Dear 100 Hour Board,
I heard there were women prophets in the Old Testament - is that the case? I seem to recall there being a "prophetess" somewhere in there, but I can't think of a name at the moment. Maybe it was just referring to something else.
Actually, there are several verses in the Bible that talk about specific prophetesses. I am listing them below with the names of the prophetess in italics:
Exodus 15:20- "And Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a timbrel in her hand; and all the women went out after her with timbrels and with dances."
Judges 4:4- And Deborah, a prophetess, the wife of Lapidoth, she judged Israel at that time.
2 Kings 22:14- So Hilkiah the priest, and Ahikam, and Achbor, and Saphan, and Asahiah, went unto Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tikvah, the son of Harhas, keeper of the wardrobe; (now she dwelt in Jerusalem in the college)
2 Chronicles 34:22- And Hilkah, and they that the king had appointed, went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tikvath, the son of Hasrah, keeper of the wardrobe; (now she dwelt in Jerusalem in the college:) and they spake to her to that effect.
Nehemiah 6:14- My God, think thou upon Tobiah and Sanballat according to these their works, and on the prophetess Noadiah, and the rest of the prophets, that would have put me in fear.
Luke 2:36- And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity;
And as long as I'm making a complete list, I might as well mention Jezebel (Revelations 2:20), who claimed to be a prophetess, but was nevertheless was a wicked person, and also an unnamed prophetess (perhaps even a symbolic prophetess) mentioned in Isaiah 8:3, and 2 Nephi 18:3.
Straight from the Bible Dictionary: "In a general sense a prophet is anyone who has a testimony of Jesus Christ by the Holy Ghost." In that sense, pretty much anyone who bears their testimony in Sacrament Meeting would qualify as being a prophet or prophetess; it's just that we use the term differently now. (Remember, the president of the Church is not "just" a prophet, but a prophet, seer and revelator, even though we shorten the title.)