Pursue love, yet earnestly desire spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy. For the one who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people, but to God; for no one understands, but in his spirit he speaks mysteries. But the one who prophesies speaks to people for edification, exhortation, and consolation.1 Corinthians 14:1-3 NASB2020
What’s missing? When people aren’t walking in the fullness of joy, you know something is missing because the joy of the Lord is our strength.
Why prophesy? Why speak what God has revealed? To edify the Church. What is edification? It’s rooted in education. To be edified means to be instructed in the truth with the purpose of being strengthened in the faith. We prophesy to help the Church grow stronger in the faith.
We speak the truth in love. When God speaks to us He shares the truth in love. Whatever He tells us is true and it’s rooted in God’s love. It’s all meant to bring glory to God and comfort to our souls. His purpose is reconciliation. He has given us the ministry of reconciliation. That means we’re restoring people back to friendly relationships with God.
Some people think that God is out to get them. That’s true in a sense. He’s out to set you free from sin. Some people love the darkness more than the Light. Whatever you love, you become.
Love grace. Love mercy. Love kindness. Love God. You’ll become more like God.
Love evil and sin and you’ll become more evil and more wicked. Don’t be that guy.
There’s a lot of people walking in darkness. Even people that you see in gatherings of the Church. Why is that? Something must be missing in their lives. Should we judge them for that? God forbid. If God reveals something to you, it’s so that you can fill in the blank.
First, pray for them. Silently, to yourself. Ask God what is missing and what He wants to provide. God will give you wisdom. Maybe He will give you a word. The words He provides are for the edification, exhortation, and consolation of the intended recipient. In other words, it’s so that you can provide strength, encouragement and comfort to them. That’s the purpose of prophesy in the Church. We are the Church. Build one another up in love.
Whenever you’re doing something, ask yourself this question: is this bringing glory to me or to God? You want to have pure motives. Humble yourself, exalt God. Then, once your heart is right, you’re ready to minister grace to others.
Be kind. Be gentle. Be patient. Be loving. Ask permission first before sharing with someone what the Lord has revealed. If they despise prophecy, you’ll be wasting your time and theirs. Never disrespect another believer. If they’re not ready, they’re not ready. We minister according to the need of the moment, not by what we want.
If someone needs strengthening, encouragement or comfort and you recognize the need, know that God has gifted you to fill in the blank. Give that word which builds up their faith. Share the truth of God to encourage them. The Lord knows we all could use more encouragement in these dark days. Comfort one another with the comfort you have received from the Lord.
Know His promises are true. He will never leave you nor forsake you. His love is constant. His words are true. His peace surpasses all understanding. Be the hands and feet of Jesus and share His words, too. What He whispers to you in secret, shout it from the rooftops.
Our King is coming soon. Be ready for His return.
Lord God, Father of all life, we give You glory, honor and praise. We recognize our human fraility and weakness and our utter dependence on You. Give us ears to hear what You are saying to Your Church and the individual members of it. Give us hearts of compassion to pray for one another and minister grace through prophecy. May the words You give us and the words we share edify, encourage and comfort Your people. In the Name of Jesus we pray all these things. Amen and amen.
The one who speaks in a tongue edifies himself; but the one who prophesies edifies the church. Now I wish that you all spoke in tongues, but rather that you would prophesy; and greater is the one who prophesies than the one who speaks in tongues, unless he interprets, so that the church may receive edification.1 Corinthians 14:4-5 NASB2020