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The Future Looks Uncertain...but God - Part B

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The Truth Network Radio
January 27, 2021 2:00 am

The Future Looks Uncertain...but God - Part B

Connect with Skip Heitzig / Skip Heitzig

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January 27, 2021 2:00 am

Everyone seems amazed that someone from long ago like Nostradamus could predict life in our modern culture—or did he? In the message "The Future Looks Uncertain...but God," Skip explains how God makes the future known to you

This teaching is from the series ...but God.

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God wants to make known to you, to us, the future. Not all of it.

As I said, all the details of it would be overwhelming, but parts of it. He wants to give us a limited amount of knowledge, and that's essentially what Biblical prophecy is. It's God telling us what's going to happen in the future. So, for example, He told Israel before it happened, you're going to go into captivity in Babylon. They did. I'm going to bring you back.

They came back. God wants you to be at peace concerning the future, and He's even given you His Word to tell you what's to come. Today on Connect with Skip Heitzig, Skip shares what God has revealed about His plans and why you can trust in His Word. But first, we want to share about an exciting resource that answers your questions about God as you explore who He truly is. Does God exist? And if He does, is it possible to know Him? Your answer to those two questions shapes how you see the world.

Skip Heitzig once wrestled with those very questions himself. You know, I've been teaching the Bible for over three decades. Before I became a Christian, and when I was new to the faith, I studied science and philosophy alongside the Bible. As I studied, I grew confident that God does exist, and yes, we can know Him. In Biography of God, the brand new book by Skip Heitzig, you'll learn to remove the limits you may have placed on your idea of who God is. Everything changes when you acknowledge and believe that God is who He says He is. Biography of God is our way to thank you when you give $35 or more today to help expand this Bible teaching outreach to more people.

Request your copy when you give online securely at connectwithskip.com slash offer or call 800-922-1888. Now, we're in Daniel chapter 2 as we dive into the teaching with Skip Heitzig. I thank you and praise you, God of my fathers. You have given me wisdom and might and have now made known to me what we asked of you.

You have made known to us the king's demand. God can do that. You see, God is a quality. He has an attribute. He has a characteristic that makes knowing the future possible.

And that is this. He knows everything. And when you know everything, you know the future.

In Psalm 139, David said, Lord, you have searched me and known me. You have known my sitting down and my rising up. You understand my thought of far off. You comprehend my path and my lying down. You are acquainted with all my ways. There is not a word on my tongue, but behold, Lord, you know it all together. In other words, even before I think the thought, you know what I'm going to think.

You know my thought of far off. You know it before I know it. That's how comprehensive God's knowledge is. So God has all knowledge. The Bible portrays him as that all knowledge. He is omniscient. He is the know it all God. And that means you can never tell God something he doesn't know. Now, I think most of us believe that, but even the best we can ever do to describe this attribute of God, because it's so foreign to us, we kind of walk away going, I don't get it. Because God's knowledge is immediate, comprehensive and without deterioration.

None of us can relate to that. If I were to give you a test from your high school days, you'd probably fail. Because all of that knowledge you learn right before the test, it's gone pretty quickly.

Like a lot of us forget what we did yesterday. So God's knowledge is immediate, comprehensive without deterioration and without painstaking research. You know, for me, the preaching is easy.

It's all the research that leads up to it. God doesn't have to do that. He doesn't have to move from one logical premise to another logical premise to come up with a conclusion. God never had to go to school. God doesn't ever have to be informed. God never says, Oh, really?

Or, wow, or huh? Or I didn't know that. He never says those things because his knowledge is immediate, comprehensive without deterioration. Now, because he knows it all, he therefore knows the future. And that is what Daniel is banking on.

That is why Daniel stands before Arioch. He's not panicking. He's very poised. He's very confident and unruffled because he knows God knows. And all it is a matter of God revealing it to him. Now, God exists out of time. That is, he is not confined by our space time continuum.

He dwells in the realm of eternity. You might call it the eternal present. That is why God can predict the future. And you'll notice this when you read the Old Testament. He often predicts what hasn't happened by using past tense verbiage as if it has already happened.

