What is a Prophet or Prophetess?

And the Breath shall direct the mouths of the prophets by the Word of YHVH, and shall opened the hearts of the prophetess.” -4 Moses 33:5

The idea of a prophet or prophetess comes from the Hebrew, (male) “nabi,” meaning “spokesman,” “speaker,” or “prophet;” or (female) “ydris,” “prophetess,” “seer.” A prophet or prophetess can be anyone regarded as an inspired teacher, or one proclaiming the will of God.

In the Latter Day Saint movement, a prophet or prophetess is generally seen as one in contact with God, called to speak on the Lord’s behalf, serving as an intermediary with humanity (the Church), delivering messages, or teachings from the supernatural source to other people (5 Moses 19:7, 11). Moses, being the example of a prophet, did more, bringing the will of the people to God, being a true emissary between the Lord (the Bridegroom) and the Israel (the Bride).

Moreover, the Book of Revelations states that “the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy,” making all Saints prophets (Revelation 19:10). Doctrines of the Saints 2d calls us to be a prophetic people. Doctrines of the Saints 2e echoes this, proclaiming: “God is calling for a prophetic community to emerge, drawn from the nations of the world, that is characterized by uncommon devotion to the compassion and peace of God revealed in Jesus Christ” (DoS 2e:71).

Many see a prophet as one who foresees future events, or one who utters divinely inspired revelations. And this is one understanding of a prophet. This does not, however, make a prophet all seeing, all knowing, or even necessarily a seer or a revelator. A prophet can be one that is wise teaching through the power of the Holy Spirit. We can test prophets by the methods prescribed in 5 Moses 19:14-15; Deuteronomy 18:20-22; 1 John 4:1-3; Moroni 7:4b-26 RAV, 7:5-26 OPV.

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