Pastor Stephen delivered part 4 of his 6-part series on Ephesians 4. This week, he talked with us about the Prophetic ministry gift.
The Big Idea: Prophets call Christians back to godliness and inspire them to live in the Holy Spirit's power.
Prophets receive messages from God relating to the future, to words needed for the encouragement or strengthening of a congregation, or to shaking up a body of believers--calling them on their sin or their neglect of the less-fortunate.
Prophets can be used powerfully by God to effect change (see 1 Corinthians 14:24-25).
Prophets have a way of ripping open our hearts, shattering our illusions, and bringing us face to face with our Maker. -- J.R. Woodward
Prophets are also important, because our acceptance of them and their message tends to open us up to the works of the Holy Spirit.
Here are 3 things you can do to help the prophetic gift work effectively in our church:
1) Test the prophets' message--does it line up with the Bible? How does the prophet's life display the fruit of the Spirit (see Galatians 5:22-23)? If the message was about future events, did they come true?
2) Be open to the prophets and their message
3) Seek the baptism of the Holy Spirit and the gifts of the Spirit.
Here are 5 things that those with the prophetic gift should be doing:
1) Ensure your outward life and your spiritual life do not disqualify your message
2) Be bold in speaking what God has shown or told you--find the appropriate time to share, and then share it!
3) Stand up for the poor and the oppressed.
4) Test the words of other prophets
5) Encourage others to seek the gifts of the Holy Spirit!
Prophets call Christians back to godliness and inspire them to live in the Holy Spirit's power.