Dr. Phillip Phinn, Contributor
This is the second and final part of a series on the biblical concept of prophecy submitted in response to readers' queries for more information on the subject.
OF THE nine gifts of the Holy Spirit, prophecy is the one that the Lord Jesus Christ is using most to bring revival in current church age.
The broad meaning of prophecy is God speaking to mankind, declaring His thought and purpose. "Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets. (Amos 3:7).
Personal prophecies are, however, conditional while prophecies of scripture are unconditional. Solomon received a personal prophecy that did not come to pass because he did not meet the conditions.
"And as for thee, if thou wilt walk before me, as David thy father walked, and do according to all that I have commanded thee, and shalt observe my statutes and my judgments;
Then will I establish the throne of the kingdom according as I have covenanted with David thy father, saying, There shall not fail thee a man to be ruler in Israel." (2 Chronicles 7:17 -18)
We all know that Solomon went off into idolatry and, as such, did not meet the conditions for his personal prophecy to be fulfilled.
Saul, too, never met all the conditions for some of his personal prophecies, so they did not all come to pass.
Abraham met the conditions of his personal prophecies and they came to pass.
God spoke to three million people and told them that He was taking them into a land flowing with milk and honey. Only two entered into the land - three million minus two never met the conditions for the fulfilment of this prophecy.
Prophecies will fail if the conditions are not met. Therefore, it is very important to record prophecies and observe them carefully.
It is easy for someone to hear the part of a prophecy which says "I will send you around the world to preach" but never hear that it will only happen if you continue to be faithful in your present ministry, for say, the next three years.
The Apostle Paul met the conditions of his personal prophecies and they all came to pass.
The prophecies of scripture will come to pass regardless of what we do or believe. They include: The Lord's second coming.All the Earth shall be filled with His glory.Eternal judgments.The kingdoms of this world shall become the kingdom of our God and His Christ.
REALMS OF PROPHECY
Inspirational: The simple gift of prophecy which every spirit-filled believer can exercise is for exhortation, edification and comfort are given by inspiration of the Holy Spirit. (1 Corinthians 14:4-25)
The office of the prophet: All realms and elements of prophecy such as guidance, correction, judgment, rebuke and revelation operate with the ministry of the prophet.
ELEMENTS OF PROPHECY
Predictive: The predictive element was and is a genuine characteristic of prophecy. (Jeremiah 28: 9, Ezekiel 33:32-33, 1 Peter 1:10, Matthew 24:1, Acts 11:28. 21:10-11).
"Yea, all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days."
Directive prophecy: In 1 Samuel 10:1-3, King Saul received direction for his life through the ministry of Samuel, the prophet.
The scripture is replete with numerous other examples Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, our Lord Jesus, Peter and the Apostle Paul.
Creative prophecy: Thou shalt decree a thing and it shall be established unto thee. (Job 22:28)
This element in prophecy is evident both in the Old and New Testaments. Elisha, the prophet looked at the woman and gave her a son by a word of decree.
He did not ask her to believe. As a matter of fact, she did not believe. He did not ask her to pray or fast. He just made a decree, commanded it to be so, and it was so. God told Ezekiel to prophesy to a valley of dry bones. (Ezekiel 33).
I remember I was in St. Croix preaching on "who hath believed our report" from Isaiah chapter 53. God showed me a woman in the congregation with arthritis. I ran off the platform down the aisle where this woman was and commanded her to be healed and she was healed.
I did not ask her if she had arthritis, nor did I ask her if she wanted to be healed. She verified that she had the disease and it went when I commanded it to go.
I have seen other instances of this element of prophecy in operation, and God always brings to pass the decree in spite of people's fears, doubt and unbelief.
This element of prophecy seems to operate as the Lord wills, and is usually done as a sign to confirm His word. This creative prophecy was evident regularly in the ministry of our Lord Jesus.
Dr. Phillip Phinn is the senior partner of the Word of Life Christian Fellowship. He may be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org