Students of prophecy are frequently accused of being “date setters.” Recently, we saw the result of May 21, 2011, the date proposed by Harold Camping. The result was error and embarrassment. Let me add that just because you are looking forward to the imminent return of the Lord Jesus, that is not “setting a date.” In fact, the Apostle Paul tells us to live godly lives “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;” (Titus 2:13)
But let us review who really is guilty of setting dates. Remember the “Grand Alignment” of 1982? It was then that the planets were supposedly to be aligned in a manner that would cause devastation on planet Earth. The same thing was prophesied to happen in the year 2000.
And let us not forget that great date setting that was trumpeted by television, newspapers and books – December 21, 2012. This was to be the end of the world! As you may recall, it did not happen.
It appears to be obvious that the habitual date setters are New Age students of the occult. And so far they have been wrong every time.
The Lord had criteria to determine if a prophet was a true prophet or a false prophet. “When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.” (Deuteronomy 18:22) A prophet of the Lord was correct one-hundred percent of the time.
The Prophet Jeremiah had to deal with a lying prophet named Hananiah. While Jeremiah was trying to warn the people of Jerusalem that the Babylonians were coming and to submit to them, Hananiah said that Judah would prevail over Babylon and everything would be alright. This was in direct conflict with the Word of the Lord.
Jeremiah 28:15-17 tells us the result of Hananiah’s falsehoods. “Then said the prophet Jeremiah unto Hananiah the prophet, Hear now, Hananiah; The LORD hath not sent thee; but thou makest this people to trust in a lie. Therefore thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will cast thee from off the face of the earth: this year thou shalt die, because thou hast taught rebellion against the LORD. So Hananiah the prophet died the same year in the seventh month.”
If you are tempted by New Age prophecy, or if you have a friend that follows the occult, remind them of the requirement of one-hundred percent accuracy in order to be a true prophet. And then remind them of the many failures of their prophecies.
The prophecies found in the Bible are true, and those that have come to pass have been correct every time and have been fulfilled literally. The best part is that Jesus is literally coming back for His Church. How I look forward to that Day! Praise His name forever!