x350.........Titles of distinction?
29 Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge. 30 If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace. 31 For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted. 32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. (1Corinthians 14:29-32)
Note in these verses--that the words "prophets"--and "prophecy" are used interchangeably--they are referrering to the same people. There is absolutely no distinction to someone who is a "prophet" as being a title of ministry--or a leadership ministry--or an "office" ministry---any special designation at all.
the simple meaning is that a prophet is someone who prophecies (speaks)--Just like a teacher is someone who teaches
One problem we have with "apostles" is that the translators decided to translate the word "apostello" into English (sent) and leave "apostellos" ("one who is sent") as "apostle". This seems to designate only certain select people as being "official apostles". It seems to say that only some people could be apostles---(this comes to us from the tradition of saint worship in the church)
the further problem is that there are only certain members of the body of Christ who are meant to function as apostles or evangelists or pastors--etc---But the ignored Bible fact is that all have some form of ministry--and that we will not be the body of Christ until all function in their gifting.
It is very plain from these verse that "all may prophecy" within a church meeting, and when someone prophecies--they are a prophet!
Another tendency we have is to think that only Isaiha or Ezekiel was a prophet--that they were the "titled" prophets--and yet we know that the new testament says that "your sons and daughters shall prophecy"---Well it is simple and plain language that when any son or daughter of God prophecies--they are a prophet--!
It is similar to the "office" of ministry--something which was put in by interpreters of the Bible because it was what they experienced. There were people who held important positions at the time of the interpretation of the King James Bible (tradition of over 1,000 years of the Roman tradition of church)--many people had important titles which gave them authority to own land and have slaves and rule over people and collect tithes and taxes (this authority supposedly from God). But the Bible does not have a special word for "office" of ministry
When it was interpreted "office" of an apostle--or "office" of a bishop or deacon--the Greek says "diakoneo" which means to serve--most often interpreted as the word ministry. Paul says: I magnify mine "ministry"---I magnify my service to God--I have the "office of an apostle"--means I serve God by being an apostle--I serve God by going where He sends me--by functioning as an apostle--not that he had some title given by God which made him ruler over others--but rather that he had a gift from God--to be sent--to be a messenger of the Gospel out to the world. (and by the way, an apostle was always someone who worked ministry in a group with others--when an apostle worked alone--Phillip is the only Bible example--he was called an evangelist)
Ministry is a function, not a title.
Prophets are people who prophecy-- teachers are people who teach --apostles are people who are messengers that work in a group--evangelists are people who bring the Gospel to the unsaved --pastors and shepherds--are guides who release people to ministry.