Modern Day Charismatic Christianity has made a much of the word prophetic.
Almost everything is titled prophetic: prophetic worship, prophetic evangelism, prophetic life coaches, etc. It seems that people feel the need to make everything “prophetically” influenced. The word prophetic is not biblical word. Yes, prophecy is a biblical word, but prophetic is not. There is no teaching in the New Testament which encourages us to be prophetic in our worship, teaching, counseling, etc.
We are not instructed to make everything surrounding ministry prophetic in nature or function. The Bible does instruct us regarding the gift of prophecy, and prophecy does have a distinct function within Christian ministry.
Can prophecy come during a time of worship? Absolutely! Can a minister teaching the Bible have a word of prophecy given to him while he is ministering? Absolutely! However, worship is worship, teaching is teaching, and prophecy is prophecy. Sometimes they may blend, but not always.
Feeling the need to make nearly every spiritual activity prophetic is not being spiritual. it is being mystical, or sensational, which opens the door to error.
Now, if the word prophetic were only used as a description of those isolated times when a minister, who is teaching has a word of prophecy, or a person worshipping has a word of prophecy, there would be nothing wrong with the use of the word prophetic in these cases.
However, when we attempt to change the function of spiritual activities such as worship, counseling, teaching, etc., into something that is prophetic in nature we then begin to err from the truth.
In Acts 8, Philip the evangelist went to Samaria and preached Christ to the people. There is no record that Philip attempted to minister prophetically to the people. He stayed within his gifting as an evangelist.
When the leadership in Jerusalem received word concerning the reception of the gospel by the Samaritans, they sent Peter and John to further minister to them. During this time, Peter confronted Simon the sorcerer, most likely by the gift of the word of knowledge.
Every minister has their own gifting and limitations, but it seems so many want to either be an apostle and or a prophet, or at the very least label their ministry as apostolic or prophetic.
This ideology is dangerous because Christians and Christian ministers who think this way can stray from the truth and become less grounded in Christ and New Testament doctrine. It truly opens to door to mysticism and sensationalism.
During the time of Jesus, the people were astounded at his doctrine. In fact, if you would take the time to examine the ministry of Jesus, you will find that Jesus taught and preached sound words to the people and it was his doctrine that was often the point of discussion among the people.
After the Sermon on the Mount, Matthew tells us the following:
And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine. ~ Matthew 7:28
After Jesus began his public ministry, Mark tells us, “And they went into Capernaum; and straightway on the sabbath day he entered into the synagogue, and taught. And they were astonished at his doctrine: for he taught them as one that had authority, and not as the scribes.” ~ Mark 1:21-22
Jesus did prophesy, but he did not attempt to make everything he said or taught prophetic. For example, Jesus told the Samaritan woman, “true worshippers will worship God in spirit and in truth.” He did not say. true worshippers will worship prophetically.
Oh how we need sound doctrine regarding the gift of prophecy or else we will abuse this precious gift: a gift I have personal experience with.
Thank God for the gift of prophecy – let’s not abuse it, but use it properly, and refrain from the excesses and errors that abuse it.