As I have travelled lately and browsed the various websites, I have noticed a NEW trend that has arisen and that is the "School of the Prophets". Now my posting this forum is NOT to offend anyone but I'm puzzled by this NEW sensation. In my 22 years of ministry, I don't ever remember such a thing, and this trend is becoming increasing larger than I imagined.
Some one please help me understand WHERE in the pages of Holy Scripture did ANY of the Major or Minor Prophets went to school to learn the GIFT of the prophetic ministry. I'm of the belief that NO ONE can teach a prophet the HOW TO'S of the office and I would love to understand the curriculum of such a school and why is there SOOOOOO many School of the Prophets?? This is just something that I've been pondering and witnessing.
This is what God has spoken to my spirit personally concerning the matter. I can't really speak for anyone else but only concerning my God given revelation.
I am in absolute agreement that noone can be "taught" to be a prophet. That gift is placed in your spirit even before the foundation of the earth. Even before we were formed in our mother's womb (according to God in the book of Jeremiah.) So, I'm in absolute agreement when you say this is not something that can be taught to person. If it's not a God given gift, it can not be developed.
But the vision that God gave me for Prophetic Institute was not to teach anyone how to "become a prophet" but to simply offer support, discipleship and avenues to network with "like-minded & like-spirited persons" to those who have already acknowledged the gift as they continue to walk in that place.
Somewhat of a Elijah-Elisha or perhaps Moses-Joshua type relationship. This is the concept that God placed in my spirit. So when I say "school" or maybe I should say "company" of prophets. I don't intend to train anyone to become a prophet. But simply share the experiences of the prophetic walk with others.
Again, I can't really express what others may mean when they say School of the Prophets. But for me, this was that which was placed by God in my spirit to complete. For me it wasn't a "trend" but a directive from God. Like many others who walk in this place, if I could do what I do and just remain responsible for me only, then I would. Because, of course, it's alot simpler that way. But that's not where God wants me right now. I'm in a season where He has bought me into a new level of obedience unto Him.And I committed to remaining in His will.
Bless you Bishop Nesby. I appreciate your heart in asking this question. I would say that your questions are openings to bring understanding to the times we are in. This will definately cause all of us to move in divine order as the Lord would have it.
Most prophets received special training. The school of the prophets was first instituted by Samuel. 1 Samuel 19 tells us that It was located during the early years at Ramah 1 Samuel 19:19,20. Later schools were established at Bethel, Jericho, Gilgal, and elsewhere 2 Kings 2:3,5. The schools attracted student of the word who were given formal training in the law and its interpretation. They were lead by an elderly prophet called Master. This is where the term the sons of the prophets comes from. 1 Sam. 10:12; 2 Kings 2:3.
Prophetic training comes to fine tune the hearing of those called to the office. In having a SOP it creates a plumbline for Prophets to operate by. In years past, the office of the Prophet really got a bad rep. This was do to lack of training and not understanding proper prophetic protocol. So what you had was a bunch of loose guns going around shooting out of the mouth with words that were not in alignment with scripture and doing great damage in the Body of Christ. Thus causing the Prophets to be thrusted out of the church do to the amount of damage they caused. However, as bad as this was, it was already prophesied in Gen. 49:19 that "Gad, a troop shall tramp upon him, But he shall triumph at last.
Now the name Gad means "Troop." This is a prophetic picture of the Company of Prophets. It says they will be tramped upon (ie..held back, crushed, and removed). However, it goes on to say that there will be a time in which the Troop will overcome. In other words there will be a time of release for the Troops.
The reason you are seeing so many SOP's rising in this season is because "The Set Time Is Now." There had to be a season of maturity for the Prophets in order that the Church may come into the place God has predestined for her. I beleive that there are great Prophets in your own house. Once they learn the Plumbline of the Prophet they can and will be of great assistance to you and your ministry and you will start to see great breakthroughs happen with less henderance. For the root of the Prophets ministry are the six keys that God gives them in Jer. 1:10 "See, I have this day set you over the nations and over the kingdoms, To root out and to pull down, To destroy and to throw down, To build and to plant."
