PURSUING THE PROPHETIC
by Rodney W Francis
The Prophetic Ministry is all about knowing things by the Holy Spirit. It is about our knowing what the Person of the Holy Spirit has come into our lives for, what His Spiritual Gifts are about, what we can do with them, and the ongoing development of them.
There are some major areas that we must face if we are going to excel in our lives and ministry callings. The word “excel” means “to superabound – in quantity or quality – make abound, have, have more abundant, exceed, increase” (Strong’s) or “1. to be superior to (another or others); surpass. 2. to be outstandingly good or proficient” (Collins Dictionary).
To “pursue” is “to follow in order to capture or overtake; to follow closely or accompany; to seek or strive to attain; to apply oneself to; to follow persistently or seek to become acquainted with” (Collins).
“Prophetic” is “of or relating to a prophet or prophecy; predictive” (Collins).
“Prophecy” is “a message of divine truth revealing God’s will; the act of uttering such a message.” To “prophesy” is “to reveal or foretell by divine inspiration” (Collins).
The prophetic is released as we recognise and discern the prompting, the inspiration, the voice of God to us in order that we will be obedient to Him. It can also come through picture form, vision, revelation, the spiritual gifts, a trance, angelic visitation and other Holy Spirit anointed people. It is the realm of the Holy Spirit and we are called to be men and women of the Spirit, trusting the Holy Spirit’s guidance to be the very Truth He is.
Jesus went back to the Father in order that the Holy Spirit could be sent to us (John 16:7). When He – The SAME Holy Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead! (Romans 8: 11) - came into our lives, He brought with Him nine Spiritual Gifts, resurrection power and authority, the voice of God, the ability to fulfil His plans and purposes for our lives. The Holy Spirit came to enable us to make an impact in our generation! But do we know these things? Are these truths embedded in our spirit, or merely in our head?
In the pursuing of the Prophetic Ministry I have discovered the following areas are very important.
- I must know who I am in God the Holy Spirit.
- I must know Who God the Holy Spirit is in me.
- I must know what the Holy Spirit can (and wants to) do in and through me.
1. I Must Know Who I Am In God The Holy Spirit
This is most likely the most crucial key to Holy Spirit Ministry. Knowing who I am is one of the most important issues in life. Knowing who I am determines the type of person I am, the life I lead, the vision I carry, the faith level I live at, the challenges I will rise to. What I believe about me is a powerful “seed” that is setting the course of my future. What I believe depends on what I know.
So, I ask myself:
- What do I know about me (as a Christian)?
- Do I know what Jesus says about me?
Think about the following – and believe the truth of Jesus’ Word:
“You are the salt of the earth . . . ” (Matthew 5:13, NIV).
“You are the light of the world . . . ” (Matthew 5:14, NIV).
One of the keys to an effective Christian life is in my knowing who I am:
- Knowing who I am as a person.
- Knowing who I am as a born-again, Spirit-filled believer:
“You have been regenerated – born again – not from a mortal origin (seed, sperm) but from one that is immortal by the ever living and lasting Word of God” (1 Peter 1:23, AMP.).
- Knowing the will and calling of God upon my life:
“Therefore, my brothers, be all the more eager to make your calling and election sure. For if you do these things, you will never fail . . . ” (2 Peter 1:1-10).
“You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit – fruit that will last” (John 15:16, NIV).
- Knowing what my strengths are.
- Knowing what my weaknesses are.
- Knowing how to make decisions.
- Knowing how to live with those decisions.
- Knowing how to handle people, i.e. having good people skills.
- Knowing how to communicate clearly, so others also know what I am carrying in my heart.
“You have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you . . . ” (John 15:16, KJV).
“And he said, The God of our fathers has chosen you, that you should know His will, and see that Just One (Jesus), and should hear the voice of His mouth. For you shall be His witness unto all men of what you have seen and heard” (Acts 22:14-15, KJV).
- That God has saved me and totally forgiven me:
“And you, who were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh – your sensuality, your sinful carnal nature – [God] brought to life together with [Christ], having (freely) forgiven us all our transgressions” (Colossians 2:13, AMP.).
- That God has washed me in the Blood of Jesus:
“ . . . unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood” (1 John 1:5, KJV);
“These are they who came out of great tribulation, and have washed them white in the Blood of the Lamb” (Revelation 7:14, KJV).
- That God has brought me into resurrection life through the act of water baptism (Romans 6)
- That God has filled me with the same Holy Spirit that raised Jesus Christ from the dead:
“If the Spirit of God, Who raised Jesus from death, lives in you, then He Who raised Christ from death will also give life to your mortal bodies by the presence of His Spirit in you” (Romans 8:11, GNB).
- That God is not ashamed to identify with me as His son and/or daughter:
“ . . . because those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by Him we cry, ‘Abba, Father.’ The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs – heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory” (Romans 8:14-17, NIV). (See also 2 Corinthians 6:16-18.)
- That God believes in me!
- That God has invested Himself in me!
“That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with might (Greek word is “dunamis”) by His Spirit in the inner man; That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ, which passes knowledge, that you might be filled with all the fullness of God. Now unto Him Who is able to do exceeding abundantly above all we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, Unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen” (Ephesians 3:16-21, KJV). (See also Colossians 1.)
