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Why Don't We Need Prophets Anymore?

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by Bishka, Aug 1, 2006.

  1. Bishka

    Bishka Veteran Member

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    Hey again y'all!

    It's me the lovable annoying misunderstood mormon.

    Please keep it respectful.

    From the "Be Honest" thread I created, I got several responses and hope to get more.


    So I have some questions, and I will pose them to several different religious groups.


    CATHOLICS

    Why doesn't the world need a prophet anymore? To you, is the Pope like the prophet of old?


    PROTESTANTS/LUTHERANS/ETC/MOST OTHER CHRISTIANS

    Why doesn't the world need a prophet? Wouldn't you think it is so much more wicked then in biblical times? Why would God leave His people wiht a guidance in the wilderness?

    MUSLIMS
    Why can't their be anymore prophets after Muhammad?

    ANYONE ELSE
    Your opinions are welcome, but I'm pretty sure most of you don't believe in prophets in the first place -- so it's kind of be redundant to ask. :D
     
  2. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

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    Why Don't We Need Prophets Anymore?
    Prophets usually predict a suggested future. Even GOD knows that the future is mutable.
     
  3. Smoke

    Smoke Done here.

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    Obviously, I don't believe in divine inspiration or infallibility, but I think there is a definite need among humans for the prophetic voice. A prophet in this sense will be someone who speaks out against folly, ignorance, or injustice; he need not be perfect, infallible, likeable, or even consistent. Such a prophet may be religious, like Martin Luther King, or irreligious, like Richard Dawkins. The only thing certain is that he will stir things up, make a lot of people angry, and -- if enough people listen to him -- change things for the better.
     
  4. ALifetimeToWaitFor....

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    prophet |ˈpräfit| noun 1 a person regarded as an inspired teacher or proclaimer of the will of God

    Dont take offense, but the fact that we aren't prescribed to a certain religion mean s we don't believe in prophets is an ignorant statement. Secondly Buddhist obviously believe in prophets, rastifarians obviously believe in prophets, muslims do also. I could go on and on.

    I believe we are in dire need of a universal prophet bridging gaps between all religions. With a message that is undeniably right. He can't just take up one cause but the cause being the suffering of the entire human race, just a man with the mentality of buddha. "Question everything" including me.
     
  5. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

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    The only captivating prophets that I see people have a desire for, are the prophets who predict or promise a brighter or better future, preferably with God at the epicenter. We have had prophets of intelligence, tolerance, harmony and understanding in the past. Some people have either forgotten or failed to recognize these individuals.
     
  6. James the Persian

    James the Persian Dreptcredincios Crestin

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    My question is, what is a prophet? If all you mean is that one makes prophecies (taking for granted that such come from God, as we're talking in a religious context), then why get hung up on the title? It often appears to me that LDS think that titles like Apostle and Prophet are somehow more than a description. To me they aren't. Someone may be an apostle and a prophet whilst never being given either title. For instance, St. Herman of Alaska was the apostle to the Aleuts, Elder Paisios made various prophecies which are widely accepted by Orthodox Christians, but we don't call either one Apostle or Prophet. People still do get revelations from God. God does still guide the Church. I'd say we don't need Prophets because we have enough of them already, even if we call them something else.

    James
     
  7. angellous_evangellous

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    I think that it is impossible to understand much of the Bible without a prophet. I think that the notion that God left his people without guidance is a heresy - if it is propounded by any Christian group/sect.

    EDIT: A prophet is a person gifted by God with the gift of prophesy. This gift can be manifested in several ways, but all include continued revelations of God's character, words, will, purposes, or anything else that God wants to reveal in any manner that God chooses to reveal it.

    IMO, certain Protestants think that God speaks to them, or they seek God's will for every damn thing in life. If they find it, they are a prophet. We have a whole generation of thoughtless Protestants that think that they are prophets, with no respect for the office or gift whatsoever.

    I just call them Christian mystics.
     
  8. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    We now have the Holy Spirit to guide us. Isn't that enough? Can the H.S. not guide people to prophesy, even if they're not "official" -- as James said?
     
  9. Booko

    Booko Deviled Hen

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    I guess I have a different understanding of a prophet, then. To me it has more to do with delivering a message of some sort that can move humanity to the next level. Predicting the future is, at most, a side issue.

    Is the future mutable from God's pov, sitting outside of time?
     
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  10. Quiddity

    Quiddity UndertheInfluenceofGiants

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    Although not familiar with St. Herman, I pretty much agree with James.

