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If I Were Told the Future - Lesson 1

Can We Know the Future?

Picture 1 If I Were Told the Future Lesson 1
Can We Know the Future?
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Let us pray together:
Our Lord and our God,

At all times, men have tried everything to know beforehand what the future might hold for them.

Is Your Word trustworthy when it foretells events of the future?

Please enlighten us during our study, we pray in Jesus Christ.

Amen.
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Isaiah 45:11 Comments
Thus said the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, and his Maker,

«Ask Me of things to come.»
To know the future, dream of many people, pretension of many charlatans...

Is it even possible to probe the future, so as to get precise and trustworthy information? Is there an infallible source of predictions?

With all our modern technology, we can hardly anticipate even the exact temperature of the following day!
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Isaiah 41:22-24 Comments
Let them bring them forth, and show us what shall happen: let them show the former things, what they be, that we may consider them, and know the latter end of them; or declare us things to come.

Show the things that are to come hereafter, that we may know that you are gods: yes, do good, or do evil, that we may be dismayed, and behold it together.

Behold, you are of nothing, and your work of nothing: an abomination is he that chooses you.
At all times, fakes and false prophets have claimed to have the power to foretell the future...
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Isaiah 47:13,14 Comments
You are wearied in the multitude of your counsels. Let now the astrologers, the stargazers, the monthly prognosticators, stand up, and save you from these things that shall come on you.

Behold, they shall be as stubble; the fire shall burn them.
Just as today, astrologers in the prophet Isaiah’s time predicted the future in a hit-or-miss manner, often mistaken because their predictions were about distant times.

Their sources of information did not seem to be very reliable...
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Proverbs 27:1 Comments
Boast not yourself of tomorrow; for you know not what a day may bring forth. We must admit: without «external» inspiration, almighty and omniscient, man cannot predict the future with consistent accuracy, especially centuries in advance!
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Isaiah 44:6,7 Comments
Thus said the Lord (...):

«And who, as I, shall call, and shall declare it, and set it in order for Me, since I appointed the ancient people? And the things that are coming, and shall come, let them show to them.»
Only God has complete knowledge of the future.

We will see in the next lessons that events to come appear to Him as in an open book.
Isaiah 46:9,10
I am God, and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done.
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Isaiah 8:19 (NKJV) Comments
And when they say to you,

«Seek those who are mediums and wizards, who whisper and mutter,»

should not a people seek their God?
It is dangerous to consult sources other than God, when we desire to know the future.

But besides these dangers, we must understand that God is the only reliable source for prophetic revelations.
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Amos 3:7 Comments
Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets. Since only God has complete knowledge of the future, we can be delighted that He is willing to communicate a part of this knowledge to us through His prophets!
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Daniel 2:27,28 Comments
Daniel answered in the presence of the king, and said,

«The secret which the king has demanded cannot the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers, show to the king.

But there is a God in heaven that reveals secrets, and makes known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days.»
The mysterious dream of King Nebuchadnezzar, described in the book of Daniel, will be the subject of a future lesson.

We will also study many other prophecies from this book, which holds more than one surprise...
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2 Peter 1:19 Comments
We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto you do well that you take heed, as to a light that shines in a dark place. As far back as the apostles’ times, a great number of prophecies were fulfilled with such accuracy that many people quickly understood the importance of studying the Scriptures more seriously in order to heed the warnings God gives to mankind.

Indeed the Lord knows that the future holds a lot of surprises for those who are not prepared.
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Deuteronomy 28:63-65 Comments
And you shall be plucked from off the land where you go to possess it.

And the Lord shall scatter you among all people, from the one end of the earth even to the other; and there you shall serve other gods, which neither you nor your fathers have known, even wood and stone.

And among these nations shall you find no ease, neither shall the sole of your foot have rest.
For example, let us look at this amazing prediction concerning the Jewish people: it would have been difficult to better describe what they were going to experience in the course of history.

Let’s see the following verse.
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Deuteronomy 28:37 Comments
And you shall become an astonishment, a proverb, and a byword, among all nations where the Lord shall lead you. The history of the Jewish Diaspora (the dispersion of the Jewish people throughout the world) confirms the accuracy of this prophecy.

Just think of the persecution of the Jews during World War II, among other events.

Still today, we admit with shame that few can lay claim to never having made fun of Jews, at least once in their lifetime.
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Luke 21:24 Comments
And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations.

And Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles.
This prediction from Christ confirms the preceding prophecies concerning the Jewish nation, but it further describes the future of Jerusalem, a city which nations have trampled underfoot.

First of all, Romans, then Greeks, Arabs, even Christians have seized it more than once, shedding an unending flow of blood in its streets...
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Matthew 24:2 Comments
Jesus said to [His disciples],

«See you not all these things? Truly I say to you, there shall not be left here one stone on another, that shall not be thrown down.»
The destruction of Jerusalem’s temple, in A.D. 70, happened in accordance with Christ’s prophecy.

