A prophetic action (prophetic act) is something done (at God's directions) in the natural (physical) realm that supports God's workings in the spiritual realm, to bring forth results that would be manifested in the natural realm. Such prophetic ministry becomes the forerunner of that move of God that opens the channel for His glory and power to be released that will affect our natural environment.
The prophetic act or activity is usually displayed or demonstrated or communicated in a dimension or language that is thought to be easily understood by those to whom the revealed prophetic actions is intended.
Prophetic acts that might have yielded fruits of great glory are of no special significance if not ordered by God.
THREE KINDS OF PROPHETIC ACTIONS
1.PROPHETIC ACTIONS PERFORMED BY GOD HIMSELF
The Prophetic acts of God often convey His love for His people. But many times these prophetic acts also communicated God’s disappointment, correction, and rebuke.
Genesis 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them
This is a prophetic act of enormous prophetic portion. God provides a covering for them in the form of a prophetic act of the redemption. God made them coats of skin to now cover them. The coats were not to shield them from the elements as we use coats today, but they were to cover them in their now perceived nakedness. Our sin exposes us not to God but to ourselves and to the perceptions of others.
2. PROPHETIC ACTIONS PERFORMED BY A PROPHET
Acts 21:10,11 10 And as we tarried there many days, there came down from Judaea a certain prophet, named Agabus 11 And coming to us, • he took Paul’s belt and bound his own feet and hands and said, “Thus says the Holy Spirit, ‘This is how the Jews at Jerusalem will bind the man who owns * this belt and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles.’”
Agabus revealed to Paul and the disciples that the road ahead wouldn’t be easy for the owner of the belt (Paul).
3. PROPHETIC ACTIONS PERFORMED BY A BELIEVER
The best example of a prophetic act performed by a believer is water baptism. A prophetic action enables the recipients to see what they are unwilling to accept through mere words due to their frightened or hardened hearts. If they reject the physical act, then the state of their hearts is exposed. Water Baptism is a Symbolical enactment of death to self and resurrection to a new life with Christ.
Mark 16:15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. 16 He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.
Baptism will not save you but the prophetic act of obedience to God’s commandment will place you on the path of salvation.
Prophetic acts can break accepted cultural, ethical, and religious norms.
- Jeremiah was told not to marry or have children in order to live out a prophetic action before God’s people (Jer.16:1-13). God’s prophetic words to His people were all the more potent as they came through this bachelor-prophet: as Jeremiah had no offspring, so the children born to Jewish parents would die from disease and by the hand of their enemies.
- Ezekiel was ordered toshave his beard and head (a disgrace for a Jewish man; see II Sam.10:4-5), and then to burn one third of it in the center of Jerusalem, strike one third with a sword throughout the city, and scatter the remaining third to the wind (Ez.5:1-17). He was then to explain to the people in Jerusalem how his actions represented the judgments that were coming upon them.
- The prophet Hosea was divinely directed twice to marry prostitutes (Hos.1:2-9; 3:1-5). His marriages, and the children he fathered in the first marriage, were prophetic actions to Israel.
- The prophet Zechariah was commanded to place a kingly crown upon the head of the high priest Joshua (Zech.6:9-15). His act was noteworthy because priests were forbidden from ruling as kings, and vice versa (see II Chr.26:16-21; Num.3:10; 16:39-40).This violation of the written word was followed by a prophetic word that foretold the Priest-King, Jesus Christ, who would rebuild Jerusalem’s temple and rule on the throne of Israel – a true priest on His throne.
Moses was always carrying out prophetic acts with his rod, he was always prophesying with his rod. God chose Moses, knowing he had a speech impediment (see Exodus 4:10), so He (God) could speak through him; so He could do signs, wonders and miracles through him; so He could do prophetic acts through him. God chose a man who now knew how to LEAN ON HIM. God said to Moses in Exodus 4:2, “What’s that in your hand? . . . USE IT!” His rod became his point of contact for prophetic acts.
In Exodus 14, after the Israelites fled from Egypt, we read about the Egyptians pursuing them with vengeance; they wanted to retrieve their slaves; the exodus of the Israelites had humiliated them; they were all devastated at the loss of their firstborn. In verses 15, 16 & 21 we see that Moses had to DO something, not SAY something. “Don’t speak . . . ACT! Stop praying, stop crying out to Me and get the people moving forward. Stretch out your rod over the sea and divide it . . .”
Elisha & King Joash's Arrow
2 Kings 13:14-19 14 Now Elisha was fallen sick of his sickness whereof he died. And Joash the king of Israel came down unto him, and wept over his face, and said, O my father, my father, the chariot of Israel, and the horsemen thereof. 15 And Elisha said unto him, Take bow and arrows. And he took unto him bow and arrows. 16 And he said to the king of Israel, Put thine hand upon the bow. And he put his hand upon it: and Elisha put his hands upon the king’s hands. 17 And he said, Open the window eastward. And he opened it. Then Elisha said, Shoot. And he shot. And he said, The arrow of the LORD’S deliverance, and the arrow of deliverance from Syria: for thou shalt smite the Syrians in Aphek, till thou have consumed them. 18 And he said, Take the arrows. And he took them. And he said unto the king of Israel, Smite upon the ground. And he smote thrice, and stayed. 19 And the man of God was wroth with him, and said, Thou shouldest have smitten five or six times; then hadst thou smitten Syria till thou hadst consumed it: whereas now thou shalt smite Syria but thrice.
- Elisha the prophet instructed the king to release arrows eastwards from a bow. Apparently, this was a prophetic act that meant that Israel would triumph over her enemies, the Syrians, who were occupying Israel's land in the east of Jordan.
- Following that, Elisha gave instructions for another prophetic act: "The arrow of the Lord's deliverance and the arrow of deliverance from Syria; for you must strike the Syrians at Aphek till you have destroyed them". Having said that to the king, Elisha instructed the King to strike the ground with arrows. King Joash dealt only three blows to the ground - to the reproach of Elisha who told him that because he struck the ground only three times, therefore Syria would suffer defeat not more than three times; while had the king struck the ground repeatedly Syria would have been rendered beyond recovery and would cease to be of any further threat to Israel.
The measure of victory we gain over our enemies comes from the obedience we give to divine instructions.
Your obedience + God's faithfulness = Great Things
Can you be trusted with more?
Luke 16:10 New American Standard "He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much.