Luther's Works (Vol. We must not despise preaching, though it be plain, and not with enticing words of men's wisdom, and though we be told no more than what we knew before. His spirit received a spiritual truth in symbol: his understanding interpreted it in its application to actual events, and his speech uttered the interpretation. The emphasis on prophesyings corresponds with that in 1 Cor. 1 THESSALONIANS 5:20. God will ever send a message of salvation by each of his ministers to every faithful, attentive hearer. 1 Thessalonians 5:20 Context. Building up the saints is to be his sole aim, 1Corinthians 14:5, 12, 26; Ephesians 4:12; to this end his words must be distinctly spoken, and his language must be suited to his hearers, 1Co 14:7, 9, 11, 16; he must avoid confusion of every kind, since confusion is of the flesh, not of the Spirit, 1Co 14:32, 33. He assigns to prophecy the precedence among spiritual gifts (1 Cor. Paul told the Thessalonians to not quench the Holy Spirit or despise prophecy. . To get what 1 Thessalonians 5:20 means based on its source text, scroll down or follow these links for the original scriptural meaning , biblical context and relative popularity. The ground for the teaching that “all may prophesy” is the work of the Holy Spirit in every believer. By challenging the Thessalonians not to despise prophecies, Paul did not want to imply that they were gullible and swallowed any religious nonsense that might come their way. 30, page 164). Paul always speaks a benediction over all of his converts. For example: “And let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment” (1Corinthians 14:29). 6. The restoration of prophecy for every believer was important to both Luther and Calvin. 4:31; Amos 6:1) and here are 2 representative passages... 1 Samuel 8:7 And the LORD said to Samuel, "Listen to the voice of the people in regard to all that they say to you, for they have not rejected (Hebrew = ma'ac = reject, despise, refuse; Lxx = exoutheneo) you, but they have rejected (Hebrew = ma'ac = reject, despise, refuse; Lxx = exoutheneo) Me from being king over them. In his second letter Paul wrote... Now we request you, brethren, with regard to the coming (parousia) of our Lord Jesus Christ, and our gathering together (episynagoge) to Him (referring to his previous letter where he had explained the Rapture - see 1Th 4:13, 14, 15, 16, 17-see notes 1Th 4:13; 14; 15; 16; 17), that you may not be quickly shaken from your composure or be disturbed either by a spirit or a message or a letter as if from us, to the effect that the Day of the Lord has come. Despising prophecy is the refusal to allow the Lord's flock to bring the authority of Scripture to bear on one another and church leaders. Today many are confused about the meaning of the term “prophecy” as it was used in the 1st century church, and what, if anything, it is in the church today. This would be abusive and constitute falsely speaking for God. This is an implication of Peter's citation of Joel in Acts 2:17—rather than the Holy Spirit only coming upon certain persons as under the Old Covenant, He indwells every true New Covenant believer. 18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. This fits with our definition of the content of prophecy as “the testimony of Christ.” So the “revelation” they share prophetically is a deeper understanding of the glories of Christ and of the many aspects of His saving work in their lives. Martin Luther, (1999, c1958). 21 But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; 22 abstain from every  form of evil. 15. Judging prophecy is by objective scripture, not subjective means.13. Let every one, therefore, who is desirous to make progress under the direction of the Holy Spirit, allow himself to be taught by the ministry of prophets. This does not mean that God has not raised up teachers (elders who labor in the word and doctrine – 1Timothy 5:17 KJV), but that every believer can also both speak prophetically and judge prophecy as is appropriate in a given setting. 1 John 4:1-3, âBeloved, believe not every spirit; but try the spirits, whether they are of God.â âThe goodâ represents a different word from that of 1 Thessalonians 5:15 (see note); it signifies what is good or fine in quality, as in 2 Thessalonians 3:13. The King James Bible (1611) and Strong's Concordance (1890) with Hebrew and Greek dictionaries are sourced from the BibleForgeDB database (https://github.com/bibleforge) within the BibleForge project (http://bibleforge.com). Guzik - We recognize that the Lord speaks to and through His people today, and we learn to be open to His voice. (Living Christianly) (Bolding added). We must assume that some were âscoffingâ at prophecies. But during the worship service, the Word is expounded by someone called and equipped in public proclamation to a bigger audience. 1 Thessalonians 5:21 Parallel Verses [â See commentary â] 1 Thessalonians 5:21, NIV: "but test them all; hold on to what is good," 1 Thessalonians 5:21, ESV: "but test everything; hold fast what is good." Second, if we assume that prophecy is a subjective impression about ideas that may or may not be from God we have a problem. 