Prophets are perhaps the most misunderstood people walking the earth today. At the root they are a balance to an equation of church government while at the same time living a bold contrasted life to put the Kingdom of God on display in vivid ways that many find unsettling or offensive. Somewhere under all of that is a real person living with a very deep and powerful revelation that it is not they that are alive but it is the Christ nature in them... and through that nature flows every last person, conversation, situation and even every detailed feeling.
Sometimes I hear people say "I want to be a Prophet". To that I can confidently say "Be careful what you wish for". There is a false image of what it means to be a Prophet that is nothing more than popular opinion in many circles. I'm writing this blog to help pull back the curtain a little bit and help the average Christian understand this mysterious office and calling a bit better.
What is a Prophet?
There are three types of Prophets. There are Old Covenant Prophets, New Covenant Prophets and False Prophets. Old Covenant Prophets no longer exist and John the Baptist was the last one of these (Matthew 11:11). Ironically, even though these Old Covenant Prophets are no longer, they are still what most people confuse a modern Prophet to be. Old Covenant Prophets are people like Isaiah, Jeremiah and Jonah. Those original Prophets had some pretty strict rules that governed their accuracy as well. In Deuteronomy 13 and other places the Lord instructs death to those who claim something from God that really isn't. This is where people get confused believing that the Old Covenant is still in effect today when of course it is not.
Just as Jesus blood is the blood of the NEW Covenant, (Luke 22:20) the office or calling of the New Covenant Prophet did not exist until Jesus gave it into the earth in Eph 4. It is there we read that the ASCENDED Messiah (key word is ascended) gave these five gifts to mankind. One of those five is the New Covenant office or calling of the Prophet. (Eph 4:11)
The rules or instructions about the New Covenant Prophetic are laced throughout the New Testament and are best summarized in a Facebook post from Dr. Lynn Hiles: “Old Covenant Prophets will torment you while New Covenant prophets will Mentor you. Old Covenant prophets call your sin to remembrance while New Covenant Prophets call Your righteousness to remembrance. Old Covenant Prophets declare the problem while New Covenant Prophets Declare the answer."
An important distinction.
There is a difference between a Christian prophesying which Paul says every believer should aspire to and a man or a woman being created from the womb to be a Prophet which is in the grand scheme of things somewhat rare. You could call these Prophets from the womb "Genetic Prophets" in that it is how their DNA is formed. The life is always in the blood and that is just as true with Prophets. This is why true Prophets usually have healing ministries and offer to pray for others regularly as prayer to a Prophet is simply a bridge to seeing Healing come into a person's life.
Genetic Prophets are hard wired to see in very black and white terms. They are often confused or misdiagnosed as a "type A personality" or more recently the "type A behavior pattern", In reality, as the zeal of the Prophetic Revelation mixes with the Spirit of Wisdom, a Prophetic person will come into deep maturity of the calling or office and tend to possess unusual or supernatural Wisdom and Power in thought and deed.
Often a "green" prophet or one who is immature will "blast" to borrow a brass orchestral term. Blasting is when you go overboard and play much too hard on a given note, often going flat or sharp as a result.The body of Christ which as a rule is hyper judgemental (especially in the prophetic arena) will often relegate a blaster as a "False Prophet" when in reality they are indeed a valid Prophet but their "blast" has offended or gotten under the skin of others. In a properly functioning church or setting, people are free to "blast" or even to fail entirely with mature prophetic voices on hand to bring gentle correction and this is what public meetings are supposed to look like to a certain extent, but that almost never happens in our churches today because we have replaced Apostles and Prophets with Pastors which is an entirely different conversation.
False Prophets/Jezebel Spirit
Almost no one has ever seen a real False Prophet or a real Jezebel Spirit. If I had to guess, I would put the number close to 97% or higher to those accused who simply offended someone else, then out of that other person's woundedness or insecurity, they bring that false accusation. In fact, in many Charismatic circles, if someone offends you, he is labeled as a false prophet and if a woman offends you, she is labeled with a Jezebel spirit. These labels are tossed out like candy to cover up offenses and bitterness most believers carry in their hearts... a condition that the very Prophets they falsely accuse are anointed to help mentor them out of. In a very real way, Christians pray prophetic people into their paths and then when they get offended by them, they shun them and go back to God and begin the process again.
A Personal Note
I can tell you from first hand experience that it is not an easy path to walk. In this season, the modern church at large doesn't even acknowledge our existence and many of those who do are so handicapped with a Pastor led church structure that they never get to enjoy the amazing power of changed lives that could come as a result of properly discerning the body and elevating the Prophetic into it's God designed role of full body leadership.
You can usually spot the less mature Prophets as the Pastors who like to control things hold them up as mature when they are really not yet, but what they are is easy to control...which again is another topic for another blog.
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