Lesson 03 - Prophecies Regarding Jesus Christ

Lesson 03 - Prophecies Regarding Jesus Christ

Lesson for January 22, 2006

The Life of Christ

Prophecies Regarding Jesus Christ

A prophet was a man who spoke on behalf of God, the message he had received from God. Prophets were God’s specially-called messengers. They were "holy men of God who spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit." (II Peter 1:21)

The control and guidance by the Holy Spirit in the expression of the message guarantees the expression of truth without error. The prophet’s job was to call the people back to God and to the truth of God. It involved warning them of the consequences of their actions and a call to repentance (a change of mind). At times it was a message of God's plan for the future of His Kingdom. They were men through whom God spoke His message of love for mankind, and warned them of the consequences of their sins. The heart of their message was God's promise of eternal redemption through the coming of Jesus Christ the Messiah.

The test of the prophet was practical and simple: “When the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known, that the Lord has truly sent him.” (Jeremiah 28:9) True prophecy has in it no contradictions. It must always agree with what is already known about God. Satan is the counterfeiter of prophecy. (Matthew 7:15-23; Mark 13:21-23; Jeremiah 14:13-18, 28; 1 Kings 22:5-28).

CHARACTERISTICS OF THE PROPHETS and THE PROPHECY

  1. The prophets were sent from God. These men always said that they were speaking from God and for God. "Thus says the Lord" was a clear emphasis of their preaching. The content of their message is proof that they were inspired of the Lord.
  2. Their message was related to history. It grew out of some historic situation in which they lived. The prophets were messengers of their times. The message can be understood only by seeing it in its original setting.
  3. God's revelation is progressive. Each prophetic message built upon another revealed truth from God.
  4. Prophecy is not always predictive. It is a mistake to think that Old Testament prophecy was always predictive, or foretelling of the future. There were times when the prophet spoke only to his own generation without any special reference to the future. He called his generation to repentance (a change of mind), to a social change (divine establishment) within the nation, or political changes. He warned the nation and its leaders of wrongs that needed to be corrected. He was a messenger of God, whether he spoke of the past, the present, or the future.
  5. There were absolute predictions of the future. These predictions revealed God's purposes of grace to men. They were dependent upon the sovereign purpose of God, and they were certain of fulfillment. A good example is Genesis 3:15, which is not dependent upon man, but solely upon God. Galatians 4:4-5 shows its fulfillment.
  6. There were conditional predictions, which directly depended on men’s responsibility for a proper human response to secure fulfillment. A good example is Jonah's prediction that Nineveh would be destroyed in forty days.
  7. Correct interpretation of prophecy includes the recognition of both literal and figurative language freely intermingled. Genesis 3:15 is a figurative way of picturing the conflict between Christ and Satan.
  8. All prophecy is centered in Christ. It is a testimony of Jesus Christ. He is at the center of prophecy because He is the central theme of all the Scriptures. No one can share that center stage with Him.
  9. We must interpret Old Testament prophecy in the light of the New Testament. We find the key to the interpretation of Old Testament prophecy by examining how New Testament writers interpreted the prophets. We discover from the New Testament writers the correct principles of interpreting the Old Testament prophecies.
  10. We must seek the plain teaching of the passage. The fulfillment of predictions made by the prophets is to be thought of as literal. However, some predictions may be given to us in figurative language. We may or may not understand them. But when the day comes for fulfillment, it is to be thought of as literal.

CLASSIFICATION OF THE PROPHETS

Prophets of the Old Testament are usually grouped as either writing prophets or oral prophets. Within these two groupings is another classification based on size of the writings and not on content or quality of inspiration. Four of the prophetic books were longer in content and therefore called “major prophets.” It does not mean the “major prophets” were more important or significant in subject matter than the “minor prophets.” The “minor prophets” simply wrote shorter books.

MAJOR WRITING PROPHETS: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel.

MINOR WRITING PROPHETS: Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi.

