Why Prophetic Pictures Are Given

I have often been asked concerning what I experience when bringing a prophetic picture to an individual; a prophetic picture that describes God’s intention to them at that moment.

What Do I See Prophetically?

Often what I see is some symbolic scene, activity, or substance, such as a rose bush, or a sailing yacht, a thing that is not necessarily literal, but immediately communicates to the individual the spiritual truth that God is trying to get them to see.

I might see a fishing boat run aground on the reef, and discover that the person loves fishing, and their life has felt like it was shipwrecked. It is personal, it is unique, and it tells them that Father knows them and cares.

Several times I have been shown the picture of a person changing their walking shoes for running shoes; meaning that it is time for them to accelerate in their calling. Other times, it is a glimpse of what Father has for them in a future time. So why are prophetic pictures given?

Prophetic pictures are given to convey a spiritual reality or a divine intention.

With these thoughts in mind, let us look at how the Apostle John experienced this prophetic grace:

(Authors notes in brackets in the following scriptures)

Revelation 4:1 (NKJV) After these things I looked, (literally: “to stare intently as one that has been given the capacity to perceive”) and behold, a door… (literally: “a portal or entrance, an opening”) standing open in heaven… (Greek word ’ouranos’ – means “air or sky” – by implication heaven, eternity) And the first voice which I heard was like a trumpet speaking with me, saying, “Come up here, and I will show you things which must take place after this.”

Literally, a portal opened between John and eternity, between the world of the tangible in which he lived and the spirit world of God’s presence. And once able to see in that realm, John was given the ability to see into an aspect of the future because past, present and future all co-exist in the spirit world of God’s presence. It was a prophetic glimpse.

Revelation 4:2 (NKJV) Immediately I was in (the) Spirit; (’the’ is not in the original)

and behold, a throne set in heaven, and One sat on the throne.

John, now with his spiritual eyes opened to see, was able to see through a portal into eternity, into the spirit world of God’s existence, and saw the throne of God! He had suddenly become compatible with that other dimension. He was ‘in spirit’!

The significance is this: Holy Spirit gave him eyes to see what was already there in the realm of the spirit but invisible to the natural eye.

God is Spirit. So, whatever it was that John saw, it was not physical, it was not tangible… but it was communicated to him in a manner that would have been meaningful to him in his human understanding. He saw a throne. That immediately communicated to John a king and his royal, undisputed right to rule.

God doesn’t have a physical throne anywhere in the entire universe! It was an impression in John’s spirit imagination which Holy Spirit used to communicate the awesome power and authority of God’s person and presence. But did he ‘see’ it? Yes, he did!

Revelation 1:10-11 (NKJV) I was in (the) Spirit on the Lord’s Day, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, saying, “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,” and, “What you see, write in a book…”

Please note that the voice was not from the sky or from some distant place or even somewhere in front of him, it was from behind him. Which clearly indicates that he was already there! He was already in the throne room! But suddenly became aware of that reality!

As he stepped ‘into spirit’, no longer blinded by the natural world of his human surroundings, he was able to see what God already saw… and wanted to communicate to him! And because God’s sight is not confined to the present, he was able to see the future as well as the present. That’s all the prophetic gift really is. It is a moment in which, being ‘in spirit’, we catch glimpses of tomorrow! That’s why prophetic pictures are given.

The Miracles Of Jesus

John 5:19-21 (NKJV) Then Jesus answered and said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He (the Father) does (in the spirit world, the world of Father’s reality), the Son also does in like manner (in the world of His reality, the world of the tangible). For the Father loves the Son and shows Him (gives Him the ability to see through the portal) all things that He Himself does (in the Spirit world); and He will show Him greater works than these, that you may marvel. (ie. as He executes in the tangible that which He has first seen in the Spirit) For as the Father raises the dead and gives life to them (in spirit), even so the Son gives life (in the physical) to whom He will. 

Verse 20 makes it clear that, in order for Jesus to demonstrate miracles that would cause people to marvel, Father had to first show Jesus that miracle in the world of His intention and purpose, the spirit world.

Jesus would see it ‘in spirit’ and outwork it in an act of obedience so that others could see tangibly! In other words, Father will do greater works in the spirit world so that Jesus, seeing those works by also being ‘in spirit’, is able to accomplish those greater works on earth.

All of this brings clarity to verses such as the following:

Matthew 16:19 (AMP) I will give you the keys (authority) of the kingdom of heaven (that spirit-world in which God rules); and whatever you bind (forbid, declare to be improper and unlawful) on earth will have [already] been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose (permit, declare lawful) on earth will have (already) been loosed in heaven.”

When you are able to see what God has bound in the world of His reality, the spirit world, you will have the authority, boldness, and initiative to bind it also in the world of your reality, the world of the tangible. Because we see it being bound in heaven, we can then bind it on earth. Your authority in the tangible is determined by your obedience to that which you’ve seen Father do in the intangible.

We are simply making manifest in the world of our reality that which we have seen Father accomplish in the world of His reality, the spirit world, which we call ‘Heaven’.

My friends, true spiritual authority is not found in how loud we shout nor in some dramatic gesture. It is found by the humble of heart that have a deep cry for intimacy with Father’s heart and the unconditional surrender of their will to His. It is a person’s unqualified availability to do what they see Him first do, that makes demons cringe and angels celebrate!

The quest for greater, authentic miracles must be preceded by a greater cry of hunger, dependency, and surrender.

In my next blog I will build on this foundation and share with you the wonder of ‘Living Beyond the Veil’.


Watch a 3-minute video – Imagination and Prophetic Pictures.