- That God has made me an ambassador for Christ.
What is an ambassador?
A fuller meaning of the word “ambassador” is:
1. short for ambassador extraordinary plenipotentiary; a diplomatic minister of the highest rank, accredited as permanent representative to another country or sovereign.
2. ambassador extraordinary, a diplomatic minister of the highest rank sent on a special mission.
3. ambassador plenipotentiary, a diplomatic minister of the first rank with treaty-signing powers.
4. ambassador-at-large, an ambassador with special duties who may be sent to more than one government.
5. an authorized representative or messenger” (Collins).
The word “plenipotentiary” means:
1. (especially of a diplomatic envoy) invested with or possessing full power or authority.
2. conferring full power or authority.
3. (of power or authority) full; absolute.
4. a person invested with full authority to transact business, especially a diplomat authorised to represent a country” (Collins).
We need to take some time to consider what we have just read, for it is a clear description of who we Christians really are. We have been invested with power and authority to speak and act on the behalf of the King of the Kingdom we represent, which is the Kingdom of God! We have been chosen by God through Jesus Christ to represent Him and His Kingdom here on earth! We are His ministers of the highest rank, invested with His full power and authority to do His business (will).
Do you know this?
Do you know who you are?
To be “the salt of the earth” and “the light of the world” is exactly what being an ambassador is all about! Commissioned by the King of the Kingdom Himself! That makes me very special indeed!
“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us . . . ” (2 Corinthians 5:120, NIV).
That God chose to make my physical body His dwelling place, His home or place of residence, where He lives right now!
“Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you? . . . God’s temple is sacred, and you are that temple” (1 Corinthians 3:16, NIV).
“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, Who is in you, Whom you have received from God? You are not your own: you were bought at a price. Therefore honour God with your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20, NIV).
Do I know these things?
And, more importantly, Do I live in the light of the truth of these things?
Or . . . do I choose to set a lower standard for myself and see myself as a “need-orientated” person still struggling to accept the truth of the Word of God? I have come to this conclusion: As a Christian I can pray, fast, read the Bible, go to every Christian meeting, be involved in so many church things, etc. (and these are all very good and desirable things to do), but if after all that I still see myself as being a “useless nobody” who can’t make decisions, still feel inferior to others, still bound up by fear, etc., then that is the level in life I will live at. I live according to the level of my self-esteem and at the level I see myself! If I am a negative person who carries a negative belief about myself, then I will be hindered in my releasing of the ministry of the Holy Spirit through my life. That is why it is so important that I know who I am.
Right now, make a positive decision to believe what the Word of God says to you as a born-again, Spirit-filled follower of Jesus Christ. What He says about you, and what you say about you, are often two very widely separated positions of opinion!
We must choose to live according to what God declares about us in His Word as His new creations in Christ, or we will live at the level that our own mind-set dictates to us. Our mind-set and way of thinking about us usually sets a standard far below that which God has set for us. What level are you living at?
Gideon is a very good example of a person who was locked into a negative mind-set and life-style (Judges 6 to 8). Israel was in bondage to the Midianites. Their strategy was to keep Israel subjected by controlling the food supply, which in turn kept the likes of Gideon physically weakened. Gideon, however, had managed to secretly grow some wheat and was in the process of threshing it when an angel of God appeared to him. Gideon would have been malnourished, hungry and lean! Yet, in spite of those circumstances, the angel proclaimed to him, “The Lord is with you, you mighty (“strong, powerful; very great in extent, importance” or “warrior, tyrant, champion; one who excels” – Strong’s) man of valour (“strength: courageous and brave, especially in battle”).”
What Gideon was experiencing, feeling and believing was not what the angel was declaring! The angel saw the potential in Gideon to rise to greater things. But at that point in time Gideon did not know who he was. He did not know the power of the word and will of God for his life. Gideon was so caught-up in his own circumstances, disappointments and discouragements he could not take it all in. His response was a negative, “How can it be? . . . Why is all this happening to me? . . . Where’s God in all this? . . . Who me? . . . Hang on there; I’m from a poor family . . . and the least important one at that! . . . There must be others better than me . . . ”
Because Gideon did not know who he was, his mind-set and confession was built around complaining and excuses. But God declared to him that he was a mighty champion, able to excel! That experience left Gideon in a position where he had to make a choice. The choice was:
1. “Do I believe what the angel (God’s Word) says about me?” or
2. “Do I believe what I say about me?”
If he chose the first, he would be able to see things change for the better. He would really discover and know who he was in God. If he chose the second, life would continue on its negative way. He would never know who he was as a person, a Christian and a man of God.
With some trepidation Gideon chose to believe what God said and, from that time, a positive change began for (and in) Gideon that saw him rise to lead Israel back into its God-ordained position of being the victors (not the victims). The more Gideon co-operated with God the more he discovered who he was - and the more he rose to become a great leader. In fact Gideon’s life so changed that he became a powerful force for good and God. Under his leadership Israel enjoyed 40 years of safety and security (Judges 8:28), whereas prior to that they were slaves to the Midianites.
