THE ROLE OF PROPHECY IN THE BIBLE
There is no theologically sound foundation for the principles of Biblical interpretation that would be complete and sufficient, if prophecy were taken out of the picture. Prophecy makes up a critical part of the Bible. If we neglect it, as some people have mistakenly done, or to speak utter contempt against the subject of prophecy, it is discrediting divine revelation. If prophecies were not in the Bible, what would be left would lack meaning. Prophecy gives the necessary foundation to the Word of God. The beauty and hope in Bible is found in the fulfillment of prophetic word. Fulfilled
prophecy is evidence for the reliability and authenticity of the Bible. No one can conspire to fulfill a prophetic word, millenniums after.In fact, the first ray of hope that ever came into the word after the fall of man was the promise of a Redeemer (Gen. 3:15); it was a
prophetic word. This verse served as the first ever prediction in the world. It is a turning point prophetic word for the entire Word of God and for the entire human race.
Enoch is the seventh generation from Adam. He prophesied about the Lord’s coming and how it would give judgment to the ungodly (Jude 14, 15). The Passover in Exodus 12 was also a prophetic act—a Christological type—which Paul later on pointed out, “For our paschal lamb, Christ, has been sacrificed” (1 Cor. 5:7). He is declaring how Christ’s death was a fulfillment of this prophetic act.
Moses also received a great prophetic word from God about the Messiah:
The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet [a] like me from among your own people; you shall heed such a prophet. This is what you requested of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly when you said: “If I hear the voice of the Lord my God any more, or ever again see this great fire, I will die.” Then the Lord replied to me: “They are right in what they have said. I will raise up for them a prophet[c] like you from among their own people; I will put my words in the mouth of the prophet,[d] who shall speak to them everything that I command. (Deuteronomy 18: 15-18)
Peter commented on this after Pentecost.Moses said, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you from your own people a prophet like me. You must listen to whatever he tells you will be that everyone who does not listen to that prophet will be utterly rooted out of the people.’ (Acts 3:22-23)
Chapters 28, 29, and 30 are also critical prophetic words in the book of Deuteronomy. Many of the Psalms were also prophetic in nature. In Psalm 16, 22, and 40, the Messiahs’ sufferings are already illustrated. In Psalms 2, 45, 72, and 110, His glory is already portrayed.
Put these accounts together with the actual books of prophecy in the Old Testament, and a pattern of prophecy and fulfillment can be seen across Scripture. In 500 BC, Daniel proclaimed that the Messiah would begin his public ministry 483 years after issuing a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem (Dan. 9:25-26). Daniel also protected how Jesus would be killed and how this event would take place before the second destruction of Jerusalem. History showed these prophecies fulfilled to the letter in the life and death of Jesus. The decree for the restoration of Jerusalem was issued by Persia’s King Artaxerxes to the Hebrew priest named Ezra in 458 BC. Jesus’ ministry began in Galilee 483 years later. Four decades after the death of Jesus, Roman legions under Titus and Emperor Vespasian brought about the destruction of Jerusalem. What is the probability of this taking place? You can do the math.
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