Bible Prophecy



Some people who choose not to believe in God try to justify their unbelief  by saying, “But the Bible was written by men.” As if we did not already know that! Well, my response to them is to say, “Yes, you’re right, the Bible was written by men… who were prophets and apostles led by the Holy Spirit in what to write.”


The Bible is true, and history is the proof. The Bible reveals the future rise and fall of world empires. The book of Daniel described Alexander the Great and his conquest of Asia about 200 years before it happened. Other prophets predicted the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonian army (which took place in 586 B.C.), the 70 years of captivity that followed and the return of the Jews from exile. Bible scholars have found more than 300 prophecies throughout the Old Testament concerning the coming Messiah. These hundreds of Messianic prophecies perfectly and accurately describe Jesus Christ centuries before he was born!


The Old Testament book of Daniel is filled with mysteries of the ancient world and prophecies about the future. In chapter 2 Daniel shares a prophetic dream given by God to Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon. In the dream the king saw a huge statue made of metals of gold, silver, bronze, and iron. However, this marvelous statue was destroyed by an asteroid-like rock from the heavens. The rock smashed the feet of the statue, which were made of iron mixed with clay. The man-made statue is later revealed to be the rise and fall of the earthly kingdoms of men, and the feet with their ten toes represent a world empire that will exist in the end times (the modern-day world), but that will only last for 7 years. The rock that then becomes a great mountain is the Kingdom of God which will never be destroyed and never come to an end.


Chapter 11 of Daniel is all about the succession wars that followed the death of Alexander the Great. If you read it with a good Bible commentary like John MacArthur or Fenis Jennings Dake, you will be amazed by the accuracy of the prophecy. It is a page out of history written before it happened. The series of events that would take place in the future include: a war, different battles, who wins, who loses, an alliance made, the capture of a city, peace talks, kings plotting against one another, a royal marriage, a battle at sea, lying, stealing, back-stabbing and a bunch of other drama described in some detail more than two hundred years before it happened.


Many people are surprised to learn that Alexander the Great is in the Bible. Why weren’t we taught this in history class? It is a historical fact that Alexander was shown by the high priest of ancient Israel scriptures in the book of Daniel that described Alexander, his conquests, his death and even his successors! As one prophet, teacher, historian and writer said, “It must have been one of the greatest twilight zone moments in history when its greatest conqueror reads about himself (in Jerusalem), from a book in the Bible. Written by a prophet from Jerusalem, while he had been a captive in Babylon — more than 200 years before Alexander would die there.” *


Daniel 8 tells the story of The Ram and The Shaggy Goat. Later in the chapter it gives us the interpretation. We find out that the ram represents Medo-Persia, the shaggy goat represents the Grecian Empire, and its large horn is Alexander. In Biblical symbology horns represent kings, and heads represent kingdoms. After Alexander died his kingdom was divided up among his generals into four smaller kingdoms. Daniel 8:8 foretold: “The goat became very great, but at the height of his power his large horn was broken off, and in its place four prominent horns grew up toward the four winds of heaven.”


Today on a political map these four regions could be represented by the countries: Greece, Turkey, Syria, and Egypt, all of which surround Israel to the north, south, east and west. After Alexander died in 323 B.C., his former generals fought over these regions in “The Succession Wars,” also known as “The Wars of the Diadochi.” Diadochi means “successors.”


The historian Josephus tells us: “Now when Alexander King of Macedon had put an end to the dominion of the Persians, and had settled the affairs in Judea after the aforementioned manner.. [his life ended]. And as his government fell among many, Antigonus obtained Asia: Seleucus, Babylon: and of the other nations which were there, Lysimachus governed the Hellespont, and Cassander possessed Macedonia. As did Ptolemy the son of Lagus seize upon Egypt. And while these princes ambitiously strove one against another, every one for his own principality, it came to pass that there were continual wars, and those lasting wars too: and the cities were sufferers, and lost a great many of their inhabitants in these times of distress.” *


Antigonus died at the Battle of Ipsus.* It was Antigonus who upon establishing his own dynasty ambitiously strove to rise up and take over the others. In the end he lost his place among his rivals and lost his life. Seleucus, Lysimachus, Cassander and Ptolemy allied together to defeat him, after which they became the four rulers of the four regions of Alexander’s former empire, thus fulfilling Daniel’s prophecy.


Secular historians are at a loss to explain any of this. If you talk about it with them, they start to get a little defensive. They are so uncomfortable because it’s supernatural. The fulfillment of prophecies in the scriptures validates the authenticity of the Bible, and it gives believers everywhere confidence in what the Word of God says about other events that will take place in the future.


Eschatology is a study of the End Times. A thorough study of the Last Days includes some very unusual topics: Signs of the Times, The Great Tribulation, The False Prophet, The Mark of the Beast, The Angel of Destruction Locked Up Inside the Abyss, The Ten Kings, The Rise of the Antichrist, Worldwide Apostasy of the Church, The Great Harvest, Armageddon and The Second Coming of Christ.


The two most prophetic and apocalyptic writings in the Bible are the books of Daniel and Revelation. The Gospel’s eschatological chapters (Matthew 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21) are Jesus’ own words about the Last Days and his soon return. These prophetic writings are foundational in studying the End Times. They are a surer word than any Hollywood movie or YouTube video. The Word is even more reliable than our own dreams and visions.


I don’t doubt that some believers today have had dreams and visions about the future. However, this does not mean that they will come to pass or that they are direction for your life. It’s true that Christians sometimes receive revelation from the Lord. A revelation is a prophetic word. It’s not something you find in a book. It is a truth that is revealed supernaturally. When you’re in the Spirit, the Holy Spirit can drop things into your spirit. You can hear from the Lord. You can know something you would have no way of knowing in the natural. A revelation does not always involve the future. It may concern the past or present. The word revelation means to unveil. It is an unveiling of the truth. A prophecy from the Lord will always line up with (agree with) principles of the Bible, which is called in scripture the Word of Truth. There are multiple scriptures that refer to the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of Truth. If you are ever wondering about some revelation that a Christian has shared, just ask yourself, “Where’s the scripture?” You can also check your own spirit to see if you have a witness about it. Even ministers can make a mistake or go in the wrong direction. I myself could be wrong about some things. But to check if I am telling the truth you will have to read your Bible and know the Spirit. Because there is unity and agreement between the Bible, the Holy Spirit and the teachings of true ministers of God.


When a friend tells you about a dream or experience they had, it may sound very spiritual or supernatural. Even still, bring everything back to the Word. Ask yourself, “What does the Bible say about this?” Because God does not contradict Himself. We know a message is true if it lines up with God’s Word. And we know a message is good if it changes the hearer. The best messages help us to become more Christlike, they increase our faith, they encourage us to be holy, they warn and correct us, they lead people to repentance, and they give us hope.


The apostle Paul encouraged believers with these words…


Do not quench the Spirit. Do not treat prophecies with contempt but test them all; hold on to what is good, reject every kind of evil. (1 Thessalonians 5:19-22 NIV)


I believe that God speaks to us by His Spirit about future events for the same reason that we find so many prophecies in scripture: He wants to prepare His people for things to come.


The apostle Peter wrote…


We also have the prophetic message as something completely reliable, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts. Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation of things. For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. (2 Peter 1:19-21 NIV)


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