—MOSeptember 1976GP No.735
(Complied by Samson Warner and the MO Ed. Dept.)
1. HUNDREDS AND THOUSANDS OF YEARS BEFORE JESUS WAS BORN IN BETHLEHEM‚ THE OLD TESTAMENT PROPHETS PREDICTED HIS COMING. Their predictions were not just general ones that "a messiah will come," etc., but specific prophecies about places, times and events that have been fulfilled in only one person—Jesus Christ. In this brief lesson we have chronologically arranged several of the most outstanding Old Testament Messianic prophecies in the actual verbatim text of the Scriptures and followed them with their New Testament fulfilments.
2. PROPHECY: Nearly 750 years before Christ's birth, the Old Testament Prophet Isaiah prophesied: "Therefore the Lord Himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a VIRGIN SHALL CONCEIVE, and bear a SON, and shall call His Name IMMANUEL." (Isaiah 7:14)
3. FULFILMENT: AS EVERYONE KNOWS, MARY WAS A VIRGIN engaged to be married to Joseph, a carpenter of Nazareth, when the angel appeared to her saying‚ "The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that HOLY THING WHICH SHALL BE BORN OF THEE SHALL BE CALLED THE SON OF GOD." (Lk.1:35) So there's the answer to the age-old question of "How did Mary conceive without ever having made love to a man?" She was made love to by the greatest Lover of all, Who created sex and knew all about it—God Himself! Immanuel means "God with us," and that's Who Jesus is when we receive Him; God is with us!
4. PROPHECY: "For unto us A CHILD IS BORN‚ unto us a SON is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and HIS NAME SHALL BE CALLED Wonderful, Counsellor, THE MIGHTY GOD, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace." (Isa.9:6—750 B.C)
5. FULFILMENT: THIS SHOWS THAT THE ANCIENT JEWS, UNLIKE THE MODERN ONES, BELIEVED THAT GOD HAD A SON—Who was to be born of the flesh Whom the prophecy said was to be called "The mighty God."
6. MOST JEWS LIKE TO QUOTE THE ONE SCRIPTURE, "THE LORD OUR GOD IS ONE LORD." (Deut.6:4) But what the Bible really says in the original Hebrew is "THE LORDS OUR GODS ARE ONE LORD!" But they always deliberately misquote it and it is even mistranslated in the King James Version of the Bible, sad to say. The original Hebrew uses the "Elohim Adoni," and "Elohim is the plural form of God! Whenever you put that "im" or "em" on the end of a Hebrew word it's plural!
7. BUT IF YOU DO HAPPEN TO BE A JEW OR MOSLEM, SEE IF YOU CAN ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS put forth by Solomon, King of Israel, in 900 B.C.: "WHO hath ascended up into heaven, or descended? WHO hath gathered the wind in His fist? WHO hath bound the waters in a garment? WHO hath established all the ends of the earth? WHAT IS HIS NAME AND WHAT IS HIS SON'S NAME, if thou canst tell?" (Prov.30:4)
8. PROPHECY: Micah, prophesying in the eighth century B.C., predicted: "But thou, BETHLEHEM Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of JUDAH, yet out of thee shall He come forth unto Me that is to be RULER IN ISRAEL; whose GOINGS FORTH HAVE BEEN FROM OF OLD, FROM EVERLASTING." (Mic.5:2—750 B.C.)
9. FULFILMENT: THE GOSPEL SAYS "JESUS WAS BORN IN BETHLEHEM OF JUDEA." (Mt.2:1) Although the Jews as a nation didn't accept Him as their ruler, the prophecy says that He "is to be ruler." This takes place spiritually now for those who voluntarily accept His Messiahship, and will soon take place literally by force at His Second Coming. AND JESUS' "GOINGS FORTH" OR EXISTENCE "HAVE BEEN OF OLD, FROM EVERLASTING." Jesus said, "Before Abraham was [2000 B.C.] I AM." (Jn.8:58) He was here referring to Himself as the God who revealed Himself to Moses in the burning bush as "I AM THAT I AM" (Ex.3:14)—the "Eternal Present" Son of God!
TRIUMPHAL ENTRY INTO JERUSALEM
10. PROPHECY: The Prophet Zechariah commanded the people by the spirit of the Lord to: "REJOICE GREATLY, O daughter of ZION; SHOUT, O daughter of JERUSALEM: behold, THY KING cometh unto thee: He is just, and having salvation: lowly, and RIDING UPON AN ASS, and upon a colt the foal of an ass." (Zech.9:9—450 B.C.)
