The spiritual gift of prophecy is the supernatural ability to spontaneously receive previously unknown information from the Holy Spirit to relay to another person for the purpose of upbuilding, encouraging, and strengthening them in their faith.
The New Testament the spiritual gift of prophecy is discussed extensively in 1 Corinthians 14. In this chapter Paul the apostle lays out the appropriate parameters for this gift to be used in the context of a local church. Here we discover the great power of a prophetic word and realize that prophecies are messages from the Holy Spirit to strengthen and encourage the church and reveal to unbelievers that God’s presence is active in their midst.
Example from the Scripture:
The spiritual gift of prophecy is mentioned numerous times throughout the New Testament. Particularly this gift is seen to function in two different ways: predictive and descriptive. The gift of prophecy can be predictive in nature as in Acts 11:27-29 where the Scripture records the story of a prophet named Agabus, who predicted a coming famine. Because of his prophecy, believers were able to gather resources to help those that would soon be affected by the famine. The gift of prophecy can also be descriptive in that it announces the purposes and plans of God that reside for a person. This type of prophecy can be seen in passages like 1 Timothy 1:18; 1 Timothy 4:14; and Acts 13:2. All prophecy, whether predictive or descriptive, must be tested to see if it is a genuine prophetic word (1 Thessalonians 5:20-21).
When this gift is absent:
When the spiritual gift of prophecy is not active in a local church the church misses the opportunity to be led spontaneously by the Holy Spirit and to encourage believers and unbelievers alike that God is aware of even the most secret details of peoples lives.
When this gift is present:
As Paul describes in 1 Corinthians 14 when the gift of prophecy is active believers will be strengthened and unbelievers will be convinced that the presence of God is at work in the church.
In the Life of Jesus:
Jesus operated in both predictive and descriptive prophecy. In John 2:19 he prophesied of the tearing down of the temple and his own resurrection, and in Matthew 16:17-19 he described the type of way that God would use Peter, which was fulfilled on the day of Pentecost.
* Has the Holy Spirit spontaneously brought a message to your mind for the purpose of strengthening and encouraging the church?
* In prayer have you seen the Holy Spirit reveal specific details about a person’s calling and future to strengthen and encourage them?
* Has the Holy Spirit spoken to you about an event that will come to pass that later comes true?
* Take our free spiritual gift test
Practical ways to implement and develop the spiritual gift of Prophecy:
* Share with your pastor if the Holy Spirit speaks to you.
* Join a prayer team at church.
* Spend time praying that God would strengthen this gifting.
* Check out our Bible Studies on spiritual gifts.
* Check out our videos and interviews.
* Sign up for our email list.
* Prayer team
* Prophetic ministry team
Where do I go from here?
* Sign up for our email list.
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