Summary: Why Study prophecy is a question often asked by Christians. We should study prophecy because God considers prophecy important.
Why Study Prophecy?
Why Study prophecy is a question often asked by Christians. We should study prophecy because God considers prophecy important. If He didn’t He wouldn’t have revealed future events to His servants the prophets. Although prophecy is a large part of the Bible most Christians today do something Jesus didn’t do. They downplay its importance. They dismiss it as something having no practical purpose. They claim it can’t be understood so why bother wasting time studying prophecy or the study of prophecy is merely a fad that will fade away like all fads fade away. It is even claimed the study of prophecy takes one’s eyes off Jesus. Why would God put something in the Bible that has no practical purpose? Why would He permit something that cannot be understood be a large part of the Bible? God is not the originator of fads.
Could it be someone doesn’t want Christians to know the return of Jesus to this earth and establish His kingdom is predicted 318 times in the 260 chapters of the New Testament? The only subject mentioned more often is salvation. In Paul’s Epistles he mentions the ordinance of communion twice, baptism 13 times, but the return of Jesus 50 times. Could it be someone doesn’t want Christians to know there are references to what we are witnessing in the world and Christianity today in the Bible?
My question is and I would like someone to answer it; why is the study of, the teaching of, and the preaching of prophecy put on the back burner? Explain why the Holy Spirit would inspire Paul to write in His second letter to Timothy all of God’s Word, not some of it is “profit for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). God wants us to understand what has been predicted in the past, the present, and the future because it has a bearing upon the decisions we Christians make.
There is no just reason that can be given for not studying, for not teaching, or not preaching on the subject of prophecy. Prophecy does not divert anyone’s attention away from Jesus. In fact, it focuses attention on Jesus. The Bible contains more than 300 prophecies about the first coming of Jesus, all of which were literally fulfilled. Every aspect of the life of Jesus was prophesied - the place of His birth, the nature of His birth, the quality of His ministry, the purpose of His life, and the agony of His death. The literal fulfillment of so many prophecies in the life of one individual transcends any mere coincidence and serves to validate that Jesus was who He said He was - the divine Son of God. Fulfilled prophecy is one of the best evidences that the Bible is the inspired Word of God. The literal fulfillment of its prophecies demonstrates that biblical prophecy is accurate and reveals our Lord as He really is.
Fulfilled prophecy is evidence only one man in history out of the many who claimed they were the Messiah that man was Jesus. He can not be confused with anyone who has ever lived in history - past, present, and future. What is amazing the Old Testament was written over a period of 1,000 years and there are over 300 references to the first advent of the Son of God our Lord Jesus. Using the science of probability the chances of just forty-eight of these prophecies being fulfilled in one person is one in ten raised to the 157th power. The odds of anyone fulfilling all of them are so great it is impossible to calculate.
In an attempt to undermine the fact Jesus alone fulfilled all the prophecies of the coming Messiah the enemies of Jesus claim the events recorded in the gospels dealing with the life of Jesus and His ministry, death and resurrection were written down by the apostles or some scribe after Jesus death. This might sound feasible if the Hebrew Old Testament had not been translated into the Greek language about 150-200 B.C. This Greek translation shows that there was at least a two hundred-year gap between the prophecies and the writing of the gospels.
Why study prophecy? The study of biblical prophecy makes it less difficult to separate the false teachings of those who do not study the Scriptures or have been mislead by the spirit of deception in this world from the truth. In Peter’s second epistle, he warns that one of the signs of the end times will be the appearance of “scoffers” who will cast scorn and ridicule on the promise of our Lord’s return (2 Peter 3:3ff). The great tragedy of our day is that many of the loudest scoffers are religious leaders who profess to follow Christ. In mainline and liberal churches prophecy language is only remotely understood - if at all.