Home About Us Apostolic Free Library Questions & Answers Guestbook Order Online Search The Network

Purpose of Prophesy

Submitted: 9/14/2005
Post a comment or
ask a follow-up question
Question: I was witnessing to a woman who does not believe in tongues for this present day. She asked me what the purpose of prophecy in the present day is. Her reasoning was that the Bible is complete giving all the information we need to live now, as well as what will happen in the future. I had never thought about it like that before. I didn't know how to respond to her. I didn't try to fudge. I admitted that I was unsure how to answer but that I'd look into it and get back to her. What do you think of that?

Answer: There are several ways to respond to the contention that prophecy is not for today since the Bible has been completed. First, Roman 12:6 lists prophecy as a gift of grace along with ministry, teaching, exhortation, etc. Are we to believe that these other gifts are no longer for today too? What justification is there for singling out prophecy?

Second, Ephesian 4:11-12 lists prophets along with apostles, evangelists, pastors, and teachers as necessary for the quipping of saints for the work of ministry. Are we to believe that this equipping can now be done without prophets or that equipping is no longer part of God's plan?

Third, in Acts 21:10-11 a prophet named Agabus prophesied that Paul would be arrested in Jerusalem. Now let's suppose that Paul had a completed Bible. How would that have communicated to him what he should expect in Jerusalem? Prophecy never contradicts the settled Word of God, but is does give us God's Word for the current situation.

Another example is in Acts 11:28, when this same prophet predicted a worldwide famine. This enabled the Christians to begin preparing relief efforts before the famine actually arrived. The problem today is, if a true prophet had said last year that there would be a horrible distaster in New Orleans at the end of August 2005, who would have believed him? Yet, if he had been believed, many lives could have been saved.

The fact that we have a completed Bible today does not do away with the need for prophecy. We need true prophets of God today just as the early believers needed them.