Update on Cubs 2016
May 15, 2016
It looks like the Cubs are on a good track to do what I’ve been predicting since last year – not only to make the playoffs… not only to win the NL Pennant… but to go ALL THE WAY to the 2016 World Series Championship!
Now, this isn’t like the NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship, which I successfully predicted – I had my alma mater to win the whole thing from the beginning. But, of course, I’ve been picking Villanova to win EVERY YEAR for a while, so you can say that’s nothing special. Then again… I would imagine a lot of people pick their alma mater every year, but they don’t always win, do they. So I have one pretty significant prediction already this year that has come true.
Again – I’m not taking credit for any of these. Like Amos, “I am neither a prophet nor the son of a prophet”, but I really feel confident that I’ve got the leading of the Ruach Khodesh on this – the Holy Spirit, that is.
Well – why not? Yahweh showed His hand in many ways in the Original Covenant, also called the Tanakh. According to Wikipedia, Tanakh is an acronym of the first Hebrew letter of each of the Masoretic Text’s three traditional subdivisions: Torah (“Teaching”, also known as the Five Books of Moses), Nevi’im (“Prophets”) and Ketuvim (“Writings”)—hence TaNaKh. The name “Mikra” (מקרא), meaning “that which is read”, is another Hebrew word for the Tanakh. The books of the Tanakh were passed on by each generation, and according to rabbinic tradition were accompanied by an oral tradition, called the Oral Torah. What has been called “The New Testament” should be referred to as “the Renewed Covenant” or “the Messianic Writings.”
One of the most significant ways that Yahweh has revealed Himself to us in these Scriptures is through prophecy. “Prophecy” can mean simply preaching the Word of Elohim, but it means, many times, a “speaking forth” about some future event. Why predict the future? There are several possible reasons, but it’s primarily to show that Elohim is in control of events that happen. It’s also important to show that He is All-Knowing and All-Powerful. Fulfilled prophesies verify His Word.
This verification aspect is the reason why those who deny any predictive prophecies in the Word are doing – let’s be blunt here – Satan’s work. Predictive prophecies show that the God who knows the future is also true in what He commands for today. This is why the Messianic Writings are loaded with prophecies: it verifies the truth of the entire document.
Let’s take a well-known prophecy. It’s Psalm 22, the first line of which Jesus quoted while He was being crucified – “My God! My God! Why have you forsaken Me?” The whole Psalm is a picture of crucifixion – but it was written by David many years before the Persians introduced the grisly practice to the world. By the time of Jesus, the Messiah, the Romans had perfected it as a weapon of terror. That was part of the reason Jesus was crucified – as a warning to all who saw it: “This is what’s going to happen to YOU if you rebel against us!” It had become a very effective tool in that way…
But it was unknown at the time David wrote this, around 1000 BC. Here’s some of it:
I am poured out like water,
and all my bones are out of joint;
my heart is like wax;
it is melted within my breast;
15 my strength is dried up like a potsherd,
and my tongue sticks to my jaws;
you lay me in the dust of death. Psalm 22: 14 – 15
Jesus specifically quoted verse one for a number of reasons, but one of the most important reasons is to fulfill that very prophecy. He frequently connected what He did in His ministry to what Yahweh had said in the Tanakh. Jesus not only specifically fulfilled prophecies, but He made His own predictive prophecies. The Word tells us, in each of the four gospels, that our Lord made it very plain to His disciples and anyone around that He would be crucified and raised from the dead. The Twelve didn’t understand it at the time – that’s the very reason that Jesus rebuked Peter, even calling him “Satan,” when Simon Peter tried to deny that Jesus had to die. It wasn’t until AFTER Jesus was resurrected that they finally understood (for some, it wasn’t until the coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost that they caught on).
Jesus not only fulfilled many prophecies in the Tanakh, He made many prophetic statements. The famous “Olivet Discourse” starting in Matthew 24 contains many predictive prophecies. The Messiah starts off by predicting that the Temple in Jerusalem, that the disciples are marveling at, will be completely demolished:
Jesus left the temple and was going away, when his disciples came to point out to him the buildings of the temple. 2 But he answered them, “You see all these, do you not? Truly, I say to you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.” (Matthew 24: 1 – 2)
He then launches into a sermon that is full of predictive prophecies – not about His upcoming crucifixion in His First Coming, but mostly about the still-to-come as of May 15, 2016, Second Coming. Listen to Him – does this not sound like the world we live in today?
9 “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name’s sake. 10 And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. 11 And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. 12 And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. 13 But the one who endures to the end will be saved. 14 And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. (Matthew 24: 9 – 14)
You be the judge.
