And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head– Christ–from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love. (Eph 4:11-16 NKJ)
A study of the prophetic ministry mentioned in the New Testament, along with those in the Old Testament shows us what the ministry of the prophet should be to the church. There are a number of key points that Paul mentions in 1Corinthians 12:28-31.
And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles? Do all have gifts of healings? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way.
- The ministries and gifts are appointed by God, literally set, so don’t think you can you can pick and choose. The seven son’s of Sceva found this out the hard way. “Also there were seven sons of Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, who did so. And the evil spirit answered and said, “Jesus I know, and Paul I know; but who are you?” (Act 19:14-15 NKJ)
- Unlike Old Testament prophets, the New Testament version is subject to the Word and their fellow prophets. “Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others judge. But if anything is revealed to another who sits by, let the first keep silent. For you can all prophesy one by one, that all may learn and all may be encouraged. And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints. (1Co 14:29-33 NKJ).
- The prophet isn’t governed by denomination, theological preference (such as dispensationalism or fundamentalism), or political preference. John writes, “Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” (Rev 19:10 NKJ) The prophet should be led by the Holy Spirit, and the spirit should be tested every time.
More tomorrow… &X