Seven Ways to Hear God Prophetically
Lesson 03: Prophetic Utterances
Lecturer: Apostle Colette Toach
Based on Chapter 05 of the How to Hear the Voice of God book by Apostle Colette Toach
The third way of hearing from God is through prophetic utterances and tongues. You have within you a wellspring of wisdom. You have the Word that has been stored within you.
You have the Spirit of God that is within you. In fact you have everything. The Scripture speaks about us having within us a spring of life. Jesus spoke about that well springing up and pouring out of us. He said, "Out of your innermost being will flow rivers of living water."
We need to tap into that inner wisdom. So what we have to do is create a link, a channel, for the flow to begin to take place and flow outwards. One of the ways of doing it is through the faculty of speech. We have seen that the Spirit can communicate outwards via the soul.
As it communicates outwards via the emotions we have our Urim and Thummim. As it communicates outwards via the mind we have dreams and visions. How does it communicate outwards via the will? It communicates through speech. The speech center is linked directly to the spirit, and when you open your mouth by an act of your will to speak forth, then you speak forth what comes up out of your spirit.
Have you ever noticed that as you speak and pour forth in speech, sometimes just talking about anything and everything, something just slips out that you did not expect. It just pops out, and you say, "I wonder what made me say that?" Psychologists call it a Freudian slip. Something just popped out while you were not thinking about it.
Now often that happens when you are counseling somebody. I am going to be dealing with that a little more shortly as we look at some other methods of hearing from God, but speech is a means of pouring forth what is from within you.
So God has given us the means of tapping into the wisdom within using speech, both speech in the natural tongue and speech in other tongues. As you pray in tongues, what actually happens is you begin to tap the resources that are within your spirit. So the Scripture says, "He that speaks in an unknown tongue edifies (or builds up) himself." How does that happen?
Have you ever noticed that when you pray in tongues for a while something begins to take place? When you get down to pray and you open your mouth and start to speak in tongues, your emotions may be completely dead. Your mind may be preoccupied with all sorts of things that are not spiritual at all. You are not even thinking about the Lord. But by an act of your will you open your mouth and you start to speak. It is a choice. You choose to speak in tongues.
What is happening is you tap the resources of your spirit by an act of your will and you begin to pour out. The Scripture calls that praying with your spirit. It is not praying in the spirit, but praying with the spirit. And as you pray with the spirit you are praying with other tongues. Paul says, "When I pray in other tongues my spirit is praying."
It is your spirit that is now in control. It is your spirit that is pouring forth and the words that are coming out of your mouth are not coming from your own understanding. They are not coming through your mind at all, but out of your spirit.
As you continue to speak in tongues and pour forth out of your spirit, after a while it starts to break through. The flow begins to take place through your soul, and your emotions start to churn and you begin to feel something happening within. Your thoughts start to come into focus, you start to think about the Lord, and you begin to think about spiritual things.
Now most people do not pray in tongues long enough for it to go any further than that. Very often people will only speak in tongues when their emotions are churned up, when they feel the anointing on them, when they feel good spiritually and when they want to worship and praise.
Speaking in tongues is for you to tap the resources within when you do NOT feel like it, when your emotions are down, when your mind is dull, when you need to hear from God desperately. It is for when you need His power, when you need to hear His voice right now!
You say, "I wish God would speak to me. I have prayed, but He won't speak to me. I can't hear anything. I do not hear anything in the Urim and Thummim either. He is just not there. It is dead."
"Well, can you pray in tongues?"
"Yes, well I don't feel like it."
"I didn't ask if you feel like praying in tongues. I said, 'Can you pray in tongues?' "
If you have received the gift of tongues then you can pray in tongues. All you need to do is open your mouth and start, by a choice, and by an act of your will to pray in tongues
I shared my experience when I gave my testimony on how God led me to spend long periods praying for an hour in tongues, and how I hit a second wind in the Spirit. Do you know what happened when I hit that second wind? It started to gush forth and suddenly pictures started to come into my mind. Suddenly my emotions became churned up to the point where I was so excited I did not want to stop. It was just pouring forth.