Because to him it's like it already has happened. I'll give you a little illustration. Let's say it's the 4th of July parade. And I'm there on the curb right in the middle of the parade route. And so I'm there, the parade is going by, and the clowns on bicycles go by. Not spooky clowns. Nice clowns. Happy clowns are waving. I wave back at the clowns. The clowns go by. Now, the mayoral float is still at the beginning of the parade route. That hasn't come by yet.

I haven't seen that. Let's say one of you sees me there and you come up and I say, well, just sit right here and you can enjoy the parade. And you go, well, man, I really want to see the clowns on bicycles. I say, well, they've already gone by, but if you go ahead, you can see what's past. Somebody else comes up and says, man, I hope, where's the mayoral float?

I want to see the mayor on the float. I don't have much time. I say, well, that's still at the beginning of the route, but if you go to the beginning, you can see the future.

What is the future to me? Now, let's take it a step further. Let's say we were to leave the ground level, get in a helicopter and get over the parade. Well, now we can see it all at once. I can see the clowns on bicycles.

I can see the mayor on his float and everything in between at one time. Daniel knows that God has this attribute. So Daniel activates his faith in God because the God he knows knows it all. And that is what Daniel is banking on. Somebody once said, faith is putting all your eggs in God's basket and then counting your blessings before they hatch. That's why he says, Aria, dude, cool your jets, man. Chill.

Give me a little bit of time. God will tell me about this stuff and I'll tell the king. So the future is unknown to us. The future is well known to God.

Let me give you a third certainty. The future is made known to us. Just like it was made known to Daniel, Daniel will now make it known to the king who had the dream to begin with. If you go down to verse 26, it says, the king answered and said to Daniel, whose name was Belteshazzar, are you able to make known to me the dream which I have seen in its interpretation? Daniel answered in the presence of the king and he said, the secret which the king has demanded, the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians and the soothsayers cannot declare to the king.

Verse 28 is a key verse in our But God series in this particular instance. But there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets. He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar, what will be in the latter days, the future, your dream and the visions of your head upon your bed were these. As for you, O king, thoughts came into your mind while on your bed about what would come to pass after this. And he who reveals secrets has made known to you what will be. So Daniel stands before the king and says, they can't tell you about your dream and I can't tell you about your dream.

But there's a God in heaven who can. And the God in heaven knows your future. He's revealed it to me and I'm about to tell it to you. So the future is made known to us. Now, here's the principle. God wants to make known to you, to us, the future, not all of it.

As I said, all the details of it would be overwhelming, but parts of it. He wants to give us a limited amount of knowledge and that's essentially what biblical prophecy is. It's God telling us what's going to happen in the future. So for example, he told Israel before it happened, you're going to go into captivity in Babylon. They did. I'm going to bring you back.

They came back. He announced that there would come one day a ruler, a Messiah, the mega prophet, the deliverer. And the prophets told about his birth, his life, his death, and his resurrection. The Bible reveals to us future judgment is coming one day. A rapture is coming one day. A great tribulation period is coming one day. Jesus will come back to the earth. That's going to happen one day. He's going to rule and reign for a thousand years. That's going to happen one day. There's going to then be an eternal kingdom with a new heaven and a new earth.

That's going to happen one day. The future is given to us, revealed by God. Now, how impressive is biblical prophecy? Pretty impressive because there are some accounts where events and people are spoken about before they are born. Some of them are even named by name hundreds of years before they existed and were told what they would do. And in fact, one-fourth of the Bible is prophecy.

That's a big chunk. A fourth of the Bible is predictive prophecy. God telling people what's going to happen in the future. Now, anybody can make predictions. Having those predictions come true, that's a whole other level.

I can make all sorts of predictions. But having them happen is quite a different category, especially as you add details to those predictions. Now, when you make a prediction and then you add detail upon detail upon detail, now you complicate the prediction. And when you complicate the prediction, you add risk. And the risk diminishes the possibility of it ever being fulfilled. So, you enter a realm called compound probability.

The more details you add, the odds of it ever happening are slim. So, the Jewish prophets, for example, predicted about 300 to 330 different layers of what would happen to this Messiah who is going to come, where He would be born, as I said, His life, His death, His resurrection. Here's a sampling. They predicted He would be born of a virgin. That narrows the population down quite a bit. That's Isaiah chapter 7 verse 14. That He would be born in Bethlehem, Micah chapter 5 verse 2. They predicted He would be born into the tribe of Judah, Genesis 49, 10. They also predicted that His ministry would begin, not in Jerusalem, but up in Galilee, Isaiah 9, 1. They predicted He would work miracles, Isaiah 35 verse 5 and 6.

