A prophet holds the office which God gave to the Church. He is blessed with the gift of prophecy. By necessity, he is a shepherd of sorts, similar to the roles of a pastor. He is responsible before those whom he prophesies because if his alleged revelation from God proves to be of a different spirit, he may bring swift destruction upon himself (II Pet. 2:1b). The prophet, therefore, may be able to reform the community if he is responsible enough to cleanse it of any theological or practical abuses.
The office of prophet is the highest office within Christianity. The famous axiom—with great power comes great responsibility—proves true in the case of the prophetic office. The prophet comes in the name of the Lord, proclaiming oracles received from God to His people, whether they be filled with judgment and condemnation or exhortation and blessing.
If a prophet wants to find his or her position within the body of Christ, then he must take upon himself the duty of reformation. As with any institution, a consistent overview of an organization’s structure and wellbeing is essential for it to survive and flourish. Without taking an in-depth look at the Church and doing away with its wrongful actions, the Church cannot be truly reformed. It will carry with it the stigma, which prophets must be able to address to reform it into the body of Christ.
For example, Jeremiah beseeched the people to “amend [or reform] your ways and your doings, and obey the voice of the Lord your God,” (Jer. 26:13a NRSV). Jeremiah’s act suggests that when one takes a look at early Judaism or the apostolic Church, one is instantly struck with the consistency that characterizes God’s wish to reform the beliefs and practices of His people. When the Temple by Aaron’s sons, Nadab and Abihu, introduced innovative religious practices, “each took his censer, put fire in it, and laid incense on it; and they offered unholy fire before the Lord, such as he had not commanded them. And fire came out from the presence of the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord” (Lev. 10:1-2 NRSV). Based from this account, we can infer that God takes false worship very seriously. He will not accept any form of worship which He Himself did not ordain and command. Prophets, therefore, must constantly reform the Church to avoid similar catastrophic abuses such as those by the sons of Aaron.
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Is there any form of false worship that you must let go of?