Saturday, October 24, 2009

Prophetic Excellence

The widespread acceptance of the prophetic ministry that emerged out of the Charismatic Renewal during the 1970s was a huge step forward for the church, but there is still a long way to go. An emphasis on quantity, rather than quality, was okay while the gifting was re-emerging, but now that it is well established, we should be focussing more on quality.

Daniel and his mates did not just make a splash on Jewish bulletin boards, their insight and ability were recognised by a tough anti-god king.

The king talked with them, and he found none equal to Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah; so they entered the king's service. In every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king questioned them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters in his whole kingdom (Dan 1:19-20).
Daniel was recognised by a worldly leader as being ten times as good as the other wise men of his times. That is why he was asked to serve three different kings in two world empires.

That is what the Christian prophetic ministry should be aspiring to. Where are the Christian prophets who are recognised by the world as being ten times as discerning as Thomas Friedman and Paul Krugman. Provided we do not become complacent about the quality of prophecy, that level of gifting could emerge.

I am looking for prophetic excellence and believe that God has much more to give than we have seen so far. In the future we will see much more tactical and strategic guidance coming from clear prophetic voices.

The Old Testament prophets did not just predict calamities. They gave tactical advise to local and national leaders (1 Chron 20:13-30). They also revealed God’s long–term plans and strategy and what his people should be doing to participate with God in his work. Moses was a great prophet. He announced God’s plan and timing for establishing his people in the promised land. He also explained what Israel must do to enter in the land.

We have the fullness of the Holy Spirit, whereas in Old Testament times, the activity of the Holy Spirit was intermittent. Therefore, Christian prophets should be at least twice as effective as Old Testament prophets.

We have a long way to go. We must not be satisfied with what we have now, but press in to receive all that God has for us through the prophetic ministry.

2 comments:

Gene Redlin said...

I understand your post. I even agree with it. Of course 1 Corinthians 13 is a guide. We see in part and prophesy in part.

NOW, the same measure must be applied for

Evangelistic Excellence
Apostolic Excellence
Teaching Excellence
Pastoral Excellence

I know many who are truly gifted in each of those ministry gifts but who are less than excellent.

I agree the Prophetic needs to be better. I want to be better. BUT, that sword cuts all ways.

Blessed Economist said...

Correct. The deficit with pastoring is even greater. There are plenty of CEOs and communicators, but real shepherds, who can bring new Christians to maturity in a couple of year are rare.