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If I Were Told the Future - Lesson 2

Prophecy and You

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We invite you to join us as we pray:

Our Father,

We now know that Your Word is the only trustworthy reference about prophecy.

This brings us to ask a second question: is it really important to study Bible prophecy? What use is it to us, to our salvation?

May Your Spirit guide us, as we open Your holy Book. In Jesus Christ.


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2 Peter 1:19

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, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts.


Do we really need to study Bible prophecy?

According to the apostle Peter, the answer is: Yes. His writings bring out the importance of the «word of prophecy whereunto you do well that you take heed».

But why must we give heed to prophecy?

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Daniel 10:21

I will show you that which is noted in the Scripture of truth.


John 8:32

And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.


Why study prophecy?

First reason: simply because the prophecy contained in the Word of God is a source of truth, just as any other part of the Bible.

And since God invites us to know the truth as revealed in His holy Book, we also have to try to understand prophecy, which is an integral part of that truth.

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The truthfulness of the prophetic word is confirmed more than once:

«And now will I show you the truth.» (Daniel 11:2)

«And the vision of the evening and the morning which was told is true.» (Daniel 8:26)

«These sayings are faithful and true: and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent His angel to show to His servants the things which must shortly be done.» (Revelation 22:6)

«And [the angel] said to me, “Write, Blessed are they which are called to the marriage supper of the Lamb.” And he said to me, “These are the true sayings of God.”» (Revelation 19:9)

«And He that sat on the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said to me, “Write: for these words are true and faithful.”» (Revelation 21:5)

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2 Peter 1:21

For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Ghost.


How can the prophetic word be an infallible source of truth?

The Bible answers that all its prophecies come from the Holy Spirit, not from man’s imagination.

For this reason, the prophetic word is entirely trustworthy.

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John 16:13

When He, the Spirit of truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth: for He shall not speak of Himself; but whatever He shall hear, that shall He speak.

And He will show you things to come.


And so the Holy Spirit, the «Spirit of truth», plays a determining role in communicating prophecy, since He is in charge of telling us «things to come».

Interesting point: about one-third of the Scriptures, inspired by the Holy Spirit, carries a prophetic content.

Therefore, to ignore prophecy means to ignore one-third of the Bible.

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Habakkuk 2:2,3

And 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.»


Second reason for which we must study prophecy: because God asks us to do so.

He gave us prophecy «that he may run that reads it», because He knows that its fulfillment, though sometimes late, is still absolutely certain.

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Genesis 18:17

And the Lord said, «Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do?»


Amos 3:7

Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets.


God expresses the desire to reveal to us His intentions for the future.

This brings us to the third reason for which we must study Bible prophecy: to prepare ourselves for what the future holds for us.

As the saying goes, «Forewarned is forearmed.»

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Jeremiah 25:4

The Lord has sent to you all His servants the prophets, rising early and sending them; but you have not listened, nor inclined your ear to hear.


Unfortunately God’s warnings, communicated to men through His prophets, did not always receive all the attention they deserved...

The Bible is overflowing with sad accounts telling the misfortunes of those who chose to ignore prophetic warnings.

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Genesis 6:13

And God said to Noah,

«The end of all flesh is come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.»


Undoubtedly, one of the most regrettably well-known stories is that of the Flood.

Informed of God’s intentions, Noah continually invited his fellow men to repent and to join him in the building of an ark that would save them.

Day after day, for 120 years, the incessant call was sent out to men.

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Hebrews 11:7

By faith Noah, being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear, prepared an ark to the saving of his house; by the which he condemned the world, and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith.


What followed is known by all. Repeated again and again, the call did not arouse any favorable answer among men, until the day the Flood came.

Only eight people believed in God’s warning, entered the ark, and thus were saved.

Even the animals showed more wisdom than men...

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Exodus 9:18,19

Behold, tomorrow about this time I will cause it to rain a very grievous hail, such as has not been in Egypt since the foundation thereof even until now.

Send therefore now, and gather your cattle, and all that you have in the field; for on every man and beast which shall be found in the field, and shall not be brought home, the hail shall come down on them, and they shall die.


Here is another example of a very clear warning that God gave to inform men of what the future was holding for them...

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Exodus 9:20,21,25

He that feared the word of the Lord among the servants of Pharaoh made his servants and his cattle flee into the houses.