Once again I appreciate your heart and I sense you are seeker of the deeper things of God. I pray that I was able to help you and point you in the right direction for God confirm in your heart what I have given you.
May God expand your territory and take you deeper in His glory than you have ever experienced.
Grace to you, Prophet Marc, I want to 1st say that I AM very aware of these Scriptures that you aforementioned and the dynamics of the scriptures that are mentioned, HOWEVER the terminology that is meant in the text is NOT what is being displayed in today's meaning. I would that you explain to me an overview of the overall curriculum/teachings of your SOP.
Thanks for the response Bishop....I personally do not run a SOP. My site is more of a fellowship for those with a prophetic call on their life. However, I have associates that do run schools with curriculum's that I could point you to. I do want to say that not every SOP is of God. In other words their are some teachings that are way off the mark, and they teach complete heresy. As you stated before....no one can teach you how to be a prophet. However, they can assist you in learning to hear from God, which is what sound Biblical based SOP's are doing in this season and much much more.
I, in fact have a Prophet in the ministry, as well as Myself who flows in the gifting of the Prophetic and am very knowledgeable of the office, BUT the problem I still have with this is, WHY SO MANY????? Because with ALL these different schools that are "popping up", we are STILL witnessing IGNORANCE in this office within the walls of the Church and needless to say some of them are attending these schools.
When I search the life of the Prophets of the bible, MANY of them were only used for specific moments, seasons or circumstances. And the messages that they delivered were of Warnings, Destruction, and/or Information and once they delivered what the Lord has said, many of them died or moved on. These prophets were oft times the bearers of BAD NEWS, but what I'm hearing/seeing today and have seen/heard for much of my 22 year ministry life, is that of the "Yea saith God, that in three Days, you gonna be blessed with a lump sum of money", or "New House, Car, etc. but I DON'T hear or see ANY of the Prophets like Nathan, Jeremiah, Isaiah, and others that told those in whom the Lord sent them to, about their Sins, Pending Death OR Destruction. The ignorance that is perpetuated in the church by many of these Prophets is a distinct SOUND that God IS & WILL NOT be pleased with.
The need to study to show ourselves approved unto God, needing not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth is a command, that those called to prophetic ministy, must adhere to and view as a necessary step to obedience and seeing the Body of Christ perfected. While it is thankfully true, that prophets are ordained and sanctified from their mother's womb and given the "word" to say, by God, there are areas that they must be knowledgeable in, that is found in His written word, as well as, from others, who are directed to help bring them into levels, of prophetic maturity. Those called to prophetic ministry must walk according to protocal and be knowledgeable of the giftings that God has graced them with. In addition, the giftings of the prophetic, must be stirred and activated, as with any of the other five-fold offices and giftings.
The prophet receives revelation knowledge from God and speaks forth, as the Spirit of God, gives utterance. Amos 3:7-8. The prophet is called into a place of God where God teaches them Himself, about Himself, which is His glory; the intricacies and essence of His being. They must know how to move and operate in God and they must know details of the mantle(level and manner of authority in Spirit realm) that has been placed on their lives and activated by God through His Spirit. As the Apostle/Bishop and Pastor operate in different administrations and receive teaching, activation and impartation through vessels of the Spirit of God, so does the prophet.
Prophets move and operate in realms of authority, according to their mantle and are to only say what God tells them to say. Prophets, as with anyone else, learn from God according to their availability to God. However; they too should sit at the feet of a mentor and teacher and learn protocol, the voices that oppose God's, double portion anointing, prophetic realms, dimensions, territory, gifts, the responsibilities and accountability of the call, identifying the call and other teachings that they did not get directly from God and like all Christians, no matter what their purpose is, must have to please God and to be effective ambassadors in the kingdom.
