4 Biblical Rules for Interpreting Prophecy

Prophecies in Scripture were written in very veiled and symbolic language. In the earliest prophecy recorded, God declared to the Serpent ~

” On your belly you will go,
            And dust you will eat
            All the days of your life;

      15And I will put enmity
            Between you and the woman,
            And between your seed and her seed;
            He shall bruise you on the head,
            And you shall bruise him on the heel.” Gen.3:14,15

He didn’t simply declare that His Son would be born of a woman, die on the cross and therefore destroy his power over mankind. God’s a great engineer but, in everything that He does God is also the most brilliant and creative artist that will ever exist! In the Hebrew, this prophecy is also very poetic. I haven’t studied Hebrew but, the verses that I have read (with a phonetic translator) were all beautifully written.

Consider the rising and falling stories of Jesus that He spoke to demonstrate the Father’s love for mankind. God is the master story-teller!

 

RULE # 1 ~  Prophecy is heavily symbolic and not meant to be understood casually.

Jesus said 7 times in his life and 7 times after He ascended in Revelation, “Let the one who has ears hear.” Not because they all needed hearing aids but, because He was conveying profound ideas in parables and not speaking plainly.

 

RULE # 2 ~ All Prophecy must not set aside previous Covenants.

Galatians 3 ~ ” 15Brethren, I speak in terms of human relations: even though it is only a man’s covenant, yet when it has been ratified, no one sets it aside or adds conditions to it. 16Now the promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. He does not say, “And to seeds,” as referring to many, but rather to one, “And to your seed,” that is, Christ. 17What I am saying is this: the Law, which came four hundred and thirty years later, does not invalidate a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to nullify the promise.”

This is a profound but simple principle. In this case, Paul was declaring the intent of the Mosaic Law. The Law could not give life and righteousness but, it also did not invalidate God’s promise (Covenant) to Abraham which did give life and righteousness.

V.15 – Even man’s covenants cannot be set aside or added to when they have been established.

It’s from this idea that I jump into some potentially deep water…

 

RULE # 3 ~ God Has a Covenant to Earth.

When Noah’s Ark landed and he sacrificed to God in Genesis 8 ~ “And Jehovah said in his heart, I will no more henceforth curse the ground on account of Man, for the thought of Man’s heart is evil from his youth; and I will no more smite every living thing, as I have done.

22Henceforth, all the days of the earth, seed [time] and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night, shall not cease.”

This previously spoken oath by God was not even given to mankind for us to potentially ruin. (Think about it) God swore this promise to the planet and it’s creatures too Himself.

This Covenant with the earth becomes more important when we read Jeremiah’s fulfilled prophecy concerning Jesus’ New Covenant. Jeremiah had started articulating the New Covenant that we have, in chapters 30 & 31 but let he was put in prison in 32 and 33 says “The Word of the Lord returned to him a second time…”

20“Thus says the LORD, ‘If you can break My covenant for the day and My covenant for the night, so that day and night will not be at their appointed time, 21then My covenant may also be broken with David My servant so that he will not have a son to reign on his throne, and with the Levitical priests, My ministers. 22‘As the host of heaven cannot be counted and the sand of the sea cannot be measured, so I will multiply the descendants of David My servant and the Levites who minister to Me.’”

We know this promise was concerning Jesus, “The Son of David” who has introduced a better Priesthood according to Hebrews 7. He went on to respond to his critics ~

25This is what the LORD says: If I do not keep My covenant with the day and with the night and fail to establish the fixed order of heaven and earth,  26then I might also reject the seed of Jacob and of My servant David

God has made it very clear that His Covenant ratified to 1) The Planet 2) The Seed of Abraham 3) “David” were all inner-twined. Any guesses as to who fulfilled all of this?

 

RULE #4Everything God does is wonderful!

“Why?

Because “God is love.” We need to remember this simple truth when life’s circumstances try to trick us.

Psalm 119: 64,68 ~

64The earth is full of Your lovingkindness, O LORD;
            Teach me Your statutes.

68You are good and do good;
            Teach me Your statutes.”

 

 

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