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End Time Prophecies
DefinitionProphecy, in a broad sense, is the prediction of future events. The etymology of the word is Greek, from pro- "before" plus the root of phanai "speak", i.e. "speaking before" or "foretelling" (proclamation). Prophecy is a general term for assertions presented as the revelation of divine will. Sometimes the Greek word mantikę (divination) is translated as prophecy.
Throughout history, people have sought knowledge of future events from special individuals or groups who were thought to have the gift of prophecy, such as Oracles at Delphi in ancient Greece. Cultures in which prophecy played an important role include the Assyrians, Celts, Chaldeans, Chinese, Druids, Egyptians, Greeks, Hebrews, Indians, indigineous North Americans, Mayans, Tibetans, and many in the Christian and Muslim traditions, among others.
Prophecy 1. Jerusalem would become an international problemBible passage: Zechariah 12:1-5
Written: between 520 and 518 BC
To be fulfilled: End Times In Zechariah 12, the prophet said that there would come a time when the surrounding nations would besiege Jerusalem and Judah (the area around Jerusalem), and that all the nations of the world would gather against Jerusalem, but that God ultimately would save the city and its people. This is widely regarded as an End Time prophecy to be fulfilled in the future.
Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of this prophecy is that it is predicated on Jerusalem being a city of critical interest to the rest of the world. And it just so happens that Jerusalem is the only city in the world that is of interest to the rest of the world.
For Jews, it is their ancient capital, founded by King David about 3000 years ago. Many Arab Moslems, however, believe that the city should be part of an independent state for Palestinian Arabs. The issue of who should control Jerusalem has been a cause of the Arab-Israeli wars during the past century.
And, the conflict between Arabs and Jews has been a primary reason as to why the international community has taken an interest in Jerusalem. In 1947, the United Nations General Assembly approved a plan to carve up the ancient land of Israel into a state for Jews and another for Arabs. This plan would have established Jerusalem as an international city to be governed by the United Nations.
This extremely unusual proposal, suggesting that a city be governed by the United Nations, simply shows the unique status that Jerusalem already has in the world: It is the only city in the world that is of interest to the rest of the world.
Given the history of the city, the volatile conflict between Israel and the surrounding Arab nations, and the unusual interest that the international community has shown in regards to Jerusalem, it seems clear that the groundwork for the future fulfillment of this prophecy is in place. Zechariah 12:1-5 This is the word of the Lord concerning Israel. The Lord, who stretches out the heavens, who lays the foundation of the earth, and who forms the spirit of man within him, declares: "I am going to make Jerusalem a cup that sends all the surrounding peoples reeling. Judah will be besieged as well as Jerusalem. On that day, when all the nations of the earth are gathered against her, I will make Jerusalem an immovable rock for all the nations. All who try to move it will injure themselves. On that day I will strike every horse with panic and its rider with madness," declares the Lord. "I will keep a watchful eye over the house of Judah, but I will blind all the horses of the nations. Then the leaders of Judah will say in their hearts, `The people of Jerusalem are strong, because the Lord Almighty is their God.'
Prophecy 2. When Israel blooms again, the Kingdom of God will be nearBible passage: Luke 21:29-31
Recorded: about 30 AD
To be fulfilled: End Times In Luke 21:29-31, Jesus said that when the fig tree blooms again, people will know that the End Times and Kingdom of God is near. Some Christian scholars believe that the fig tree represents the nation of Israel. This passage is sometimes interpreted to mean that the End Times would not begin until sometime after the nation of Israel regains sovereignty. When Jesus delivered this prophecy about 2000 years ago, Israel was ruled over by the Roman Empire. The people of Israel did not have sovereignty over their own land during that era. But, after centuries of exile, the Jews were able to return to Israel and reclaim sovereignty, in 1948. Luke 21:29-31 He told them this parable: "Look at the fig tree and all the trees. When they sprout leaves, you can see for yourselves and know that summer is near. Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that the kingdom of God is near.
Prophecy 3. The Messiah will appear after the Jews return to IsraelBible passage: Jeremiah 23:3-6
Written: sometime from 626 to about 586 BC
Fulfilled: end times In Jeremiah 23:3-6, there is a prophecy that indicates when the Messiah is to appear in the land of Israel. Jeremiah said that it would be after the exiled people of Israel return to their homeland. From a Christian point of view, this is of special interest because Jesus is supposed to appear twice. And this coincides with the fact that the people of Israel have been expelled from their homeland twice, and that they are currently in the process of returning after the second expulsion.
More than 2500 years ago, the Assyrians and Babylonians forced the people of Israel out of their homeland. Many returned during the centuries that followed and then Jesus appeared, about 2000 years ago, and announced that he is the Messiah. Later, the people of Israel were again forced out of their land (by the Romans in 135 AD) and scattered to countries throughout the world.
But, during the past few centuries, millions of exiled Jews around the world have returned to their ancient homeland. And this is one of the reasons why Christians say that the world is being prepared for the return of Jesus Christ. Because, as Jeremiah had prophesied long ago, the Messiah is to appear after the people of Israel return to their land.
The phrase, in Jeremiah 23:5, "I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King," refers to the Messiah, and that he will be a king and a descendant of King David, who reigned over Israel about 3000 years ago. Christians believe that when Jesus returns, he will establish a kingdom of peace and righteousness.