I am reminded of the reference to "group of Prophets," (Schools of Prophets, according to Matthew Henry) in 1 Samuel 10:5-11, 20:35. It is believed that Samuel and Elijah, among some others, had a School of Prophets whereas they trained young men (referred to as sons of prophets) in prophetic ministry. The Sons of Prophets in reference to Elijah and Elisha can be found in 2 Ki 2:3,15. (at least).
It is not uncommon for persons of like interest to form associations or study together. We learn in so many different ways. Seasoned prophets can provide a wealth of gleaning, to the less experienced, less learned, less confident, prophet.
There are a lot of Prophetic Schools, on the rise, because there is a "paradigm shift" taking place in the Body of Christ and the prophets, as well as, the other five-fold offices must be learned and in position to fulfill the purpose that God has called them to. God has assigned many seasoned prophets, to provide a platform for others to learn from, in a structured setting.
Please feel free to browse: www.propheticmantlenetwork.com for a list of the classes offered at Prophetic Mantle Network School of Prophets and further insight on its mission.
I pray that this information has addressed your concerns.
Consumed in His Purpose,
Prophetess Janice Fountaine
I appreciate your insight and I did visit your site, and I noticed that once your students complete the sessions they graduate. May I ask what are they being tested on?? And when you mention graduate, will they earn a degree or certificate of completion?? Your site also states that some may be ordained as well, will they be ordained as a Prophet under you and your ministry?? What about those who are already ordained by their Pastors/Bishops etc...? I MUST say that EVERY Prohpetic School is NOT called of God NOR operating in the things of God. So I must disagree that the reasoning for these Prophetic Schools is because of a "Paradigm Shift", because EVERYBODY can NOT be a Prophet.
After reading this blog, I too have to add my words and thoughts within this and explain my points in the simplest ways possible:
Who amongst you know of the Marvel characters "The X-MEN"? We almost all know of it from the movies. If anyone followed the movie or even the comic books and cartoons, you would know that the X-Men were powerful mutants with different gifts assembled by a man named Charles Xavier, a highly powerful mutant himself. Before they ever jumped into the suits and fought the enemy, they first had to attend Xavier's school for "gifted people". He didn't give them the gift; no they already came with the gift. What he did was 1) helped them accept the gift within them because they usually ran from their calling and gifting, 2) taught them how to harness the power within them with focus and self control, and 3) pointed them in the right direction as he sent them out to "serve" and protect the very world that actually hated them.
What does this have to do with the Prophetic? Picture the School as the "School of the Prophets", call the "mutants" Apostles & Prophets, and call Professor X "Apostle/Prophet Charles Xavier". The school of the Prophets is very much so Biblical, with the start accredited to the Prophet/Priest Samuel. Many famous alumni have come from it, some obvious, and some people didn't even realize:
-King Saul (mentored by Samuel himself)
-Elisha (mentored by Elijah)
(need I go on?)
To understand and help harness the power that works within a new born Prophet(ess), they are guided by the HOLY SPIRIT to an elder Prophet(ess), a company of Prophets, and/or an Apostle. Normally new Prophet(ess)s come out and say silly things like "I don't need no help or teacher, cause GOD Himself teaches me". This can not be any further from the truth! If they go out and just learn by "trial and error" without guidance from an elder and/or a the Prophetic Company, they have to learn by just simply experimenting on the saints. How many of you want to go to a doctor and he's "just figuring it out" with NO TYPE of guidance???? "Don't worry, I can do this brain surgery because I got talent and good instincts!" No they weren't lone rangers! They had guidance. For those that didn't have that much guidance, they had ALOT MORE GRACE, because you will hurt many a soul out of ignorance, trying to do GOD's will and stand for righteousness.
