Tips for Sharing Prophetic Warnings In Church Life

Prophetic_WarningsWhen anointed by the Spirit and used with wisdom, the issue of a timely prophetic warning can be a great blessing to a church, leader or individual.

A prophetic warning can be used by God:

  • As a means of protection—e.g. to avert danger
  • Help us prepare for an incident beforehand
  • To direct or redirect our actions in accordance with His purpose, or
  • To empower us to pray when there is danger or spiritual warfare is occurring.

However, a prophetic warning also has the potential to cause damage, and either the giver or receiver of a warning can be hurt when it is handled unwisely.

Due to the sensitivity of this ministry, it is vital that we learn how to respond when the Holy Spirit alerts us to something—and how to use wisdom and share something at the appropriate time and to the right person.

5 Tips for Giving a Prophetic Warning

Do you believe that the Holy Spirit has alerted you about a danger or potential negative outcome regarding your church or an individual? [1] Here are some tips to help you process and share it:

1. Pray Further about the Warning

If you receive a prophetic warning, pray and ask, ‘Father, what is Your purpose in sharing this warning?’ A prophetic warning will reflect the heart of the Father and His good purposes for His Church and His children. [2]

Remember that warnings in the Bible were, for the most part, timely and specific.[3] So if the insight is general or vague, wait on the Holy Spirit further, to receive more clarity.

2.Weigh up the Warning before Sharing

Consider, ‘What is the likely fruit (outcome) of sharing this warning?’ (Gal 5:22-25)

We need to take extra care if a warning relates to a situation or person close to the heart of the one we have received the warning about and could produce an emotional response. In addition to weighing up the insight itself, we should also weigh up the means by which we deliver the word.

3. Use Wisdom in Sharing the Prophetic Warning

Due to the sensitive nature of a prophetic warning, extra care should be taken in communicating it. For example, if it relates to an individual regarding themselves or their family, the appropriate course of action may be to firstly share the word with a leader or spiritual oversight, rather than approach that person directly. [4]

There may be times of urgency when the Spirit directs a mature intercessor to share a warning quickly—however we still need to be open to having our actions come under scrutiny and weighed up. We do not always perceive 100% correctly, nor do we know the big picture of what God is doing in someone’s life. (1 Cor 13:9)

If your oversight prays about it, weighs it up, and decides not to pass the insight on—let it go. Trust God to speak to your leaders and give them wisdom in their leadership capacity.

In a public meeting, a warning (or issue of discernment) relating to the church, or a ministry of the church, should not be shared to all present, but privately to the leader. This helps create a safe environment and ensures that the word is weighed up and empowers the leader with the opportunity to share or withhold it at that time. Even if you are a leader with a high level of trust, remember that you are providing an example to those who are less mature to follow.

Every church has unique prophetic protocols, so if you are unsure, check with your church’s oversight.

4. Don’t Share a Warning with Third Parties

It is never appropriate to share a warning or negative discernment to someone who is not in oversight, about another person. (this could be called prophetic gossip) Inappropriate sharing can cause suspicion or fear.

If you are concerned about something that you perceive spiritually, share it with the senior leader of your church, or to an appropriate leader. Trust them to have the leadership and wisdom to handle what you have shared.

5. Check your Motivation

Humility is critical to delivering a word of warning. This means we are open to the word being assessed by others—and deliver it on that basis. (1 Cor 14:29) If the prophetic warning concerns your church, check that your attitude is one of love and honour for the church, its vision and leadership.

Judgments (negative opinions) and hurts will cloud our ability to hear from God. In this case, it is vital that you deal with what is in your heart before you do anything with a warning that you receive— this includes praying about it.

An intercessor or prophetically gifted person in the life of the church should be primarily sharing encouragement, and messages from God’s heart that build up the church and individuals. (1 Cor 14:3) A primary focus on warnings or negative discernment could be an indication that there is an imbalance in our ministry.

Warnings from Personal Intercessors

I asked a group of pastors and leaders about what they would prefer their personal intercessors to do with any warnings they received. Without hesitation they each said they would prefer to know immediately. If you have the role of personal intercessor to a ministry leader or minister by appointment or invitation, you already have the mandate to share any revelation you receive concerning those you are praying for.

Once you have shared the warning, offer to continue interceding about it. Sometimes a warning is given by God to an intercessor solely to prompt him or her to pray—either spontaneously, or over a longer period.

Note: I believe it is important that those with an intercessory gift (especially if leading others) submit the nature and direction of their prayers to oversight. When praying by the means of prophetic revelation especially, accountability is very important for the safety of the one praying and those being prayed for. Prayer has power, and we need to ensure that we are praying according to God’s purposes. (Matt 6:10)


Notes:

[1] I am not discussing warnings in relation to the consequences of sin in this article, but do recommend that anything along these lines be submitted directly to oversight.

[2] I always encourage intercessors who have a gift of discernment to pray further about a warning they receive. See my article, ‘6 Tips for Exercising the Gift of Discernment in Church Life’ for more information about this.

[3] See the article, ‘Prophetic Warnings: What Should We Do with Them?’ for examples and more information.

[4] In church life, we should not assume that just because God has spoken to us about an individual, or the church, we are responsible to immediately deliver the word. As with all prophetic revelation, warnings are subject to being weighed up, to check that they are truly of the Holy Spirit.


Related Posts:

Prophetic Warnings: What Should We Do With Them?
6 Tips For Exercising The Gift of Discernment In Church Life


Do you have any insights or questions on the topic of prophetic warnings to share? I would love to hear about it. Leave a comment in the box below. If the comments box is not visible, click on this link and scroll down.


© Helen Calder Enliven Blog – Prophetic Teaching

On team with David McCracken Ministries: Prophetic Ministry That Empowers The Church

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2 thoughts on “Tips for Sharing Prophetic Warnings In Church Life

  1. Adele

    Thank you, God really spoke to me through your article. The night before Black Saturday Bush fires, my husband and I had a vision (prophetic warning) of seeing the mountain burning from our own property. We made a quick comment about the vision and new exactly what we had both seen. Exactly 24 hours after our vision my husband called me to the exact same spot that we stood whilst receiving the vision and we looked at the mountain and saw the same as in the vision but in real time. It was then that we gathered our 4 kids together, jumped into the car and evacuated. That day we rang many people to warn them of the fire from where the fire started to us, but for some reason never rang anyone from us to where the fire was heading. I personally lost 23 friends that day, whole families in some cases. I blamed myself for a long time for their deaths as I never shared what God had given me. It took me a long time to realize that if God wanted me to share it then He would have prompted us to share, but He never, so we didn’t. Sometimes we need to let God be God and understand that He has shared something with us, this was a opportunity for us to grow and put our trust in Him.

  2. Helen Calder Post author

    Hi Adele, such a tough thing you have experienced. You are so right, sometimes there is an element of mystery, we don’t understand why God allows the things that happen. He would certainly have given you further revelation and the urgent prompt to share, if He had meant for you to do so.
    I pray that you receive complete freedom, healing and peace in this area of prophetic warning. May you know beyond a shadow of doubt, that receiving prophetic revelation and walking with the Spirit is a safe and wonderful place for you to live in.
    May you and your family experience His rich blessing… Helen

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