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Scripture clearly indicates that there are various realms of prophetic flow. Different degrees of unction operate on each of these prophetic levels. Therefore, it is important to have a clear understanding of these varying areas of prophetic function.
· Prophecy is supernatural utterance in a known tongue.
· Diverse kinds of tongues are supernatural utterance in an unknown tongue.
· Interpretation of tongues is supernatural showing forth of that which has been said in tongues.
· The Bible uses three major terms for the ministry of the prophet.
· The first word is “seer”, which comes from the Hebrew word “roeh” and, not surprisingly, means “to see”.
· The second word is “prophet”. It comes from the Hebrew word “nabi”, which means “to speak forth, to flow forth”. It carries the thought “to bubble forth like a fountain, to let drop, to lift up, to tumble forth,to spring forth”.
· Both words are used in 1 Samuel 9:9:
· “Formerly in Israel, when a man went to enquire of God, he spoke thus: ‘Come, let us go to the seer’; for he who is now called a prophet was formerly called a seer”
· The New Testament word for prophet is the Greek term “Propheteo”, which comes from two Greek word: “pro” means “for”, and “phemi” means “to speak”.
· Thus the prophetic ministry can be defined as “someone who has a revelation from God and declares the vision as God’s spokesperson.”
· Basically, a prophet is someone who sees and speaks.
· A prophet receives divine communication, and then communicates this revelation to humanity.
· The Lord delivers His revelation in many forms- through visions, visitations, dreams, commands, discussion. And so forth.
1. The Spirit of Prophecy
· The Holy Spirit is a Prophetic Spirit.
· This realm of prophetic unction is mentioned in Revelation 19:10. “…the testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of Prophecy”.
· The Spirit of Prophecy is the Holy Spirit’s mantle of prophetic anointing, which is given at various times to a believer (or body of believers), which causes him to prophesy the Word of the Lord (“the testimony of Jesus”) and without which occasion of special endowment he could not prophesy.
· Those who do not have the gift of prophecy and who are not prophets cannot prophesy except when there is a Spirit of Prophecy upon them.
· The infrequency of their prophetic flow is rather indicative that they function not by the gift nor in the office but only under the Spirit of Prophecy.
· Moses expressed the wish that all the Lord’s people would prophesy (Numbers 11:25-29).
· Paul in 1 Corinthians 14:24,31 states that all may prophesy. Yet Paul clearly separates this from the office of a prophet and by contextual implication the Gift of Prophecy by the phrasing of his question in 1 Corinthians 12:29, “All are not prophets, are they”, requiring a negative answer in the Greek form.
· Having an anointing on occasion to prophesy is not necessarily indicative of the resident gift of prophecy or the office of a prophet.
· Acts 2:17… Here we see that when the Lord pours out His Spirit everyone prophesies- young and old, male and female.
· So just having prophetic revelation does not make one a prophet.
· When the Holy Spirit moves in a service, a prophetic mantle may at times be upon the congregation, and anyone could prophesy if he exercises faith.
· This does not happen every service nor is it to be necessarily expected to happen on every occasion of the assembly of God’s people.
· In Numbers 11:24-30 the seventy elders of Israel all prophesy under the Spirit of the Prophetic Anointing.
· Please note that they only prophesied once.
· In 1 Samuel 10:10 Saul met a company of prophets, and the Spirit of Prophecy likewise came upon Saul and he also prophesied.
· In 1 Samuel 19:20-24 Saul sent three different groups of messengers, who could not otherwise prophesy, to a company of prophets. The result was that they all prophesied when they came under the Spirit of Prophecy.
· Covet Prophecy- desire earnestly to prophesy (1 Corinthians 14:38-41).
2. The Gift of Prophecy
· The gift of prophesy is the second level of the prophetic (and to another workings of miracles; and to another prophecy; 1 Corinthians 12:10)
· The Gift of Prophecy is also mentioned in Romans 12:6 & 1 Corinthians 12:8-11 as a Gift of the Holy Spirit resident within certain believers.
· Pursue love and desire Spiritual Gifts, but especially that you may prophesy (1 Corinthians 14:1).
· Desire means to be zealous for, to burn with desire, to pursue ardently and to desire eagerly or intensely.
· Do not quench the Spirit. “Do not despise prophecies” (1 Thessalonians 5:19-20).
· “Despise” means to set at naught, be in contempt, to make of no account, to despise utterly.
· We are encouraged to passionately seek the gifts of the Spirit, but above all that we may prophesy.
· Not all have this Gift, but is distributed by the Holy Spirit “severally” as He will (1 Corinthians 12:11).
· One who has the Gift of Prophecy can prophesy on a somewhat regular basis amidst God’s people.
· He need not wait for the special occasions when the Holy Spirit will come upon a congregation with the Spirit of Prophecy, but rather he can prophesy by reason of this resident Gift.
· The Gift of Prophecy operates only within the sphere of edification, exhortation and comfort ; this is the purpose for the Gift of Prophecy (1 Corinthians 14:3).
· The Gift of Prophecy is for the believer (1 Corinthians 14: 22-25).
3. The Office of a Prophet
· Ephesians 4:11 declares that the office of a prophet is an ascension Gift of ministry set in the New Testament church by the Lord.
· It is important to distinguish between a prophet and a gift of Prophecy (Acts 21: 8-11).
· The Office of a Prophet not only ministers edification, exhortation, and comfort, but also operates in the realm of guidance, rebuke, judgment, correction and revelation.
· The one who has the Gift of Prophecy but is not a Prophet does not function in any of these latter realms.
· If you are not called to be a prophet, then stay within the limit of edification, exhortation and comfort.
· If you do not, you will bring confusion.
· A prophet has the authority to speak beyond this realm (2 Kings 6:18).
· 1 Corinthians 12:28 :
§ “And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, thirdteachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healing, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues”.
· In Greek writings a prophet is defined as “an interpreter of oracles or of other things”. “one who, moved by the Spirit of God as His spokesman, solemnly declares to men what he has received by inspiration, especially concerning future events, and in particular such as relate to the cause and kingdom of God and to human salvation. (Strongs, a fore teller)”.
· The office of the prophet carried the greatest anointing, authority and responsibility in the realm of the prophetic.
· A Prophet has a stronger utterance and has the grace to go beyond the realm of edification, exhortation and comfort.
· This office is a gift extension of Christ Himself as the Prophet.
· The Office of the Prophet is anointed and authorised to operate in a higher realm than the one who is endowed with the Holy Spirit’s gift of Prophecy and operates on the level of the prophetic Spirit.
· The ministry anointing of this Office may differ from prophet to prophet, in actual administration of the gift; some prophets are stronger in certain areas than others.
· John the Baptist did no miracles and yet was considered great.
· Elijah and Elisha raised the dead.
· Daniel was strong in the area of visions and dreams.
· Ezekiel was a visionary prophet.
· They had different administrations. Some were stronger in deliverance, others in the area of discernment.
· Prophets prophesied in a different realm from the Spirit of Prophecy, or the Gift of Prophecy.
· They prophesy with more:
· Utterances that come forth are charged with the power and anointing of God.
4. The Word
· Even though there are supernatural manifestations in your life, don’t build your ministry on supernatural manifestations.
· Invite them and have them.
· But build your ministry on the Word.
· Even if you’re a prophet, build your ministry on the Word.
· Build on the Word, not on spiritual gifts, and the Word will last forever. It never fails.
· God’s Word is the highest form of Authority in the Kingdom.