Christ, the Heart of History and Prophecy

One of the things that makes Jesus utterly unique is this: His biography was written before He was born. Christ’s life story is a fulfillment of prophecy. Old Testament prophecies present a clear outline of Christ’s life in advance. The New Testament is His life story told in fulfillment.

We know the Old Testament was completed, at the very latest, 250 years before Christ’s birth; because the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Old Testament, was begun about that time. No wonder that in writing the Gospels of the New Testament, Christ’s disciples were amazed at how accurately details in their Master’s life fulfilled Old Testament prophecies.

Anyone who carefully reads the Old Testament discovers that it continually mentions the coming Messiah. When Adam and Eve fell into sin, God immediately promised them that He would send someone to our world to defeat the devil (Genesis 3:15). That Person, Scripture further reveals, would be the Messiah. The Hebrew word “Messiah” in the Old Testament, which literally means “Anointed One,” corresponds to the Greek word “Christ” in the New Testament (see John 1:41; 4:25). Jesus Christ is the Messiah. That’s a central premise of the New Testament.

Living from five hundred to fifteen hundred years before Christ’s birth, the Old Testament prophets made scores of very specific predictions about the life of the Messiah. Their prophecies identify the city of Christ’s birth, His name, and His lifework. They disclose details of His trial and events connected with His death. The prophecies show that when brought into court He would offer no personal defense, and they actually predict some of the very words He would speak in His dying hours. Even the year, the day, and the hour of His death are foretold. Messianic prophecies also reveal that He would come to life again on the third day.