PRAYER ALERT on prophetic impressions. Over the past two decades prophetic ministry teams have multiplied in charismatic churches. Most allow just about any believer to take prophetic training and then participate on teams, since 1 Corinthians 14:31 says “you can all prophesy”. Many thousands have gone through training and likely many millions have received ministry from church prophetic teams.
Beginners usually learn to hear from God by watching for impressions from God. These prophetic impressions can come to the mind, to the heart, and/or to the body. They include words and visions in the mind, emotional stirrings in the heart, and sensations in the body. The one prophesying asks God what those prophetic impressions mean, and then shares them in a constructive way with recipient.
This approach to prophecying has gained such good results that people often wait in long lines for prophetic ministry. But beginners—and seasoned prophetic people too—have made mistakes. So have many people who received their ministry. The mistakes have too often led to grievous results. They often stem from the failure to separate soul from spirit.
“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to the dividing of soul and spirit, joints and marrow. It judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart” (Heb. 4:12, NIV).
The word of God divides soul and spirit. The soul consists of “the thoughts and attitudes of the heart” which the word of God judges. We should let the word of God judge our own thoughts and feelings before we deliver the word of God to others. And we should separate our own thoughts and feelings from our spirit, so our spirit can receive more clearly from God’s Spirit.
According to Thayer’s Lexicon, our spirit (Greek pneuma) is what is capable of “perceiving and grasping divine and eternal things, and upon which the Spirit of God exerts its influence.” Our spirit can unite with the Holy Spirit in us to learn what the Spirit knows.
“The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man’s spirit within him? In the same way no one know the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God” (1 Cor. 2:10-11).
The Spirit of God knows all things, including the thoughts of God and the thoughts of men. Through the Spirit we too can know the thoughts of God and the thoughts of men. Mistakes happen when we pay more attention to the thoughts of men, and try to be man-pleasers to the recipients of prophetic ministry. More mistakes happen when we let our own “thoughts and attitudes of the heart” get in the way. God may be sharing His thoughts about the recipients. But if we have our own strong thoughts and feelings about them, we won’t hear God’s “still small voice” very well.
So let’s apply the living word of God to our own lives before we prophesy to anyone. Let’s identify our own thoughts and feelings and put them aside. Let’s open our spirits to the filling of the Holy Spirit. For His thoughts are higher than our thoughts, and His ways than our ways. Then we will better communicate His thoughts and His ways to others.
PRAY WITH US. Father God, we thank You for Your promise of the Holy Spirit. He came at the birth of Your church, at Pentecost, and He has never stopped coming. This promise is for us and our children and all who are far off. Because of Him, our sons and our daughters can prophecy. But we too are still children. Help us grow in this gift of prophecy. Make us mature fathers and mothers of more prophetic children. We want to hear You better, know You better, and make Your good will known to others better. Give us prophetic impressions which become factual evidence of Your lovingkindness.
Show us how to put off the old self, with its old thoughts and old ways. Help us put on the new self with Your thoughts and Your ways. Cleanse our spirits of the old and make them vessels of Your Holy Spirit. Pour out Your Spirit on us so we may overflow to others. And empower us to not only know and speak Your words, but to do Your works. Through prophecy many good works have begun. Use us to carry them to completion. Build us up until we all reach unity in the faith and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ. In Jesus’ name, amen.
DailyInsight. We know only in part, so we can prophesy only the part we know. Let God fill in the other parts in His times and ways (See 1 Cor. 13:9-10).
BPN articles related to prophetic impressions.
Related sources for prophetic impressions.
Keyword: prophetic impressions.
How do we test our prophetic impressions?