Prophetic Ministry Is Going To A New Level – Nathan Shaw
Radical changes are coming to the depth and focus of prophetic ministry. In recent decades the church has come to understand and appreciate the importance of prophetic ministry. During this time many good foundations have been laid. However, we are stepping into dimensions that far surpass present realities. Two strategic foundations will take greater prominence:
- The prophetic power of blessing.
- The importance and significance of standing in God’s council.
The Power of Blessing
The book of Genesis reveals a profound prophetic authority contained in the power of blessing. In fact blessing dominates Genesis from beginning to end. It starts with God blessing Adam and Eve in Genesis 1 and ends with Jacob blessing his twelve sons in Genesis 49. If you took blessing out of the book of Genesis there would be no book of Genesis. Not only do you see fathers blessing their sons and daughters, you also see the outworking of those blessings. Blessings shaped individuals and nations.
Throughout the Bible God is known as the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. God blessed Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Isaac blessed Jacob. Jacob blessed his sons. The nation of Israel was founded on blessing. Abraham, Isaac and Jacob were different, not because of their great exploits, but because of God’s blessing. Blessing releases identity and destiny.
Many in the body of Christ have not received their natural father’s blessing. As we learn to administer our heavenly Father’s blessing these people will be healed and restored. When Jesus came to earth He revealed the Father in a greater dimension than ever before. Consequently the New Testament church has a profound authority to release blessing.
The power of blessing is a foundation for all true prophetic ministry. Abraham is the first person God called a prophet in the Bible (Genesis 20:7) and God expressly said that through Abraham all the families of the earth would be blessed (Genesis 12:3). The more we understand the power of blessing the more prophetic we become.
Standing in God’s Council
In Biblical times it was well understood that supernaturally inspired dreams and visions were the domain of prophets. The concept of everyday people receiving high level dreams and visions on a regular basis was shocking. But that’s exactly what happened at Pentecost (Acts 2:17). However, there’s a lot more to the story.
Old Testament prophets not only received supernaturally inspired revelations, they also stood in God’s heavenly councils—sometimes as observers and sometimes as participants (see for example 1 Kings 22:19-23 or Isaiah 6). In these heavenly councils major and important decisions were made. Prophets had 20/20 vision of that which God was doing in Israel, in the nations, and in the lives of kings and individuals. Standing in God’s councils was an extreme privilege. For this reason prophets were revered.
Jeremiah challenged Israel about listening to lying prophets by asking an important question: “But which of them has stood in the council of the LORD to see or to hear his word?” (Jeremiah 23:18 NIV). He went on to declare that if these prophets had in fact stood in God’s council there would have been a very different outcome for the nation (Jeremiah 23:22). A person can prophesy when God moves on them by His Spirit, but God’s council is a place. It’s a place that’s accessed by the Spirit. The Bible describes it like a place that you can go to and come from (see for example Daniel 7:9-14 or Revelation 4:1-2). Many prophets actually see these councils but such seeing is not a necessity to stand in God’s councils.
How do we stand in God’s council? By faith. How do we release blessing? By faith. Faith opens doors into new dimensions. I have always been amazed at how prophesy works. You can be standing in front of a person and have no inspired thoughts about them at all. But then in a moment of time profound revelations and strategic insights begin to flow. I have had this happen to me countless times when speaking over individuals and churches.
A few years ago I started getting revelation about specific cities and nations. Initially it frightened me to prophesy on this level, but it’s really no different than prophesying over individuals. When prophesying over cities and nations there does need to be a higher level of accountability but whether we are prophesying over individuals, cities, or nations, it’s no harder for God to give the revelation. With the same ease we can be ushered into His council in a moment of time.
Old Testament prophets had dreams and visions and stood in God’s council. New Testament prophets also have dreams and visions and stand in God’s council. However, New Testament prophets have an added dimension: They have a unique authority to equip every member of the church to receive supernatural revelation and stand in God’s council. New Testament prophets equip the church to be God’s prophet in the earth (Ephesians 4:11-16). When you stand in God’s council it affects the way you walk, the way you talk, and the atmosphere that you carry. It releases profound humility (see Isaiah 6:1-7). God is igniting a deep cry within His prophets, and within His body, to not only receive dreams and visions, but to also stand in His heavenly council.
© 2018 Nathan Shaw.
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