1 Thessalonians 5:20-28 New International Version (NIV) 20 Do not treat prophecies with contempt 21 but test them all; hold on to what is good, 22 reject every kind of evil. 1 Thessalonians 5:24, KJV: "Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it." Why? Vol. But in every case, prophecy must be judged, and all may judge it. 19 Do not quench the Spirit; 20 do not despise prophetic  utterances. With the completion of the divine revelation in the New Testament canon such direct communication of new spiritual revelation has ceased. Teachers are to defer one to another, 1Co 14:30, nor is any teacher to be judge of the profit, or otherwise, of his own utterances, 1Co 14:29. They must not disparage the true manifestations of the Spirit but be alert to detect the false, which leads into the next section. Prophecy testifies about the person and work of Jesus Christ—that is its great central theme. 1Co 14:19), there were those who regarded the power of working miracles, or of speaking in unknown tongues, as a much more eminent endowment than that of stating the truths of religion in language easily understood. 1 Thessalonians 5:24 Parallel Verses [â See commentary â] 1 Thessalonians 5:24, NIV: "The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it." Retail: $22.99. 1 Thessalonians 5:20 - Understand the meaning of 1 Thessalonians 5:20 with Christian Bible study, teaching, sermons, and commentary search on hokma.com. 1 Corinthians 6:4 If then you have law courts dealing with matters of this life, do you appoint them as judges who are of no account in the church? But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil.” (1Thessalonians 5:19-22). We have a lot of folk who are in Christian service, but they are ignorant of the Bible and they look down on Bible study. Matthew Poole surmises that some of the Thessalonians "despise it (prophecy) because of the outward meanness of the persons which prophesy; some, through a proud conceit of their own knowledge; some, by a contempt of religion itself. His higher, spiritual part (pneuma), and his moral intelligence (nous), and his speech (logos) worked in harmony. What sense is there to this drunken prattle of the pope and his papists, though handed down over many generations: “We command, we earnestly direct, the Church of Rome is Mistress of the churches and the articles of faith”? This double action imparted a peculiarly elevated character to his speech. So prophesying really becomes what we call today expository preaching and teaching. But send him on his way in peace, so that he may come to me; for I expect him with the brethren. 18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. John MacArthur, Hard to Believe (Nashville: Nelson, 2003) 89. (Amplified Bible - Lockman), Barclay: Don’t make light of manifestations of the gift of prophecy. Therefore they may prophesy. . When Peter received the Holy Spirit, he powerfully testified about Jesus Christ and salvation (Acts 2). But some of the Bibles commands are not just difficult, but impossible. 1 Corinthians 16:11 Let no one therefore despise him. In the well respected theological journal Bibliotheca Sacra, the late Dr John Walvoord makes the following statements... Divine revelation, of course, received a tremendous addition when Jesus Christ came in the flesh. God is perfectly just and cannot lie. Paul prohibits us from despising it, if we would not choose of our own accord to wander in darkness. Such addresses, or prophesyings, Paul tells us, we are not to despise. The prophetic revelation might at times concern the future (Acts 11:28) but not necessarily so. Now those who believe in Christ are all prophets; for they have the real and chief qualification prophets should have, even though they do not all have the gift of foretelling the future. God used many Old and New Testament prophets to foretell future events, but that was never an indispensable part of prophetic ministry. (Hiebert, D. Edmond: 1 & 2 Thessalonians: BMH Book. Do not treat it lightly. Context Summary. 3. Bible Gateway Recommends. 40 : Church and Ministry II (J. J. Pelikan, H. C. Oswald & H. T. Lehmann, Ed.). Luther often cited 1Corinthians 14:31 as proof of Rome's error in this regard. For Paul, in the passage which I have quoted, assigns to prophets teaching for edification, exhortation, and consolation, and enumerates, as it were, these departments. Church authorities alone claimed the right to prophesy, and when doing so falsely, claimed immunity from being judged. 5:19, 20). In summary in issuing this negative command, Paul is saying that some in the Thessalonian church had a low opinion of prophesying and/or viewed this activity with contempt. If you haven't come in repentance, conviction of your own sin, and abandonment of self with such desperation that you cry out for salvation and righteousness and heaven, whatever the cost, then you didn't pass through the narrow gate. So the convicted person is brought to see that their secret sins are exposed to God's just eyes and they face His certain judgment unless they obtain the imputed righteousness of Christ through faith. 8. 20 Do not despise prophecies, 21 but test everything; hold fast what is good. Prophesy and other official prophets could judge them have been the case subsequently in Corinth, cp. 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