PROPHETIC PRIORITIES – Ray E Horton
“Pursue love, yet desire earnestly spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy” (1 Corinthians 14:1).
Note, that of the spiritual gifts we are “especially” to desire to prophesy. Love comes first and sets the atmosphere for people to hear.
Desire to prophesy
“One who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort“
Why did Paul consider prophecy so important? Is it not because New Testament-style prophecy builds up the church, the people of God?
What is New Testament prophecy? Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 14:3, “One who prophesies speaks edification and exhortation and comfort.”
Who can do this? Anyone who is Spirit-filled. We must earnestly desire it. It is birthed in love. We care for one another to build each other up in the Lord. We listen to God’s voice to our hearts, then speak it out in faith.
Messages from prophets speaking of the future are good. Dreams and visions are wonderful. Personal prophecy can be very helpful. But not all are prophets, and the gifts are distributed by the Lord variously as needed.
It’s the Father’s heart
Yet, every Spirit-filled believer can prophecy as in verse 3. Like our prayer language, it comes with the Baptism in the Holy Spirit. It is communing with God and hearing and speaking forth His heart.
What is needed most in the church? What is the prophetic priority? Is it not for believers:
- to be built up in their faith
- to receive needed exhortation from the Holy Spirit,
- to be comforted from the daily onslaught of the world, the flesh and the devil?
Yes, we have a God of love, and that is the Father’s heart.