So very often just praying in tongues will cause to come up out of your spirit influences, visions even, pictures into your mind. Your spiritual Urim and Thummim and all of them start to come to life as you spend long periods praying in tongues. And then you are also in a position now to begin speaking in your native tongue because you do not understand what you are saying in tongues. You may be seeing pictures in your mind.
You may be feeling a sense of positive and negative in your emotions, but you still do not have any instruction, because you do not know what you are saying in tongues. You do not know what your spirit is saying in tongues.
So Paul says, "If any man pray in an unknown tongue, let him pray that he can also interpret." Do you realize that as you pour forth in tongues, you are tapping the wisdom that is within? It is the wisdom that your spirit has, because it is in contact with the Holy Spirit? Do you want to know the will of God? Do you want to hear His voice? Do you want Him to speak to you? He is doing it all the time.
All you need to do is learn to hear the voice of your own spirit, because your spirit is going to tell it to you. If you are going to hear the voice of God, do you know what it is going to sound like? It is going to sound like you.
I found that as I began to help people move into these things, and to understand the voice of God and the revelations that were coming to them, that there would be times when the Spirit of God would move and God would show me and reveal things to me. And I would say, "Now, God has put something in your mind. Come on, share it with us. What do you see?"
The person would say, "Well, I kind of thought this, and I thought, 'Hey, it is just me. I am making it up.' "
Of course it was you. It came up out of your spirit because the Holy Spirit is going to speak to your spirit and it is YOUR spirit that is going to communicate it outwards.
That is the voice that you have learned to hear throughout your life, the real you, the inner you, the spirit within you. That is the voice that is going to come out. That is where God is going to speak through. That is where the influence is going to come from.
If you can learn to speak out in tongues, you can then learn to interpret your tongues. And if you can learn to interpret your tongues, you can know what the Spirit is saying.
So you can pray, and you can speak in tongues, and you can interpret your tongues. You can develop to the capacity where God will then begin to speak to you, where the anointing of the Spirit of God will rise up within you and you will speak in tongues and interpret your tongues. You will speak in tongues and you will interpret your own tongues.
When God first began to show me that I could do this, I thought it was heresy at first. But the anointing of the Spirit of God showed me that it had to be real. It was God. I could feel it, I could sense it. It was powerful. I began to speak in tongues and interpret my tongues, and God began to give me direction.
He began to give me prophetic words, words of wisdom and words of knowledge. He began to give me direction concerning the future. He began to tell me His plan for my life and what He had in mind for me.
Eventually I kept a tape recorder handy, and I recorded it. Every time I felt the urge to speak in tongues I put the tape recorder on and I would speak in tongues and then interpret my tongues. I ran out of tape! It went on for hours.
Eventually I began to transcribe some of the recordings, write them down and keep a log of them. I began to look at them over a period of time to see whether I had made all these things up or whether it was God. It began to fall into place like a jigsaw puzzle. Something would happen in my life and I would go back and read something that God had said to me, weeks, even months before. And there it was, in writing right there.
The Lord was warning me and telling me that things were going to happen, that changes were going to take place so that when this happened I was not to be surprised because it was of Him.
Then as I would pray for people, not knowing what their needs were, I could pray in tongues, and I could interpret what I prayed in tongues and know what the wisdom of the Spirit is, and what it is that I should pray. Every single believer who can speak in tongues has the ability to tap into the wisdom that is in their spirit in this way.
Prophecy is speaking without tongues. I shared in my testimony of how I would practice over myself and prophesy over myself. You will find as you do this that it works the same way. You have developed the capacity now where you do not need to pour out in tongues to get the water flowing. You have prayed in tongues for long periods. You have set up the channel. The pipe is sunk, the flow is there, and you can close your eyes and the Lord is there. When you open your mouth to speak, His Spirit is there. You sense that urge rising up within you, and you begin to speak forth in prophecy.
Very often, it will happen while you are praying. I found out that as I would pray with people concerning their needs, it would slip out. I would say something while in prayer like, "Lord, we pray for this person, and Lord I pray that you would do this..." And the spirit of prophecy would rise up and say, "Yes, that is it. This is what I am going to do, and..." out comes a prophecy most unexpectedly. Why? Because I learned to tap the flow from within my spirit by the faculty of speech.
