Thursday, January 24, 2013

What is a Prophet?

A Christian prophet is one inspired by Holy Spirit to deliver a message for a specific purpose. A prophet is often associated with predicting future events, but in a broader sense, he or she is given the power to preach repentance to those who do not want to hear the message, and to warn of the spiritual results of disobedience. A prophet faces a lifetime of rejection, persecution, and abasement, thus, the prophet is given a unique charism of obedience and long-suffering, and a heart of self-immolation. God calls and anoints a prophet, not to elevate him or her for their personal glory, but for the glory of God, alone.

DICTIONARY: [prof-uh-see]
1. The foretelling or prediction of what is to come.
2. Something that is declared by a prophet, esp. a divinely inspired prediction, instruction, or exhortation.
3. A divinely inspired utterance or revelation: oracular prophecies.
4. The action, function, or faculty of a prophet.

" penetrate all mysteries and knowledge."

Authority And Role Of The Prophet

"He who receives a prophet will receive a prophet's reward"

A prophet carries no authority other than that which God gives him for the issuance of God's word. A prophet does not seek nor require the permission or approval of a priest, bishop or king for it is often to such that he is called to speak. Scripture allows, however, that the prophet recognize those that have "rule" and "authority" over the flock of which he or she is a part, and seek their counsel and guidance; therefore, those who speak from a prophetic platform are encouraged to be an active parishioner of a local Orthodox church and to be in regular communication with an Orthodox priest, as far as this is possible.

"A Prophet does not speak for God; he speaks from Him."

The Test of True Prophets

"You may be privately wondering, 'How are we to tell that a prophecy does not come from Yahweh'? When a prophet speaks in the name of Yahweh and the thing does not happen and the word is not fulfilled, then it has not been said by Yahweh. The prophet has spoken presumptuously. You have nothing to fear from him."

"Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus, that spirit is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world"

The Signs of False Prophets

"...the prophet who presumes to say something in my name which I have not commanded him to say, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet must die."

"Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them."

"At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. . . . For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect – if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time"

"Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for that is how their fathers treated the false prophets"

"But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them – bringing swift destruction on themselves. Many will follow their shameful ways and will bring the way of truth into disrepute. In their greed these teachers will exploit you with stories they have made up. Their condemnation has long been hanging over them, and their destruction has not been sleeping"

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