How does one come to be an authority on prophecy? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.
I often get amazed when I go on YouTube or into a Christian bookstore and see the craziness that is prophecy interpretation. These are normally some of the most popular books in the bookstores. It doesn’t matter that these people keep getting things wrong and keep changing their views and using the exact same hermeneutic. They are still experts. How does this happen? Let’s have some fun and look at the making of a prophecy expert.
Step One — Declare yourself to be a prophecy expert.
This might sound like a small step, but it’s a necessary one. You see, the world will need to know that you’re a prophecy expert. “But I haven’t gone to Bible college and I have no degrees or credentials!” That can help, but it’s not necessary. You can set up a channel on YouTube and get instant notoriety that way. Of course, if you have any credentials, that could land you a bigger audience, but we all have to start somewhere.
Step Two — Watch the news first.
It would be really difficult to write a book in 2003 about how Trump will be elected president in 2016 and claim to find that in prophecy. A far better route is to start with what is already happening and then go back and see how that was truly prophesied in Scripture. Then, go and extrapolate from that what you think will happen. This is when you go to the Bible. You go there and look and see if you can find anything in there that will back up your claim. That brings us to our next point.
Step Three — Avoid context of Scripture.
One cannot be picky about what the author intended or what a historical or social situation was at the time of writing. Caring about the real message the author wanted to get will cause us to miss the meaning we want to find. Feel free by all means to play a kind of hopscotch where you just jump around from place to place and find whatever you mean and make it a vague reference. What’s that? Your audience might actually look up the passages and see what you’re talking about? Ridiculous. Won’t happen. Don’t worry about such nonsense.
Step Four — Like Prego, it’s in there.
Rest assured also that every event you want to talk about is in the Scriptures. Every president has been prophesied and every Pope has been prophesied and every war and new law has been prophesied. It’s in there. You just have to look hard enough. For my fellow Americans, rest assured God loves us and we are obviously His favorite country so naturally, we’re all over the Bible.
Step Five — Ignore it when you are wrong.
We all make mistakes. The important thing is to act like they never happened. That’s right. Got your blood moon prediction wrong? Don’t admit it. Did the Harbinger not come through? Don’t admit it? Obama really wasn’t the antichrist? Say nothing about that! The Pope really wasn’t the man of sin? Be silent!
You see, if you don’t acknowledge your mistakes, odds are your audience won’t either. What? You think people really will care about your mistakes? You can be sure that this isn’t the case because so many prophecy experts have gone before you and this has never held them back. They keep going on and on.
Step Six — Repeat the cycle.
Okay. So the time has come. You made your mistake. It’s out there for all to see. What do you do now? Go back to step one. Repeat the whole process once more. Past failures don’t matter. Amazingly, as someone who has been proven wrong over and over and thus have no right to be called an expert, you will still be called an expert. Now go out there and start writing your next book and making your next video or blog post for the world again.
Or, you could avoid all of this and just study the Scripture faithfully and not make predictions about what will happen trusting that God is in control and work on other things that well, they might not seem as important, but they could be. You could work on understanding and living out your faith. You could work on taking care of the needy in your area. You could work on building up your marriage and home life. Of course, most of these won’t lead to the status you’ll get as a prophecy expert, but that’s the price you pay.
If you’re also someone who really doesn’t care about being this prophecy expert, be on the watch for those who do and don’t give them credibility once they’re shown to be wrong over and over again. The Scriptures are too sacred an item to treat so lightly. I look forward to the day when these fad prophecy books are not out on display immediately in Christian bookstores.