Tuesday, 7 April 2009
The Bible is uniquely prophetic. No other religious or holy book makes predictions of the future like the Bible does. This phenomenon has led some Bible teachers to over-emphasise the Bible's ability to predict the future. The rise in claims of the Bible's prophetic detail coincided with its increased availability. When medieval scribes increased production of Bible copies the number of prophetic speculations also increased. When the Gutenberg Bible revolutionised the way Bibles were produced from the 1500s, there was similarly a marked increase in the number and variety of prophetic speculations.
This reached a new zenith in the 20th century, when Bibles largely dedicated to emphasizing and interpreting Bible prophecy, were published. This included the Scofield Reference Bible, The Ryrie Study Bible, and the Dake's Annotated Bible. Not only did these Bibles make some absurd prophetic speculations (like a secret rapture, a yet to come Antichrist, a one-world government, a cashless society and a rebuilt temple in Jerusalem), but they spawned some of the most popular books in Christian publishing history such as the now totally discredited The Late Great Planet Earth and more recent exercise in Christian fantasy and gullibility: The Left Behind Series. These "study" Bibles and paperback books on Bible Prophecy have conditioned today's Bible students to regard the Bible as more accurate than tomorrow's newspaper...
This expression (about the Bible being more accurate than tomorrow's newspaper) is a common statement made by some dispensational evangelists). As a boy growing up in a dispensational church I would hear this kind of statement from every "Prophecy Teacher" who came through. For example, one Bible College website puts this belief this way-