Gideon represents your life and mine. The same choices he had are the same choices we have today. Are you going to believe what God says about you? Or, Are you going to believe what you say about you?
When we know who we are, we carry a vision, a sense of destiny and purpose. We know we are on a journey, a mission; we have a task to fulfil. That task is bigger than ourselves and we need others (like-minded) to help us fulfil it.
When we know who we are we lead others, because we know where we are going. We know something of how to get there. We take responsibility for the decisions made and know we have to live with the consequences.
2. I Must Know Who God The Holy Spirit Is In Me
As I come to accept who I am in God I discover that God has a great purpose for me and for my life. He saved me to use me in His plans and for His glory. He came to indwell me so I could live my life according to the God-factor. To think that He has chosen me to be His Temple is beyond my comprehension, but He did. He now lives inside of me! Not only on Sundays or meeting times, but always! I am now a part of His eternal purposes – right here in the present, the now! Jesus sent the Holy Spirit because I desperately needed Him in my life; I am destitute without Him! Only what is done in His power and anointing is acceptable to Him. “The flesh profits nothing,” Jesus said (John 6:63)! Now that the Holy Spirit lives within me I am a “spirit person, an eternal spirit person”! I am now a part of God’s eternal purposes on earth, as well as in heaven! How amazing! Anything is possible!
The finished work of Calvary has purchased me to be a living witness of Jesus through the power of His Holy Spirit within me! He has made me “sufficient as a minister of the new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life” (2 Corinthians 3). This is a totally different way to that of a religious duty. The Holy Spirit within me brings the voice of God to me, so I might know His plans and purposes for my life. As I learn more and more to recognize His voice, the more effective I can become as a son and/or daughter of God.
3. I Must Know What The Holy Spirit Can (And Wants) To Do In And Through Me
The Prophetic Ministry is all about pursuing what the Holy Spirit wants to do in and through me, and what I am willing to do with Him. This is called a “partnership” where I come to realize that God has chosen me to be His representative here on earth as a fully ordained ambassador of the Kingdom of Heaven. I represent Jesus the King of the Kingdom of Heaven here on earth! As such I have power and authority to do things in His name! He has already given me this! I don’t have to keep waiting or believing for it. I have it now! Through the Holy Spirit and His nine beautiful gifts I am able to minister effectively as a son of God in a world that desperately needs what God has given to me. I now choose to share those “unsearchable riches of Christ” (Ephesians 3:8) or I can choose to withhold them. I hold the key to these things!
I have learned that God never gives us anything we don’t need. He never asks us to do things we cannot do, or to go places we cannot go. He is the Spirit of Truth and He only speaks the Truth (John 14:16-17; John 15:26; John 16:13). He never leads us wrong. We have that blessed privilege of learning to trust the voice of Truth and to see the wonderful ways God wants to use us as we release out of our lives the Holy Spirit and His Gifts that are already within us. They are waiting to be released and used for the glory of God! To do that we have to know who we are, Who God is and what the Holy Spirit can do through our lives. We must pursue the prophetic. It doesn’t “just happen.”
The challenge we all face right now is to know how to co-operate with the Holy Spirit of Truth inside of us in such a way that He is released to benefit those we come in contact with. The Spiritual Gifts enable us to see, know and do things in a simple, yet supernatural way that can become the turning point in the lives of others and see them rising to fulfil their destinies in Jesus Christ. The keys to all this is in our ability to partner with the Holy Spirit and adventure out with Him. The action part is called faith which “comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17), which is the spoken word into our spirit. Whenever that word comes, it usually means we have to act in a certain way to release it to the benefit of others. It may be in speaking it out prophetically, or the doing of a prophetic act, or for prayer purposes until such time as the Holy Spirit wants us to release whatever He is asking of us.
We must pursue this! These things do not “just happen.” We must express and demonstrate a genuine desire before God that we are committed to doing whatever He asks of us. The desire for the prophetic has to become stronger than any and every excuse we might be holding on to at this present point in time. We have to rise above the doubts, the fears, the personal inhibitions, inferiorities, etc., to be available for whatever the Holy Spirit desires of us. When we live in that state of desire and readiness there are no limits to what the Holy Spirit can do through us. The nations of this earth become our pulpit!
May the Lord Himself help each of us to yield more and more to His purposes of why He has sent the Holy Spirit to live inside of us. Be the ambassador He has called you to be!
Pursue the Prophetic!
Rodney W. Francis founded "The Gospel Faith Messenger" Ministry in April 1964, which is mainly a literature ministry providing salvation, healing and follow-up materials to help people find Christ and get established in the Christian faith. It also provides 6-7 days "Prophetic Equipping Schools" (PES), formerly called "International Training Schools", and a "School Of The Holy Spirit". Rodney and his wife Jean have pastored in the Elim Churches of NZ for many years, and in 1999 they went full time with GFM Ministry and have ministered to thousands of people world-wide who are eager to know more of the power of the Prophetic Ministry and the operation of Spiritual Gifts. They currently live in Paraparaumu on the Kapiti Coast in New Zealand.
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