When Aaron and Miriam rebelled against Moses’ leadership, God said to them: “Hear now My words: If there is a prophet among you, I, the Lord, make Myself known to him in a vision; I speak to him in a dream” (Num. 12:6). Throughout Old Testament times the prophetic gift was in operation. The first person called “a prophet” in the Bible was Abraham (Gen. 20:7). In the history of Israel, Moses was the greatest of the prophets; he communicated with God “face to face” (Deut. 34:10). Shortly before his death he told the Israelites: “The Lord your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your midst, from your brethren. Him you shall hear” (Deut. 18:15). This prophecy was initially fulfilled through Joshua and the prophets who followed him. It found its ultimate fulfillment in the appearance of the Messiah who was the prophet who would lead God’s people from the slavery of sin into the heavenly Canaan.

The New Testament writers as well as several other individuals mentioned in the New Testament had the gift of prophecy (Luke 1:67; Matt. 11:14; Acts 13:1; 15:32; 21:8-10). Paul wrote to the Ephesians that the gift of prophecy would remain in the church “till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God” (Eph. 4:13). In the book of Revelation, therefore, the remnant church in the time of the end is said to have “the testimony of Jesus” (12:17), which according to Revelation 19:10 is “the spirit of prophecy.”

All through Bible history prophets served God, often delivering messages from God for both that time and for the future. God's prophets include Noah, Elijah, Elisha, Daniel, Nathan, Stephen, and John, "the revelator."