Dr. John Hartmann

Proclaiming the Whole Counsel of God

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God’s Purpose to Raise up Prophets to Speak to His People and the Culture

March 21st, 2010 · No Comments

Amos 2:9-12 states that God raises up prophets to speak to His redeemed people. Taking this assumption as a point of departure, Dr. Hartmann proceeds to look at the call of John the Baptist, as it is laid out by the angel Gabriel in his annunciation to Zacharias in Luke 1:14-17.

4 points stand out in relation to the calling of John the Baptist:
1) He as consecrated to God as a Nazarite from birth
2) He was filled with the Spirit from his mother’s womb
3) He paved the way for the work of the Messiah
4) He ministered in the spirit and power of Elijah

Dr. Hartmann discusses the what is meant by “the spirit and power of Elijah”, relating it to the why in which the prophetic order relates to Israel’s position in God’s plan as a theocratic covenant nation that was called to be a kingdom of priests and His light and witness to the world. The prophet functions as God’s covenant spokesperson. The removal of the authentic prophetic ministry is viewed in Isaiah 29:10-13 as a judgment of God, leading to blindness and spiritual “illiteracy” among the apostate covenant people.

Coming back to John the Baptist, Dr. Hartmann defines the spirit of Elijah as the intent and purpose that God had placed within the prophet, that which drives and motivates him in terms of the end game of his ministry. In Elijah’s case it was the drive to see the apostate covenant people repent and return to God, so that He might in turn heal them and restore them to His full purpose for them within the covenant. The power of Elijah has to do with the unique working of the power of God through him to accomplish that task which drove him, what we sometimes refer to as the “anointing”.

At the level of application Dr. Hartmann calls the church to pray for the raising up of true prophets as a gift to the church and the culture in which the church is set, in accordance with Jesus’ command to pray that God would send laborers into the harvest (Matthew 9:37-38). He calls the church to seek out its calling to be a prophetic people and a prophetic witness to the culture, in accordance with Acts 2:16-21 and Revelation 19:10.

Our study closes with 10 characteristics of the true prophet of God, all of which are listed and expounded at the end of this invigorating sermon.

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