The Narrow Way Bible Study Lessons
The Spirit of Prophecy - God’s Gift to His Last Day Church
Throughout the Bible, we read of God bringing messages to His people through prophets and prophetesses. But can we expect to find the gift of prophecy manifested in God’s church in these last days as well? And if so, how are we to relate to these prophetic messages?
1) What is one of the gifts of the Spirit to be given to the church? __________________
“And he gave some, apostles; and some, ________________; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;” Ephesians 4:11
“Now there are diversities of __________, but the same Spirit…. To another the working of miracles; to another ________________; to another discerning of spirits; to another [divers] kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues:” 1 Corinthians 12:4,10
2) What is the purpose of the gift?
“For the ____________________ of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the ________________ of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the __________ of the faith, and of the __________________ of the Son of God, unto a ______________ man, unto the measure of the stature of the __________________________________:” Ephesians 4:12, 13
“But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men [to] ______________________, and ______________________, and ______________.” 1 Corinthians 14:3
One of the purposes mentioned here is to perfect our characters and help us become truly Christ-like. This should be our main goal as Christ’s followers awaiting His second coming, so we should value and treasure the gift of prophecy which will help us reach that goal.
Another purpose given is to unify the church. When the church does not listen to and obey the prophetic messages given it, chaos results, with one believing one thing, and one another; and there is certainly no unity.
3) Does the Bible foretell the gift of prophecy existing in the end of time? YES / NO
“And it ____________________________________ afterward, [that] I will pour out my spirit upon all flesh; and your sons and your daughters shall ________________, your old men shall dream ____________, your young men shall see ______________:” Joel 2:28
“And it shall come to pass ________________________________, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall ________________, and your young men shall see ______________, and your old men shall dream ____________: And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy:” Acts 2:17-18
4) What are the two marks given in Revelation of God’s remnant people? ________________________________________________________________________
“And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which ________________________________________________________, and __________________________________________________________________.” Revelation 12:17
5) What is the testimony of Jesus? __________________________________________
“And I fell at his feet to worship him. And he said unto me, See [thou do it] not: I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren that have the testimony of Jesus: worship God: for the ________________________________ is the ________________________________.” Revelation 19:10
So again, we see that God’s last-day church, His remnant people, will have the gift of prophecy in their midst.
God has given this gift to His people through the life and ministry of Ellen G. (Harmon) White (1827-1915). Ellen Harmon received her first vision at age 17 while in frail health, and she shrank from the responsibility God was asking of her to go and tell others what she had seen. But she chose to obey, and went. She continued to receive visions and dreams for the next 69 years, and to share, by pen and voice, what God had shown her. Over 50 of her books are still being published today.
Let us now review 4 Biblical tests of a true prophet, and see how they were fulfilled in the life of Ellen White.
6) What is the first test of a true prophet?
“To the ______ and to the __________________: if they _________________________
__________________________, [it is] because [there is] _________________ in them.” Isaiah 8:20
A prophet must be tested by the Bible, and a true prophet will be in full agreement with it. God will never contradict through a modern-day prophet what He has already revealed to us in His Word. Neither will a true prophet combine truth with error in the things they share. As you read through the writings of Ellen White, you will find them in total agreement with, and always pointing people to the Word of God.
7) What is the second test of a true prophet?
“Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that ____________________ that Jesus Christ is __________________________________ is of God:” 1 John 4:2
A true prophet will uplift Christ and will teach that Christ, while fully divine, also became fully man, taking our fallen human nature, and thus can be our perfect example. Ellen White definitely fulfilled this test, as can be seen in her books such as Desire of Ages.
8) What is the third test of a true prophet?
“Wherefore ______________________________ ye shall know them.” Matthew 7:20
While this does not mean that a prophet is perfect, it does mean that their daily life will be consistent with their teachings, and in harmony with the Word of God. Those who knew Ellen White testified that this was true of her life.
9) What is the fourth test of a true prophet?
