The Gift of Prophecy
Brief overview: One of the gifts of the Holy Spirit is prophecy. This gift is an identifying mark of the remnant church and was manifested in the ministry of Ellen. G. White . As the Lord’s messenger, her writings are a continuing and authoritative source of truth which provide for the church comfort, guidance, instruction, and correction. They also make clear that the Bible is the standard by which all teaching and experience must be tested. (Joel 2:28, 29; Acts 2:14-21; Heb. 1:1-3; Rev. 12:17; 19:10.)
Why it is important to understand the truth about the gift of prophecy:
In 1 Corinthians 12 we read about several gifts God has given His church to help edify and build it up. Many are surprised to find that the gift of prophecy is one of the gifts mentioned (verse10). Prophecy in the biblical sense is so much more than just predicting the future. It is also having a message from Jesus-bearing His testimony, “for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy” (Revelation 19:10).
Why it is important to understand the gift of prophecy in light of the cross:
Ephesians 4:1-13 tells us that after the Cross Jesus gave the church several gifts including the gift of prophecy. Paul knew that just as Jesus and the prophets were not accepted in their time and place that many in his day and our day would reject the idea of someone having the gift of prophecy, so he wrote in 1 Thessalonians 5:20-21 “Despise not prophesyings” but rather
“Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.” We know that is sound advice as John has warned us in 1 John 4:1 “because many false prophets are gone out into the world.” Please take a look in the further study section on how the Scriptures reveal a true prophet from a false prophet.
Further Study on the Gift of Prophecy
What two things identify the remnant church?
And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ. Revelation 12:17
What is the testimony of Jesus?
And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See thou do it not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. Revelation 19:10
What is the purpose of a prophet?
Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets. Amos 3:7
How long is this gift to be in the church?
And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: Ephesians 4:11-13
Was this gift given to men only?
And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances. Exodus 15:20
Will this still happen in the last days?
And it shall come to pass afterward, that I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, your old men shall dream dreams, your young men shall see visions: And also upon the servants and upon the handmaids in those days will I pour out my spirit. And I will show wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke. The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the LORD come. Joel 2:28-31
How can one tell the true from the false?
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither [can] a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Matthew 7:15-20
Will what they say come to pass?
The prophet which prophesieth of peace, when the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known, that the LORD hath truly sent him. Jeremiah 28:9
Do prophets place their own interpretation on Scripture?
Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. 2 peter 1:20
Will all they say be in harmony with the Scripture?
To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because [there is] no light in them. Isaiah 8:20
Will they point out sin?
Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. Isaiah 58:1
Will they edify and counsel?
But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men [to] edification, and exhortation, and comfort. He that speaketh in an [unknown] tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church. 1 Corinthians 14:3- 4
Will they warn of judgment?
The earth shall reel to and fro like a drunkard, and shall be removed like a cottage; and the transgression thereof shall be heavy upon it; and it shall fall, and not rise again. Isaiah 24:20
What if we reject a true prophet?
I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him. But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that [is] the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, [but] the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him. Deuteronomy 18:18-22
What is God’s assurance to us?
Believe in the LORD your God, so shall ye be established; believe his prophets, so shall ye prosper. 2 Chronicles 20:20
What are we counseled to do?
Quench not the Spirit. Despise not prophesyings. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21