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A person who serves as a channel of communication between the human and divine worlds. Israelites thought of the prophetic experience as one that occurred when people were possessed by the spirit of God: “the hand of the Lord” fell upon them (1Kgs 18:46; 2Kgs 3:15; Jer 15:17; Ezek 1:3); the spirit of God “rested on them” (Num 11:25-26) or “took possession” of them (Judg 6:34). They felt compelled to speak the divine message that had been given to them (Amos 3:8; Jer 20:9). Prophets could sometimes be identified by distinctive clothing or a mark (1Kgs 20:35-41; 2Kgs 1:8; Zech 13:4). Others sometimes performed symbolic acts (Hos 1:4-9; Isa 7:3; Isa 8:1-4; Isa 20:1-6; Jer 19:1-15; Jer 27:1-28:1) or constructed their oracles in characteristic ways (e.g., using the formula “thus says the Lord”). Because divine possession was not a continuous experience for any of the prophets, they played various social roles in addition to carrying out their prophetic activities. Prophets like Amos prophesied only occasionally and were normally involved in secular occupations (Amos 1:1; Amos 7:14-15). Others, such as Jeremiah and Ezekiel, were priests who were occasionally transformed into prophets (Jer 1:1; Ezek 1:3). Prophecy also played an important role in Christianity from the very beginning (Acts 2:14-21). The early church used OT prophecy to interpret the life and teachings of Jesus, who himself was recognized as a prophet (Matt 13:57; Matt 21:11; Luke 4:24; John 4:19; John 9:17). After the resurrection, prophecy became one of the gifts of the Spirit and at least in some congregations was a normal part of worship (1Thess 5:20; 1Cor 12:28-29; 1Cor 14:26-32).