Recently, a brother told me that he stays away from prophecy. He’s not alone; a lot of people who teach Scripture like to stay away from prophecy. In general, they all seem to believe it is hazardous to teach prophecy. Too many people have fallen away from the faith because things did not turn out the way they had been told prophecy said they would turn out. Thomas Pain, the American founder, is among this number. However, I strongly disagree with these teachers. While I recognize the dangers posed if prophecy is handled carelessly, I also realize that, if we remove prophecy from our Scriptural curriculum, we not only lose a full third of YHWH’s Word, we also lose Yeshuah, the Messiah!
I anticipate that there will be many who read this who do not understand why I would say we lose Yeshua if we exclude prophecy from our teachings. Sadly, those who would ask this question demonstrate exactly why we should be studying and teaching prophecy. How can we know that Yeshua is the Messiah unless we know the signs that testify to His identity? And can we know those signs if we do not know the prophecies which provide them to us? You see, the only reason we know Yeshua is Messiah is because He fulfilled so many of the Messianic prophecies. Had the Apostles not known prophecy, they would never have known for sure that Yeshua is the Messiah — and neither would we! This is why I say, unless we study prophecy, we lose the Messiah; and if we lose the Messiah, we are lost indeed.
But there is yet another good reason to study and teach prophecy: it is one of the most powerful evangelical tools available to believers! Yeshua’s ‘Great Commission’ was to go and make disciples of the nations. Well, this brings us right back to the same problem we had in deciding how we can know Yeshua is the messiah without first knowing prophecy, just in a different form. How do we teach the nations to be disciples of Yeshua unless we also teach them prophecy? And how do we teach the nations that prophecy unless we have first studied it? However, I think there is an even better question; a question that might hit a little closer to home for many who try to be faithful and obedient. How many believers realize that the Great Commission is not only a prophetic event, but that, when we obey this command, we are taking part in the fulfillment of prophecy? It’s true! But did you know that? If you say you know it, then what prophecy is linked to the Great Commission? But, if you didn’t know this, ask yourself why didn’t you know it?
YHWH’s Prophetic Word tells us why prophecy is important. YHWH’s Prophetic Word constantly informs us that He tells us the future from the beginning so that, when it comes true, we will know that He is God! Therefore, just as we were given prophecy so that we would know that Yeshuah is the Messiah, we have also been given prophecy so that we can know that YHWH is the One, True, Living God.
This is why I am going to start a series on prophecy: because it is absolutely central to our faith. If you do not know prophecy, then our faith is built on a foundation of sifting sand. But, when we study prophecy properly, then we know that our faith is built upon solid rock. But that is the key to studying prophecy: we must study it correctly. This will be the subject for our next post in this series: how should we go about studying YHWH’s Prophetic Word?