Common objections raised by critics about prophies concerning Christ:
• That the prophecies were written at or after the time of Jesus.
Response: 450BC is the historic date of the Old Testament, and in 250 BC a Greek translation was made.
• That Fulfilled prophecies were deliberate.
Response: many were beyond the Messiah’s control e.g., place, time and manner of birth; betrayal; death, etc.
• That the Fulfilled prophecies were coincidental
Response: Maybe one or two, but taken together, only Jesus could fulfil them all. The chance of just eight of the main prophecies being fulfilled in one man is 1 in 1017 (Peter Stoner and Robert Newman, in their book Science Speaks)
It is mathematically absurd to claim that Jesus accidentally or deliberately fulfilled Old Testament prophecy.
Some Important Old Testament Prophecies About Jesus.
|Prophecy||Old Testament Reference||New Testament Fulfilment|
|1. Born of a virgin:||Isaiah 7.14||Matthew 1.18,24,25|
|2. Born in Bethlehem:||Micah 5.2||Matthew 2.1 Luke 2.4-7|
|3. Preceded by a forerunner||Malachi 3.1||Matthew 3:1,2 Matthew 11:10|
|4. Entered Jerusalem on a donkey||Zechariah 9.9||Luke 19:35,36,37 Matthew 21.45|
|5. Spat on and struck||Isaiah 50.6||Matthew 26.67|
|6. Betrayed for 30 pieces of silver||Zechariah 11.12||Matthew 26.15 Matthew 27:5,7|
|7. Crucified with other prisoners & made intercession for his persecutors||Isaiah 53.12||Matthew 27.38 Luke 23.34|
|8. Pierced through hands and feet||Psalm 22.16||Luke 23:33 John 20.25-27|
|9. Pierced through His side||Zechariah 12.10||John 19.34|
|10. Soldiers gambled for clothing||Psalm 22.18||Luke 23.34|
|11. Buried in a rich man’s tomb||Isaiah 53.9||Matthew 27.57-60|
|12. Would be resurrected||Psalm 16.10||Matthew 28.6:|
Conclusion: These are only twelve of the many prophecies that support Jesus’ claim to deity. In the Old Testament, there are 60 major messianic prophecies and approximately 270 ramifications that were fulfilled in one person, Jesus Christ. No wonder Jesus and his early followers appealed to fulfilled prophecy to substantiate His claim!