Most churches have dropped the ball as far as Prophecy is concerned.
Forty one percent of the population believes that history, as we know it, is coming to an end. And yet, we who know the truth, are pretty much silent. :~(
Dr. Mark Hitchcock did the research and found that 27% of the Bible is Prophecy. Can the “whole counsel of God” be preached and taught while leaving out 27%?
Let’s say you have a sixteen year old and you’re teaching her to drive. You want her to know how to stay safe on the road. If you only teach her 27% of what she needs to know, would you want be on the road with her?
Or if you’re teaching at a medical school, and you don’t teach 27% of what they need to know to save peoples’ lives, do you want to go to that doctor or have them show up in an emergency situation? Of course not. You put people in danger by giving them less than what they need.
Billy Graham wrote “The church has failed to keep divine objectives in view because she has neglected the prophetic message of the Word of God. This neglect has caused Christians bewilderment, confusion and ignorance in a world that seems to be disintegrating around them. Many Christians needlessly wring their hands and ask, “What is going to happen to us? What does the future hold?”
According to Joel C. Rosenberg the reasons pastors don’t teach Prophecy are because:
- They don’t believe in the power and sufficiency of God’s word.
- They lack knowledge or sound training in Bible prophecy or theology, and don’t want to deal with it.
- They have a fear of being lumped in with the Prophecy nuts, and those that pedal sensationalism. Who wants to identify with them?!
- They lack an understanding of the times we’re in.
And I would suggest that another reason for nor teaching prophecy is to avoid controversy since there are different understandings. For instance there is pre-trib rapture, post-trib, mid-trib, no-trib/amilennialism, and pre-wrath, etc. Whoa!
Joel goes on to say that more than ever, we need pastors and lay people like the Sons of Issachar….men who understood the times and knew what Israel should do.
The apostle Paul gives us concisely and with great clarity the reasons for teaching prophecy:
- The one who prophecies speaks to men for edification, exhortation and consolation….to build people up in Christ. He wants us to know something about the future so that we are prepared for what’s coming.
- That we be encouraged to live for Christ in this fallen age, and to be ready for Him. He wants us to be sharing the gospel; making disciples; advancing the kingdom; living holy lives in this dangerous world as time runs out….as Christ’s return approaches.
- To be comforted in the difficulties, dangers, persecution, and trials that we will endure ’til His return….to have hope.
Jesus didn’t give us prophecy to start intellectual, religious or political arguments; to split churches or denominations; to divide brothers and sisters, or to cause us to be consumed with speculations about the future and date-setting. Right?
Nod if you agree.