Keys To Understanding Bible Prophecy!

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 Lesson two (b) -Jesus Christ's Life and Death in Prophecy

Many are vaguely aware that Jesus Christ's birth, life and death were prophesied in the Hebrew Scriptures, the Old Testament. But few are aware of the sheer number of predictions and the astonishingly precise details foretold up to thousands of years in advance. These predictions are a powerful confirmation of the accuracy of Bible prophecy.

The Jewish New Testament lists 52 prophecies fulfilled in Christ's birth, life and death as stated in 81 passages in the Old Testament (pp. xxv-xxix). In many ways the Old Testament pointed forward to Christ's first and second comings. All the Messianic Prophecies of the Bible discusses not only hundreds of specific prophecies, but many events, people, rituals and sacrifices recorded in the Hebrew Scriptures that foreshadowed the life, death, ministry and return of Jesus Christ (Herbert Lockyer, 1973).

What were some of the prophecies Jesus fulfilled? Let's notice a few:

Jesus Himself could not have controlled how these prophecies were fulfilled. No one can control the circumstances of His own birth, who his ancestors are and where he is born. Nor could He control the actions of others in betraying Him, putting Him to death and laying His body in the unused tomb of a wealthy man. Yet the prophets had written these remarkable details in advance up to 1,000 years earlier. King David predicted even details of Christ's death by crucifixion hundreds of years before the practice of crucifixion became common as a method of execution.

The four Gospels abound with accounts of how many Messianic prophecies were fulfilled, but Christ's closest followers didn't recognize their fulfillment at the time. Only in hindsight were they able to recognize many specific prophecies recorded in the Hebrew Scriptures and how they had been fulfilled.

Many prophecies regarding Jesus Christ are in the process of being fulfilled. [The Encyclopedia of Biblical Prophecy] lists more than 200 prophecies of the Messiah, most of which are in the process of coming to pass (Barton Payne, 1996, pp. 665-670). Just as the many precise details of Christ's birth, life, death and resurrection came to pass exactly as foretold, so will the many prophecies that relate to His second coming be fulfilled exactly as spelled out in God's Word.

Proceed to lesson three. - Our Prophetic Legacy!

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