    ~Victor
     
  11. Booko

    Booko Deviled Hen

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    Hopefully some of our Muslim friend will pop in, but I'll answer from the pov of the different way we interpret one of the titles of Muhammad "Seal of the Prophets."

    It is the common belief among Muslims that this means that after Muhammad, no prophets.

    We believe that as the Arabic word used for "prophet" is "nabi" (minor prophet) that means that we should expect a Daniel or Hosea. The Arabic word "rasul" means major prophet, like Moses, Jesus or Muhammad. The title "Seal of the Prophet" doesn't imply an end to the "rasuls."

    If you consider this, it would make sense. From Muhammad's time on, humanity has done a much better job in terms of speedier communication, putting things in writing, and having a much larger worldview. So why would we need a "minor" prophet, whose job it is to call us back to an existing religion?" It's not like anyone's lost the text of the Qu'ran. Unlike many other religions, Muslims don't have to waste time debating which texts are authentic and which aren't. (They save that for hadith. :))

    That doesn't mean we don't need any "major" prophets, though.

    Even in Islam, there are prophecies about the appearance of figures known by names such as the Mahdi, Qaim, Tenth Imim, and the like.

    If these references are not to someone who is a prophet, then what sort of figure *do* they refer to?

    Well, you left Baha'is out, and we do believe in prophets, but I'm guessing you didn't include us because you know for us the question is kinda moot. :D
     
  12. Quiddity

    Quiddity UndertheInfluenceofGiants

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    Learned something new.......Gracias.....:jiggy:
     
  13. Booko

    Booko Deviled Hen

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    It seems to me that even in English we have more than one usage of the term "prophet." If we can find a way to be clearer about what me mean by "prophet" it sure would help!

    One version is a person who just predicts the future. In the religious context, I think this too narrow and not a very useful definition.

    A second version is an otherwise normal individual who has the gift of prophecy. To me, this is more like someone who's very good at listening to the HS, and might be called "inspired." They do not speak with the authority of God, even though they are tapped into the HS. (This is what you're referring to, yes, Sojourner?)

    A third version is people like the Biblical "minor prophets." They get a message from God more directly than us mere individuals who have the gift of prophesy. They speak with authority, but they call people back to a religion that already exists.

    A fourth version is people that start entire new religions, like Moses, Jesus, Krishna, Zoroaster, Muhammad, and Baha'u'llah. Like the minor prophets, they appear to be different than just a person who has the gift of prophesy. They do NOT call people back to an existing religion -- they build upon an existing one. They also speak with authority, but unlike minor prophets, they have the authority to overturn social laws* that have outlived their usefulness, and add new social laws that are needed for the times.

    *Social law: laws such as marriage and divorce laws, inheritance laws, dietary laws, details on how and when to pray, etc.

    *Universal law: Core laws that demand honesty, loving your neighbor, treating others well, that are present in all religions.
     
  14. BruceDLimber

    BruceDLimber Well-Known Member

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    Greetings!

    I'm a Baha'i, and IOV Divine Messengers (sometimes called prophets) are not only needed periodically, but will never cease to appear!

    God typically sends a new one every 500-1,000 years, and He renews religion (founding a new religion in the process) and gives us God's new teachings for the current Age! We thus receive continuing Divine Guidance if only we are spiritual enough and wise enough to recognize it.

    IOV the latest such Messenger came about a century and a half ago (bringing many new volumes of scripture in the process and founding the Baha'i Faith); He has promised us that there will be another in the endless stream of such Messengers after a thousand years or so....

    And all these religions build upon each other and are part of a single ever-evolving faith, the Faith of God!

    Best, :)

    Bruce
     
  15. dawny0826

    dawny0826 Mother Heathen

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    We HAVE the greatest prophet...Jesus Christ...who is the same TODAY within his believers as He was yesterday and will be forever.

    Wicked in what way?

    The bible states that in the latter days, many will prophesie. I believe very much that some are given the gift of prophesy for edification of the church...however, I don't think that there is ONE SINGULAR or profound living prophet that anyone should be turning to for revelation.

    We have CHRIST. And anyone who truly prophesies is receiving their information from God Almighty. Where does Christ Jesus reside? Within the heart of the believer. We have what we need within ourselves and within the pages of God's Holy Word.

    He didn't, Becky. As promised, He sent us the Holy Spirit to guide, comfort and teach us.

