This blog is about the prophet Samuel. Samuel’s life is recorded in the Bible from First Samuel chapter 1 through to chapter 25. These pages are also about prophecy. The life of Samuel speaks to us today, as does the whole bible. I believe God wants prophecy to be manifested through the church of Jesus Christ today. I believe that the message and life of Samuel addresses the issue of prophecy and gives us a university standard of study course in understanding prophecy and its basis, as well as prophets in general.
When God speaks to someone, it is prophetic, however minor or major the spoken word seems to be. God speaking to man is intrinsically prophecy. For instance, in the most basic expression of Gospel preaching, whether preachers are aware of it or not, they are prophesying. The prophecy is, “When you die you will miss God and go to hell, unless you receive Christ into your life by faith; in which case you will then go to be with Christ when you die.” That is a prophetic statement. Preachers prophesy that statement over the lives of millions of hearers around the world every day. It is forth-telling the word of God at that moment. It is fore-telling the future of the hearers. It is biblical. It is God’s word for people with no faith, or faith in somebody or something else other than Christ. It is the front door message, the introductory invite to meet God and change one’s destiny. It is the very testimony of Jesus Christ. Revelation 19:10 tells us that the testimony of Jesus Christ is the spirit of prophecy. Gospel preaching is intrinsically prophetic.
But most people would cry out that prophecy must have a deeper and more mysteriously “supernatural” source in order to qualify as, “real prophecy.” From what is generally conceived of and received as prophecy they would be correct with that complaint. But is that how God perceives it?
There is, “Deep, Deeper and Deepest,” in many areas of life. There are variations in the degree of inspiration in prophecy. There are variations in the ability to see and hear in the realms of the prophetic. Just as a sound and solid adult human being may be four feet six inches tall, or six feet and four inches tall, so prophets may vary in spiritual weight and/or stature. The lighter is no less a prophet for his differing aspects of anointing. One person may have an eye for detail. Another eye might see more in the distance along a distant far reaching road than another. The eyesight of both is relevant and verifiable as genuine, even though they both see and say different things when looking at the same scene.
There are prophets in the world today. There are people who should be prophets who allow the traditional teaching of their denominations to halt them in their tracks from moving forward in their gift. There has been an upsurge in the church of Jesus Christ world-wide in all things prophetic; in prophecy itself, as per the gifts of the Spirit listed in 1 Corinthians 12, and also in that “mysterious” character the prophet (or prophetess).
The spirit of prophecy has never been withdrawn from the earth since the days of Enoch, Abraham, Moses, Samuel, Isaiah or Jeremiah. Prophecy is a gift from God. God desires to break in to people’s lives through personal prophecy. God is still speaking concerning the local church, the church world-wide, national events and world events. If there were prophets before the law was given, and if the law was given prophetically through angels; if prophets were required after the law was given, and after Christ had returned to heaven – why should there be any rationale in the mind of Christian people who believe in Christ and the Bible, that prophecy is not currently, “God’s way of doing things.”
Amos 3:7 says that God will not do anything without telling His prophets. I would say that God is still doing things in the world. Wouldn’t you agree. If He is still doing things He must have prophets somewhere that He is speaking to before He acts. That is the meaning of Amos 3:7.
God wants us all to know what He is saying. God speaks in generalities sometimes, as well as specifically to individuals at other times. God speaks about biblical truth, as well as about mundane and practical necessities of life. God chooses His prophets as He will, and as He always has. Trust me when I say that the Almighty is not into Hollywood and appearance. Be careful if a person acknowledged as a “prophet” comes to your town and is singularly lacking in make- up, good looks, smooth talk or a white suit. Whether you are impressed or repulsed by what you see and hear. If you get it wrong about prophets, you could be in trouble with God.
A man who was acknowledged as a prophet by many, spoke over me once telling me, “God loves you, and wants to prosper you!” I thanked the prophet. I thanked God. I believed what he had told me. I was uplifted and edified by the words of him who was acknowledged as a “prophet.” It was twenty plus years ago. I am not sure how to define my prosperity. I am happily still here and rejoicing in God. That is surely the best kind of prosperity. I cannot point to anything else in my life that would indicate anything out of the ordinary processes of life. I refuse to deprecate the man who spoke to me that day. Perhaps he was a prophet in training. Perhaps his spiritual vision was marred by the complexities of my life. Perhaps he saw things he was not allowed to share with me. I hold the experience in loose hands and pray for God’s blessing on the man who spoke those words over my life. I rarely share the experience because people with a negative take on such things tend to deride the gift as a useless piece of spiritual hype.
Then again, I have another experience of a prophet and his gift. I heard this prophet once address a young man whom he had never met before. It was so striking I cannot forget it. I may not recall it exactly, but the memory is still clear. I was working as a “catcher” in a prayer line for this prophet. For the uninitiated, “a catcher,” attending prayer lines for people who require personal prayer, is a person who tries to soften the fall and the dignity of those who happen to be bowled over by the power of God when the Holy Spirit comes upon them to heal them through prayer. The prophet pointed to one single young man, who was attending this church for the first time, and said words to this effect: “You were a college student years ago. You had a relationship with a female student. You made the young woman pregnant. When she told you that she was pregnant, you insisted that you were not mature enough to be a father to any child at that moment. You gave the young woman money to pay for an abortion. She went away distraught. You have never seen her since.” There was a pause at that moment and the young man being addressed, acknowledged the truth of what the prophet had said to him. But then the prophet spoke on. “Since your denial of your fathering the child, and your rejection of the human being in the young ladies womb, you have never found success or achievement in any way whatsoever.” The young man answered and eagerly affirmed that what the prophet had said was absolutely true, and was the very reason he had come for prayer. “I have news for you,” said the prophet. “The lady did not abort. You have a son. You will not prosper in any way whatsoever until you respond positively to the child and he calls you, “Daddy.” The young man became animated and cried aloud, “But I have no idea where she lives. She might even be abroad! I do not know how to find her, never mind if she has a child!” The prophet said that he (the young man) would find out about her right there in Lagos. To cut the story short, the prophet concerned gave the man enough money to stay in Lagos for several days, prayed over him and said, “Just walk the streets of Lagos and keep your eyes open”. Three days later he bumped into the sister of the supposed mother. The sister confirmed that he was a father. The whole story was resolved and after a while, even though neither the young man, nor the mother wanted to renew any relationship, the child saw him as his “Daddy” and the young man’s life was turned around. That was a prophet indeed.
Christianity is all about hearing from God and walking with God. If anybody is a true Christian, they themselves have heard from God. That is not the common language of Christians to say such a thing, nevertheless it is true. When a person knows and understands the correctness of repenting from their sins and taking Christ as their personal Saviour, they have heard the voice of God. That is prophetic.
It is my hope that through these pages understanding about prophets, prophecy and the need for the prophetic word will be aroused in the readers heart. Who knows? Some readers might discover their own prophetic gift whilst reading.
- Prophetic Hearing (merediscipleship.wordpress.com)
- Receiving Prophecy (merediscipleship.wordpress.com)
- Concerning Spiritual Gifts (pbsministries.wordpress.com)
- The Baptism In The Holy Spirit for All is the Biblical Norm. (keithlannon.wordpress.com)