Gifts of the Holy Spirit 8

The Gift of Prophecy

by Pastor John Hamel


We have studied the three Power Gifts.  The three Power Gifts do something. 


We have studied the three Revelation Gifts.  The three Revelation Gifts reveal something. 


This lesson will begin our study of the three Utterance Gifts.  


The Utterance Gifts say something.


The first Utterance Gift we will study is the Gift of Prophecy. 


The Gift of Prophecy is speaking supernaturally on God’s behalf in a known tongue or language. 


It is not possible to say all that could be said about the Gift of Prophecy in this short lesson.  However, we will see enough to get you going in the right direction. 


There are two types of Prophecy that we will briefly cover in this lesson.  One type of Prophecy contains no revelation or prediction.  The other type of Prophecy does indeed contain revelation or prediction.  


The Non-Revelation Type of Prophecy


We will begin with the non-revelation type of Prophecy.  This is often referred to as “simple” Prophecy.


Simple Prophecy has been called “The Poetry of the Spirit.”  It is used to lift God’s people higher, drawing them closer to God and bringing comfort to them.  Here’s what the Apostle Paul said about simple Prophecy.


“But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort.” (1 Corinthians 14:3)


John the Baptist’s Father was named Zacharias.  He spoke forth through the simple Gift of Prophecy one day.   


Before John was born an angel announced to elderly Zacharias that his barren wife would have a child.  Zacharias’ attitude towards the angelic announcement was “You must be joking.”  


Because he refused to believe, he was struck dumb until after John was born.  


Once John’s birth was accomplished, Zacharias’ tongue was loosed and he prophesied, praising God openly and lifting the spirits of all around him.  He prophesied by inspiration of the Holy Spirit …


“Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people, And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David; As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began:  That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us;” (Luke 1:68-71)


On and on Zacharias went praising God, edifying, exhorting and comforting all those who heard him.  He spoke according to the Holy Scriptures, supernaturally lifting all who were within earshot.


This still happens today.  The Holy Spirit moves upon someone to speak or to sing words of Scripture, inspiration, comfort and encouragement, and all who hear are lifted out of the doldrums.  A very precious and important Gift it is.  


Everyone needs God’s encouragement at one time or another.  This is why the Apostle Paul said we should covet this precious Gift.  It edifies all who hear it in operation. 


"Follow after charity, and desire Spiritual Gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy. For he that speaketh in an unknown Tongue speaketh not unto men, but unto God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the Spirit he speaketh mysteries. But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort. He that speaketh in an unknown Tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the Church. I would that ye all spake with Tongues, but rather that ye prophesy: for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with Tongues, except he interpret, that the Church may receive edifying." (1 Corinthians 14:1-5)


The Revelation Type of Prophecy


Moving on from the simple Gift of Prophecy, we come to the higher form of Prophecy.  This is the form of Prophecy that does contain revelation and/or prediction.  


This form of Prophecy does speak concerning future events.  Let’s look at a New Testament example.


“And in these days came prophets from Jerusalem unto Antioch. And there stood up one of them named Agabus, and signified by the spirit that there should be great dearth throughout all the world: which came to pass in the days of Claudius Caesar.  Then the disciples, every man according to his ability, determined to send relief unto the brethren which dwelt in Judaea:” (Acts 11:27-29)


Here the manifestation of Prophecy did have revelation of coming events contained within it.  This is the type of Prophecy that Prophets operate in more consistently than the general Believer.  The general Believer can operate in this type of Prophecy but not nearly as often as the Prophet will. 


When Prophecy contains revelation of future events it then becomes a Word of Wisdom.  


You will recall that the Word of Wisdom has to do with revealing future events.  The Word of Wisdom is the equivalent of the Gift of Prophecy because it is inspired utterance in a known language concerning future events.  The two Gifts operating together are still considered to be Prophecy.  You may call it the Word of Wisdom if you prefer.  I’m just separating them for teaching purposes.  I’m confident that you’re getting the big picture.


So we have briefly seen the two types of inspired utterance in a known language.  One is the simple Gift of Prophecy.  It inspires, lifts and encourages.  It has no revelation or prediction contained therein.  However, it is still supernatural because it is the Divine Agency speaking through the human agency.


The other type of Prophecy does foretell future events, which causes it to become a Word of Wisdom as well.  


Prophets speak forth this type of Prophecy far more consistently than the general Believer does.


Sometimes the Gifts of the Spirit remind us of the colors in the rainbow.  Often it is hard to tell where one color stops and another color starts, but they are all still the rainbow. 


Sometimes it is hard to tell where one Gift lets off and another picks up, but they are all still the precious Gifts of the Holy Spirit.  He knows how to cause them to operate with perfection, too. 


In our next lesson we will study the second of the three Utterance Gifts, the Gift of Tongues.


Be Blessed … John and Barbara Hamel



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