How Prophets Help Us Today
For those who feel isolated, cut off from the rest of the body of Christ, or worry about what's ahead for us, we’re here to tell you that God still speaks to His people, and He has good things to say to you. This week could be a week filled with the voice of the Lord for you!
You may be aware of the importance of daily casting your cares on the Lord so that He will sustain you, and of the refreshing lift that comes in times of worship (both isolated and corporate worship). You may know the “centering” effect of hearing the inner voice of the Holy Spirit in times of personal prayer and Bible reading, but have you thought about what the gift of prophecy has to offer? Or even prophets: gifts that are people.
Throughout the Bible, a picture is painted of individuals whose destiny is to call God’s people back to the covenant. In Ephesians 4, a wonderful portrait emerges of what these people-gifts look like for us today:
Now, these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. (Ephesians 4:11–13)
In other scriptures, we see that we all receive gifts from the Holy Spirit (speaking in tongues, interpreting tongues, gifts of healing, miracles, faith, etc), but here in Ephesians, the gifts are people given to the entire Church.
Jesus gave us apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers. These men and women are created to serve God’s people, to help them to know Him better, to come into unity, to be encouraged and built-up, and grow in maturity as individuals and as a life-giving religious culture that acts like Jesus.
Perhaps you are one of these gifts, and perhaps you know others who are. The wonderful thing is that you can be a prophet, an apostle, etc and not be leading a church or ministering from a pulpit on Sunday mornings. You can be an apostle in business, a prophet in communications, a pastor to your coworkers, a teacher writing anointed technical manuals! Even if you are not one of these particular gifts, you do have a spiritual gift that is powerful, and which is needed in the world. We do not exalt any one gift above another, therefore we don’t honor prophets or apostles more than others. Rather, we recognize that these people-gifts are created by Jesus to encourage us, so as we hear from them, we hear more of Jesus’ heart for us, His Bride.
Here’s the great thing: Jesus said, “…my sheep hear my voice”, so it is the inheritance of all followers of Jesus to hear the voice of our Shepherd and to respond to Him. So whether you are a prophet or not; whether you have the gift of prophecy or not; you can hear from Him every day. We bless your ability to hear Him, to obey Him, to be encouraged by His voice.
This week as we begin the conference Voice of the Prophets, we encourage you to meditate on Ephesians 4 as you watch online so that you can pull from the fullness that is the gift of prophets. The Father has a good, fresh perspective for your life and how you fit in with His purposes in the world, and we want to see you encouraged, built-up, and linked-in with what God is doing around the world. One of the things that prophets do is release others into their destiny, so as you watch online with us and see our posts on social media, listen to what the Holy Spirit in you is saying. As the voices of prophets are broadcast, may the Holy Spirit in you resonate with fresh encouragement and purpose for your own life!
It is our firm belief that this week will be the spark in your life for an increased awareness of what God is saying to you in your own life, and that your inheritance as a prophetic person in Christ will be made manifest!