Ministry of a Prophet
By Dr. Femi Bolaji Richard
[1 Corinthians 12:1(KJV)]
“Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant.”
One of the reasons for the error, abuse, misrepresentation, misappropriation and assumption that are generating widespread controversies when it comes to the office of an apostle and that of a prophet in our generation today is largely due to ignorance. Ignorance has always been the bane of God’s people from time immemorial and God doesn’t want his people remain ignorant.
Hosea 4:6 (KJV)
“ My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.”
More than any other time in the history of the church, we have more apostles and prophets; yet we don’t have a major biblical breakthrough in the understanding of our mind concerning their true purpose and function. We are in a scenario where we are living with more definitions than functions.
Prompted by the prevailing ignorance on the part of the 21st century church, God has laid it in my heart to put together this incredible book from a point of experience and from the mainstream of rich biblical truth concerning the ministry of the prophet and that of the apostle today.
At the beginning of the early church, the apostolic ministry was prominent. It took a long while before we began to hear of prophets; whereas in the Old Testament, prophets in place; but with the coming of Christ, He shifted things. In the midst of the church under the apostolic wave, we began to see the prophetic coming into prominence.
Then in the book of Acts chapter thirteen, we saw the office of the teacher in the church at Antioch. Philip was also called an evangelist years later.
God gave the Church the fivefold ministry, namely: apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. From time to time, God can lay emphasis on any of these fivefold ministry gifts in the body of Christ as He will. When the spotlight and emphasis are on any, He is not also denying the other four gifts. It is just a seasonal emphasis which we often mistook for supremacy.
In the 80s, the teaching ministry was very strong. Then, you hear phrases like “Confession brings possession,” you hardly hear wrong slangs.
We should not be thrown off course if He places His emphasis on one of the fivefold ministry gifts seasonally. We should enjoy the light that is being shed on it fully but we must not be blown away by it. He is not denying the other four, what He is emphasizing is good, but we will always being blown off course.
In February, 1992-Dr. Morris Cerullo came to Nigeria and conducted a powerful week- long school of ministry tagged,”THE ANOINTING BREAKS EVERY YOKE”, it was an all-African evangelism congress held at the latter Rain Assembly and I was a participant.
Dr. Robert Lairdon, one of the prophetic leading lights in this generation came alongside Dr. Morris cerullo and gave these prophecies during his session about the coming prophetic move in Nigeria.
“I am bringing a NEW OPERATION into this continent; I am raising gifts that have been silent for many years and placing them in the right position” says the spirit of God. “I am bringing besides those I have positioned to assist and to help and to bless for THERE IS A GREAT WORK AHEAD FOR THIS LAND SHALL BE KNOWN AGAIN AS A PLACE OF GREAT CHURCHES as once was in the past.”
“Great ministries shall be born but this time ”says the Spirit of God”shall not be one ot two or three or four but there will be many across this land. So prepare your heart in that way for there is coming A CHANGE in the land in this time” says the Spirit of God.
“CHANGES! CHANGES!! CHANGES!!! In the spirit of the climate of nations. CHANGES in the hearts of the people in this place. ”
We are beginning to live in the light of this prophesy. I was right there and I heard these words in my ear. Eight months later, I was at Ilesha (my hometown) in a fivefold ministry gifts conference organized by Rev. Mike Bamidele (now Bishop Mike Bamidele) at the Victory Church International, Ilesha and Rev. Francis Wale Oke, now bishop Wale Oke…was there and he taught extensively on the fivefold ministry gifts for about three days.
He remarked that the apostle governs the prophet guides, the evangelist gathers, the teacher grounds, and the pastor guards. By these, in a nutshell, he summarized the functions of the fivefold ministry gifts.
Prayers were said at the closing session of this event and when I came out to be prayed for, the Holy spirit overshadowed me and I felt His power went through me like bolts of electricity. I was glued to the sport for a while as my entire being vibrated violently and I knew with every fiber of my being that I had received something divine during this prayer flow; but I didn’t know what it was until next day while preparing for church. Suddenly, my spiritual eyes were opened and I could see for the very first time into the spirit realm of existence and I could also hear words while I was still very much conscious of my environment. I was thrilled because it was the first time this was happening. This went for a weeks; revelations and visions kept unfolding in my eyes in diverse ways until I heard a voice “I have called you from your mother’s womb as a prophet to the nations.” I was startled and shocked thinking ‘I am too young for this’, because most of the prophets I knew were all very old people. I was 22 years old as at that time.
These words floated in my eyes of vision and it went on for days and weeks till I broke down in tears because I least expected it. The call came, the gifts began to operate gradually and gracefully but I gave myself to word of God and studied it diligently for years. I didn’t wear the toga of a prophet up and down or set the title [Prophet] as my initials.
I began to understudy other prophets and observed prophetic movements across the nation of the world with a strong prayer foundation. Having been part of many prophetic movements in Africa; having ministered for many apostles and prophets over the years in major prophetic meetings in Ghana, South Africa, Liberia, DR Congo, Cameroun, Kenya, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Uganda, Togo, and many other cities and nations outside Africa; I realized that God indeed desires to make AFRICA A PEOPLE OFPROPHECY.
What God designed to flow down to us as a pure crystal clear stream from the throne of the Lamb with the intent to edify the body of Christ and impact the society, got mixed up with the chaff which Satan planted. To an extent, the prophetic streams in Africa has been corrupted by Satan with manipulation, extortion, arrogance, pride, witchcraft, divination, ignorance, assumption, unbiblical methodologies and practices.
I began to write this book in 1996. Are you surprised? That is 22 years ago! I had to wait on the Holy Spirit to shed light and supply deeper divine revelations on this crucial subject and for him to take me through certain experiences so I won’t be writing from another viewpoint of a scholarly mind on this subject but from the point of experience which is the basis of all true knowledge.
This book no doubt will trigger a fresh APOSTOLIC & PROPHETIC REVOLUTION in Africa and the rest of the world. It will literarily raise up throne room prophets. It will stir up the gift of God within its reader.
This book is not written to witch-hunt people or attack false prophets. They are not the motivation for writing this piece. This is written purely to EDUCATE THE CHURCH so we can receive, apply and benefits as a body from one of the blessed fivefold ministry gifts Jesus gave the Church during his ascension on high.