“The prophet which prophesieth of peace, when the word of the prophet _____________ __________________________, [then] shall the prophet be known, that the LORD hath truly sent him.” Jeremiah 28:9
When a prophet predicts events in the future, if the prediction comes true, this is another sign that the prophet is true as well. While Ellen White wrote mainly for edification and exhortation, and did not make many predictions, those predictions she did make (such as those foretelling signs of the end or giving medical information before it was known by the medical world) have come to pass and been validated.
Thus we see even in this very brief overview, that these four tests of a true prophet were indeed fulfilled in the life and ministry of Ellen G. White.
10) Are the writings of God’s end-time prophet as fully inspired as the writings of Scripture? YES / NO
The writings of Ellen White, which we call the Spirit of Prophecy, are not part of the Scriptures, but they are inspired by the same Holy Spirit that inspired the writers of Scripture. Therefore we must not try to say that some parts of her writings are inspired and some are not, that some of her counsel we need to obey and some we do not; just as we would not accept some portions of Scripture as inspired and reject others as not.
11) What is the relationship of the writings of Ellen White to the Bible? Read the quote, then write the answer in your own words: ________________________________
“The written testimonies are not to give new light, but to impress vividly upon the heart the truths of inspiration already revealed. Man's duty to God and to his fellow man has been distinctly specified in God's word; yet but few of you are obedient to the light given. Additional truth is not brought out; but God has through the Testimonies simplified the great truths already given and in His own chosen way brought them before the people to awaken and impress the mind with them, that all may be left without excuse.” 2T 605
12) Why did God give us the Spirit of Prophecy in these last days? Read the quote below, then write the answer in your own words: ________________________________
“If you had made God's word your study, with a desire to reach the Bible standard and attain to Christian perfection, you would not have needed the Testimonies. It is because you have neglected to acquaint yourselves with God's inspired Book that He has sought to reach you by simple, direct testimonies, calling your attention to the words of inspiration which you had neglected to obey, and urging you to fashion your lives in accordance with its pure and elevated teachings. The Lord designs to warn you, to reprove, to counsel, through the testimonies given, and to impress your minds with the importance of the truth of His word.” 2T 605
13) What are we told will be one of the last deceptions of Satan? ___________________
“The very last deception of Satan will be to make of none effect the testimony of the Spirit of God. "Where there is no vision, the people perish" (Proverbs 29:18). Satan will work ingeniously, in different ways and through different agencies, to unsettle the confidence of God's remnant people in the true testimony. There will be a hatred kindled against the testimonies which is satanic. The workings of Satan will be to unsettle the faith of the churches in them, for this reason: Satan cannot have so clear a track to bring in his deceptions and bind up souls in his delusions if the warnings and reproofs and counsels of the Spirit of God are heeded. 1SM 48
This is a very solemn warning, and one to which we must give serious heed, because even among God’s professed people, even among those who have their names on the church books, there are tragically many who are giving heed to Satan’s deception and making of no effect the writings of the Spirit of Prophecy. They may claim to believe them, but they make excuse for their disobedience of them by saying things like, “Oh, that counsel was just for her day”, or “I’m following the principle behind what she wrote, but of course the application doesn’t apply to our time.” Others are even bolder in their rebellion and blatantly proclaim their disbelief in the Spirit of Prophecy, resorting to false slander and saying that Ellen White was a plagiarist, etc. Beware of these teachings whether you read them in a book or even hear them from the pulpit. They are not of God. We are called to be God’s remnant people and to follow the Lamb wherever He goes (Rev. 14:4), no matter what others around us may do.
14) How are we to relate to the prophetic gift given by God?
“____________ not the Spirit. ______________ not prophesyings. __________ all things; __________________ that which is good.” 1 Thessalonians 5:19-21
15) What blessing is pronounced on those who believe God’s prophets?
“Believe in the LORD your God, so shall ye be established; _____________________ ____________________, so shall ye ______________.” 2 Chronicles 20:20
16) After studying this lesson, write your thoughts below of what you feel God is asking you to do in regard to the gift of prophecy as manifested in His last-day church through the writings of Ellen G. White. Will you accept it as God’s message to His people and willingly bring your life, with the help of God, into harmony with and obedience to its counsel? ________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
2) Motivation for Obedience