11. FULFILMENT: FIVE DAYS BEFORE HIS CRUCIFIXION‚ JESUS RETURNED TO JERUSALEM and told His disciples, "Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: loose them, and bring them unto Me. ... And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them, AND BROUGHT THE ASS AND THE COLT, ... AND THEY SAT HIM THEREON ... AND THE MULTITUDES THAT WENT BEFORE‚ AND THAT FOLLOWED, CRIED, SAYING, HOSANNA to the Son of David: BLESSED is He that cometh in the Name of the Lord." (Mt.21:2-10)
12. THE MOST OUTSTANDING FULFILMENT OF THESE VERSES IS NOT THAT HE RODE INTO JERUSALEM ON AN ASS, which anyone could have done, BUT THAT THE SAME PEOPLE WHO WERE SHOUTING "HOSANNA TO THE SON OF DAVID" WHEN HE RODE IN, WERE FIVE DAYS LATER GOING TO DEMAND HIS CRUCIFIXION. It was like riding into your enemy's stronghold and expecting a warm welcome! But that's what He did! He knew that the Scripture had to be fulfilled. He had so much faith that the people were going to shout when He rode in that He said to some of the religious hypocrites who were trying to shut the crowd up, "If these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out." (Lk.19:40)
13. PROPHECY: Again Zechariah predicts: "And I said unto them‚ If ye think good give Me My price; and if not, forbear. So they weighed for My price THIRTY PIECES OF SILVER." (Zech.11:12—450 B.C.)
14. FULFILMENT: "THEN ONE OF THE TWELVE, CALLED JUDAS ISCARIOT, went unto the chief priests‚ And said unto them, What will ye give me, and I will deliver Him unto you? And they covenanted with him for THIRTY PIECES OF SILVER." (Mt.26:14,15)
15. PROPHECY: "And the Lord said unto Me, Cast it unto the POTTER: a goodly price that I was prised at of them. And I took the THIRTY PIECES OF SILVER, and CAST THEM to the POTTER IN THE HOUSE OF THE LORD." (Zech.11:13—450 B.C.)
16. FULFILMENT: "Then Judas, which had betrayed Him, when he saw that He was condemned, repented himself, and brought again the THIRTY PIECES OF SILVER to the chief priests and elders. ... And he CAST DOWN the pieces of silver IN THE TEMPLE, and departed, and went and hanged himself. AND THE CHIEF PRIESTS TOOK THE SILVER PIECES, and said, It is not lawful for to put them into the treasury, because it is the price of blood. And they took counsel, AND BOUGHT WITH THEM THE POTTER'S FIELD‚ to bury strangers in." (Mt.27:3-6) The thirty pieces of silver were "cast unto the potter ... in the house of the Lord!"
17. PROPHECY: "He was TAKEN from PRISON and from JUDGMENT: and who shall declare His generation? For He was CUT OFF out of the land of the living: FOR THE TRANSGRESSION OF MY PEOPLE was He stricken." (Isa.53:8)
18. FULFILMENT: In the course of Jesus' trial, Pilate asked the Jews, "Will ye therefore that I RELEASE unto You [from prison] the King of the Jews? Then cried they all again, saying, Not this Man, but Barabbas." (Jn.18:39) So Jesus should have STAYED in prison. Pilate, after questioning Jesus, went before the Jews three times proclaiming. "I FIND NO FAULT IN HIM." HIS JUDGMENT‚ THEREFORE, WAS THAT HE WAS INNOCENT of the charges laid against Him. (Jn.18:38; 19:4,6)
19. But the Jews weren't satisfied with leaving Him in prison nor with the judgment of His innocence‚ and by using their political 'leverage' on Pilate they finally got him to give in to the bloodthirsty mob. And he took Jesus "FROM prison and FROM judgment" and "delivered he Him therefore unto them to be crucified!" (Jn.19:16)
20. PROPHECY: About 1000 B.C. Kind David prophesied: "Dogs have compassed Me: the assembly of the wicked have inclosed me: they PIERCED MY HANDS AND MY FEET. I may tell all my bones: they look and stare upon Me. They PART MY GARMENTS among them‚ and CAST LOTS UPON MY VESTURE." (Ps.22:16-18—1000 B.C.) (See also Zech.12:10; 13:6.)