Jeremiah 23:3-6 "I myself will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the countries where I have driven them and will bring them back to their pasture, where they will be fruitful and increase in number. I will place shepherds over them who will tend them, and they will no longer be afraid or terrified, nor will any be missing," declares the Lord. "The days are coming," declares the Lord, "when I will raise up to David a righteous Branch, a King who will reign wisely and do what is just and right in the land. In his days Judah will be saved and Israel will live in safety. This is the name by which he will be called: The Lord Our Righteousness.
Prophecy 4. The Gospel will be preached to the entire worldBible passage: Matthew 24:14
Recorded: about 30 AD
To be fulfilled: End Times In Matthew 24:14, the Bible says that the Gospel (the New Testament books of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John) will be preached throughout the world. The Bible also says that after this happens, the end times will come. The Bible has been preached throughout the world for a long time. But now, with the increasing worldwide availability of television and the Internet, there is greater potential for the Gospel to be preached to everyone, everywhere.
Matthew 24:14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
Prophecy 5. The world would be able to simultaneously witness eventsBible passage: Revelation 11:9-10
Written: sometime between 54 and 95 AD
To be fulfilled: End Times In Revelation 11:9-10, the Bible gives a prophecy that has not yet been fulfilled, at least not in a literal sense. But, perhaps for the first time in history, it can be fulfilled. The prophecy says that people all over the world will be able to simultaneously witness a particular event (the death of two prophets). This of course would have been difficult before the popularization of television and the Internet. But it is now common for people worldwide to simultaneously witness events via television and the Internet. Revelation 11:9-10 For three and a half days men from every people, tribe, language and nation will gaze on their bodies and refuse them burial. The inhabitants of the earth will gloat over them and will celebrate by sending each other gifts, because these two prophets had tormented those who live on the earth.
Prophecy 6. Zechariah foreshadowed modern warfareBible passage: Zechariah 14:12
Written: between 520 and 518 BC
To be fulfilled: End Times In Zechariah, chapter 14, the prophet says a time will come when nations gather to attack Jerusalem. In Zechariah 14:12, the prophet says the nations that attack Jerusalem will be struck with a "plague" that will cause their flesh to rot while they are still standing. This might be a fitting description for modern warfare if it were described by a person who lived 2500 years ago, as Zechariah did. Chemical weapons are capable of causing rapid deterioration of flesh. And a blast of heat from a nuclear weapon could have a similar affect. Some Bible scholars, however, believe that this plague could refer to a supernatural event from God to protect the Holy Land.
Zechariah 14:12 This is the plague with which the Lord will strike all the nations that fought against Jerusalem: Their flesh will rot while they are still standing on their feet, their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongues will rot in their mouths.
Prophecy 7. Many people will go to Jerusalem to seek God's favorBible passage: Zechariah 8:22
Written: between 520 and 518 BC
To be fulfilled: End Times In Zechariah 8:22, the prophet said 2500 years ago that a time will come when many people go to Jerusalem to seek and honor God. This prophecy has been at least partially fulfilled already. The Jews recaptured Jerusalem during the Six Day War in 1967. Since then, people from around the world have toured Jerusalem to visit various sites that are important to the history of Judaism and Christianity. Jerusalem is also an important city to Moslems.
Zechariah 8:22 And many peoples and powerful nations will come to Jerusalem to seek the Lord Almighty and to entreat him."
Prophecy 8. Book of Revelation envisioned an army of 200 millionBible passage: Revelation 9:16
Written: sometime between 54 and 95 AD
To be fulfilled: End Times In Revelation 9:16, the Bible says that an army of 200 million will one day be assembled. This prophecy, obviously, hasn't been fulfilled yet, at least not literally. But, as the world's population rises above 6 billion, it is increasingly possible for a coalition of countries to amass an army of 200 million, and this would have been unthinkable even 100 years ago. Revelation 9:16 The number of the mounted troops was two hundred million. I heard their number.
Prophecy 9. The troops would cross the EuphratesBible passage: Revelation 16:12 Written: sometime between 54 and 95 AD To be fulfilled: End Times In Revelation 16:12, the Bible says there will come a time when the flow of the Euphrates River is halted or dried up, preparing the way for the "the kings from the East." Some scholars have connected this prophecy to others that speak of armies waging war in Israel. When the book of Revelation was written 1900 years ago, it would have taken a great natural disaster, or a great amount of labor to divert the flow of the Euphrates so that an army could cross it. (In 539 BC, Cyrus and his army diverted the flow so that his troops could march across the riverbed and conquer Babylon). But, today, there are a series of dams that would make it much easier to divert the flow of the powerful river.
Revelation 16:12 The sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great river Euphrates, and its water was dried up to prepare the way for the kings from the East.
Prophecy 10. People would be forced to receive the mark of the beastBible passage: Revelation 13:16-18 Written: sometime between 54 and 95 AD To be fulfilled: End Times In Revelation 13:16-18, the Bible says that there would come a time when a powerful leader would force people to receive a "mark" on or in their right hand or forehead, and that no one would be able to buy or sell unless they had that mark. When the book of Revelation was written about 1900 years ago, it would have been nearly impossible for a world leader to force everyone to receive such a mark. But, today, with modern technology, it would be much easier. Today, for example, it would be possible to implant under a person's skin a small microchip that could be used like a credit card.
Revelation 13:16-18 And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads: And that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. Let him that hath understanding count the number of the beast: for it is the number of a man; and his number is Six hundred threescore and six. (KJV).
Notes: Bible verses are from the New International Version (NIV) translation.
Read more about End Times.