7 Functions of the Office of a Prophet in the New Testament

There seems to be a lot of confusion about the office of prophet in the New Testament Church. New Testament prophets have seven roles, or functions, in the Church today. We cannot dismiss their purposes, because they release words of wisdom, knowledge, and understanding, helping us navigate the times we are in. 

A prophet of the New Testament never changes the Word of God. The prophet gives us words that illuminate God’s purposes for us today. 

The 7 roles of a prophet in the New Testament:  

  1. Confirm the vision
  2. Correct to the vision 
  3. Revive the vision
  4. Protect the vision
  5. Expand the vision
  6. Bring warning to the people
  7. Judge the word of the prophets

Confirm the Vision | A Role of a Prophet in the New Testament

Scripture reference:

“But Peter explained it to them in order from the beginning, saying: ‘I was in the city of Joppa praying; and in a trance I saw a vision, an object descending like a great sheet, let down from heaven by four corners; and it came to me. When I observed it intently and considered, I saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, creeping things, and birds of the air. And I heard a voice saying to me, “Rise, Peter; kill and eat.”’”

—Acts 11:4-7

This vision was part of the birth of the modern-day Church. To understand this vision we must understand who Peter was. He was a Jewish Believer and prophet in the New Testament. He lived a kosher lifestyle. In the vision, he saw a giant tallit, or prayer shawl, come down from the sky full of unclean animals. 

He had been told his whole life not to touch or eat any of these unclean animals. But the Spirit of the Lord told him, “No, kill and eat.” 

This was the birth of the One New Man, the modern-day Church, when Jew and Gentile would come together in unity (see Ephesians 2). This was a confirmation of the vision.  

Immediately following this vision, Peter speaks the Gospel to Gentiles from Caesarea. The vision confirmed what the Spirit said, “Then the Spirit told me to go with them, doubting nothing,” (Acts 11:12). The vision confirmed Peter’s call. 

Correct the Vision | A Role of a Prophet in the New Testament

Scripture reference:

“And a vision appeared to Paul in the night. A man of Macedonia stood and pleaded with him, saying, ‘Come over to Macedonia and help us.’ Now after he had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go to Macedonia, concluding that the Lord had called us to preach the gospel to them.”

—Acts 16:9-10

Paul, a prophet in the New Testament, did not plan to go to Macedonia. From earlier in the chapter we read that he was “forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the word in Asia” (Acts 16:6). Verse 7 tells us that he went to Mysia, and tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit stopped them. 

Then Paul had the vision mentioned in verses 9 and 10 that corrected his vision. We can imagine that Paul may have been confused as to why he was forbidden to go to Mysian and Bithynia, as he desired to preach the Word. 

But Paul did not allow the confusion to hinder him. He responded to the Spirit’s correction of the vision, laying down his will, going in the direction that the Holy Spirit led him.

He could not have done that had he not allowed a correction of vision to occur. Sometimes the Spirit uses words of correction from a prophet of the New Testament to close doors so that we will follow Him. 

Revive the Vision | A Role of a Prophet of the New Testament

Scripture reference:

“So they rose early in the morning and went out into the Wilderness of Tekoa; and as they went out, Jehoshaphat stood and said, ‘Hear me, O Judah and you inhabitants of Jerusalem: Believe in the Lord your God, and you shall be established; believe His prophets, and you shall prosper.’”

—2 Chronicles 20:20

To be established means to be put in a position of authority. This is done when you believe in the Lord. The next step is to believe the prophetic word. It is then that you will prosper in the position. 

Stepping back and starting to become critical and judgmental with an evil intent kills the prophetic word. 

The revived vision takes place when the prophetic word is believed. When you believe, there is an anointing of establishment and prosperity. 

Protect the Vision | A Role of a Prophet in the New Testament

Scripture reference:

“Saying, ‘Do not touch My anointed ones, and do My prophets no harm.’”

—1 Chronicles 16:22

When God wants to protect the vision, He says, “Listen, I’ve given the prophets special and unique gifts.” You have to understand that there is warfare going on when the Lord releases a prophetic word.

The enemy wants to steal it. Using wisdom in warfare means that we cannot come against the words of the prophet. We want to be established in the vision, not an enemy of the vision. 

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Expand the Vision | A Role of a Prophet in the New Testament

Scripture reference:

“If a trumpet is blown in a city, will not the people be afraid? If there is calamity in a city, will not the Lord have done it? Surely the Lord God does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets. A lion has roared! Who will not fear? The Lord God has spoken! Who can but prophesy?”

—Amos 3:6-8

The book of Amos in the Bible.

The Lord is expanding the vision in the Body of Christ all across the world. He is expanding the purpose of the United States and other nations right now. 

We are called to be a light on the hill. This is the vision the Lord is expanding for us today. 

Curt Landry recently shared a vision of expansion. The vision was thousands of sheep standing in front of the Red Sea. Some of the sheep turned into lions and ran across the Red Sea, across the wilderness, and to the foot of Mount Sinai. 

They consumed the fire on the mountain, which represented instruction. Then the instruction consumed them. They immediately roared and ran with the fire of instruction into the Promised Land. 

The Lord is doing a quick work, expanding the Body of Christ for His Kingdom purposes. 

To be a part of this quick work and vision, you must align yourself with the Lord. 

Bring a Warning | A Role of a Prophet in the New Testament

Scripture reference:

“But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, and the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand.”

—Ezekiel 33:6

The fact is, as Believers, we must take the whole Word. We cannot take only the love and mercy part and leave the justice part. Justice is His judgment for the unrighteous and the righteous. When we take His Word and are on the right side of God, we yield to the Spirit and are bold. In Christ, you have nothing to fear. 

“For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.”

—2 Corinthians 5:21

We may give a word of warning that some will receive, and sadly others will not. But it is our responsibility as kings and priests, to be bold in our position as a watchman. We must be the trumpet that sounds the alarm.

Judge the Word of the Prophets | A Role of a Prophet in the New Testament

Scripture reference: 

“Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others judge. But if anything is revealed to another who sits by, let the first keep silent. For you can all prophesy one by one, that all may learn and all may be encouraged. And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.”

—1 Corinthians 14:29-33

If you want to protect your future, you must surround yourself with people that can judge the spirit of the word in the Spirit, not in the flesh

First Corinthians 14:29-33 is clear on how to do that. We must interact with the prophetic word instead of being critical of it. The timing of the word and the spirit of the word of the instruction is important.

The Takeaway

As a New Testament Believer, you need to stay on fire for the Lord!

The Bible says that in the end times many hearts will grow cold. The heart is where your faith lives. It is impossible to please God without faith. He wants your faith to be on fire. 

God sends modern-day prophets to…

  • Correct the vision, which is to fine-tune it 
  • Revive the vision, which is to pray and receive prayer for renewal and revival
  • Protect the vision and give warning about what is coming

In other words, do not attack the prophetic word. Do not walk in doubt and unbelief. Instead, praise God for what He is doing and will do. And remember, God is always with you and in control. 

“Say to those who are fearful-hearted, ‘Be strong, do not fear! Behold, your God will come with vengeance, with the recompense of God; He will come and save you.’”

Isaiah 35:4

If you would like to hear Curt Landry’s teaching about the 7 functions of the office of a prophet, click here.