How to respond to prophecy and prophets in the church today? let’s start by understanding the types of prophecy in the church.
There are two types of prophecy we experience in the church today:
1) Prophecy recorded in the Bible, foretold by Jesus and other prophets who were inspired by the Holy Spirit. The prophecies included in the canon of scripture are infallible and 100% accurate.
2) The ministry of the prophets and the gift of prophecy working through a believer or a church leader. The latter is subject to human interpretation and often colored by the prophecy giver. The Holy Spirit inspired prophecy is filtered through human understanding, thus making room for error.
In this post I’d like to share a few attitudes a believer must embrace toward the prophets and the gift of prophecy.
A. Honor and celebrate the ministry of prophets and the gift of prophecy
I have been immensely blessed by some very powerful men of God who have been used by God to speak through prophecies into my life. While not all of them have been accurate all the times, I have embraced the ministry of prophets because there is great benefit in listening to an anointed prophetic voice.
We must not stop celebrating the gift of prophecy or the ministry of prophets, just because some have abused it and used it for selfish gains.
[tweetthis url=”http://goo.gl/Yq2wW3″ twitter_handles=”@hariraopawar”]We must not stop celebrating the gift of prophecy and prophets,because some have abused it.[/tweetthis]
B. The Bible is the standard not the prophet
Psalm 119:89 AMP
“Forever, O Lord, Your word is settled in heaven.”
The word of God is settled and decided in heaven, not by the prophecies given by a human vessel.
We must use the scripture to mold, direct and guide our lives, and prophecies come as a confirmation.
C. Test the prophecy
Listen, record, pray and test the word of prophecy in light of the scripture and what the Spirit of the Lord is witnessing to your heart. We must test the prophecy and not the prophet. New Testament prophecy and prophets are very different from those in the Old Testament.
D. Prophets ought to confirm and not guide or control
The Holy Spirit is our primary guide and helper in life and ministry. No prophet, pastor and leader should assume that role. We are submitted to church leadership as a body for accountability and counsel, although sometimes it is very unfortunate to see people use their position and gift to control people’s lives.
[tweetthis url=”http://goo.gl/Yq2wW3″ twitter_handles=”@hariraopawar”]The Holy Spirit is our primary guide in life. No prophet or leader should assume that role.[/tweetthis]
Prophets that go about guiding people’s lives are in grave danger of assuming the role of the Holy Spirit in people’s lives. I have also noticed people trying to replace their walk with God by just asking for prayers from a prophet, which can lead to disastrous results.
Nothing and no one should replace our personal relationship with God.
E. Don’t ostracize or condemn the prophet, if he/she gets it wrong
We must be intentional about creating room for learning or error and people exploring their prophetic gifts.
We must create an environment of accountability, where a person is accountable for the words he/she speaks as inspired by God. If a prophet gets it wrong, discuss it with the person in love. There is no need to crucify our own.
I highly recommend you read Translating God by Shawn Bolz.
[tweetthis]Nothing and no one should replace our personal relationship with God.[/tweetthis]
I hope this post has helped you. If you have any questions on the subject, please do leave a comment below and I will try and respond to them.
How true, prophecy is to build God’s kingdom not our own kingdom. May be most prophecy heard starts with what our hearts desire and fulfillment is the actual purpose of God in our life for His kingdom. Question is prophecy about once getting a property or child or wealth should meet basic fulfillment of Father’s will in one’s life. Eg: By getting property one would dedicate it to God or The child would spread God’s word across nations or wealth to build and make the kingdom firm. And also on the basis of Bible fulfillment of a prophecy would mature only at the right time and sure not in a day but in years. Endurance is key. 🙂
Thank you Arick for your comment. Absolutely endurance is the key. Prophecy is divine revelation by the spirit of God, it may or may not be an extension of our desires.