Prophecy

What Is a Prophet?

Elijah Fed by an Angel - Ferdinand Bol, 17th Century

A draft excerpt from the book “The Words of the Covenant” (forthcoming, DV)

It is commonly asserted within biblical scholarship that the main focus of the prophet was on proclamation; that only incidentally was he (or she) concerned with prediction. In many studies of the role of the prophet the emphasis is put upon the prophet’s function as a moral exhorter to his time and place. Here is a recent example:

The prophet’s role was to speak the word of God to the king, nation, or people to reveal his will for their lives and how they should act. Prophecy sometimes included predictions, but always with a view to revealing something of God’s plan, nature, or personality so that the hearers would respond appropriately in worshipful obedience.1

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Witnessing Better Than Knowing the Future

A Sermon (No. 2330) Intended for Reading on Lord’s-Day, October 15th, 1893.

Delivered by C.H. Spurgeon, at the Metropolitan Tabernacle, Newington on Thursday Evening, August 29th, 1889.

When they therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel? And he said unto them, It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power. But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.—Acts 1:6-8.

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The Significance of the Five Quotations of Isaiah 6:9-10 in the New Testament

All quotations of the Old Testament (OT) in the New Testament (NT) are significant. Yet when a particular OT passage is cited multiple times, we do well to study why the NT persons and writers viewed this text as so important. Such is the case with Isaiah 6:9-10, a text quoted in the NT five times in connection with national Israel’s rejection of Jesus as Messiah.

The context of Isaiah 6:9-10 is the prophet Isaiah’s commission to disobedient Israel around 740 B.C. Isaiah’s message to Israel would not result in the nation’s repentance but would result in their being further hardened:

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Fulfilled Prophecy a Potent Argument for the Bible

(About this series)

CHAPTER IV — FULFILLED PROPHECY A POTENT ARGUMENT FOR THE BIBLE

BY ARNO C. GAEBELEIN, EDITOR “OUR HOPE,” NEW YORK CITY.

“Produce your cause, saith the Lord; bring forth your strong reasons, saith the King of Jacob. Let them bring them forth, and show us what shall happen; let them show the former things, what they be, that we may consider them, and know the latter end of them, or declare us things to come. Show the things that are to come hereafter, that we may know, that ye are gods” (Isa. 41:21-23). “I declare the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying. My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure” (Isa. 46: 10).

This is Jehovah’s challenge to the idol-gods of Babylon to predict future events. He alone can do that. The Lord can declare the end from the beginning, and make known things that are not yet done. The dumb idols of the heathen know nothing concerning the future. They cannot predict what is going to happen. And man himself is powerless to know future events and cannot find out things to come.

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The Book of Revelation Is Not Apocalyptic Literature

It may seem odd to suggest that the book entitled Apocalupsis does not belong to the genre of literature commonly referred to as apocalyptic. Nonetheless that is my suggestion here. The term employed in the title of the book denotes a revelation or disclosure.1 While this particular revealing or disclosing describes a broad swathe of eschatological events, it is not its own literary genre.

Apocalyptic as a genre is described as “characteristically pseudonymous; it takes narrative form, employs esoteric language, expresses a pessimistic view of the present, and treats the final events as imminent.”2 Henry Barclay Swete (Cambridge), even while arguing that Revelation is apocalyptic literature, admits that the book differs from that genre, in that the book of Revelation (1) is not pseudepigraphic, (2) engages a specific audience (seven churches), (3) has a significant church focus, rather than a purely Israel nation-centered focus, and (4) includes notes of insight and foresight that are more indicative of inspiration than is found in earlier extra-biblical apocalyptic literature.3

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Dispensationalists Frantically Adjust End-Times Charts To Include Brexit Vote

Sovereignty of God & Human Responsibility: Nehemiah & the Daniel 9 Prophecy

Daniel 9:24-27 is a monumental passage, emblematic of God’s sovereignty over human events. It provides the chronological skeletal system of Biblical prophecy, recording Gabriel’s revelation to Daniel in around 516 B.C., of a 490-year timeline for Israel’s future: “for Jerusalem, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most holy” (9:24). The clock begins its countdown with “a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem” (9:25).

The certainty of the timeline is non-negotiable and inalterable. The seventy sevens had been decreed or determined, as the Hebrew term nichetaka (decreed, determined) is in the niphal perfect, which typically indicates a passive (niphal) and completed (perfect) action. The timeline had already been determined. Daniel would be able to “know and discern” (9:25a) the timing from a particular point in history—a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem.

When we examine the Biblical literature, we find only one decree regarding the rebuilding of the temple. There was a decree to rebuild the temple (Ezra 1:1-4,5:17), but that did not match Gabriel’s description of the decree to rebuild the city itself. For the decree matching the Daniel 9 description, we look to Nehemiah 2.

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