21. FULFILMENT: THAT WAS WRITTEN BY KING DAVID, WHO DIED A NATURAL DEATH (recorded in 1Kings Chapter 1), so he wasn't talking about himself. But being a prophet, he predicted the type of death that Christ would die! As it says in the New Testament, "Then the soldiers‚ when they had CRUCIFIED JESUS [PIERCED HANDS AND FEET], took HIS GARMENTS, and made FOUR PARTS‚ to EVERY SOLDIER A PART; and ALSO HIS COAT [HIS VESTURE]: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore among themselves, Let us not rend it but CAST LOTS FOR IT, whose it shall be." (Jn.19:23,24)
22. Crucifixion was not practiced by the Jews of David's time (they used stoning), but David predicted this type of death for the Messiah, a method of execution virtually unknown to the Jews of his time—foretold 1000 years before it happened!!!
23. PROPHECY: Again another prophecy by David regarding "The Righteous (Ps.34:19), or the Messiah, says, "Many are the afflictions of THE RIGHTEOUS, but ... He keepeth all His BONES: NOT ONE OF THEM IS BROKEN." (Ps.34:20—1000 B.C.—also Ex.12:46)
24. FULFILMENT: MANY OF GOD'S RIGHTEOUS SERVANTS HAVE HAD THEIR BONES BROKEN, especially in their martyrdom—but Jesus was "THE righteous My righteous servant‚" as Isaiah called Him, Who through His death would "justify many" or make them righteous. (Isa.53:11,12) Jesus died for our sins to make us righteous servants, but it's only through His righteousness—THE RIGHTEOUS! And to prove that He was "the righteous" Who would "justify many," God didn't let any of His bones be broken.
25. Jesus was crucified on the eve of the feast day of the Passover‚ and to ensure that the bodies of the two thieves and Jesus wouldn't be hanging there on the cross during the Jews' holy day (crucifixion sometimes took days), THEY BROKE THE LEGS OF THE THIEVES, CAUSING THEIR BODIES TO SAG, cutting off their respiration and causing a quick death. "But WHEN THEY CAME TO JESUS, AND SAW THAT HE WAS DEAD ALREADY, THEY BRAKE NOT HIS LEGS:
26. "But one of the soldiers WITH A SPEAR PIERCED HIS SIDE" (Jn.19:31-34)—to ensure that He was dead, and in so doing fulfilled another prophecy of Zechariah: "The house of David, and ... the inhabitants of Jerusalem ... shall look upon Me whom they have PIERCED, and they shall mourn for Him, as one that mourneth for his ONLY SON." (Zech.12:10) And a lot of Jews were mourning because "many of the people believed on Him"—"the ONLY begotten SON of God!" (Jn.7:31; 3:18)
27. PROPHECY: "And He made His GRAVE with the WICKED, and with the RICH in His DEATH." (Isa.53:9)
28. FULFILMENT: JESUS DIED AS A WICKED MAN IN THE EYES OF THE SYSTEM, as there were "two THIEVES CRUCIFIED WITH HIM." (Mt.27:38) And after His DEATH "A RICH MAN ... named Joseph ... went to Pilate, and begged the BODY OF JESUS. ... And when Joseph had taken the body, he ... LAID IT IN HIS OWN NEW TOMB"—a GRAVE with the RICH!!! (Mt.27:57-60)
29. "For thou with not LEAVE My soul in HELL; neither with thou suffer thine HOLY ONE to see CORRUPTION." (Ps.16:10)
30. THE WORD "HELL" HERE IS FROM THE HEBREW WORD "SHEOL," which is sometimes translated "hell" and other times "grave." It means both. King David, who gave the prophecy, died and was buried and his flesh saw corruption, but Jesus was raised from the grave and hell three days after His death, and "His soul was not LEFT in hell [or the grave], neither [did] His flesh see corruption." (Ac.2:27–31) As the angel said to the mourners who came to Jesus' tomb‚ "He is not here, but is risen. ... Why seek ye the living among the dead?" (Lk.24:6,5)
31. JESUS IS ALIVE! The scriptures show that He walked the earth for 40 days after His Resurrection and was seen by hundreds of followers! (Ac.1:3 & 1Cor.15:4-6) He then ascended up to Heaven where He sits at the right hand of the throne of God (Mk.16:19), and from which He shall soon return to take over the earth and rule it for a thousand years! (See our Revelation classes.)
32. Now‚ of course, one of the arguments used against these prophecies is‚ "Well, THE CHURCH HAD ALMOST TOTAL CONTROL OF THE OLD MANUSCRIPTS FROM WHICH BIBLE IS TRANSLATED and they just doctored up the Old Testament prophecies so that they'd look like Jesus fulfilled them." This argument fell apart in 1947, when an Arab shepherd boy in Palestine stumbled across a cave containing ancient scrolls of the Old Testament, all dated before 68 A.D. and some as early as 200 B.C.! The scrolls agreed in almost every respect with the traditional Hebrew texts used in the translation of the King James Version of our Bible, containing the same prophecies word for word.