THE ORAL PROPHETS

  1. Enoch (Jude 14-15)
  2. Noah (II Peter 2:5)
  3. Abraham and the Patriarchs (Genesis 20:7; 27:27-29; 49:4
  4. Moses (Deuteronomy 18:18-22; 34:10-12.
  5. Miriam and Aaron (Exodus 15:20; Numbers 12:1-8
  6. The Seventy (Numbers 11:24-29)
  7. Balaam (Numbers 22-24)
  8. Joshua (Joshua 1, 23, 24)
  9. Deborah (Judges 4-5)
  10. Unknown prophet in days of Gideon (Judges 6:7-8)
  11. Unknown prophet in days of Eli (I Samuel 2:27-36)
  12. Samuel (I Samuel 3:20)
  13. Schools of prophets under Samuel (Saul) (I Samuel 10:10-12; 19:20-24)
  14. Gad (I Samuel 22:5; II Samuel 24:11-19; I Chronicles 29:29; II Chronicles 29:25)
  15. Nathan (II Samuel 7, 12; II Chronicles 9:29; 29:25)
  16. David (Acts 2:30)
  17. Ahijah (I Kings 11:26-40; 14:1-18)
  18. Man of God from Judah (I Kings 13)
  19. Shemaiah (I Kings 12:21-24; II Chronicles 12:1-8)
  20. Iddo the Seer (II Chronicles 12:15; 13:22)
  21. Azariah (II Chronicles 15)
  22. Hanani (II Chronicles 16:7-10
  23. Jehu son of Hanani (II Chronicles 19:1-3)
  24. Elijah (I Kings 17-II Kings 2)
  25. Micaiah (I Kings 22)
  26. Unknown prophet encouraged Ahab (I Kings 20:13-15)
  27. Unknown prophet rebuked Ahab (I Kings 20:35-43)
  28. Jahaziel (II Chronicles 20:14-17)
  29. Eliezer (II Chronicles 20:37)
  30. Elisha (II Kings 2-8)
  31. Prophetic School of Elisha (II Kings 9:1-13)
  32. Zechariah son of Jehoiada (II Chronicles 24:20-22)
  33. Man of God forbade Amaziah's league with Israel (II Chronicles 25:7-10)
  34. Unknown prophet rebuked Amaziah (II Chronicles 25:15f)
  35. Zechariah (II Chronicles 26:5)
  36. Oded (II Chronicles 28:8-15)
  37. Huldah the prophetess (II Kings 22:12-20)
  38. Urijah (Jeremiah 26:20-23)

These are twenty prophecies of over three hundred in the Old Testament, which were fulfilled by Jesus Christ during the dispensation of the Hypostatic Union, proving that He is Messiah. Therefore, our faith is based on facts not fiction. Had Jesus Christ failed to fulfill even one of these prophecies, He could not be the Messiah.

Prophecies Regarding the Coming Messiah

Prophecy

Old Testament

New Testament

He was to be born of a virgin

Isaiah 7:14

Luke 1:35

Born in Bethlehem

Micah 5:2

Matthew 2:1-2

To be called Emmanuel

Isaiah 7:14

Matthew 1:18-23

Smitten on the cheeks

Isaiah 50:6

Matthew 26:67

Spat upon

Isaiah 50:6

Matthew 27:30

His people would not believe

Isaiah 53:1

John 12:37-38

His backed whipped

Isaiah 53:5

Matthew 27:26

Oppressed and afflicted

Isaiah 53:7

Matthew 27:27

Silent before His accusers

Isaiah 53:7

Matthew 27:12

Killed

Isaiah 53:8

Matthew 27:35

Buried in rich man’s grave

Isaiah 53:9

Matthew 27:57

Grouped with criminals

Isaiah 53:12

Luke 23:32

Descendent of David

Jeremiah 33:14

Luke 3:23

Pierced hands and feet

Psalms 22:16

John 19:34,37

Parted His garments

Psalms 22:18

John 19:23-24

He thirsted on the cross

Psalms 22:15

John 19:28

Not a bone to be broken

Psalms 34:20

John 19:31-36

Darkness on Calvary

Psalms 22:2

Matthew 27:45

Given vinegar to drink

Psalms 69:21

Matthew 27:34

Betrayed by a friend

Psalms 41:9

John 13:18

The entire sacrificial system of the Mosaic Law was prophesy regarding Jesus Christ. The Passover ceremony, the offerings, the Day of Atonement and the sacrifice of animals were typifying Jesus Christ and His sacrificial death on the cross.

Certain things in the Old Testament were predictive of the coming Christ:

  1. The Manna in the wilderness (Exodus 16 – John 6:48-51)
  2. The smitten rock (Exodus 17:6 – I Corinthians 10:4)
  3. The Tabernacle (Exodus 10 – John 1:14)
  4. The Temple (I Kings 5:1-5 – Matthew 12)
  5. The torn veil (Exodus 26:31-33 – Matthew 27:51)
  6. The Mercy Seat (Exodus 25:10-22 – Hebrews 9:1-5)

Certain persons in the Old Testament were predictors of the coming Christ:

  1. Melchisedec (Genesis 14:17-20 – Hebrews 5:6-10)
  2. Aaron (Leviticus 8 – Hebrews 5:1-5)
  3. Isaac (Genesis 22:1-12 – John 3:16, 10:17)
  4. Joseph (Genesis 37:1 – Matthew 3:17)
  5. David (II Samuel 15 - Luke 19:14).

Prophecies regarding Jesus Christ were given thousands of years before He appeared on the scene as a man, so that the Jewish nation, God’s chosen people, would recognize Him and embrace His arrival. Because of their blindness, the Jewish nation rejected their Messiah and ultimately had Him crucified as a criminal. Had the Chief Priests of Christ’s day understood the prophecies concerning their Messiah, they would have recognized Him and acknowledged Him as Messiah.