What is Prophecy? is a study of what is prophecy in the Bible, and how that affects our understanding and true and false ministers of God.
What is Prophecy?
To begin with, we do not what it is without studying the use of the concept in the Bible. So God chose a nation, Israel, and he communicated with them by means of prophets. But in actuality, the place of the prophet is more expanded in the later days of Israel than at first.
In the beginning, God spoke to Israel through direct visions and men whom God called to teach them the ways of God. Within all of this, there was a very important focus on God’s ways of holiness, and Israel implementing them in their daily lives.
When Israel became dense, which is to say, they didn’t listen to God, then God began to judgment Israel. These judgments came in the form of prophecies of doom and gloom in which they were not so much fixed as they were threats. If Israel did not change their ways, then God would send other nations to enslave them and cause them problems.
The prophecies came true, all of them. Their nature was such that even when Israel repented, later on with time, they fell again. God brought the prophecy of doom to Israel at a later time. But we must not miss the point. God did not send the judgment immediately upon them because of their repentance.
Prophecy is essentially preaching
When we look at the content of prophecy, it is essentially just good preaching. In the time of Israel, it had an element of condemnation upon the sins of the people. God’s condemnation of sin is because sin harms us, sin is always bad for us, and sin will drag the judgment of God over us with time.
But not all of this is always brought out in a prophecy. Under the surface, it may be there, but it is not in a clear and focused way.
Today in the NT church, we have inherited the Bible, and especially the teachings of prophecy about the end times, so God has no need of more prophets to predict dire outcomes of our lives. We all read Revelation and know how things will end for the earth.
But the other element of prophecy, which is just exposition of God’s principles and the application of them to our daily lives is still very much active in prophecy today. But basically this is the very essence of biblical preaching also. So we should understand prophecy in the New Testament as just preaching.
More articles on False Prophet-Teacher
- FP: False prophets worship other gods
- FP: Catching the False Prophet with his hand in the Cookie Jar
- False Prophets and Teachers Overview (updated 1/28/2022)
- Covetousness is Idolatry
- Covetousness doesn’t mix with God’s Work
- Biblical Overview of Covetousness
- A study on False Prophets and Teachers
What is Prophecy?