Conviction is a major anointing that is needed in the prophetic ministry. The Scripture tells us that the gifts and the calling are without repentance. Many prophets operate in the gifts without having any conviction in their personal lives. Conviction can be defined as “the act of convincing a person of error or of compelling the admission of a truth.”
When you spend time in the presence of God, you are measured according to His standards, not the standards of man. In light of the Lord revealing Himself to Isaiah, he got a true picture of himself.
Once Isaiah met with the Lord and was convicted of his sin and cleansed from his guilt, he was ready to serve God. True conviction from the Holy Spirit releases an awareness that you’ve done something against the standard of the Lord, while on the other hand condemnation says you have done something wrong.
So I said: “Woe is me, for I am undone! Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.” Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a live coal which he had taken with the tongs from the altar. And he touched my mouth with it, and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your iniquity is taken away, and your sin purged.” —Isaiah 6:5–7, NKJV
Isaiah’s sin had to be burned away; the fire of judgment was applied to his place of sin. This was obviously a spiritual transaction. If one has a sinful mouth, it must be purged by the fire of God.
It is an anointing from heaven. Notice the Lord had to cleanse his lips, which represents speech. Isaiah saw his sinfulness and the sinfulness of his people, mainly in terms of sinful speech.
• By nature our lips are full of flattery and false intent: “With flattering lips and with a double heart do they speak” (Ps. 12:2).
• By nature lips lie and are proud: “Let the lying lips be put to silence; which speak grievous things proudly and contemptuously against the righteous” (Ps. 31:18).
• By nature lips deceive: “Keep your tongue from evil, and your lips from speaking deceit” (Ps. 34:13, NKJV).
• By nature lips are violent: “Swords are in their lips” (Ps. 59:7).
• By nature lips bring death to others: “The poison of asps is under their lips” (Ps. 140:3, NKJV).
Because of the Fall our carnal natures must be transformed before becoming the mouthpiece of God. The mouthpiece can be defined as a person who represents the views or opinions of another, a spokesperson who perpetuates the views or agenda of another. Purging of the tongue is purifying the speech.
Prophets can be very accurate, but this is not the litmus test for true prophetic ministry. It must be that they are walking in the nature of Christ. Prophets must mature to the full measure of the stature of Christ.
Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: “Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?” Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.” —Isaiah 6:8
Isaiah was a righteous, godly man by all outward appearance. Yet when he saw the enthroned King, the Lord of hosts, he saw how sinful he was in comparison. Authenticity comes from being with the Lord yourself. This is the hour when prophets must ascend the hill of the Lord and descend with truth and revelation from personal conviction. The Lord, not man, must give you your assignment.
This process cuts away the strings and false allegiances in your life. Seeing the Lord for yourself will release a level of faith and courage to fulfill your assignment at all cost.
Prophets are sent from the presence of the Lord. The Lord imparts His vision, assignment, and heart to the prophet. Prophets must have a heart that has been processed in the presence of God.
This will allow your heart to know its own sinfulness. Prophets develop a heart that knows the need among the people, the need for God’s word. Prophets must have a heart that has been touched by God’s cleansing fire.
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.