They also predicted He would one day enter into Jerusalem on a donkey, Zechariah 9 verse 9. He would be betrayed by a friend, Psalm 41 verse 9. He would then be sold for 30 pieces of silver, Zechariah 11, 12. He would be wounded and bruised, Isaiah 53 verse 5. His hands and His feet would be pierced, Psalm 22 verse 16. He would be then crucified with thieves, Isaiah 53, 12. His garments would be torn and lots would be cast to see who owns them. That's Psalm 22, 18. His bones would not be broken, Psalm 34 verse 20. His side would be pierced, Zechariah 12 verse 10. He would be buried in a rich man's tomb, Isaiah 53 verse 9, and He would rise from the dead, Psalm 16 verse 10. Those are 16 only of those 300 predictions, very detailed predictions of what would happen to this Messiah.

Now, I think you will agree. These are impossible to arrange from a human level. You can't decide in advance what tribe you're going to be born into or who your mother is going to be or where you will live as a baby. All those are predicted. In fact, 100 billion years isn't enough time to give us enough chances for those prophecies to ever be fulfilled without God. That's why Daniel said, but there is a God in heaven who knows all these things and reveals secrets. So that's Bible prophecy. You see, Bible prophecy isn't a good guess. It's good news to a guessing world to give them certainty. And that is because in Bible prophecy, you have multiple contingencies and features, different layers of those that cannot be known, they cannot be controlled. And so you're left at the end going, there's only one explanation for that, divine authorship. There's really no other way to explain the Bible's ability to predict the future unless you see God as the author. Because the precision is undeniable.

Undeniable. So the future is unknown to us. The future is well known to God. The future is made known to us. And fourth and finally, the future makes God known to us.

Now, this is the most important point. The reason God predicts future events is to make himself known to people. So go down to verse 45 after Daniel tells him what he saw, what it means, what's going to happen after he dies, all the kingdoms that are coming. Verse 45. And then as much as you saw that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that a broken piece is the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, the gold, is all the kingdoms that would come after Nebuchadnezzar. The great God has made known to the king what will come to pass after this. Notice what he calls God, not just a God or my God, but the great God. The great God is made known to the king what will come to pass. And then look what he says, the dream is certain, the interpretation is sure. Then, verse 46, Nebuchadnezzar said, Cool.

I on purpose misread that. Nebuchadnezzar did what anybody would do. In having a guy tell him exactly what he dreamed, exactly what he was thinking about before he fell asleep, and exactly what it means in terms of future prophecies. Nebuchadnezzar fell on his face prostrate before Daniel, and commanded that they should present an offering, an incense to him. And the king answered Daniel and said, Truly your God is the God of gods, the Lord of kings, and a revealer of secrets, since you could reveal this matter. That is the reason for biblical prophecy. So that people will realize that there's only one God, there's only one true God, and that's the God who can predict the future. Did you know that God himself uses prophecy as his business card?

He does. I mean, he uses prophecy to show that other world religions are all a sham, all made up, all demonic endeavors that don't add up to anything. I want you to listen to Isaiah 41. This is God speaking. He says, present your case, set forth your arguments, bring in your idols, and have them tell us what is going to happen. Declare to us things to come. Tell us what the future holds so that we may know that you are gods.

See, God is showing off. He's saying I can predict the future. Can they? Can your idols, your false gods?

No, they can't. Jesus saw prophecy as basically the same thing as a reason to believe a reason for faith. John 1429, Jesus said, And now I have told you before it comes to pass, so that when it does come to pass, you may believe.

That's the goal that you may believe that you may trust. You see, Jesus has basically three credentials that set him apart from every other religious system or belief system. Number one, his impact upon history is incomparable. Number two, his resurrection from the dead. And number three, fulfilled prophecy, fulfilled prophecy. Most religions in the world will base their beliefs on the philosophical postulates of their founders, the things they said, words of wisdom, a lifestyle captured by disciples and written down. But of the 25 books that are out there or thereabouts about 25 books that claim to be scripture.

