The Prophet

  Some of the most interesting stories in the Bible are the stories of prophets. Just about everyone knows the story of Elijah and the false prophets of Baal in First Kings 18. Elijah had been called of God to stop the rain for 3 years at the end of which he faced hundreds of false frenzied prophets in an absolute test of whose God was real. There is another story that at first glance doesn't reveal important details. That is the story of Jonah. The account itself seems to indicate that God wanted Jonah to go to Ninevah and Jonah didn't want to go; so God made him go. Truth is God doesn't make us do anything we don't want to do. We can do it and get God's blessing or we can do otherwise and lose God's blessing. If we do something God tells us not to do, we reap dust devils, whirlwinds or typhoons.  Jonah was a volunteer prophet until Ninevah when he tried to break his vows to God. God does not allow vows to be broken, except in rare cases and with incompetents.
  Prophets have always been sent to forwarn individuals or nations to beware the judgement of God. They are not buffers. They are usually not the carriers of God's judgement themselves, nor were they to soften the judgement of God. They, themselves, did not usually have the power to negotiatate. They just had a message that God commanded them to deliver.

 One interesting aspect of several of the prophets of God was that before they left the presence of God to deliver a message, God told them that the recipient or recipients would not listen to or hear what the message was! Still, the prophet was to deliver the message and maybe repeat the message numerous times even though the hearer did not have the right ears. Isaiah chapter six reveals that the compassion of the God of Grace would fall upon deaf ears. In fact the more people heard of the grace of God, the harder they would become.
  Hosea and Ezekiel are two stories that show us that sometimes prophets had to be conditioned in order to deliver the message in the right mood and spirit. Both of those men and there are others who had to get their minds off themselves, so they could correctly and boldly deliver the message of God.
 Another absolute in the ministry of a prophet was that if he was truly sent from God, then he carried the authority of God with him.The recipients of his message might disdain the messenger and his message. They might even kill the messenger. But they soon realized that the scraggly dressed, poorly situated, prophet had indeed carried truth and they should have listened. They should have considered the facts of their own hearts.

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