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Prophesy (2 of 5)

Mike Connell

I remember last night as I prophesied over one person, that they began to feel touched, and began to feel the love of God, began to feel tears, and unexplainable sensations that can only be interpreted that God has actually touched their life. So when you bring an authentic word of prophecy or flow in a gift of the spirit like this, the impact on the person is to feel like God came really near them and touched them, and God - I knew God loved the world, now I know He loves me. That's the sensation often that people have, and so it can affect people in very many different ways. So when you prophesy, often when there's a release of the Holy Spirit to touch the person, and spiritual atmosphere can shift, so prophetic words are amazing. Just you can speak to people, and God touches them, and they often say how did you know that, or how could you possibly have known that? It's a wonderful, wonderful gift.

I want to show you several things about the gift of prophecy. One of them first of all is all believers are encouraged to prophesy, so 1 Corinthians 14, Verse 1; follow charity (or love), and desire or passionately hunger after spiritual gifts, and rather than you may prophesy. In other words God highlights prophecy, highlights prophecy. All believers are able to prophesy. Verse 39, 1 Corinthians 14, it says this: brethren, covet to prophesy, and don't forbid speaking in tongues. So the Bible says passionate, be passionate to prophesy. Why? Because we're called to build people up and this is one of the best gifts for building people up, so whenever you have been filled with the Holy Spirit you can prophesy, so all believers can prophesy. Now tell someone next to you you can prophesy you know.

The response probably then is well, really? How? [Laughs] Well we'll get to that. I'm glad you asked that. We'll get to that in a moment, so there are some guidelines around prophesying which I want to share with you, because prophecy like all the gifts can be a great blessing, but also it can be misused, and create a lot of problems, so the misuse of the gifts, or immaturity in operating in the gifts, can create a lot of problems for people, so we need to have a few guidelines around it. So the first thing I want to point out is we're going to read in Verse 29 of 1 Corinthians 14, notice what it says there; let the prophet speak, two or three, and let others judge. So here's an interesting thing about prophesying. It says in Verse 33, God is not the author of confusion but of peace, so when there's confusion there is something else at work other than God. If God is ministering to you, I notice this; He doesn't use lots of words, and He's incredibly sharp and clear, so when something is confusing they may have got an idea right, but something is filtered through it, and it's actually not right.

God does not bring confusion to you, so if someone speaks something to you, and it leaves you confused or feeling flat, the chances are highly likely it did not come from God at all, and the person has just got it wrong, or injected in their own thoughts and ideas into what they're saying. So with prophesying it's okay to judge it, and when you say judge it, it's not judging the person. We're just checking to see whether this really - how much or what of this comes from God, so that means what is the content? Does that feel right? What's the spirit of it? If someone prophesies harsh and judgemental, immediately you can pick the spirit of that's not right. That doesn't come in the attitude that Jesus would come, that's one of love and building people up. So we can assess then a prophetic message in a number of ways. Here's some key things, if someone brings a word of prophesy, you could ask. Firstly, does it agree with scripture? If it's not in agreement with scripture it's wrong, just don't even receive it. No, I can't receive that, it violates scripture.

The second thing is what does it do to your spirit? Does it witness in your spirit? Remember if it comes from God, it will energise or lift up your spirit. You'll feel strengthened or aware of the presence of God, so inside your heart, you must ask, what did you really feel about that? Please be honest, and if you're honest you'll have a witness in your heart about that message, all of it or some of it. So does it lift you up, or bring you heavy after the person's ministered? So if someone's spoken something to you, and you feel a lot of heaviness around you something's not right in it, just say well Lord, I just let it go to You and I don't receive anything didn't come from You, just receive what You have for me. So does it agree with the character of God? So those are some kinds of questions. I tend to work off the content; does that sound right? Does it sound like it's line with the word of God? Does it lift my spirit and bring life? Those are the kind of key things I use on it.