Apostle Jacquelyn Fedor
THE FIVEFOLD MINISTRY - The Hand of God
The PROPHET - The mouthpiece of God
The prophet is the pointer finger on the hand of God. They point the direction we should go by sharing the heart of God with the church. Through the prophet, God guides and protects His church. They are, along with the Apostles, indeed a part of the church's foundation.
20 having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone,
The Prophets and Apostles are gifted to bring revelation knowledge to the church. By this I mean, through the prophets and apostles God shines a light on the scriptures in a way not seen before. It will be exactly what God wants the church to understand for the present hour.
Eph. 3:2-5 explains:
2 if indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you.
3 how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already,
4 by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ),
5 which in other ages was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to His holy apostles and prophets:
Indeed, through the prophets we not only have spiritual 20/20 vision, but physically also both as individuals and the body of Christ we receive direction as well.
2 Chronicles. 20:20 is an example of how an Old Testament King looked at the prophets.
20 So they rose early in the morning and went out into the Wilderness of Tekoa; and as they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, "Hear me, O Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem: Believe in the LORD your God, and you shall be established; believe His prophets, and you shall prosper."
PROPHETS REBUKE THE CHURCH
A less received attribute of the prophets is the fact that they are used of God to point out the sin in the church, as well as in the lives of individuals! Cracks that will eventually cause the foundation of a work to crumble and split, or even bring to a halt a congregation's walk with God, are exposed by the prophets. No-one likes to be rebuked however, so often the prophet is not the most popular office.
Amos 5:10 tells us:
10 They hate the one who rebukes in the gate, and they abhor the one who speaks uprightly.
God confronts sin through His prophets as well as the powers and principalities causing the sin. Prophets, as well as Apostles, are powerful prayer warriors.
Many times prophets are ridiculed and called false prophets because God's ways are not our ways. The counsel of the prophet may seem foreign to human thinking, and even the doctrines they bring forth may sound different from what was taught and understood by the church in the past. But, they bring fresh manna to God's people through the rhema word and their direction is straight from the heart of God for now. As always the old wineskins will have problems as the light of God exposes a new understanding on truth or gives directions not used before. Over the years Prophets have been burned, beaten, put in prison and run out of town by people that thought they did God a service by getting rid of them.
James 5:10 says:
10 My brethren, take the prophets, who spoke in the name of the Lord, as an example of suffering and patience.
God takes a dim view of those that come against His mouthpiece. See Psalm 115:14-15 for a look at God's heart concerning His prophets.
14 He permitted no one to do them wrong; yes, He rebuked kingsfor their sakes,
15 Saying, "Do not touch My anointed ones, and do My prophets no harm."
Prophets have always had a difficult relationship with God's people, because they speak what God wants to say to them, and not necessarily what they want to hear! People like to have their ears tickled and to be told they are right on with God. God however, through His prophets, updates truth or adds a deeper meaning to what is known, eradicates false doctrine, and communicates how He really feels about our walk and the walk of the church. People however tend to look at the vessel, rather than Christ the prophet within the person, and therefore do not give credence to what they are saying. Even Jesus had this problem with people that knew Him well.
44 For Jesus Himself testified that a prophet has no honor in his own country.
1 Then He went out from there and came to His own country, and His disciples followed Him.
2 And when the Sabbath had come, He began to teach in the synagogue. And many hearing Him were astonished, saying, "Where did this Man get these things? And what wisdom is this which is given to Him, that such mighty works are performed by His hands!
3 Is this not the carpenter, the Son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us?" So they were offended at Him.
4 But Jesus said to them, "A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house."
5 Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them.
For the prophets that have had the challenge of trying to walk in their calling around a people that don't want to grow, or don't want to change, or maybe don't even believe that prophets are for today, be comforted in the fact that the prophets that walked before you experienced the same thing. Here is what God told Ezekiel.
30 "As for you, son of man, the children of your people are talking about you beside the walls and in the doors of the houses and they speak to one another, everyone saying to his brother, 'Please come and hear what the word is that comes from the LORD.'
31 "So they come to you as people do, they sit before you as My people, and they hear your words, but they do not do them for with their mouth they show much love, but their hearts pursue their own gain.
32 "Indeed you are to them as a very lovely song of one who has a pleasant voice and can play well on an instrument; for they hear your words, but they do not do them.
33 "And when this comes to pass-- surely it will come-- then they will know that a prophet has been among them."
Ezekiel's prophecy was not only for them, but now as well. God told me to read this very scripture when He sent me to the First Baptist Church of Homosassa Springs. The early church that was trained by Jesus and His disciples, believed in the prophets and acted on their direction.
27 And in these days prophets came from Jerusalem to Antioch.
28 Then one of them, named Agabus, stood up and showed by the Spirit that there was going to be a great famine throughout all the world, which also happened in the days of Claudius Caesar.
29 Then the disciples, each according to his ability, determined to send relief to the brethren dwelling in Judea.
THE PROPHETS ARE NEEDED
Everyone laments that the church today doesn't walk as powerfully as it should for these end times. Yet this powerful office, that is certainly an important part of the fivefold ministry, is not given the place it deserves in the majority of the church. Speaking of end times, look what God says in Amos 3:7.
7 Surely the Lord GOD does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.
Rev 22:6 shows that God will
6 Then he said to me, "These words are faithful and true." And the Lord God of the holy prophets sent His angel to show His servants the things which must shortly take place.
You see, the prophets stand between the church and the supernatural to see what the Lord is doing, or what it is He wants the church to do, so God's people can respond appropriately. We can be doing good things, but not necessarily the right things. Many times direction will come through prophetic praise as well as spoken prophecy. The prophecy may be for an individual, the local church, the universal church, or even to the nations, governments, or even to His enemy Satan and the kingdom of darkness. There is a special fire and anointing in the praise of the prophets that is renewing, refreshing and exhilarating, but at the same time it can also powerfully pull down the strongholds of the powers of darkness and loose the enemy from its attempts to thwart God's plans.
I could say so much more about the prophetic, but in closing let me just say that the prophets are very needed in today's church. The are, along with the Apostle, a part of the umbrella that covers the work God is doing in these end times. They warn scold, bless heal, foretell call to repentance subdue through prayer and counsel straight from the heart of God. Is it any wonder that Satan has grasped such a hold on God's people and filtered so much false doctrine in during the dark ages. Both the apostolic and prophetic were lost during this time to the church! This is why the Devil is so angry now that they are back bigger than ever pointing their finger, tearing down his strongholds, setting free his captives while praising with such power that at times it seems the whole supernatural shakes!