    When one receives Christ...they receive the Holy Spirit, as promised. We have not been left alone in the wildnerness. The answers we seek are found in Christ...who lives within each believer.
     
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  16. Halcyon

    Halcyon Lord of the Badgers

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    To me a prophet is someone who receives divine revelation. All they need to do to be a prophet is write down that revelation.
    If people then read that message and consider the author a prophet because the message makes sense to them then so be it, other people will not consider them a prophet and that's fine too.

    If someone goes a step further and claims to be a prophet, similar to that Maitreya guy in another recent thread, i automatically distrust them. I don't think people can be a permanent prophet, and thus everything they say comes straight from God - such a thing would be open to obvious abuse.

    Instead i think the label of prophet must be given to someone on the merit of the revelation given, and that the label is not permanent otherwise any old crap they make up could become doctrine.
    Thus, although i think there could be many prophets living right now, i doubt they are self-proclaimed prophets or hold the position of Prophet within an organisation.
     
  17. lunamoth

    lunamoth Will to love

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    A prophet is someone who sees past the illusion of what everyone knows to what truely is. We always need and always have prophets among us.
     
  18. Quiddity

    Quiddity UndertheInfluenceofGiants

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    Unless we define what a prophet is, we will be talking French to Spanish and never get anywhere. Ok I'll start: :D


    (1) General Idea -- The Hebrew Prophet was not merely, as the word commonly implies, a man enlightened by God to foretell events; he was the interpreter and supernaturally enlightened herald sent by Yahweh to communicate His will and designs to Israel. His mission consisted in preaching as well as in foretelling. He had to maintain and develop the knowledge of the Old Law among the Chosen People, lead them back when they strayed, and gradually prepare the way for the new kingdom of God, which the messias was to establish on earth. Prophecy, in general, signifies the supernatural message of the Prophet, and more especially, from custom, the predictive element of the prophetic message.

    (2) The Hebrew Names -- The ordinary Hebrew word for prophet is nabî'. Its etymology is uncertain. According to many recent critics, the root nabî, not employed in Hebrew, signified to speak enthusiastically, " to utter cries, and make more or less wild gestures", like the pagan mantics. Judging from a comparative examination of the cognate words in Hebrew and the other Semitic tongues, it is at least equally probable that the original meaning was merely: to speak, to utter words (cf. Laur, "Die Prophetennamen des A.T.", Fribourg, 1903, 14-38). The historic meaning of nabî' established by biblical usage is "interpreter and mouthpiece of God". This is forcibly illustrated by the passage, where Moses, excusing himself from speaking to Pharao on account of his embarrassment of speech, was answered by Yahweh: "Behold I have appointed thee the God of Pharao: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet. Thou shalt speak to him all that I command thee; and he shall speak to Pharao, that he let the children of Israel go out of his land" (Exodus 7:1-2). Moses plays towards the King of Egypt the role of God, inspiring what is to be uttered, and Aaron is the prophet, his mouthpiece, transmitting the inspired message he shall receive. The Greek prophetes (from pro-phanai, to speak for, or in the name of someone) translates the Hebrew word accurately. The Greek prophet was the revealer of the future, and the interpreter of divine things, especially of the obscure oracles of the pythoness. Poets were the prophets of the muses: Inspire me, muse, thy prophet I shall be" (Pindar, Bergk, Fragm. 127).
    The word nabî' expresses more especially a function. The two most usual synonyms ro'éeh and hozéh emphasize more clearly the special source of the prophetic knowledge, the vision, that is, the Divine revelation or inspiration. Both have almost the same meaning; hozéh is employed, however, much more frequently in poetical language and almost always in connexion with a supernatural vision, whereas râ'ah, of which ro'éh is the participle, is the usual word for to see in any manner. The compiler of the first book of Kings (ix, 9) informs us that before his time ro'éh was used where nabî' was then employed. Hozéh is found much more frequently from the days of Amos. There were other less specific or more unusual terms employed, the meaning of which is clear, such as, messenger of God, man of God, servant of God, man of the spirit, or inspired man, etc. It is only rarely, and at a later period, that prophecy is called nebû'ah, a cognate of nabî'; more ordinarily we find hazôn, vision, or word of God, oracle (ne um) of Yahweh, etc.

    http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12477a.htm
     
  19. Radio Frequency X

    Radio Frequency X World Leader Pretend

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    How can you tell the difference between a prophet and a madman?
     
  20. Bishka

    Bishka Veteran Member

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    By the power of the Holy Spirit.
     
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