Chapter 1 – four negatives and two positives – and Jeremiah wanted to run a mile. I can’t do that, don’t ask me to do that, LORD!
I’ve been there, I know the reality of that, how about you?
God had left the Church that day – and not even the priests knew – Jeremiah
Chapter 2 verse 8. They didn’t miss him. Jeremiah is on a demolition mission.
A prophet is a seer, he sees something, they could see what was to come.
Jeremiah and the underwear – Chapter 13 – pretty dramatic – we’d better get the word pretty out. This is a disaster, oh God, but I have to put up with it. Chapter 20
The prophets were given strong and heavy burdens at times.
In the New Testament, prophecy is always to strengthen, encourage, and comfort. I Corinthians chapter 14 verses 1 to 5.
Speaking in Tongues plus Interpretation has the value of Prophecy.
Verse 27. (If I were writing about our current situation, it would probably go something like: At least one of you should do it.)
Verse 29. A prophecy is given. If God speaks, don’t you think the least we can do is stop and consider what He has said, its meaning, and all that might be involved?
It is not to guide, but to confirm or impart knowledge.
The building of the Church is important, the building of oneself is equally important but it is done in a different way.
Everything is done to build up The Church – to build up the Church. And in the case of prophecy, the Church judges! That is NOT the same as criticizing – or having a sneaking suspicion.
The first prophetic word I spoke was in November 1969 at a Fountain Trust conference in Yorkshire: “I have a work for you, and in my name you will do it.” It was for my brother and friend, Jim Kincaid, as he was being prayed for before he left Scotland for South Africa, and he and his wife Val went and did the job!
Verse 37. Prophets must be aware of Control – Order – Regulation. An evil spirit interrupts.
The prophet reminds the people of GOD – JESUS - the BIBLE.
Do you want the Definition of Prophecy? “The ability given by the Holy Spirit to a believer to speak words that come from God that do not come from the believer’s own wisdom, understanding, or education. Some people see written words, or see visions, or just start talking. “
Verse 39. Seek – desire – and be prepared to take the risk.
“Almighty God – loving Father – teach us – guide us – use us – in this dark and wounded world – where there is so much pain and suffering. Raise up men to speak, preach and teach Your unchanging Holy Word. Jesus, anoint those whom they have called, with love and grace and power and courage – and sensitivity and tenderness, when these are needed. Amen.”