The Introduction to Prophesy

 

  1. The Scriptures have been given to man in several different formats, or styles; what are three of them? (History, poetry and prophecy.)
  2. What are some of the historical sections of the Bible? Poetical?
  3. Do any of the historical books contain prophesy? Do any of the prophets contain poetry?
  4. Give a reasonably good definition of Biblical prophecy:
  5. How important is prophecy to the overall significance of the Bible?
  6. What if there was no Biblical prophecy?
  7. What if Biblical prophecies were proven to be fraudulent or inaccurate?
  8. How important is clarity versus ambiguity in the area of prophecy?
  9. How important is literal accuracy to clarity?
  10. How much does prophecy have to do with God’s testimony of Himself? (Isaiah 41:5-12)
  11. How strictly does prophesy deal with the time element? (Sometimes not as strictly as we would like.)
    1. Cite a well-known prophesy which speaks of something future as though it was present. (Isa. 9:6)
    2. Cite a well-known prophesy which speaks of something future as though it was past. (Isa. 53).
    3. Cite a verse in Malachi bringing close together events widely spread apart. (Mal. 3:1).
    4. So how much care do we need to give to the time element in prophecy?
    5. Despite these things, what is the element of time that is essential to prophesy? (If the fulfilment is immediate, the prophesy loses it credibility or its value.)
  12. What is the law of double reference? (One prophecy may refer to both something immediate and future.)
    1. Cite one such (contested) example from Isaiah 7. (7:14 – Behold a virgin shall conceive, and…)
    2. Why did God use double references? (By fulfilling the prophesy near-at-hand, He strengthened hope in more important but distant prophesy.).
  13. Cite a passage from Jonah where we have a conditional prophecy. The destruction of Ninevah
    1. In this kind of case the prophecy was used as a type of exhortation.
    2. Does this mean that all prophesies are conditional?
    3. What criteria might is often involved in determining whether a prophesy is conditional or not? (The relationship of that prophecy to either man or God; God’s nature does not change, but man’s does.)
  14. Did the Biblical historians usually understand what they were writing?
  15. Did the Biblical prophets usually understand the prophecies that they were giving?
  16. Were the prophecies usually given in order for us to map out the future? (Not really. They were given to inform us that God knows and controls all things, including the future.)
  17. Does God always use righteous men to give us prophecy? Examples?
  18. What is the relationship of prophecy to miracles? (Miracles prove the Lord through His omnipotence; Prophecies prove the Lord through his omniscience and then to His omnipotence and sovereignty.)
  19. From the perspective of the Lord, what is more important Eschatology or Soteriology? (Neither.)
  20. From the perspective of man, what is more important: Eschatology or Soteriology?