33. THE OTHER ARGUMENT IS THAT THE NEW TESTAMENT WAS DOCTORED UP A LITTLE in order to make it appear that Jesus fulfilled the Old Testament, prophecies. If that's so, how do you explain the following three prophecies?
EXACT YEAR OF HIS CRUCIFIXION
34. PROPHECY: "Know therefore and understand, that FROM THE GOING FORTH OF THE COMMANDMENT TO RESTORE AND TO BUILD JERUSALEM UNTO THE MESSIAH the Prince shall be SEVEN WEEKS, AND THREESCORE AND TWO WEEKS [or 69 weeks]: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And AFTER threescore and two weeks shall MESSIAH BE CUT OFF, but not for Himself." (Dan.9:25,26)
35. IN 453 B.C., ARTAXERXES LONGIMANUS, KING OF THE MEDES AND PERSIANS‚ gave the Jews who were held captive by the Persian Empire the commandment to go forth (from captivity into the land of Israel) "to restore and to build Jerusalem."
36. THE PROPHECY OF DANIEL PREDICTED THAT FROM THE TIME OF THIS COMMANDMENT UNTO THE MESSIAH THE PRINCE SHALL BE—HOW LONG?—"SEVEN WEEKS, AND THREESCORE AND TWO WEEKS"—OR 69 WEEKS. We know that each of these weeks is symbolic, because no one who claimed to be the Messiah or who anyone now claims to have been the Messiah died 69 weeks, or one year and four months, after the commandment went forth in 453 B.C.
37. HOWEVER, IN THE BOOK OF GENESIS, A WEEK WAS SYMBOLICALLY USED TO REPRESENT JACOB'S SEVEN YEAR SERVICE for his wife Rachel. "Fulfil her week," his uncle told him, "and we will give thee this also for the service which thou shalt serve with me yet seven other years." (Gen.29:27)
38. THE WORD THAT'S TRANSLATED "WEEKS" HERE IN THE KING JAMES BIBLE IS THE HEBREW WORD "SHABUA" WHICH LITERALLY MEANS "SEVEN." Therefore a little better‚ more literal translation would be "69 sevens," instead of "69 weeks." Taken literally, 69 "shabuas," or 69 sevens, would be 69 x 7, which equals 483. So 69 SEVENS OF YEARS, OR 483 YEARS, WERE TO PASS BETWEEN THE GOING FORTH OF THE COMMANDMENT TO BUILD JERUSALEM AND THE CUTTING OFF THE MESSIAH.
39. MODERN HISTORIANS NOW DATE THE BIRTH OF JESUS AT 4 B.C. AND HIS CRUCIFIXION OR "CUTTING OFF" IN 30 A.D. This is because of a miscalculation on the part of the Catholic monk, Dionysius, who in the sixth century devised our present Christian calendar system without the use of the more precise archaeological information we now have. So Jesus actually began His ministry at 30 years of age (Lk.3:23), in the year 27 A.D.‚ and was crucified three years later, in 30 A.D.
40. WE KNOW THE COMMANDMENT WENT FORTH IN 453 B.C. AND JESUS WAS "CUT OFF" IN 30 A.D. Therefore‚ if we add the 453 years B.C. to the 30 years A.D., IT EQUALS 483 YEARS, the fulfilment of the 69 sevens or 483 year period that Daniel predicted would transpire between the rebuilding of Jerusalem and the death of the Messiah! And this was prophesied in the year 538 B.C.—almost 600 years before Jesus the Messiah was crucified!
41. ALSO, JUST AS THE PROPHECY DIVIDES THE 69 WEEKS INTO TWO PARTS, one of seven weeks, and then 62 weeks, so there were two events that were fulfilled in these two time periods.
42. Now you many want to argue with our interpretation of times and weeks‚ etc., but Daniel's prophecy continues with undeniable proof that this Messiah had to be Jesus:
DESTRUCTION OF JERUSALEM AFTER HIS COMING
43. PROPHECY: "And AFTER threescore and two weeks shall MESSIAH be CUT OFF, but not for Himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall DESTROY THE CITY [OF JERUSALEM] AND THE SANCTUARY [THE TEMPLE]." (Dan.9:26—540 B.C.) This prophecy shows that after the Messiah's death the city of Jerusalem and the Jews' temple would be destroyed.
