Pray that the saints would be perfected to speak with the three constituting elements of prophesying, the first of which is the knowledge of the Word of God—the human element of learning (Luke 1:46-50 and note 461; 1 Tim. 4:6; 2 Tim. 3:15-17).
Luke 1:46-50—And Mary said, My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit has exulted in God my Savior; because He has looked upon the low estate of His slave. For behold, from now on all generations will count me blessed, because the Mighty One has done great things for me, and holy is His name. And His mercy is unto generations and generations, unto those who fear Him.
Luke 1:461, my soul—Mary’s poetic praise was composed of many quotations from the Old Testament, indicating that she was a godly woman qualified to be a channel for the Savior’s incarnation, and that Jesus would grow up in a family that was filled with the knowledge and love of God’s holy Word.
1 Tim. 4:6—If you lay these things before the brothers, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, being nourished with the words of the faith and of the good teaching which you have closely followed.
2 Tim. 3:15-17—And that from a babe you have known the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise unto salvation through the faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and profitable for teaching, for conviction, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, fully equipped for every good work.
We need to be perfected to prophesy. First Corinthians 14 stresses and uplifts prophesying. It is considered as the excelling gift, the top gift, for the building up of the church as the Body of Christ…Prophesying is not ordinary speaking. It is speaking for the Lord and with the Lord.
Anyone can speak in a general way, but to prophesy, to speak the Lord forth, comprises three elements. First, we must learn the holy Word. We must gain the proper knowledge concerning God and concerning the things of God through the knowledge of the holy Word. We have to study the Bible. (CWWL, 1988, vol. 4, “The Excelling Gift for the Building Up of the Church,” ch. 3, pp. 471-472)
First, in order to prophesy we must be persons who have been saturated and soaked with the holy Word. Nearly every phrase and every point of Mary’s prophesying in Luke 1:46-55 is a quotation from the Old Testament. This proves that Mary, a young woman, was soaked in the Word. This is why the Lord chose her to be the mother of the Man-Savior. The Lord Jesus was born into a family that was full of the knowledge and love of God’s holy Word. Mary’s example shows us that if we are going to prophesy, we must get into the Word, being saturated and soaked with the Word to become one with the Word. (CWWL, 1988, vol. 4, “The Present Advance of the Lord’s Recovery,”ch. 4, p. 564)
We have many publications in life among us, especially the Life-study [messages]. The Life-studies are a storehouse of the riches of the Word. I charged the young full-time trainees in Taipei to spend from two to four hours every morning in the Life-studies for two to four years. Some of the young people did this and finished reading all the messages and also all the footnotes of the Recovery Version. When these ones stand up to speak, their speaking is rich because they have gained much knowledge and experience of the word within their being. When they speak, the riches flow out. The Lord may afford some among us, especially the young people, the opportunity to study the New Testament in the same way. We need some who can do this in the churches. Most of us may not be able to make it through the Life-study of the New Testament in two to four years, but we can all get into the Life-study messages according to our time and capacity.
We can gain the knowledge and experience of the Lord’s word based on the Scriptures, through the hymns, and through the publications in life. (CWWL, 1987, vol. 3, “The Scriptural Way to Meet and to Serve for the Building Up of the Body of Christ,” ch. 18, p. 434)
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