God, Give Us Prophets
I often hear the phrase, “Prophetic Ministry.” I don’t know, but the simultaneous use of the words “prophet” and “ministry” almost seem like a veiled attempt to tame the untamable nature of the prophet.
The word “prophet” speaks of unconventional methods and means. In this context the word “ministry” seems to imply the use of conventional methods and means.
Prophets are unpredictable, while ministries have become very predictable.
Ministries are typically planned by men, while prophets are ordered by God.
Prophets have thrown themselves prostrate before God in order to be stood up by God to forever be set apart for God’s purposes.
Prophets hear only from God. Therefore, they can speak for God.
Prophets have been touched by the hand of God. Therefore, they know the power of God.
Prophets have been positioned to see from God’s perspective, observing the world’s system as it really is. For it is corrupt in nature with nothing of eternal value to offer.
Prophets have seen the glory of God. Therefore, they know the call to be holy.
Prophets have trembled before the holiness of God. Therefore, they will not tremble before men.
To revere God is to fear no man – be it individuals or institutions.
Prophets walk differently, as they hear a heavenly music.
Prophets talk differently, as they hear a heavenly voice.
Prophets act differently, as they desire the clear and effective communication of the word of the Lord.
Peer pressure has no appeal to or influence upon the prophet. The prophet is more concerned about God’s reputation than social acceptability.
Prophets have sacrificially thrown themselves on the altar of God as an offering. There to be consumed by the fire of God as a sacrifice and filled with the Spirit of God as a sanctified vessel. Prophets have been consumed by the Holy in order to be empowered by the Holy.
The scripture states that Christians are to be “kings and priests” (Revelation 1:6). However, the contemporary Christian is more like the traditionalist of Ezekiel’s time than like the New Testament descript. Contemporary Christians tend to be predictable traditionalists merely tweaking the methods and means that they have been taught and trained to use.
Typically speaking, the contemporary Christian is too busy to spend time with God in order to bask in His glorious presence, too busy to study the word of God in order to know the mind of God, too busy to have altar time with God to be consumed by holy fire, and too busy running from the demands of God to be running with God, knowing the miraculous will of God. Many contemporary Christians lack the vision and passion to build the Kingdom of God. Rather, they build the “Chapel of Self”….
Leonard Ravenhill, 20th Century Revivalist said:
“Oh God send us prophetic preaching that searches and scorches! Send us a race of Martyr-preachers – men burdened, bent, bowed and broken under the vision of impending judgment and the unending hell of the impenitent…”
“Preachers make pulpits famous; prophets make prisons famous. May the Lord send us prophets – terrible men, who cry aloud and spare not, who sprinkle nations with unctionized woes- men too hot to hold, to hard to be heard, to merciless to spare…”
“We are tired of men in soft raiment and softer in speech who use rivers of words with but a smidgen of unction. These know more about competition than consecration, about promotion than prayer. They substitute propaganda for propagation and care more for their church’s happiness than holiness…” (~From ‘Why Revival Tarries‘).
Ezekiel was the priest who became a prophet. His call from God to prophetic office is worthy of our examination; as our place in history cries out that God send prophets. His vantage point as a prophet is worth taking note of, for the conditions of the nation require the prophet’s insight and perspective.
His methods of communication should be studied, as the world needs to hear and understand its destitute rebellious nature and the impending judgment of all unrighteousness.
His calling of the nation to repentance is worth remembering, for it is a fearful thing to not have grace cover the nation’s sin. His promise of restoration is worth remembering, as it was given by Jehovah the covenant-keeping God. ~From “The Wedding of Purity and Power” by Paul Holdren.
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