Jesus=God? Part 5: Prophecy

Prophecy is an important aspect of the gospel message. The claims Jesus made about himself are incredible. For his claims to have validity, it is vital that we see persuasive evidence (Jn 5:31-36). Besides the testimony of Jesus’ words and the testimony of his miracles by by those who were eye witnesses, we the testimony of prophecy fulfilled. Concerning the importance of prophecy to the gospel creed we read this excerpt from Paul’s letter to the Corinthians: For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures (1 Cor 15:3-4 ESV) The phrase “in accordance with the Scriptures” refers to fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy.

To anchor them in context it is vital that we see Jesus fulfilling prophecy with such precision that there can be no other explanation than that he is the one foretold.

There are hundreds of direct and indirect prophecies in the Old Testament fulfilled by the first coming of our Lord, Jesus Christ. The following is not by any stretch of the imagination an exhaustive list:

Event Prophecy Fulfilled
Born of a virgin Is 7:14 Mt 1:21-23
Descendant of Abraham Gen 12:1-3, 22:18 Mt 1:1
From the tribe of Judah Gen 49:10 Lk 3:23, 33
Of the house of David 2 Sam 7:12-16 Mt 1:1
Born in Bethlehem Mic 5:2 Mt 2:1; Lk 2:4-7
Taken to Egypt Hos 11:1 Mt 2:14-15
Herod´s killing of the infants Jer 31:15 Mt 2:16-18
Anointed by the Holy Spirit Is 11:2 Mt 3:16-17
Heralded by John the Baptist Is 40:3-5; Mal 3:1 Mt 3:1-3
Would perform miracles Is 35:5-6 Mt 9:35
Would preach good news Is 61:1 Lk 4:14-21
Would minister in Galilee Is 9:1 Mt 4:12-16
Would cleanse the Temple Mal 3:1 Mt 21:12-13
Enter Jerusalem on a donkey Zech 9:9 Mt 21:4-9
Rejected by Jews Ps 118:22 I Pe 2:7
Would first present Himself as King 173,880 days from the decree to rebuild Jerusalem Dan 9:25 Mt 21:4-11
Would rise from the dead Ps 16:10 Mk 16:6; Acts 2:31
Ascend into Heaven Ps 68:18 Acts 1:9
Would sit at the right hand of God Ps 110:1 Heb 1:3
Die a humiliating death Ps 22; Is 53 Includes:
rejection Is 53:3 Jn 1:10-11; 7:5,48
betrayal by a friend Ps 41:9 Lk 22:3-4; Jn 13:18
sold for 30 pieces of silver Zech 11:12 Mt 26:14-15
silence before His accusers Is 53:7 Mt 27:12-14
being mocked Ps 22: 7-8 Mt 27:31
beaten Is 52:14 Mt 27:26
spit upon Is 50:6 Mt 27:30
piercing His hands and feet Ps 22:16 Mt 27:31
being crucified with thieves Is 53:12 Mt 27:38
praying for His persecutors Is 53:12 Lk 23:34
piercing His side Zech 12:10 Jn 19:34
given gall and vinegar to drink Ps 69:21 Mt 27:34, Lk 23:36
no broken bones Ps 34:20 Jn 19:32-36
buried in a rich man’s tomb Is 53:9 Mt 27:57-60
casting lots for His garments Ps 22:18 Jn 19:23-24

All the prophecies in the left column above were written more than 400 years before the events took place. They were written by several different people from a variety of walks of life over a span of at least six centuries. The statistical chance of any one human being fulfilling all of these prophecies is so slight as to be absurd. The only reasonable explanation is divine providence. No credible attack was ever launched against the testimonies to these fulfillments given in the New Testament.

The apostles proclaimed their testimony with great boldness. They demonstrating total belief in their claims. They did so at great person risk. Most of the apostles were martyred, yet never has anyone produced a reasonable explanation as to why they would lie.

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About Lance Ponder

Christian author of "Ask James one"; public speaker; husband and father. Available to speak on Creation and the Gospel.
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3 Responses to Jesus=God? Part 5: Prophecy

  1. Todd Beal says:

    It is interesting to me that all those who naysay Jesus’ divinity, conveniently choose to forego disproving all Biblical prophecies concerning him. Just like Satan, they quote just enough truth, in a close enough context, to make their version appear true, and truth, untrue – synthesis at its twisted finest.

    They grab a little bit of this and a little bit of that, then fill in the gaps with an attractively clever and subtly blatant wording, thus alluding to a “self-explanatory” meaning. Upon which, they subsequently proclaim an explicit stance of truth-resembling irrefutable doubt, convincing all but those who intimately know truth, that truth exists in contradiction to their synthesized reality, not the other way around.

    • Lance Ponder says:

      You’re exactly right. In the account of Jesus’ wilderness temptation we get a great example of how Satan (and those of his camp) do exactly that. It is fascinating that Satan quotes scripture out of context, what in religious lingo today we would call “proof-texting” or eisegesis,

      • Todd Beal says:

        Absolutely, Lance, and today’s Church is so caught up in context-irrelevant regurgitated scripture quotes, and as you put it, fancy church lingo, that we are completely incapable of defending our faith, let alone discerning truth from untruth.  God help us!

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