1st Coming - Understand Prophecy - Yamartino
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Chapter 32 of  60

FULFILLMENT of prophetic REFERENCES to CHRIST (commentary)


That the compilation of prophetic references to Christ presented in the previous chapter defies accurate interpretation, even meaningful interpretation, without the benefit of the New Testament, is, I think, apparent, and by itself constitutes proof of sorts, that prophecies are not given to lead one to the Christ (32:2)

However, there is additional proof available to us: their fulfillment. Having looked at these references by themselves, we will now take our investigation one step further by looking at their fulfillment, and the light that it throws on the purpose of prophecy (32:3)

It is beyond the scope of this book to discuss the fulfillment of all of the prophecies presented in the previous chapter. Rather, to achieve the purpose of demonstrating the nature of prophecy, while at the same time attempting to be brief, I have chosen to present all of the references cited in the first book of the New Testament - the nineteen occurrences in the Book of Matthew where it is specifically stated that a prophecy has been fulfilled. Although only a partial set of prophecies, yet because it encompasses those of an apostle's description of the life of Christ, there is a kind of completeness to the list that Matthew presents. Of course, these nineteen occurrences are not the only references that find fulfillment in the life of Christ as described by Matthew . A reference Bible will cite hundreds of verses in the Old Testament. These nineteen are only the ones specifically mentioned by Matthew as having been fulfilled (32:4)

The same principles which these occurrences will uncover can be seen throughout the rest of the New Testament. I do not believe that the actual spiritual principles, which influenced the peoples of Christ's time, are hidden beneath layers of information that can only be uncovered by scholarly research. If this were the case, how could God's Word be available to the common man? Does one need to be a scholar to understand why the Beloved Christ was rejected, or that He laid down His life for the salvation of the world, or what Christ desires for those who follow him? Does one need years of study to understand the pride of the Pharisees, or the humility of the disciples? No. So, why would another fundamental message of the Bible, one that implies that God, alone, knows the meaning of prophecy before its fulfillment, require anything more than to read the Bible with the sincere intention of understanding? (32:5)

The prophecies presented here will be generally in this form: I have numbered the prophecies as they appear in the order Matthew has presented them. For each of these, after having given the Old Testament reference, under the heading "Predictions", I explore briefly what these words could have meant to someone seeking the Christ at His First Coming. That is, we will attempt to look at the words through the eyes of the seeker. After this, the verses from the book of Matthew , indicating fulfillment of these words, are given. Finally I conclude with commentary on the possible significance of the whole process (32:6)

As with the previous chapter, you may not want to read the presentation of all nineteen prophecies at this time. By reading the first few of these, you will get a feel for the relationship between prophecy and fulfillment. The rest can be revisited at a later time if you choose (32:7)

I think you will agree, that it is evident from the very first prophecy examined, how difficult a task it would have been to recognize the Christ through scripture (32:8)

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