And he that regarded not the word of the Lord left his servants and his cattle in the field. (...)

The hail smote throughout all the land of Egypt all that was in the field, both man and beast; and the hail smote every herb of the field, and broke every tree of the field.


... but here again, many attached no importance to God’s warning and, as a result, had to suffer the consequences of their choice.

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Matthew 24:15

[Jesus said,]

«When you therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, whoever reads, let him understand.»


Jesus Himself reminds us of the importance of Bible prophecy.

He invites us to examine the prophet Daniel’s book in order to make ourselves acquainted with the warnings written in it.

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Daniel 2:28

But there is a God in heaven that reveals secrets, and makes known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days.


Daniel 10:14

Now I am come to make you understand what shall befall your people in the latter days.


Jesus was right in telling us to study the book of Daniel, because we discover that the content of this prophetic book can definitely help us to understand «what shall be in the latter days».

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Revelation 1:1

The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave to Him, to show to His servants things which must shortly come to pass; and He sent and signified it by His angel to His servant John.


Revelation 1:19

Write the things which you have seen, and the things which are, and the things which shall be hereafter.


Likewise, the book of Revelation holds important information about the «things which must shortly come to pass».

We will have to study it too.

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Daniel 12:4

But you, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end.

Many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased.


Revelation 22:10

And [the angel] said to me, «Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand.»


Let’s pay attention to the following point.

In the sixth century B.C., Daniel was ordered to seal his book until the time of the end. Centuries later, John received the opposite order.

Why? «For the time is at hand.»

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Proverbs 6:23

The commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life.


Psalm 119:105

Your word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path.


So we see that the prophetic word is not sealed anymore and can be understood here and now.

As a lamp to our feet, it will guide us along the dark path of the future, preventing us from stumbling over the many obstacles on our road.

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John 5:39

Search the Scriptures; for in them you think you have eternal life: and they are they which testify of Me.


Luke 24:27

And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, [Jesus] expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.


Another reason showing the importance of prophecy: our need to better know Jesus Christ.

This study guide will indeed bring us to realize how much prophecy gravitates around the person of Jesus.

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2 Timothy 3:15-17

From a child you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished to all good works.


We will also see that prophecy, as well as the rest of the Scriptures, will help us to deepen our understanding of the wonderful and essential salvation God offers us in Jesus Christ.

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2 Timothy 3:1

This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.


Luke 21:36

Watch you therefore, and pray always, that you may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.


The study of Bible prophecy gives us an invaluable help, for the Word of God announces very difficult times, and we must know right now how to properly prepare ourselves.

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Romans 15:4

For whatever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.


And when, with the help of God, we have properly prepared ourselves for what the future holds for us, prophecy will no longer be something to arouse anguish and discouragement.

On the contrary, it will become an inexhaustible source of hope for each one of us.

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Revelation 22:7

Behold, I come quickly.

Blessed is he that keeps the sayings of the prophecy of this book.


Revelation 22:20

He which testifies these things said, «Surely I come quickly.»


The return of Christ is near, as this study guide will show us.

And the nearer this great event approaches, the more it is essential to turn our attention to Bible prophecy.

Let’s pay attention to the blessing, «Blessed is he that keeps the sayings of the prophecy of this book.»

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1 Thessalonians 5:20

Despise not prophesyings.


Revelation 1:3

Blessed is he that reads, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein.

For the time is at hand.


God promises blessings to those who will take time to study the prophecies of the Bible.

Why? Because God eagerly desires that we know what the future holds for us, so that we make informed, accurate decisions right now.

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Hebrews 2:1

Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.


Bible prophecy is one of the most precious gifts from God to mankind.

We must invest a little of our time to probe its content, so that we won’t be caught unprepared like all those people living in Noah’s days, who chose to turn a deaf ear to God’s warnings.

May this study guide be very useful in your quest for the truth.

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Summary of the seven reasons why we must study Bible prophecy

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Let us pray together:

O Lord,

Many people say that Bible prophecy has no importance for the believer. Others state that it is impossible to understand what it really means.

But You tell us, on the contrary, that the prophetic word is no longer sealed, and that we must study it, for this is a privileged way to prepare ourselves for the difficult times coming soon.

May Your Holy Spirit guide our search, helping us to know Your Son Jesus Christ better and to appreciate more and more His sacrifice for each one of us.

In His name we pray.


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