44. FULFILMENT: AFTER JESUS WAS CUT OFF [OR CRUCIFIED IN 30 A.D.]‚ not for Himself, but for the sins of the world, do you know what happened to Jerusalem and to the Jews' Temple? In 70 A.D., the Roman legions marched in and BURNT JERUSALEM TO THE GROUND and so utterly DESTROYED THEIR SANCTUARY that not one stone was left upon another.
SHUTTING OF EAST GATE AFTER HIS COMING
45. PROPHECY: "Then He brought me back the way of the GATE OF THE OUTWARD SANCTUARY which looketh toward the EAST; and it was SHUT. Then said the Lord unto me; This GATE SHALL BE SHUT, it shall NOT BE OPENED, and no man shall enter in by it; BECAUSE THE LORD, THE GOD OF ISRAEL, HATH ENTERED IN BY IT, therefore it SHALL BE SHUT." (Ezk.44:1,2—572 B.C.)
46. FULFILMENT: WHEN JESUS MADE HIS TRIUMPHAL ENTRY INTO JERUSALEM on the back of the colt of an ass, He came from the Mt. of Olives and ENTERED INTO JERUSALEM'S EAST GATE—the gate which led into the temple courts, as it says here "the gate of the outward sanctuary which looketh toward the east." (Mt.21:9-12)
47. In 70 A.D., the city of Jerusalem was utterly destroyed and it stayed that way for centuries after. BUT IN 1542 THE MOSLEM SULTAN, SULIEMAN, REBUILT THE WALLS OF THE CITY, And because the Jews still believed their Messiah was yet to make his triumphal entry into Jerusalem‚ SULIEMAN WALLED THE "EAST GATE" COMPLETELY SHUT, and thus fulfilled the ancient prophecy of Ezekiel, "It SHALL be SHUT ... BECAUSE the Lord [Jesus], the God of Israel, HATH entered in by it."
48. ACCORDING TO THESE TWO HISTORICAL FACTS:
49. WHO ELSE WAS born of a virgin in Bethlehem, was called God, rode triumphantly into Jerusalem on an ass, was betrayed for thirty pieces of silver, was proclaimed innocent yet condemned unjustly to crucifixion while soldiers parted His garments, was associated with the wicked, was buried in a rich man's tomb and rose from the dead—all in fulfilment of prophecy!—The answer, of course, is no one else but Jesus! And the prophecies that we have used here are only a few out of nearly 300!!!
50. WHY DID JESUS DIE ON THAT CROSS? Because He loved you. He loved you enough to take your punishment to die and be separated from His Father so that He could bring you the Love of God and eternal life. As another prophecy says, "ALL WE LIKE SHEEP HAVE GONE ASTRAY; WE HAVE TURNED EVERY ONE TO HIS OWN WAY; AND THE LORD HATH LAID ON HIM THE INIQUITY OF US ALL, ... neither was any deceit in His mouth. Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise Him; He hath put Him to grief: when thou shalt MAKE HIS SOUL [JESUS'] AN OFFERING FOR SIN [OURS]. ... By His knowledge shall MY RIGHTEOUS SERVANT JUSTIFY MANY; FOR HE SHALL BEAR THEIR INIQUITIES." (Isa.53:9–11—750 B.C.)
51. JESUS DIED FOR YOU‚ IT'S JUST THAT SIMPLE—and God gave all these prophecies and had them written down and preserved from enemies so that your faith might be strengthened by them enough to believe that "God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." (Jn.3:16) Do you?
52. GOD LOVES YOU AND JESUS IS JUST WAITING AT YOUR HEART'S DOOR, KNOCKING AND WAITING FOR YOU TO OPEN TO HIM. As He said, "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear My voice, and open the door, I will come in to him and will sup with him, and he with Me." (Rev.3:20)—He'll partake of your life and you'll partake of His—and you'll really only then know what it's all about.
53. WOULD YOU LIKE TO? IF YOU WOULD, JUST PRAY FROM YOUR HEART THIS CHILDLIKE PRAYER: Dear Jesus, I know that I've done wrong things and I'm sorry. I believe that You died for my sins and I ask You to right now come into my heart and forgive me—and help me to live for you and others by reading Your Word and telling others about Your Love.—In Jesus' name!
54. WE LOVE YOU AND WANT TO HELP YOU TOO—Just write us, or better yet, visit us at one of our many Colonies around the world.