Prior to studying the Bible, 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 fantasy.
Well, God opened my eyes...
You might be a total skeptic as I was, however if you give God the chance to show you what He has shown me and many others, He will change your mind.
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.
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; history bears them out.
You might think the Bible, especially the OT, is a load of hogwash, just a random collection of dusty old folk tales, fables and legends.
If you sincerely want to know the truth, however, you need to be prepared for your view of the Bible, and your worldview, to be changed.
Don’t be overwhelmed or intimidated by all the complicated signs, symbols, numbers, weird animals etc in the Bible (especially Daniel and Revelation). Get an overview of the big picture first, or at least an outline, and fit in all the gaps and missing pieces over time as you get settled in the basics.
Have an open mind and a receptive attitude when studying Bible prophecy and you’ll get the picture, or at least enough to satisfy your own ‘need to know’.
There are at least as many interpretations of Bible prophecy as there are denominations.
How can we know which one is true?
First and foremost, we must surrender all (and I mean all) to God's will and ask Him to lead us to the truth.
If we are not totally surrendered to God then His hands are tied and He can't effectively work in us and with us.
I’ve increasingly accepted over the years that the only way to interpret Bible prophecy is to let the Bible interpret itself; it is internally coherent and consistent.
We should let the Bible alone tell us what it is saying to us, what God is saying to us.
One reason I joined the Adventist church was just that; they use the Bible to interpret the Bible.
That was logical to me. Simple common sense.
The single most important consideration when studying the Bible 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.
David Asscherick gives a clear, intelligent and easy-listening introduction to Bible prophecy in these 6 talks below: