Who is God's Prophet (and who is NOT)?

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Definition of "a prophet of God"

In Exodus 7.1, God assigned roles to Moses and Aaron...

  • Moses was to function as "God" to Pharaoh
  • Aaron was to function as the prophet of Moses

Based on Exodus 7.1, we can arrive at the following conclusion...

  • The job that a prophet does for God is the same job that God assigned Aaron to do for Moses.
  So the Lord said to Moses: "See, I have made you as God to Pharaoh, and Aaron your brother shall be your prophet." Ex 7.1

In Exodus 4.16, God said that Aaron would function as "spokesman to the people" on behalf of Moses.

As shown by Exodus 7.1 (above), God assigned Aaron the job of serving Moses in the same manner as a prophet serves God.

Based on Exodus 7.1 and 4.16, we can arrive at the following Bible definition...

A prophet is any person who serves as God's spokesman to the people.

  (God told Moses...) "So he (Aaron) shall be your spokesman to the people. And he himself shall be as a mouth for you, and you shall be to him as God." Ex 4.16

Who is a prophet and what does he or she do?

Zechariah 1.6 gives the following information...

  • A prophet is a servant of God
  • A prophet speaks forth the words and commands ("statutes") that he or she receives from God
  (God said...) "Yet surely My words and My statutes, which I commanded My servants the prophets (to speak forth), did they not overtake your fathers?'' Zech 1.6a

Second Peter 1.21 gives the following information...

  • A prophet is a holy man of God
  • A prophet speaks for God as he or she is moved (Greek: phero) by the Holy Spirit
  for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved (phero) by the Holy Spirit. 2 Pet 1.21
  phero -- "to bear, carry," is rendered "moved" in 2 Pet. 1:21, signifying that they were "borne along," or impelled, by the Holy Spirit's power, not acting according to their own wills, or simply expressing their own thoughts, but expressing the mind of God in words provided and ministered by Him.
(from Vine's Expository Dictionary of Biblical Words)
(Copyright (C) 1985, Thomas Nelson Publishers)

Two Categories of Prophetic Activities

A prophet speaks forth God's messages in TWO MAIN CATEGORIES, as illustrated from the book of the prophet Isaiah in the verses alongside...

  • Category #1: Preaching -- a preaching prophet encourages, comforts, or reproves the people. (NOTE - from this standpoint, a pastor who preaches, in full and accurate accord with God's Bible, is functioning as a prophet.)

Examples of a prophet who preaches

Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; put away the evil of your doings from before My eyes. Cease to do evil Isa 1.16

If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land Isa 1.19

  • Category #2: Foretelling -- a foretelling prophet gives the people the word of God concerning the future

Example of a prophet who foretells

Therefore the Lord Himself will give you a sign: Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel. Isa 7.14

Prophecy Today

To serve God's church in the PRESENT TIME, God imbues certain of His servants with the gift of being His prophets.

  And God has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. 1 Cor 12.28

Based on Revelation 22.18, it is Bible Bell's OPINION that God's Bible contains ALL the foretelling that He deems we need. Therefore, it is our OPINION that the verse alongside means...

  • God is no longer revealing future events to His present day prophets
  For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book Rev 22.18
Accordingly, we hold the further OPINION that the Biblical function of today's prophets is simply to preach and teach from the word of God -- His Bible   But he who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort to men. 1 Cor 14.3

Beware of False Prophets

In the verses alongside (and in many other Bible verses not quoted herein) God has stringently warned us that there are FALSE prophets.

  And the Lord said to me, "The prophets prophesy lies in My name. I have not sent them, commanded them, nor spoken to them; they prophesy to you a false vision, divination, a worthless thing, and the deceit of their heart." Jer 14.14

Jesus said...) "Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many." Mt 24.11
God has given the following guidelines to protect us from false prophets...

If someone purports to speak as a prophet from God, the church should assemble so as to judge the validity of that prophet's words...
  Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others judge. 1 Cor 14.29

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but
test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 1 John 4.1
  • A false prophet can be recognized by the fact that he or she yields bad fruit -- distrust, discord, confusion, wrangling, gossip, useless disputes, and divisions within the church
  (Jesus said...) "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit." Mt 7.15-17
  • A prophet's words are false if they are inconsistent with, or contradict, God's Bible. (This is the ACID TEST. God does not contradict His Bible.)
  Thus says the Lord of hosts: "Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you. They make you worthless; they speak a vision of their own heart, not from the mouth of the Lord." Jer 23.16


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