Prophecy by the Numbers
As the end of days approaches, you can find hope as you see the signs of His coming again!
Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near. -Revelation 1:3, emphasis added
When Jesus walked on earth, He announced to His disciples that His coming was near. In fact, the anticipation of His soon return was what motivated the early church. Now, 2,000 years later, those who love Him are still looking for the Second Coming of Christ. Is there any way we can know that His coming is actually close at hand? I believe there is.
While studying a series I was preparing ("What's Next for Planet Earth?"), I began examining just how much God has left for us to know about events yet to come, and found J. Barton Payne's series of numbers regarding prophecy to be quite enlightening!
The Bible has a total of 31,103 verses, 8,352 of which are prophetic; they speak of events yet to come. All biblical predictions about the future can be grouped into 737 different predictions. Of the 8,352 verses, 6,312 (or 522 different predictions) have already happened exactly as God's Word said they would. About 2,040 verses, with 215 specific predictions from God about the end of the world, are in process of being fulfilled.
These prophecies can be further divided into eighteen chronological categories (by the timing of the events). There are only five categories of the eighteen left to be fulfilled. Here are the categories: church prophecies, Second Coming prophecies, Millennial prophecies, Final Judgment prophecies, and New Jerusalem prophecies. Each of the prophetic signs that Christ and His apostles gave is very specific. Jesus has explained that as we get closer to the Second Coming, we will witness these events, which will begin at the same time, run concurrently, and crescendo like the pains of a woman giving birth.
The list of the biblical signs of Christ's return will not be full blown until the actual Tribulation, after the Rapture has occurred. Each of these signs, Jesus said, is a trend. These trends are speeding up in our generation; the last seconds of the countdown clock of Christ's return are clicking away. The prophetic picture Christ painted grows clearer daily as signs captured by the apostles and prophets between 2,000 and 3,500 years ago are now happening in our lifetime.
In all history-only our generation has seen every one of these events starting to unfold. As Jesus said in Matthew 24 when you see these things happening, know that the end of days is getting near.
If Christ were to come today, are you ready to meet Him face-to-face?
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