Meridian Star

August 24, 2013

Seeing is believing

By Ron Wood / guest columnist
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN — I believe in predictive prophecy. By that I mean that there are people among us who know things before they occur. The Bible calls these people “Seers” or “Prophets.” Several stories illustrating this divine ability are recorded in the most authenticated book written in the history of mankind, the Holy Bible. In a moment, I will give you one fascinating case in point.

    First, read this: “The Bible contains 66 separate books penned by 40 authors over several thousands of years composed of an intricate skillfully integrated message system which provably had its origin outside our time domain.” This statement is from a brilliant NASA scientist, Dr. Chuck Missler.

    By predicting the future, I am not talking about psychics or fortune-tellers. That stuff is mostly bogus and is strictly forbidden by God as serious sin. What I am saying is that within the pages of your Bible is one amazing story (among many others) that corresponds with an event in recorded history in a startling way.  It has to do with the fall of Babylon (located in Iraq).

    In 539 BC, Cyrus took Babylon without a struggle. According to the Greek historian Herodotus, Cyrus diverted the course of the Euphrates, making the river level drop so his invading forces could enter the city at night in the riverbed. The Persians were able to just walk into town. Within a year, Cyrus declared that all the Jews captive in Babylon were free to return home to Jerusalem, as described in Ezra.

    Among those captive Jews was Daniel the prophet. He wrote (in Daniel 5:6) that one night Belshazzar was feasting when the “handwriting on the wall” appeared, and his “knees smote” (read, “he wet his pants”). The judgement of God was fulfilled that night on this wicked man.

    These two events—the taking of Babylon the Great without a battle and the liberation of the Jews soon after—are both remarkable historical events in themselves. What makes them even more notable is the fact that God told precise details about these events in Isaiah 44:26–45:1, 13, calling Cyrus by name 100 years before he was even born!  Amazing!

    Think about this: King Cyrus, having conquered Babylon, was greeted by an elder statesman, a Hebrew prophet, who handed him a scroll - the Book of Isaiah - opened up to the passage written 150 years prior, foretelling exactly how Babylon would fall and even calling Cyrus, “his servant.” Is it any wonder Cyrus looked with awe upon the God of Daniel? This is just one of scores of fascinating Bible accounts that show how God sees beyond time.  We ought to pay attention!

    Folks, the God of the Bible - the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ - is the Author of history- Alpha and Omega. He is the One True God. There is no god besides Him. He requires us to believe and wants us to enter the kingdom of Jesus. I can trust what God says in his Word. It is a proven, reliable basis for faith in God.

    Ron Wood ministers at Trinity Assembly of God. Hear him Sundays on 103.3 FM at 8 and 7.  601-483-8189.