Posted by Mark Labuschagne on Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Let me start off by making the following statement, I thank the Lord I am not a stereo-typical Prophet: One that is regarded as embodying or conforming to a set image or type. A conventional, formulaic, and oversimplified conception, opinion, or image.
After 30 years, I am of the opinion and always have been, the church has a wrong understanding / perception of the true function of this gift to the Body and once again, we know there is enough so-called "prophets" out there who willingly entertain and conform to this type of thinking and because of our stereo type impression, the function of the gift of prophecy (1 Cor 14:1) has been impeded and does not operate in our midst as Paul instructed.
The gift of prophecy is something we should all eagerly desire and if I might add, most people that call themselves prophets could merely be people who have learnt to exercise themselves in this free gift, however, this does not necessarily mean they were called to be Prophets either. We have to realize the gift of prophecy and the office of the Prophet are totally different. Eph 4:11-13 So Christ himself gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers, to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. So my first question is simply this:
1). How do we think that the general “personal” prophecies received by these prophets is equipping anyone of God’s people for works of service? Of course we know they can, but this is not the general tone of the prophecies I have heard.
I want to make it quite clear that in order to bring balance to this note, I am not attacking the gift, the office or any particular minister WHATSOEVER, but I am saying there are many who are called as prophets who have not “graduated” as it were and still find themselves learning to hear and to speak by the Spirit, but any mature prophet will agree that we cannot stay here, we have to move on. Having said this, as long as the Church and including the leadership think what they hear and see many of these people doing is the true function of a prophet’s ministry, then I am afraid we will continue to see these people remain in the stereo-typical category and pattern we have become accustomed to.
Eph 2:19-22 Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.
2). We have many who are able to speak words that encourage, exhort and comfort individuals, but where are those who can reveal and speak the secrets of God’s own heart?
Won’t you agree with me, there is nothing more discouraging when you sit in a service having the stereo-typical prophets prophesying to individuals, creating an expectation in your own heart because of your particular need, and never get to share a word from the Lord or anything for that matter with you?
Another thing that I like to mention is the amount of people who come to a meeting hoping to “get a word” also never ceases to amaze me. Worse than this is the stereo-typical prophet who willingly and eagerly adhere to their wishes.
Friends, as a Prophet, I also minister to people on a personal basis, but if you ever attend my meetings, you will notice that this in not my focus and this because I do not consider myself only a preacher, but a prophet and when I share the word of God it is prophetic by nature, delivered directly, giving direction and correction to the people I was sent to minister God’s word to.
Finally, a true prophet will always point people to Jesus and never draw attention to themselves.