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In the Bible, God always brought His Message to the people of the world through the prophet of the age. He spoke to Moses through a burning bush and gave him the commission to lead the Hebrews out of Egypt. The visible Pillar of Fire and other signs were given to vindicate his ministry. John the Baptist brought a Message preparing the world for the coming Messiah. While baptizing the Lord Jesus in the Jordan River, a Voice from Heaven confirmed John’s commission to introduce the Lamb of God, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Years later, the Lord’s Voice was again heard speaking to a prophet when He spoke to Paul through a blinding Light, and later gave him the commission to set the churches in order. Throughout the New and Old Testaments, God has never spoken to His people through a denominational system or a religious organization. He has always spoken to the people through one man: His prophet. And He vindicated these prophets through supernatural signs.
But what about today? Does God still reveal His Word to the prophets? Are there still supernatural signs? Would God send a modern-day prophet into the world? The answer is a most definite, “Yes!”
But how will we know when a prophet arises? What will he look like? How will he act? What sign will he give us? What Scriptures will he fulfill?
The prophets of old were gallant men of God, and were not afraid to stand against religious organizations. In fact, they were almost always reviled by the clergy. Elijah challenged the religious organizations of his day, asking them if God would respect their offering, or his. They shouted. They prophesied. They jumped on top of the altar. They cut themselves with knives. But God did not hear them. Elijah looked up to Heaven and said, “Let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word.” He then called fire down from Heaven to consume the offering. Micaiah the prophet withstood the King of Israel, and the entire priesthood, when he rebuked the High Priest Zedekiah for prophesying a lie. The High Priest struck him in the face and the King imprisoned him for speaking the truth. Even the Lord Jesus was so hated by the religious organizations of His day that they crucified Him alongside the vilest of criminals. If history holds true, a prophet would be hated by the modern denominational system, and he would be labeled a heretic, false prophet, or worse. But God would stand by His servant.
If there was a prophet in this modern day, how would he be accepted by the Catholic Church? The Baptist Church? The Lutheran Church? Any denomination?
The Lord Jesus commissioned all that believe Him:
“And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.”
(Mark 16:17-18). Is this Scripture true today? If it is not true, when did the Words of the Lord expire? Throughout the Bible, the prophets were able to heal the sick, cast out devils, and perform miracles. Moses set the brass serpent before the people of Israel to heal them from the bite of venomous snakes (Numbers 21:9). Naaman, a powerful Syrian, came to Elisha to be healed of leprosy (II Kings 5:9). When a young man fell to his death from the upper window, the apostle Paul embraced him and brought life back into the dead body (Acts 20:10). We only have record of about 3½ years of our Lord Jesus’ life, but during those few years, He continually healed the sick. The blind were made to see. Lepers were healed. The deaf received their hearing. The lame walked. Every manner of disease was healed (Matt 4:23).
God also vindicated his prophets in other ways besides healings. Even the most guarded secrets of the heart were made known to these men of God. King Nebuchadnezzar had a troubling dream, but he could not remember what it was about. The prophet Daniel told the king both the dream and the prophecy that followed (Dan 2:28). Nothing was hidden from Solomon when the Queen of Sheba came before him. He was so filled with the Spirit that he told her the questions of her heart
she asked them (I Kings 10:3). Elisha told the King of Israel all the plans of the King of Syria, even to the private words spoken in his bedroom (II Kings 6:12).
Through His own actions, the Lord Jesus showed that this Spirit of discernment is the Spirit of Christ. He discerned Nathanael’s nature when He said, “Behold an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile!” And Jesus went on to tell Nathanael where he was when Phillip told him about the Messiah (John 1:48). When he saw that Jesus knew his heart, Nathanael immediately recognized Him as the Christ. The first time Jesus saw Peter, He told him the name of his father, Jona (John 1:42). Peter then forsook all and followed Jesus for the rest of his life. Jesus met the Samaritan woman at the well and told her of her past sins. Her first words were, “Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet” (John 4:19). All three of these people were from different walks of life, yet they immediately recognized Jesus when He showed the gift of discernment.
Did this gift disappear when the last page of the Bible was written? If these miracles are so plainly written in the Bible, where are they today? A modern-day prophet would surely be vindicated by miracles.
Has God forgotten His people? Is He still able to heal the sick? Does He still speak to us through His prophets? Did any of the prophets foresee this day?
Are there prophecies that have yet to be fulfilled?