After having burned down the temple, the Romans tried to recover the gold that was covering the walls, which had become trapped between the building’s stones under the effect of heat.

To do so, each stone was systematically dismantled, just as Christ foretold.
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Joshua 21:45 Comments
There failed not ought of any good thing which the Lord had spoken to the house of Israel; all came to pass. Prophecies do not only carry messages of destruction.

The study of Bible prophecy does not seek to satisfy our curiosity or to excite our imagination: it aims especially to develop our faith and to maintain our hope.

Our next lesson will clearly demonstrate this.
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Habakkuk 2:2,3 Comments
The Lord answered me and said,

«Write the vision, and make it plain on tables, that he may run that reads it.

For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.»
The prophecy has been given «that he may run that reads it», and not to mystify us endlessly.

Biblical prophecies have always been fulfilled until now: what do the Scriptures predict for tomorrow?
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Isaiah 42:9 Comments
Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare: before they spring forth I tell you of them. We are now going to look into the amazing world of Bible prophecy, which will become for each one of us an inexhaustible source of hope.

May God guide us during these lessons!
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Let us pray:
Almighty God,

How can we thank You for this message You give us through Your holy book, the Bible.

We have only begun to discover its precious treasures, and we know that there are even more awaiting us.

Please stay with us and guide us by the assistance of Your Spirit. In Jesus Christ, we pray.

Amen.
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Lesson 1 - Test The test of Lesson 1 is waiting for you!

Source of the Pictures of this Lesson
Screen 1: Picture collection «ClickArt 65,000» by Broderbund, CD #4, NATOT668.JPG. Screen 2: The Plain Truth magazine (Unknown date), Worldwide Church of God, Front cover. Screen 3: Photo by Betty Blue/Enrique Fuentealba. In «La Sentinelle» magazine (November 1993), Pacific Press Publishing Association, p.2. Screen 4: WILLIAMS, Gilbert. «Dreamweaver», Picture #IMA5213 (http://www.lazaris.com/isisweb/magwfull.htm). Screen 5: MANISCALCO, Joe. In: «Images from the Bible and Sacred History CD», Chosen Works, MLI Software, JM015.BMP. Screen 6: JUSTINEN, Lars. In: «Questionnaire Adulte de l’Ecole du Sabbat», Pacific Press Publishing Association, Third Quarter, 1999, front cover. Screen 7: STEEL, John. In: «The Triumph of God’s Love, volume 2» (WHITE, Ellen G.), Pacific Press Publishing Association and Review and Herald Publishing Association, 1950, p.483. Screen 8: MICHEL-ANGE. «Isaiah», Sistine Chapel, Vatican, Rome. In: «Great Bible Stories and Master Paintings» (RACHLEFF, Owen S.), New York, Abradale Press Publishers, p.208. Screen 9: STEEL, John. In: «Prophecy Seminars», Seminars Unlimited, 1989, Daniel lesson #1 («Introduction to the Book of Daniel»), p.1. Screen 10: Photo by P. BLEECKX. In: «Le Moniteur», Pacific Press Publishing Association, First Quarter, 1999, front cover. Screen 11: BOWER, Maurice. In: «The Living Bible Encyclopedia in Story and Pictures, volume 3», New York, H.S. Stuttman Co. Inc., 1968, p.336-c. Screen 12: «World War II, Auschwitz». In: «Collier’s Encyclopedia Deluxe 1998», Sierra Home. Screen 13: LAUNE, Paul. In: «The Living Bible Encyclopedia in Story and Pictures, volume 7», New York, H.S. Stuttman Co. Inc., 1968, p.912-a. Screen 14: STEEL, John. In: «God Cares, vol.2» (MAXWELL, C. Mervyn), Pacific Press Publishing Association, 1985, p.29. Screen 15: SCHLAIKJER, Jes. In: «Votre Bible et Vous» (MAXWELL, Arthur S.), p.193. Used by permission. Copyright ©1959, 1987 by Review and Herald® Publishing Association, USA. All Rights Reserved. Screen 16: AYRES, Robert. In: «La Sentinelle» magazine (September 1991), Pacific Press Publishing Association, p.8. Screen 17: MANISCALCO, Joe. In: «Images from the Bible and Sacred History CD», Chosen Works, MLI Software, JM229.BMP. Screen 18: Photo in: «El Centinela» (January 1993), Pacific Press Publishing Association, p.10.
Any copyrighted images not bearing a statement of permission, are used for the purpose of non-commercial scholarly commentary or criticism in accordance with section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law, and with article 29 of Canada Copyright Act (Chapter C-42), which by law can be without the consent or endorsement of the copyright holder. Images lacking attribution are either known or assumed to be in the public domain, or have an as yet undetermined status. Anyone having knowledge of proper attribution for an image is requested to contact us via email below so that it can be correctly noted. It is our intent to comply fully with applicable laws regarding intellectual property rights.

Lesson 1 - Test The test of Lesson 1 is waiting for you!