Inspirational or Vocal Gift
Bringing to light secret motives of the heart.
Jesus speaking forth the strengths and weaknesses of the seven churches in Asia (Revelation 2-3).
The gift of prophecy edifies, exhorts, and comforts (I Corinthians 14:3); helps us
build up or strengthen; and should lead us to the Word of God.
It is the ministry of the Holy Spirit to convict of sin, of righteousness, and of
judgment to come (John 16:8-11).
Prophecy is divinely inspired and anointed utterance; a
supernatural proclamation in a known language.
It is the manifestation of the Spirit of God - not of intellect (I Corinthians 12:7), and
it may be possessed and operated by all who have the infilling of the Holy Spirit
(I Corinthians 14:31)
Intellect, faith, and will are operative in this gift, but its exercise is
not intellectually based. It is calling forth words from the Spirit of God.
The gift of prophecy operates when there is high worship (I Samuel 10:5-6), when others
prophets are present (I Samuel 10:9-10), and when hands are laid on you by ministers
Some Common Misconceptions About Prophecy
The gift of prophecy (I Corinthians 12) and the office
of the prophet (Ephesians 4:11) are not the same thing.
There is a ministry of the prophet, but
not everyone is a prophet. For example, a boy may wear a Cubs baseball cap, but that does
not mean he plays professional baseball for the Chicago Cubs. You may prophesy, but
operating in the simple gift of prophecy does not qualify you to stand in the office of
a prophet, much like wearing a Cubs hat does not qualify you to play baseball for the Chicago
Cubs - you must be gifted. To stand in the office of a prophet, one must have a consistent
manifestation of at least two of the revelation gifts (
word of wisdom, word of knowledge, or
discerning of spirits) plus prophecy.
Prophecy is not the
intepretation of tongues.
The Bible says that "greater is he that
prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues" (I Corinthians 14:5), even though
both are inspired utterances.
Tongues, of course, is inspired utterance in an "unknown" tongue. The interpretation of
tongues is inspired utterance telling that which was spoken in tongues. Prophecy, on
the other hand, is inspired utterance in a "known" tongue. The difference between
interpretation and prophecy is that interpretation is dependent upon tongues, whereas
prophecy is not.
Prophecy is not prediction..
People sometimes think that "prophecy" means to predict (foretell) what will happen
in the future. Actually, the simple gift of prophecy is essentially forthtelling; it
is a ministry to make people better and more useful Christians now.
Prophecy in the New Testament church carries no prediction with it whatsoever,
for "he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to
edification, and exhortation, and comfort" (I Corinthians 14:3). Notice that there is no
mention of the word prediction here.
Prophecy is not the same thing as preaching..
The words preach and prophesy come from two entirely
different Greek words. To "preach" means to proclaim, announce, cry, or tell. Jesus
said, "Go ye into all the world, and PREACH the gospel.." (Mark 16:15). Note that
He didn't say to prophesy the Gospel.
The word prophecy means to "bubble up, to flow forth, or to cause
to drop like rain." Teaching and preaching are preplanned, but prophecy is not.
The Bible tells us that we are to "Despise not prophesyings. Prove all things."
I Thessalonians 5:20-21. When a prophecy is given, we are to test it and hold on to what
is good in it.
Seven Ways to Judge Prophecy
||By their fruits you shall know them.
||Does it glorify Christ?
(John 16:14; I Corinthians 12:3; I John 4:1-2)
||Does it agree with the Scriptures? (Isaiah 8:20)
||Are their prophecies fulfilled? (Deuteronomy 18:22)
Some prophecies are not of God even though they may come to pass. The benchmark remains
that all prophecies should exalt the Lord Jesus.
||Is the prophecy disjointed or confused? True prophecy
is line upon line and precept upon precept.
||Do the prophecies produce liberty or bondage? (Romans 8:15)
||All believers have an unction (anointing) within them that tells
them when something is wrong. Prophecies should witness with our spirit.
(I John 2:20,27)
Why Is Prophecy Important?
There are five reasons why prophecy is so important in the local church:
It brings life. Prophecy brought life to the valley of dry bones (Ezekiel 37:1-4).
||It gives spiritual vision. The Bible says, "Where there is no vision, the people
perish.' The Lord gives vision through the prophetic word (Proverbs 29:13,18).
It edifies, exhorts, and comforts (I Corinthians 14:3).|
It brings revival and restoration. True prophecy brings restoration and revival
It guides you to your right position in Christ. Prophecy is used by God to direct you
where you need to go (Acts 13:1-3)
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