When God calls ministers of the gospel, He anoints them with one or more of the fivefold ministry gifts—apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor and teacher—and sets them among us to perfect us through revelation. We can connect with these gifts through partnership, which brings us into covenant relationship with them. Once that divine connection is made, the anointing that is on the apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor or teacher is released to us. We partake of their grace, or their anointing.
When the Apostle Paul wrote to his covenant partners in Philippi concerning their “fellowship in the gospel” (Philippians 1:5), he went on to tell them, “Ye all are partakers of my grace [my anointing]” (verse 7). In other words, the same anointings and giftings that were in full manifestation in Paul’s life and ministry were available to those who were in covenant partnership with him. All they had to do was lay hold of them by faith, place a draw on them, and receive them.
If you are a Partner with Kenneth Copeland Ministries, you have access to the same covenant partnership with the ministry of the prophet that Kenneth Copeland has operated in since 1977. When you attend or watch the convention this year, you will receive powerful teaching. But if you desire to make a total withdrawal from the deposit God gives you, it is critical to understand the ministry of the prophet.
The Role of the Prophet
Also known as seers, prophets serve as the eyes of the Body of Christ. They perceive deep spiritual revelation, and see far out in the distance, with a view best likened to that of an eagle. As beholders of visions, prophets have the ability to see the future through a tunnel of time, meaning that what seems impossible or unlikely to those around them is easy for prophets to envision.
Imagine what those around them must have thought when the prophets from Genesis to Malachi declared, “The Anointed One is coming! The Anointed One is coming!” There was no sign to back up their claims, and it certainly didn’t seem likely. Yet, these prophets were looking beyond what made sense and seeing ahead to what God had revealed to them.
But beyond simply seeing ahead to the future plans and purposes of God, prophets also serve as the mouth of the Lord. The Hebrew word for prophet, nabi, is also translated as spokesman. Prophets today say whatever God tells them to say, just as the prophets in the Old Testament obeyed Him when He told them, “You must go wherever I send you and say whatever I tell you” (Jeremiah 1:7, New Living Translation).
In the Old Testament, the prophets were mouthpieces for the Lord—delivering His Word into the earth. God revealed this to Jeremiah, saying, “Look, I have put my words in your mouth!” (verse 9, NLT).
The message of God, delivered by way of many prophets, announced the coming of Jesus—the foretold King—hundreds of years before the event took place. Why would God leave a roadmap to Jesus through prophets? The Bible tells us it is a prerequisite, as “surely the Lord God does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7, New King James Version).
In other words, without the prophets, Jesus could not have come. In the book of Matthew alone, there are at least 16 references to Jesus where attention was turned back to the fact, “that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet.”
The role of a prophet is to see what is revealed by God, then speak it, declaring God’s plans on the earth. Revelation delivered via prophets will come in the form of a word of knowledge, a word of wisdom or the discerning of spirits. In addition, prophecy, as defined in 1 Corinthians 14:3, edifies, exhorts and comforts—it is speaking inspired by God.
Make no mistake—prophetic words are not all edification and comfort. Old Testament prophets—just as modern-day prophets—declared judgment. The heart behind such warnings did not come from a heart of condemnation, but from the love of the Father giving opportunity to those in jeopardy to repent, turn around and change their ways. In Ezekiel 3:17, He said to His prophet, “I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore hear a word from My mouth, and give them warning from Me” (NKJV).
There was a reason that God constantly endeavoured to teach His people to obey Him: He wanted them to live in victory. So all through the Bible, you’ll find Him talking to His people, sending them prophets as witnesses of Himself and revealing His good plan for them. God always did His best to cause Israel to hear what He was saying so they could obey and live free from bondage.
God sent prophets to Israel to tell them how to avoid defeat, year after year after year. It’s amazing to see how much God cared for Israel. And He still cares that much for us today!
The book of Jeremiah provides another clear and accurate picture of God’s history with His people. The Scripture says He continually sent prophets to tell His people what they should do for their own good (Jeremiah 7:25, 35:15). Yet, again and again, the people refused to listen to what God said through those He sent.
God still warns through His prophets today. It can be a word of correction, judgment or warning to an individual, the Church or even a nation. No matter the recipient, when a word of warning comes through the ministry of the prophet, one thing is sure—we need to listen.
Prophets Prepare the Way
The great prophet Isaiah announced things to come, to prepare the hearts of the people, invoking them to open their spiritual eyes and expect a move of God. Isaiah 40:3, 5 says, “The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God…. And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.”
The voice of the prophet Isaiah was creating a highway for the coming of the Lord. And in John 1:14, we find that “the Word became flesh” (NKJV). The prophetic word was now reality. This is an example of the fulfilment of prophecy after a long wait, and an illustration of how we are to view prophecy in our personal lives. When you receive from the ministry of a prophet, whether it be a personal word for you or a declaration over the Church or your nation—don’t ever give up on a prophetic word—and don’t let the passage of time weaken your faith.
Years before it actually took place, Brother Copeland spoke a prophetic word about the Berlin Wall coming down. At the time, people may have thought, Well, that wall has been around for a long time! There was no natural sign that it was even close to coming down. Yet, on Nov. 9, 1988, the wall came down. It was a prophetic word in action.
That’s how prophets prepare the way. A prophetic word tears down and roots out. It changes and builds up. It can take a divided city and make it whole again. We participate by believing, receiving, interceding and taking action, when necessary.
The Lord will do nothing until He reveals things to His prophets. He will reveal to His servants the words that need to be declared, and those words will begin to produce a highway to the fulfilment of those words.
How To Receive From the Ministry of the Prophet
The Bible says, if you believe His prophets, then you will prosper (2 Chronicles 20:20). That means to receive from this ministry, first you must believe the words a prophet speaks. And naturally, if you believe the words of a prophet, you will receive them, intercede and take action.
As you prepare to attend the 2023 Southwest Believers’ Convention, pray that the prophet’s ministry will come forth, and that the Church will receive the benefits. God said He will tell the prophet what is to come, and the prophet will tell the Church. We need to know what’s coming! That’s why Kenneth E. Hagin said the prophet’s ministry is above the teaching ministry.
When Kenneth Copeland steps over from the gift of teaching to the office of the prophet, he will deliver a message by the Spirit. It becomes a time of revelation, warning and instruction. It is a treasure of God’s words being delivered in audible form to you as a believer.
You Can Partake of the Prophet’s Reward
A prophet’s reward is waiting for you at the Southwest Believers’ Convention this year. Jesus said, “If you receive a prophet as one who speaks for God, you will be given the same reward as a prophet” (Matthew 10:41, NLT). What is the prophet’s reward? The anointing—the equipping to do what you’re called to do. Prophets have the keys that can open doors within you—and open doors for the entire Body of Christ.
The ministry of the prophet is an accelerator. It moves God’s people forward more quickly through revelation, warning and instruction. It gives us direction for prayer and action in our lives and in our world. It prepares the way for things to come and keeps our expectancy where it belongs—high!
You can act on these life-changing words by being open and eager, and valuing the ministry of the prophet.