The NT had the same school system installed started by JESUS as HE worked with the Apostles. Paul mentored Timothy and Titus; Peter had Mark; John had Gauis (3rd John) and Ignatius of Antioch, and so on. The School of the Prophets is not just systematic teaching of the Bible and church history, but a mentorship/internship/big-brother program with a different curriculaum because you aren't supposed to train a Prophet like you train a Pastor, Evangelist Bishop, Deacon, Teacher or Missionary. For example: Evangelists are taught "win the lost at any cost". The Prophet is NOT necessarily called for that job. The Teacher has a certain style of teaching that is structured and orderly, not breaking mold or form because he/she pumps them out like a factor. The Prophet does NOT teach in such a manner. I know this because I came from a Church that was Evangelistic and Teaching based. ALL THEY PUMPED OUT WERE EVANGELISTS, PASTORS AND TEACHERS LIKE A FACTORY! The Prophets that came out of there? They LEFT out of there. Why? Simple, you answered the reason with your very own words: "In my 22 years of ministry, I don't ever remember such a thing, and this trend is becoming increasing larger than I imagined." The Prophetic and Apostolic Office have only been restored only recently (past 20 years give or take) at this level, and it will grow even more because it is needed. There are alot of colleges and alot of seminaries. Each one puts out a certain type of graduate. Watch closely for the Alumni of the Apostles and Prophets Classes from '00 to '09, and beyond! The curriculum is TOTALLY different (detailed Apostolic/Prophetic Warfare, Angels & Demon, Edenic Dominion, the animal kingdom, "Studying the stars", 1st -7th Heavens, Feast studies, Prophetic history on Prophets/Seers like Enoch, Apostle John, Samuel, Daniel, ect.). Just keep an eye out and ask around for different subject matter that the Prophets study and speak on amongst themselves, because Prophets are naturally "cliche-ish"!
I must disagree with you about the Restoration of the office of the Prophet and Apostle, in my 22 years of ministry I've encountered the Prophetic and Apostolic ministry of some GREAT Men & Women of God, some who've gone on to Glory and some who are STILL active; names such as George Brooks, Nathan Simmons, Brian Mosely, Kim Clement, etc. these offices have NOT diminshed at all in all of my 22 years. BUT the intense growth that we're seeing is SUSPECT because many Prophets are being glamorized because of the gift NOT for the authority of the office, the reason I say this is because just about EVERY conference a Prophet is invited and it's NOT for the Word of God but to give a prophecy and this is a travesty.
Do you HONESTLY think that the people in the Holy Scriptures were EXCITED, ANXIOUS, INVITING to see the Prophets when they knew what the ROLE of the Prophet brought with it???? The answer is NO!!!
I agree with most of the responses I have read so far, particularly Prophet Marc. I think the problem arises because of the use of the term, School. It may be a misnomer, in this case. I think the term, School of Prophets, refers more to a group of prophets than a school house for prophets: (for example; school of fish = group of fish). 2 Kings 6 refers to the sons of prophets, usually the students of the master prophet, (in this case, Elisha), who were building a new place to dwell, in their community of prophets. From my study of the history of prophets, prophets were originally believed to be madmen, or estatics (Nava can mean to prophesy or to utter in a state of frenzy). So because they were not considered, normal, they tended to move in the same circles, and live in communities and travel in companies of prophets, hence the term, School of Prophets. I must say, I agree with you that a lot of these prophets and schools are not of God. I completely agree that the sudden proliferation of prophets bespeaks of a disturbing trend. I would dare say the endtime inundation of all ofthe gifts and offices (five fold and otherwise) is a sign that the spirit of deception has entered the temple. I have long questioned the rise of so many prophets, apostles, pastors, wonders... in this time. And I agree, the prophets of old came with words of correction, reproof and admonishment; and today there seems to be alot of prosperity prophets. I would dare say that it is possible for an entire region of prophets to be struck with a lying spirit (see 1 Kings 22). So, all in all, I think your question has merit, and there are some misconceptions concerning the school of the prophets, company of prophets, and the role in the endtime of the prophets, both those who have the gift of prophesy and those who occupy the governmental office of prophet. I think that God would that the leaders teach the Bible, just as it is, in order to insulate from the deception. The Bible speaks for itself, and if we would go back to teaching a solid gospel, line upon line and precept upon precept; we would not be swept away by every wind and doctrine. I think it is telling that in the book of Revelations, God wrote to one of the churches, that He held (against the church) their refusal to dismiss the endtime teaching ministry of Prophetess Jezebel (Rev. 3:20), another sure sign that at this time there would be a problem in the church with those who call themselves a prophet(ess), but God did not indict Jezebel, He held the church responsible for tolerating that spirit, in the temple.
