This week we are studying the gift of prophecy and what it means to be prophetic. We started this conversation on the Everyday Jesus podcast. You can catch up by clicking the play button on the player below:
Consolation: This is the last purpose we are going to look at in regards to the gift of prophecy. Earlier this week we looked at edification and exhortation. Consolation is quite different from those two. Prophetic consolation can be a form of healing to those whom the Lord is ministering.
Consolation is defined as the comfort a person receives after a loss or disappointment. Prophetic consolation is the act of sharing a word with someone that comforts them after a loss or a disappointment during one of those times.
As Christians, we are not promised a life filled with sunshine and roses. You will go through hard times. The Bible says it’s through “many tribulations” that you will enter into the kingdom, but that doesn’t mean you won’t have peace. Comforting words bring peace in the midst of the storm.
In Mark chapter 5, we read about a woman who had an issue of blood for 12 years. You may recall this story, she pushes her way through the crowd because she believed that if she could just touch a piece of a Jesus’s clothes, she would be healed. Sure enough, she gets close enough and she touches him. She is immediately healed.
Now Jesus knew someone had touched him. And he started asking those around him who touched him, but the crowd was pressed against him and they didn’t understand what he meant. But the woman knew and she was afraid and trembling. She presented herself to Jesus and fell down before him. In this moment, Jesus could has said anything to her. He could have rebuked her for touching him without permission. He could have dealt harshly with her. But he didn’t do any of those things. He consoled her.
“Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace and be healed of your affliction.”
Jesus knew what the woman was feeling. He spoke peace to her. He comforted her. She had already been healed. She had gotten her miracle, but she was still afraid. She was trembling. Jesus perceived all of this. He prophetically spoke peace into her situation.
Prophecy can bring peace to people who are frightened, disappointed, hurt, lost and in despair. And honestly, this is one of it’s most powerful uses. I’ve seen firsthand how it can change a person’s life.
Years ago, I had a friend in college who struggled with depression. And even though he grew up in a Christian home and was attending a Christian college with Christian friends, he was really struggling during school. One night, shortly before exams started, he took way too many sleeping pills. I stayed up with him all night, because I was afraid that if he went to sleep, he would never wake up. Looking back, I should have alerted staff at the school to get him help, but I didn’t know any better at the time.
He survived that ordeal, but his depression didn’t go away. About a month later, when school was over, I took him to a church near where I lived. A young lady, that neither of us knew came up to him and spoke prophetically into his situation. She spoke comforting words and all of the depression, anxiety and fear fell off of him. She didn’t know him, but she changed his life. He finished college and has been a pastor for almost 20 years now.
Prophecy can really change people. Prophecy can heal people’s mind and soul. Paul encourages us to prophecy and I think it’s because he knew of the healing that can take place when used for consolation.