Now you might be one of those people who do not talk much. You might be introverted and quiet, and you are wondering why God never uses you in prophecy. You are like the person who is standing there saying, "Oh, I wish I could speak in tongues. Oh Lord, I want to speak in tongues. Lord, please make me speak in tongues." I know, I was one of those when I first received it. I sat waiting for the Lord to give me tongues. I sat waiting for him to give me tongues and He did not seem to give them to me. But do you know what? Even if He gave them to me I would not have known it, because I was not talking. How can you tell if you can speak in tongues if you are not speaking? You have to open your mouth and say something before what comes out is tongues. You have to open your mouth and get it going.
It is like a boat on the water. You can place it in the water and you can sit and play with the rudder all you like. It does nothing to the boat. The boat just sits there. But get the boat moving, push it out and set it in motion, and the moment you move that rudder the boat is affected immediately. You have to open your mouth and speak. And if you want to prophesy, or hear from God in prophecy, then you are going to have to practice this. If you are afraid to do it in public, then you must do it the way I learned by doing it in your private prayer closet. You do it by learning to pray in tongues and interpreting your tongues and by learning to prophesy over yourself. The more you do that, the better you will become at it, until eventually you will have the confidence.
As you begin to pray over people that you know, that are near you, you start to hear for them while you are praying with them, and you start to prophesy over them as you pray for them. You become an instrument to speak the Word to them. It is the function of the prophet to speak the Word of God to other people. But if you are going to do this then you must develop that capacity and exercise it, and make it available to the Lord so that He can use it. Then when He wants you to speak a Word to somebody, He does not have to shake you and put you in a trance, or put you under the power, He just needs to give you that gentle prompting that says, "Now." It is a gentle prompting that just gives one or two words, one or two thoughts, a little picture pops into your mind, and God says, "Okay, now. Speak it forth."
"What do I speak?"
"Speak it forth!"
"But what do I speak?"
"Speak it forth!"
You are saying, "Lord, move the rudder."
The Lord is saying, "I want to move it. Get the boat going."
Two Types of Prophecy
You open your mouth and you launch out, and as you do it He steers the rudder. You speak and He will give you the words to speak. And as it comes out, it is going to come out in two forms.
It is either going to be general prophecy, or it is going to be personal prophecy. General prophecy normally falls under the standard gift of prophecy that Paul speaks about in 1 Corinthians 12.
It is a prophecy that is given to the whole group. That word of prophecy could be a word of encouragement or exhortation, and it could apply to more than one person that is in the group. So several people could leave the meeting saying, "The Lord spoke to me tonight."
Thus one prophetic word covered all of them. In order to do that, the prophetic word needs to be general. It needs to cover principles of Scripture, so very often general prophecy will involve quoting the Word. What it is actually, is a spontaneous little sermon, an unprepared little sermonette that the prophet gives. He simply stands up and God gives him an idea.
God gives him the main points of his message, and he stands up and preaches it by the Spirit. It is just a quick, short, sharp little Word to the group. It is like the preacher standing up and sharing. Sometimes it is a confirmation of the sermon that is being preached that night.
Personal prophecy is when you are speaking only to the person that you are praying with, and you are giving a specific prophecy
You could say, "Thus saith the Lord to you, my brother/sister..." Personal prophecy becomes a little bit more intensive, a bit more direct, and it becomes more directive.
You cannot give directive prophecy to a group. You cannot stand up and say, "Thus saith the Lord, You have pondered changing jobs. This is of Me. Go ahead and do it." A whole lot of guys are going to go and pack up their jobs and get into trouble because they were mad at their boss.
You have to be careful. You do not give directive prophecy to a group. But when you are prophesying over an individual you can speak directive prophecy by the word of knowledge, by the word of wisdom, a specific word for that individual.
God will give the words as you speak them forth. But you have to learn to develop that capacity before it is going to flow out of you as a prophet.
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