In Christendom today, there are many in the flesh that have put themselves under the office of being a prophet or prophetess and at the same time are prophesying the word of GOD. In this short essay, I want to ask this question: Is the gift of prophecy valid for today?. To get an understanding of the role of a prophet let us go to the word of GOD. 20 But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. 21 And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? 22 When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that [is] the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, [but] the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him. (Deuteronomy.18:20-22).
A prophet was GOD’s spokesman: He spoke for GOD and gave His message. Sometimes that message was regarding the future, other times it concerned the present (during the prophet’s lifetime), even the past, or simply doctrinal truth, but it was always GOD’s message going forth. The office of prophet was a valid office during the biblical times, there is no question about that, but now we need to focus on the original question: Is the gift of prophecy valid for today? We will let the Scriptures answer this question.
PAUL, the apostle to the church the body of CHRIST, gives us two very important Scriptures to help us find the answer to this question. First, Paul tells us in Acts 17:10-15 to be like the Bereans and search “the Scriptures to see if those things were so”. Next, he tells us in 2 Timothy 2:15 “study to shew thyself approved unto GOD, a workmen that needeth not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. Using these two verses as our guide let’s examine what Paul had to say about the gift of prophecy.
In 1 Corinthians 13:8-10 the apostle says this: “charity never faileth (will never go away): but whether there be prophecies they fail, whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge it shall vanish away. 9 For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. 10 But when that which is prefect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away with.
There are many in the church today who denies that all these signs gifts will ever cease. I want to focus on the sign gift of prophecy and why it is no longer valid. There are several factors that tell us that prophecy is no longer given to the church.
- GOD has given us a complete revelation of Scriptures which is altogether sufficient in all stages of faith and practice.
- No revelation is given today (the LORD warned not to add nor take away from His word (Revelation 22:18-19) no one can add a verse to the Scriptures.
- The prophets were the foundation of the church (Ephesians 2:19-22) which is now complete
- If they are prophesying the Word of God today, I should be able to verify the prophecy from the Word of God because the cannon is complete.
Prophecy was an important gift to the church and met a unique need in the early church, but it is no longer needed or given. Its partial message (1 Corinthians 13:9) has been replaced by the complete cannon of revelation (Scriptures). The church, the Body of Christ, needs nothing added to the revelations that were given to the Apostle Paul for the church, the Body of Christ.
May the LORD JESUS CHRIST add a blessing to this study.