A prophet is an individual who, in religious terms, is claimed to have been contacted by divine or supernatural entities, or to speak for such, serving as an intermediary with humanity, delivering knowledge or information of such entities to others. The message that the prophet conveys is called a prophecy. Traditionally, prophets are regarded as having a role in society that promotes change due to their messages and actions. The English word "prophet" comes from the Greek προφήτης (profétés) meaning advocate, and has become applied generally to anyone who makes predictions based on nearly any means of analysis or assessment, whether correct or not.
- The prophet's mantle, ere his flight began,
Dropt on the world — a sacred gift to man.
- Thomas Campbell, Pleasures of Hope, Part I, line 43
- I shall always consider the best guesser the best prophet.
- Cicero, De Divinatione, II. 5, a Greek adage
- I have been very jealous for the Lord God of hosts: for the children of Israel have forsaken thy covenant, thrown down thine altars, and slain thy prophets with the sword; and I, even I only, am left; and they seek my life, to take it away.
- And those dwelling on the earth rejoice over them and enjoy themselves, and they will send gifts to one another, because these two prophets tormented those dwelling on the earth. And after the three and a half days spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet, and great fear fell upon those beholding them.
- The best prophets lead you up to the curtain and let you peer through for yourself.
- When you spread out your hands in prayer,
- I hide my eyes from you;
- even when you offer many prayers,
- I am not listening.
- Your hands are full of blood!
- Wash and make yourselves clean.
- Take your evil deeds out of my sight;
- stop doing wrong.
- Learn to do right; seek justice.
- Defend the oppressed.
- Take up the cause of the fatherless;
- plead the case of the widow.
- A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country and in his own house.
- Jesus, in Matthew, XIII. 57
- Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. "You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? "So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit…
- Jesus in Matthew 7:16
- As it was, deformed and made mad by his hellish life, he had become what prophets had probably always been: not frauds, for they themselves believed what they had seen, but pitiful creatures, dreaming some salvation from this crushing world in their malfunctioning brains. Yaum ed din, the crazy little man, the prophet Aida’s John the Baptist, had said: the Day of Religion, the Muslim’s term for Judgment Day. Yaum ed din, the last consolation of the crazy and the weak.
- Jamil Nasir, in Tower of Dreams (1999), Chapter 9 (p. 123)
- If I have eschewed the word prophet, I do not wish to attribute to myself such lofty title at the present time, for whoever is called a prophet now was once called a seer; since a prophet, my son, is properly speaking one who sees distant things through a natural knowledge of all creatures. And it can happen that the prophet bringing about the perfect light of prophecy may make manifest things both human and divine, because this cannot be done otherwise, given that the effects of predicting the future extend far off into time.
- Nostradamus, in The Prophecies (1555), Preface
- I tell you in truth: all men are Prophets or else God does not exist.
- Jean-Paul Sartre, in The Devil and the Good Lord (1951), act 1
- The historian is a reversed prophet.
- Karl Wilhelm Friedrich Schlegel, in Athenäum (1798) I, 2, 20: Fragmente
- Prognostics do not always prove prophecies, at least the wisest prophets make sure of the event first.
- Horace Walpole, letter to Thomas Walpole (9 February 1785)
- The prophets ... hurled their "woe be unto you" against those who oppressed and enslaved the poor, those who joined field to field, and those who deflected justice by bribes. These were the typical actions leading to class stratification everywhere in the ancient world, and were everywhere intensified by the development of the city-state (polis).
- It is characteristic of the prophets that they do not receive their mission from any human agency, but seize it.