There's something absent in all of them except one. That's detailed prophecy. Detailed prophecy. You won't find it in the Quran. You won't find it in the writings of Buddha. You won't find it in the writings of Lao Tzu and Taoism. You won't find it in the sayings of Confucius or the Hindu Vedas. Prophecy about the future, of which God stakes his reputation on, is found only in the Bible. So here's God saying, I know the future. You don't.

Nobody does. But I'm in the business of revealing it to you. But it's so that I can reveal myself to you. I want to make myself known to you.

I want a relationship with you. Remember when Paul stood in Athens on the Areopagus on Mars Hill and he confronted the philosophers of Athens? And he was ingenious. He said, you know, you guys are so religious. You have so many gods. I was even wandering through your streets today and I found a statue to an unknown God. It said to the unknown God. So you worship all these gods and you've even made one up called, in case you left somebody out, this is the unknown God. And then Paul said, him I proclaim to you. The God you don't know is the God that you should know. And he wants you to know him and he from that point preached the gospel to them.

God wants to make himself known and made himself known to Nebuchadnezzar. And I love it. Verse 45. Notice Daniel says, the dream is certain. The interpretation is sure. Do you hear any hesitation in his voice at all? He didn't say, did I get it right, Mr. King, sir? He just said, this is a done deal, King.

It's certain, it's sure. There's a weighty ring to his speech. He knows he has heard from God and that's what's going to happen in the future. So that's why God reveals himself in prophecy. It's not just to make people aware. It's to make people adore. It's not just to inform people of God's plan. It's to conform people to God's plan. It's not just to get people to wow, but to get people to worship, to surrender, to submit to his plan.

And by the way, since you don't know what's ahead in your road, you can't see around the curves. God does. He knows. And he will be there to meet you when those events occur in your life, to give you grace to endure them all.

But doesn't it make most sense that because we are limited and God is unlimited that we who are limited would surrender ourselves to the unlimited being who wants to be a part of our lives? That makes most sense. Corey Tin Boom, one of my favorite people in modern history, was a Christian believer who helped hide Jews during World War Two. She was caught. Her family was caught. Some were killed. She was put in a concentration camp, a Nazi concentration camp. And then another concentration camp. She almost died.

She was brutally treated for years. She said this, never be afraid to entrust an unknown future into the hands of a known God. That sums it all up. Never be afraid to trust an unknown future into the hands of a known God.

That makes sense. And if you don't know this God, he wants to reveal himself to you and to walk with you and to have a relationship with you. That concludes Skip Heitzig's message from the series, But God. Right now, we want to tell you about a unique opportunity to take your knowledge of Scripture to a new level. Calvary College is now open for registration. Calvary College is offering select online classes as an opportunity for individuals to take their life's calling to a whole new level with an educational emphasis in Biblical studies, with our unique partnerships with Veritas International University and Calvary Chapel University.

You will have the opportunity to obtain your bachelor's or master's degree with complete online programs. Whether you're looking to obtain an accredited online degree or take individual courses to become better equipped in your knowledge of God's unchangeable truth, Calvary College has you covered with a range of opportunities. For updates on classes and registration information for Calvary College, please visit calvaryabq.college. That's calvaryabq.college.

For Calvary College, calvaryabq.college. Listeners like you are a vital part of helping share the gospel of Jesus Christ with as many people as possible. If these teachings by Skip have encouraged you, you can pass that blessing on through your support to help keep these messages available for you and others. Just visit connectwithskip.com slash donate to give a gift now. That's connectwithskip.com slash donate. Or you can call 800-922-1888.

800-922-1888. Thank you for connecting more people to Jesus. Tune in tomorrow as Skip Heiseck talks about the reality of life without Christ and the joy of living your life with Him. Unbelievers aren't just sick, they're dead. They lack the capacity to respond to stimuli. In this case, spiritual stimuli. So that's important because it shows us they don't need a self-help course.

They don't need a personality adjustment. They need salvation. They need a divine but God moment. Make a connection. Make a connection at the foot of the cross. Cast all burdens on His word. Make a connection. A connection. Connect with Skip Heiseck is a presentation of Connection Communications, connecting you to God's never-changing truth in ever-changing times.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-12-30 21:26:12 / 2023-12-30 21:35:27 / 9

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