The Prophets Primary Job
There is so much being written and taught about the prophetic, prophesy, and prophets today that it is often hard to discern what is truth and what is just a lot of fluff. There has been a call for a reformation of the prophetic or a more pure prophetic flow. But, shouldn’t prophecy be pure, straight from the heart of God?
Prophets were and are still mouthpieces of God. The Hebrew word for mouth is “Pey” and there are many instances where this was associated with an OT prophet. Exodus 4, for example, is where Aaron was to be the prophet or ‘pey’ for Moses to Pharaoh. Jeremiah 15 tells us that Jeremiah was a ‘pey’ for God to the nations and Israel. Jeremiah spoke what God told him and often caused great harm and injury to him.
It seems that the prophets dealt with rejection after speaking God’s words. That is why a prophet must first pledge their head to heaven before they at as God’s mouth. In the same way, New Testament prophets are supposed to speak as the ‘pey’ or mouth of God. In the church prophecy and prophetic voices are first to encourage, exhort, and build up the body of Christ.
However, a true prophet whether New or Old Testament will be a reforming voice, whether to the church or the nations. They bring change as they seek to bring people back to God. All prophecy should bring some sort of change if the recipient acts on it. After all ‘the spirit of prophecy is the testimony of Jesus.’ Prophecy should always point to, and buildup the name of Jesus. Even a judgment prophecy should end with hope and encouragement that points to Jesus.
But what is the primary function of a prophet? To prophecy? Yes. but is that what they spend most of their time doing? Prophets, whether they are seers or word prophets are about prayer. Prophets and prophetic people are intercessors first and foremost. The first person in the Bible allied a prophet was not Samuel or Moses, but indeed it was the Father of Nations Himself, Abraham.
Genesis 20:7 tells us that Abraham was a prophet because he was a man of prayer. God told Abimelech that he should return Abraham’s wife because he was a prophet and would pray for him. Men like Job prayed a lot as we see in Job 42 and Jeremiah 15. Others who prayed and were special to God’s heart were Moses, Noah, and Samuel.
So, prayer is vital to a prophet’s life and is a necessary part of his or her functioning effectively. Prayer is not a one-sided effort. No one just sits and prays without stopping and listening. Prayer requires the prayer to listen to God’s heart and voice to know what to pray and decree. Otherwise, it is just divination as we pray what we want. Now we can ask and seek and knock but we still need to be about His heart.
If prophets and prophetic people are to be people of prayer then is that their primary job? I submit that a prophet’s first or primary job is to listen to and hear the voice of God. Prayer flows from connecting with God’s heart. We do that mostly by listening to His voice, but also by studying the word of God.
John 3:29 details the position and primary function of any prophet, prophetic person, or any believer since we all can prophesy
“The one who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom’s voice. Therefore this joy of mine is now complete.”
John declared that Jesus was the bridegroom and that in this story he was the friend of the bridegroom. John was considered the last Old Covenant prophet, but he introduced the kingdom of God, the Messiah, the lamb of God, and the one who takes away the sins of the world. That is quite an accolade. Jesus even said that John carried the Spirit of Elijah.
But, John himself said that what he really enjoyed and what he identified with was standing and hearing the voice of the Lord. I believe that hearing God’s voice and rejoicing to hear it is the first job of any prophet or prophetic voice.
God asked Jeremiah ‘who has stood in the counsel of the Lord?” A prophet must stand in the Lord’s counsel or else they have not heard God’s voice. It is in the council, where the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit meet that a prophet is transformed and gets God’s heart and can truly become His mouthpiece.
So many believers want to be prophetic or to be a prophet but they are not willing to take the time and listen to the Holy Spirit. Listening is a major part of developing the prophetic because in listening we learn to know His voice and we come to be familiar with it. When the enemy comes and speaks or we are tempted by our voice we can recognize it since we know the ‘real’ voice of the Father. We know the voice of Jesus and the voice of the Holy Spirit.
In John 10 Jesus says that His sheep know His voice and will not follow another. This only comes by listening to His voice. Becoming familiar with someone’s voice helps us to recognize a counterfeit. When you were a child you listened to your parent’s voice call you or tell you to eat or just basic commands. That is how life started- listening to someone else telling you what to do and soon you were repeating the things that you learned.
So it is in the kingdom of God, we listen to the Word of God, and the voice of God until we only know and obey His voice. That is the goal when our parents are raising us. Hearing their voice and obeying what they say is the ultimate outcome. And so that is a primary task of the prophet, hearing and obeying God’s voice. I will take it one step further, and say that we need to do it with joy and rejoice that we and hear His voice.
So, whether you are a prophet, prophetic voice, or a believer who can prophesy, you need to take the time and listen. We all have two ears and one mouth which means we need to listen twice as much as we speak and when we speak we will speak only what He tells us. We will speak what flows from His heart because we have taken the time to listen and we do it with joy.
To be a mouthpiece for God means you have heard from God!!