What is Prophecy?
Simply expressed, prophecy can be defined as hearing the voice of God and speaking what He says. This gift is commonly experienced in several different ways.
1 Corinthians 14:31 For you can all prophesy one by one, that all may learn and all may be encouraged.
One is auditory, meaning that the receiver hears words, which they then repeat or release. Another type is visual, meaning the receiver sees a message through some type of picture, which they can get an interpretation from the Lord and then release. Generally, these pictures are either received while awake by means of visions, or while asleep through dreams. Yet another type is perception. This type is harder to explain but it does not come from hearing or seeing, but from a inner knowing. Many prophetic people will experience all aspects at various times, but they tend to have one that is more dominant or frequent.
1 John 4:1, John the apostle clearly states by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.”
Prophets and psychics may operate in some similar ways, but their sources of revelation and interpretation of that revelation come from completely different places. Prophecy comes from spirit of truth, whereas a psychic reading is from a demonic inspiration.
Surely the Sovereign Lord does nothing without revealing his plan to his servants the prophets.