Before studying the Bible (with an open mind) I was a complete skeptic. Any relevance the Bible had to the real world was imaginary, and any claims of it predicting the future were delusion, fantasy.
Well, God opened my eyes...
You might be a total skeptic and even somewhat a cynic like I was, however if you give God the chance to show you what He has shown me (and, of course, many others), He will change your mind.
Becoming acquainted with Bible prophecy (the foretelling of events) can be an almost instantaneous experience or a long, slow process, or something in between.
The SDA church was, in a sense, founded through Bible prophecy.
Even the "great disappointment" of 1844 was predicted in Revelation (ref. the "Millerite movement" - prior to, and a precursor of, the SDA church).
Believe it or not, it’s there.
If we accept the historicity of the Bible (an essential and, through archaeology, an increasingly supportable stance) and the general timeline of Bible writings (well-established historically), then we cannot but be amazed at the quantity and accuracy of its predictions, or prophecies.
The predictions about Jesus in the Old Testament (OT), the when and where of His birth, His life, mission and fate, are simply staggering. They cannot be refuted.
The prophecies in Daniel are simply astounding; secular history bears them out.
You might think the Bible, especially the OT, is a load of old hogwash, just a random collection of dusty old stories, fables and legends.
If you sincerely want to know the truth, however, prepare for your view of the Bible, and your worldview, to be changed.
There are at least as many interpretations of Bible prophecy as there are denominations.
How can we know which one is true?
I’ve increasingly accepted over the years that the only way to interpret Bible prophecy is to let the Bible interpret itself.
The Bible is internally consistent; it is God’s word.
I think we should let the Bible alone tell us what it is saying to us, what God is saying to us.
One of the reasons I joined the SDA church was just that; they use the Bible to interpret the Bible.
That made absolute sense to me. It was logical. It was common sense.
It is essential to have an open mind and a receptive attitude when studying the Bible; this is especially true when it comes to prophecy.
The single most important consideration when studying the Bible, however, is to ask God to lead you in your study and to enlighten your understanding of His word.
It is God’s Spirit who will convince you, convict you and convert you.
Nothing else, no-one else.
Bible prophecy should always have Jesus at the centre. The audio sermon below is a good example of this.
The book of Revelation begins with a promise: "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" (Rev. 1:3). God calls us to faithfully study His Word and understand the truths about where we have been, where we are, and where we are going so that we may stand firm in these last days. "An Enduring Vision: Revelation Revealed" is an in-depth, verse-by-verse exposition of the book of Revelation. An avid student of the Bible, history, and Spirit of Prophecy, Pastor Austin Cooke thoroughly examines Revelation in light of history and presents a solid interpretation of prophecy based on Bible truth, drawing from sources that date back to the 1700s all the way to recent publications, including current media. This book will engage you with its in-depth study of history, amaze you as to the accuracy of God's prophecies, and inspire you to be ready for the second advent of Jesus.
David Asscherick gives a clear, intelligent and easy-listening introduction to Bible prophecy in these 6 talks below: or download here.
Bible prophecy is a vast subject with innumerable differing interpretations (exegeses) and dissenting viewpoints.
So where do we go to find the truth, i.e. to find what God is truly saying in His word?
First and foremost, we must surrender all (and I mean all) to God's will; if we are not totally surrendered to God then His hands are tied and He can't effectively work in us and with us.
Next, before any Bible study, we must pray for the Holy Spirit to open God's word to our understanding.
I suggest the following site is a good reference point (it needs updating and de-Flashing however is still useful and above all, Biblical!):