Bible prophecy can be confusing. First, you have what seems to be a ‘stream of consciousness’ writing style. None of the prophets follow what might be considered the modern-day sermon outline: introduction, 3-points, conclusion. That’s challenging enough but on top of this, prophecy by its very nature contains a lot of figurative language.
In fact, here is our summary of what makes prophecy impossible (yes, we said impossible) to definitively interpret if you are only provided with the prophecy itself to interpret:
- no clear outline; difficult to follow,
- not clear language; figurative; illustrative,
- context often not helpful or even relevant (ex 2 Samuel 7:14, Hosea 11:1),
- the “now” and “not yet” nature of Scripture (sometimes called “duality” in prophecy).
Fortunately, God has not only revealed prophecy to us but other Scripture – inspired writers that help us sort through and understand at least some (if not most) of the “prophetic word.” This is the very point being made by Peter (1 Peter 1:10-12) and a main reason for this site. Unfortunately, many don’t take the time to consider all that God has said about something and jump to conclusions — a practice especially dangerous with prophecy (see above).
It seems people, even church leaders, gravitate to the most elaborate and sometimes obscure portions of prophecy and “pluck” them out to form a doctrinal belief. Leaving these portions aside for the moment, we believe there are four chapters from each of the ‘major’ prophets that provide all of the foundational concepts and themes that can guide the Bible student to understanding the ‘more difficult’ portions of prophecy.
Let’s take a closer look at each of these prophetic pillars:
These four chapters leave no wiggle room in their interpretation. The twenty-first century Bible student can understand their meaning and application with full confidence through divine interpretation. We don’t need charts, diagrams, theological “genius” or a charismatic televangelist!
From these four chapters, we can understand clearly that Jesus, the Branch of David, came in the last days and established his eternal kingdom. This spiritual kingdom, the church, is the restoration of spiritual Israel and Judah. Anyone, Jew or Gentile, is free to take possession of “the land” and enter into a “covenant of peace” with God through his word. Doing so makes them a Levite (priest to God) and a joint heir with Christ, where God will dwell until they inherit the heavenly land.
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