Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Thoughts on Bible Prophecy

I was watching TV earlier this week and caught one of those old programs about Nostradamus. You know, the French guy from Sixteenth Century France who – if you believe the spin – accurately predicted every important event between then and the end of the world. Our boy Michel – I’m gonna call him Mike – grew up in a Jew-converted-to-Catholic family with no money or influence, which meant he got into a lot of scrapes with the Inquisition (yeah, those guys who figured the best way to express the Love of God and Christ for Humanity was to torture confessions outta people and burn heretics to death). Mikey picked up a few patrons along the way; reportedly the Queen thought he was all that and a basket of croissants, which helped him build both his reputation and a defense against his enemies.

Mike had a problem. On the one hand he had all these great prophecies spinning in his noggin, just screaming to be put down on paper. On the other hand, Mikey had a lot of enemies, who could be counted on to use anything he wrote against him, and misuse the prophecies for potentially horrific results. So, Mike wrote his prophecies down in a strange sort of verse called Virgilianized Syntax, mixing in words from other languages and playing word games. While this produced a book of odd verse which many have taken for profound prophecy, it’s a bit difficult to credit it completely, precisely because our boy Mike was a big vague on details. I’ve read Mikey’s prophecies and while some of them seem to have hit the mark, others are hard to consider proven, and some are just too darn weird to take any specific meaning from them.

And that brings me to the Bible. The Bible is also a book with many prophecies, and some of the wording makes it hard to understand. My problem here, is that while I can pretty much ignore Mike’s prophecies with no worries because I really do not see anything to indicate that I need to be up to speed on what a dead Frenchman’s saying on the issues of the day, I do happen to believe in the Bible, and that includes the prophecies. So I believe that I need to pay attention to what God’s saying in the Bible. And that is sometimes harder than I would like.

Part of that is the number of people who want to sell their own interpretation of Scripture. Nothing wrong with someone saying what they think, except that some of these folks are not calling it their own opinion, but selling it as God’s truth. That gets a person into real trouble, right quick. So before I post again on this subject, let me be very clear that whatever think on the matter of prophecy, it’s nothing but my guess and take it as that and no more than that.

to be continued

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