The Ultimate Purpose of Prophecy is Not to Tell The Future, But to Cause it!
What Do We Do When We Receive a Prophetic Word?
Have you ever received a prophetic word and felt like the person who gave it was reading your mail? Or have there been times when you were given a prophetic word that didn’t seem to really mean anything? Still, have you ever received words in the past that you felt some of it made sense, but other parts didn’t? I know I have! It’s so important that we know what to do when we receive a prophetic word. Why? Because the power of a prophetic word creates a spiritual exchange between both the giver and the receiver of the word!
Judge The Prophecy Not The Person!
My questions to you are these: what do you do with the words spoken over you? How do you steward them? Do you realize you don’t have to take every word in its entirety? If that’s true, then the question becomes what do you take and what do you leave? Paul writes, “Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment” (1 Corinthians 14:29). Notice that the prophetic word, if at all possible, is to be judged immediately. Now don’t let the word “judge” scare you. It’s simply what I call feedback. I want to be very clear on this point. The Word says that we are supposed to judge prophecies, NOT the person giving the prophetic word!
Judging & Giving Feedback for the Prophetic Word You Have Received:
Graham Cooke puts it like this “Judge the spirit of the prophecy before you judge the truth of the word.”
Determine The Source
So, what exactly are we judging when we are weighing prophetic words? Obviously, the first thing we are trying to determine is what and where the source of the word has come from? Is it from God’s Spirit, the human spirit, or even possibly from a demonic spirit? It does happen, believe me! Only then can you judge the truth of the word more concisely.
You Have A Responsibility
Did you know, once you receive the prophetic word, you have the responsibility of weighing or judging the word and giving “feedback” to the giver of the word?
It says in 1 Thessalonians 5: 19-21 – “Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies. Test all things; hold fast what is good.” And then in 1 John 4:1, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God.” You can see very clearly from these two scriptures, we are to test and weigh the spirit of all prophecy.
There are also a few other principles that will help us distinguish which words are from the Lord and which could be from other sources:
- The word must line with Scripture, as well as the heart of Father God.
- God’s voice will never contradict His Word (2 Timothy 3:16)
- A prophetic word must bear witness with the spirit of the one who receives it. (Spirit-to-spirit knowing or resonating – Romans 8:16)
- The outcome, byproduct or fruit of all prophetic words, must be that the person receiving it is brought into a closer relationship with or revelation of God.
- Revealing God’s true character, nature, and love towards them
- Line up with E.E.C. Words (1 Corinthians 14:3)
Prophetic words that separate people from the Body of Christ do not find their source in or from God.
- The prophet(s) and the church leadership team should be in agreement with the prophetic word. In addition, there must be agreement several other things: on interpretation, application, and whether the word is for an individual or a group.
When God gives leaders oversight in our lives, He also gives them insight into our lives. They will often see things in us and have perspectives about us that no one else has.
Prophecy Should Always Glorify Jesus
From a Biblical basis, here are some other scriptures we can use to see and judge a prophecy. However, the main measure of all prophecy is that it SHOULD glorify and honor Jesus!
John 16:13,14 – It must always exalt Jesus.
Deuteronomy 18:22 – It must come to pass.
Deuteronomy 13:1-4 – It must point back to God and our obedience towards Him.
Romans 8:15 – It must produce freedom.
2 Corinthians 3:6 – It must produce life.
Two Important Questions
Finally, we need to weigh or judge the word by taking it back to the Lord and asking Him the following two important questions:
- What does this prophecy mean to me and my life?
- What do you want me to do with this prophetic word?
Feedback is Essential
Now, remember to always weigh the word you receive and give feedback to the giver of the prophecy. Because when you do, it allows them to grow and become more attuned to the voice of God. If it’s not correct or does not resonate, then again give them constructive feedback that gives them time and space to evaluate where they may have missed it.