When the Spirit of truth comes, He will guide you into all the truth. For He will not speak on His own, but He will speak whatever He hears. He will also declare to you what is to come. John 16:13
6. Why do we want to know the future?
- worry about the future
- fear of sickness, disease, financial difficulties, political unrest, war
- our past
- lack of trust in God
We must think it’s possible to know the future, or we wouldn’t seek out sources that claim to have that knowledge.
Sometimes we just want advice from those who are wiser, more knowledgeable or have more experience. If they are mature believers, that’s not so bad.
However, I admit I’ve erred in searching for advice before asking God.
God does use signs in the heavens and the earth.
An unspecified number of perhaps priestly scholars traveled to see “He that is born the king of the Jews” because they observed a star rising in the east that signaled His birth. They set out on a pilgrimage to worship Him. They fulfilled prophecy they probably never heard.
My grandsons and I attended a Christmas program at the planetarium last year. Several major astrological signs occurred around the time of Jesus’ birth. This article outlines the natural and supernatural possibilities.
The program suggested the “wise men” were simply astrologers. However, they looked for the king of the Jews to worship Him. It’s an interesting topic, but I will resist the urge to further pursue the rabbit trail.
7. a. Biblical prophecies and prophets–
- There is only one God, and He is our creator and the creator of the world we live in.
- He created it for us, so He understandably takes great interest in what happens here.
- He invites us to plead our case before Him—if we think someone or something is above His counsel.
- He predicts coming events.
- He always says what’s right, does what’s right, and knows how to help.
- He is the only reliable source.
The fact is, God, the Master, does nothing
without first telling his prophets the whole story. MSG
2 Timothy 3:16 Every part of Scripture is God-breathed and useful one way or another—
- showing us truth,
- exposing our rebellion,
- correcting our mistakes,
- training us to live God’s way. MSG
Hebrews 11:32-40 Many prophets in scripture exemplify faith—
- They heard God.
- They were obedient to God.
- Their obedience led to evangelism—Elijah obeyed God when sent to the Shunammite widow’s home. raised the Shunammite widow’s son from the dead 2 Kings 4:17-35.
- They demonstrated the power of God through working miracles.
- They subdued and conquered kingdoms.
- They obtained promises.
- They were mocked, persecuted, tortured, imprisoned, forced to hide in caves, and martyred.
- They didn’t always live to see the promises fulfilled. In some cases, that was a blessing. Hebrews 11:19
- The Old Testament prophets had the Spirit of Christ within.
- They prophesied of Christ, the suffering He would endure, and the glory that would come after. Revelation 19:10
- They didn’t fully understand everything they spoke, but they longed to. Matthew 13:10; 2 Peter 1:19
b. Biblical prophecies are the Word of God.
- They are true.
- They are reliable.
- They will be fulfilled.
8. Examples of fulfilled Biblical prophecies
Isaiah 7:14; Luke 1:26-27 Isaiah prophesied the miraculous sign of a virgin giving birth to a son who would be “God with us.” Mary had questions but willingly agreed to God’s plan to use her in this way.
Both Elijah and Mary willingly submitted to God’s plan for their lives even though others would question in disbelief.
Micah 5:2-4; Matthew 2:1-6 Another Messianic prophecy, this time from the prophet Micah. (Including details through verse 4.)
- His mother will come back home to Bethlehem to give birth to Him.
- Bethlehem was home to David in the territory of Judah.
- He will rule like a shepherd in God’s strength and reveal God’s majesty.
- His greatness and peace will extend throughout the earth.
Isaiah 53:3-6; Matthew 27:22-26 A prophecy showing God’s plan for Jesus to suffer as our sacrificial lamb, taking all sin and sickness for us. The free gift of forgiveness and healing is now available to all who believe.
9. Five red flags that may signal false prophecy and false teaching
- False prophets seem harmless and sincere. But they are leading others astray; ripping them off in some way. MSG
- They don’t bear good fruit. Character is more important than charisma. Who they are is more important than what they say. (MSG) Their actions do not agree with what they profess. James 2:17, 20, and 26
Some will falsely claim, “I am the Messiah.” They are deceived or simply set out to deceive others.
Greed motivates them. Verse 15 compares them to Balaam.
Their teaching and doctrine deceive. Jesus used the Pharisees as an example. See also Matthew 16:12; Galatians 1:8-9; 1 Timothy 1:3-9, 4:1-6; and 2 John 7-11
A false prophet may not exhibit all five of these characteristics, and not everyone who exhibits one or two of these characteristics is a false prophet. However, these traits are associated with the false prophets who were identified in the Bible and should be questioned. (Note on Matthew 7:15 Andrew Wommack’s Living Commentary.)
10. Because the Bible records many fulfilled prophecies, it validates itself as the infallible Word of God.
The Bible also sets itself apart. No other spiritual writing can make that claim.