I would agree with just about everything you said my friend. However, the words about "and today there seems to be alot of prosperity prophets" is a thing that is to be examined. Far too often we hear a message on prosperity from a Prophetic person, and we turn from it because we want to hear the Gospel of JESUS. I thought GOD took pleasure in the prosperity of HIS people. I thought "money answers all things". Prosperity can be good if kept in check, but far too often the regulations are so tight it can't even get taught! You cannot restrict a Prophet to "just preach the Gospel of JESUS death burial and resurrection". Here are a few reasons why:
1) Do you call a barber to be your lawyer? Is the medical doctor your mechanic? "I called for Bob, so what are you doing here Jack?"Is a Prophet necessarily an Evangelist, or are there distinct differences in the offices? Peter heard his assignment from CHRIST, and instead of simply obeying, he turned and questioned the next man's destiny and assignment. JESUS said "what is it to you if I tell him to reside till I come; you follow Me". Paul planted, Apollos watered, so why do I want to next man to do exactly what I was called to do instead of me just sticking to my own assignment?
2) Are you saved? If you are saved, then why do you need to be "re-evangelized"? Is not the Gospel to be preached amongst the non-believers? Why is it being pumped out MORE in the pulpits amongst those washed in the blood, than in the streets amongst the non-believers? Aren't we supposed to "teach the believer" and "preach to the non-believer"? The Gospel in the Church house amongst fellow believers can all too often be the right teacher's subject, but for the wrong classroom.
Reading this is enlightening, and I agree with what many of the comments here. Bishop I agree with what you stated below and I have a different take on it
"the problem I still have with this is, WHY SO MANY????? Because with ALL these different schools that are "popping up", we are STILL witnessing IGNORANCE in this office within the walls of the Church..."
I ask myself why so many churches keep popping up on every street corner. And, I see in church at large where (unfortunately) there is not only ignorance, but also politics, elitism, subversion and religiosity too. Why are there so many being run like little kingdoms but carrying on in ways that seem independent of the counsel of God? Why indeed. So you see I understand your feeling that way about prophets / SOPs. Your position isnt far fetched in that context. Add to that the fact that the prophetic office is not fully understood although the Spirit of God is bringing understanding, and opening our hearts to the same. WHEN we know better we do better, when we become mature we put away childish things, whether we are pastors or prophets.
[It seems] many pastors are threatened by this emerging prophetic leadership being elevated to provide foundational support to the church by speaking truth, direction, confirming, strengthening, establishing, interceeding, activating and releasing people to be able to identify their individual giftings and to go and serve in the same. I havent seen many pastors in America who subscribe to that paradigm. My conviction is that some, perhaps many have followed in ways they were taught by men to execute their office. God, and other ascension gifts besides that of "pastor" was shut out.
BTW The greek word for "prophesy" is a derivative of the same greek word meaning "preach". It means simply to proclaim, to boldly speak forth. Scripture itselt is a sure word of prophecy.
Right now I daresay the prophetic movement and understanding of the prophetic office is yet in infancy stages. But it must grow and mature if we (the body of Christ) are to attain the full measure of the stature of Christ. Yet as you say there are forerunners. Forerunners do not define a movement, only God does. Not to worry! At the last day He will cause prophetic wheat and chaff to be separated, just as He will for all. Meantime we (1) dont judge a thing before the time (2) know them by their fruit and (3) continue praying and laboring for Gods kingdom to come and His will to be done. And we recognize and accept that some things we simply cannot know on this side of heaven, but there we will know and be known.