Various Way God Calls People to the Prophetic

Various Way God Calls People
to the Prophetic
Indications while still a youth
Bob Jones, whom I have already mentioned numerous times in this book,
is a man who has had a profound prophetic ministry. Bob had very little
religious background and did not become a Christian until he was in his late
thirties. Nevertheless, Bob had several angelic visitations and supernatural
experiences as a boy that indicated he would have a prophetic ministry in
his adult life. When Bob was thirteen, he heard an audible voice from heaven
call his name. When he was fifteen, he saw himself in a vision being broughtbefore the throne of God. These experiences terrified Bob. It took him
several months to get over the vision. It never occurred to him until after
his conversion that these things represented God’s call on his life rather than
God’s judgment. Immediately after his conversion, to Bob’s amazement, the
prophetic gifts began to operate powerfully in his life. Bob is an example of
how the gifts of grace and the calling of God were given as a result of God’s
grace, not his striving.
Sudden calling in one’s adult life
Marty Streiker spent his whole adult life as a schoolteacher. In his early
fifties, he heard the gospel and responded enthusiastically. Immediately
after he was born again, he began to receive prophetic dreams and visions.
However, he had no knowledge of the gifts of the Holy Spirit and, thus, no
frame of reference for his experiences. The prophetic gifts that began with
his conversion continued to increase over the years that followed.
Stirring up the gift
Michael Sullivant has been a pastor and teacher who for many years
believed in the prophetic ministry. Yet Michael’s function in the church was
mostly in the areas of leadership and teaching. Several prophetic people told
Michael that they sensed he would have a prophetic ministry someday, but
that seemed unlikely since there was no notable sign in him of any prophetic
gifting or calling. However, for thirty nights in a row, after one prophetic
word was spoken over him, he had prophetic dreams. Since that time,
Michael has grown much in the prophetic ministry.
John Wimber was teaching at Fuller Theological Seminary when hebegan to teach on healing. Soon after, healings started taking place. Before
long the word of knowledge, which is a function of the prophetic call,
began to operate in him in a mighty way. With John Wimber, there was no
dramatic angelic visitation or voice from heaven. He simply began to regularly
step out in faith by speaking the words of knowledge that God was
giving him. In the process, the gifts of the Spirit began to operate through
him more and more.
Phil Elston had recollections of “seeing” things as a boy and thinking that
there was nothing unusual about this. He had several supernatural encounters
with God. One of them led to his conversion to Jesus Christ. Phil didnot have understanding about the prophetic gifting that manifested itself
rather strongly in him after his conversion in 1976. He had many spiritual
dreams and visions and heard God’s voice. The most common way that this
gift operates in him now is by receiving impressions from the Holy Spirit
that allow him to know things he has no natural way of knowing. Now Phil
travels internationally teaching and ministering prophetically.
These are just a few of the testimonies that could be offered in this book.
The point of all this is that the prophetic calling on someone’s life is a function
of God’s plan, issued before that person did anything to cultivate the
gift. God has gifts and callings designed for your life. Bible training, discipline,
fasting, and praying will not change your calling. However, these
spiritual disciplines will enhance the release of the calling that has already
been divinely determined. The goal is not to try to get God to call you as a
prophet. It is usually a matter of stirring up the gifts and callings already
determined for you by God.