The head of a tawny eagle with the header "New Testament propher"

The Holy Spirit now dwells within never to leave so we can all prophesy

Joel in the Old Testament prophesied a coming day when “It will come about after this that I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; and your sons and daughters will prophesy.” Joel 2:28

The Holy Spirit came to Jesus as a dove at his baptism and rested and remained on Him. John records “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him I would not have known him except that the one who sent me to baptise with water told me,’ The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is he who will baptise with the Holy Spirit.’” John 1:32.

A white dove descending

Luke records that after his baptism “Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit returned from the Jordan” Luke 4:1.

On the day of Pentecost, when the Spirit was poured out and, “Suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit was giving them utterance.” Acts 2:2-4

Peter declared that the day Joel spoke of had arrived. “For these men are not drunk , as you suppose, for it is only the third hour of the day; but this is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel: ‘ And it shall be in the last days’ God says that I will pour forth my Spirit on all mankind and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy.” Acts 2:15-17

The Holy Spirit is now living within the believer, like he did in Jesus. This means that under the New Testament covenant Paul is able to state, “You can all prophesy” 1 Cor 14:31 (24).
It is the Holy Spirit who inspires prophecy as Jesus says he would in
John 16:13. “I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when the Spirit of truth comes he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own. He will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.”


The Holy Spirit ‘within us’ means that prophecy is now available to all believers. The characteristic of the New Testament church should be an outpouring of prophecy.

Under the New Covenant of grace, Christians have the freedom to practice prophecy without the fear of being stoned or personally judged. It is the prophecy that must be weighed and judged (1 Cor 14:29) not the person. It must be compared with scripture - our “More sure word of prophecy” 2 Pet 1:19 and must never contradict the word of God. Furthermore, it must also be words, which we can picture Jesus saying.

The reason now why prophecy must be judged is that “For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face”. 1 Cor 13:12 “For we know in part and we prophesy in part.” 1 Cor 13:9 More than one prophet or prophecy about something will normally bring a more complete picture.

 

You don’t need to go out looking for prophetic guidance!

“But just as it is written, ‘Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and which have nor entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.’ For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God, which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words.” 1 Cor 2:9-13

The Holy Spirit is abiding within and available to all believers, therefore there are no examples in the New Testament of the need for prophetic guidance to be asked of a prophet.

However, in the New Testament we often see prophecy given, normally unsought (except in prayer) which acts as a warning about a course taken (Acts 21:11), confirms or reveals new details about situations (John 1:29, Acts 11:27-30). These however need to be weighed and judged as above.

New Testament prophets also worked in teams (Acts 11:27).

Next.
1. Introduction - friendship with God.
2. Friendship is higher than service.
3. OT prophet. The Spirit came upon them.
4. God wanted prophecy for all in the OT.
5. The wrath of God.
6. God is a merciful judge.
7. John the Baptist - the prophet between the OT and NT
8. NT prophet. The Spirit within we can all prophesy!
9. The spirit of prophecy is the testimony of Jesus.
10. Spiritual gifts are for building not destroying.
11. What you speak to rises up.
12. Prophesy truth not facts.
13. The primary purpose of prophecy in the NT.
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