"But thou hast fully known my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, charity, patience ... " (2 Tim. 3:10)
Prophets and prophetic people must walk in love, humility and purity. Whenever we talk about character, we are referring to your personality, attitude and behavior patterns. Doctrine, gifting and character all work together:
"And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins. Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall" (2 Pet. 1:5–10).
The call to the prophetic ministry requires a process of maturing. Prophets are called, trained and commissioned.
There are several points I want to draw from these verses. Notice that we are to give all diligence in developing our character. Our character will determine the level of revelation and power the Lord will entrust to us. Development of character gives you the capacity to carry the authority of the kingdom.
The verses mention virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, godliness, brotherly kindness and charity (love). Notice that knowledge is included. I believe ignorance can be a character issue. True prophets should have knowledge, especially knowledge of the Word of God.
Secondly, notice that he who lacks these things is blind (v. 9). Lack of character development will result in blindness. There is no way you can be effective in the prophetic ministry with blindness in your life.
Thirdly, notice the way we make our calling and election sure. Prophets have a calling from heaven. How do we confirm this calling? The answer is by developing our character with all diligence:
"A good tree produces good fruit, and a bad tree cannot produce good fruit. Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began" (2 Tim. 1:9).
The call of God is a holy calling and requires godly character. On the other hand, false prophets are known by their fruit (bad character). This fruit includes lust, greed, covetousness and pride. "But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation" (1 Pet. 1:15).
Prophets were called holy men. Holy men spoke as the Holy Ghost moved them.
Michelle McClain serves as director of prayer ministry on the staff of Crusaders Church under the leadership of Apostle John Eckhardt. She is also one of the house prophets and apostolic team leaders at Crusaders Church in Chicago. She is the author of The Prophetic Advantage, from which this article was excerpted.