The Functions of a Prophet
God’s last-day church will have the gift of prophecy. For the Bible teaches, “And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy” (Acts 2:17).
What are the functions of a prophet in the church? The Bible answers, “Surely the Lord GOD does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7). God shows His mercy by the fact that He does not bring His punishment upon people until He first warns them through His prophets. Before the Romans destroyed Jerusalem, Jesus foretold the city’s destruction. Likewise, in our modern day, before the destruction of the world at the second coming of Christ, God will warn the world through His messengers.
Another function is to bear testimony to Jesus. The Bible tell us, “…Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy” (Revelation 19:10). The Holy Spirit was first sent to bear testimony to Jesus (John 15:26), and His witness is equivalent to that of Jesus in person. Since it is the distinctive work of the prophets to bear messages from Jesus to the people (Revelation 1:1), the end time church will be distinguished by the manifestation of the gift of prophecy.
In addition, the ministry of prophets will bring about revival in the believers that they may be able to receive the gifts of the Spirit. In 1 Corinthians 1:5-8, Paul writes that the church will have “the testimony of Christ” and will “come behind in no gift” until Jesus’ second coming. The blessing of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the believers will be so that the church may be established and rooted in their faith and may be enabled to demonstrate God’s love to the world.
Through the power of the Spirit of God, the church will receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit. These gifts are listed in 1 Corinthians 12:1, 4–10, 28; Ephesians 4:8, 11-13. The purpose of these gifts of the Spirit is to help the church grow spiritually until it reaches unity that is based on the Word (John 17:11-23) and perfection in Jesus (Ephesians 4:12–15).
In His service,