Jesus goes on to give us more details about the world at the time of His Second Coming, especially about what the world leader known as the “Antichrist” will do. Apparently, a Third Temple will be built and the Jews will be free to sacrifice once again, but only for a short time. In the middle of a time called “the Tribulation”, the Antichrist will demand to be worshiped in the rebuilt Temple. Read the details for yourself in Matthew 24, starting with verse 15.
Later, Jesus says this:
32 “From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts out its leaves, you know that summer is near. 33 So also, when you see all these things, you know that he is near, at the very gates. 34 Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.”
Many say that this is a prediction, that in these days before His Second Coming, the nation of Israel will be reborn – they have been symbolized as a fig tree in Scripture – oh, that’s happened, hasn’t it! Either that, or He’s simply using it to symbolize that, just as a fig tree blooming is a sign of summer, there will be many signs that Jesus is coming back before He returns. Notice – He makes it very emphatic that these words are extremely important.
Now, we need to be careful – the next section warns us not to set a date for His return. We don’t know when it will be – exactly – but we can know He’s coming soon. Now, soon may still be a long while off – when I first got saved in the late ‘70’s, a lot of believers thought Jesus would return before the ‘80’s were over. Some thought that Hitler was THE Antichrist (turns out he was an antichrist, not the final one – but he had a lot of The Antichrist’s attributes). So – I can’t say when, but the signs are there. I’m ready to go tomorrow… or wait another long time. Whenever He decides to come is His business; my business is to be His witness until my time is up.
This is why predictive prophecies are so important – and that’s why Satan and his minions have attacked these prophecies so viciously. For one thing, many say that, because the prophecy of the destruction of the Temple by the Romans in 70 AD is SO accurate, it must have been written as a “prophecy after the fact” – in other words (with no real evidence), accuse Matthew of lying and pretending that Jesus predicted the Temple’s Destruction, but He (or he, because if Jesus didn’t know the future, He – that is, he – wasn’t God in human flesh) was reporting something after the fall had already happened.
It’s amazing how stupid we moderns think ancient people were, when all the evidence shows us how much more intelligent they were in general. Look at the ignorance of many young people today – how many don’t know who won the Civil War – or even that there WAS a Civil War! Many modern young people can’t tell you who was the President during the Civil War… no, not Jefferson Davis; they don’t know it was Lincoln! And, yet ancient people could be fooled by “prophecies” after the fact? No – they weren’t that stupid. So – when liberals invent a “Second Isaiah” who wrote much later than the “First Isaiah” because the prophet couldn’t POSSIBLY have known, 150 years before, that Cyrus the Great would be the ruler who was “the Lord’s anointed servant” who would allow the people of Israel to come back and rebuild the Temple and, eventually, the walls of the city of Jerusalem – could he?
They also say, with no evidence (except speculation) that Daniel was written at about 160 BC or thereabouts, instead of the 500’s BC when it claims to have been written. Why? Because (say the liberals) he specifically mentions Greece and Rome in Chapter 7, predicting the actions of Alexander the Great about 200 years before his career. “Daniel” or whoever the liar called himself, wrote the history of that era so accurately in Daniel 11, that he couldn’t POSSIBLY have known any of it until after the fact. The problem, of course, with post-dating Daniel is that, not only does it deny Yahweh’s omniscience, but it forgets that one of the most significant prophecies is fulfilled long after the days of the Maccabees. The prophecy in Daniel 9 extends far out into the life of Jesus – Jesus came into Jerusalem on the EXACT DAY prophesied by Daniel to be proclaimed as the Messiah, the King of Israel. The prophecy ALSO predicts that the “Messiah will be cut off” – a clear passage that means their Deliverer will be killed soon after He is acclaimed as King, Jesus was executed less than a week after the day we call “Palm Sunday.”
Josh McDowell wrote two large books – “Evidence That Demands a Verdict” and “More Evidence That Demands a Verdict” that covered many – but not all – of the predictive prophecies in the Tanakh and the Messianic Writings, and showed that many, many of them have come to pass. There are still FUTURE prophecies that haven’t happened yet, but the ones that have occurred are accurate on every point.
Which brings us back to the Cubs… and why, I predict (with my trust in the Holy Spirit) that the Cubs will finally… FINALLY … win it all this year, 2016. Unless they blow it by doing something ELSE to curse them again, the “Curse of Three-Fingered Brown,” the “Curse of the Babe’s Called Shot”, the “Curse of the Hebrew Hammer,” (that is, Hank Greenberg), and the “Curse of the Koufax Cadenza” are all over. They will win.
Hey – I give all the credit to the One who actually knows the future. I was right on Villanova. I expect to be right on the Cubs.
If I am – which I don’t doubt because I believe the God of the Universe has ordained it – what does that say about the power of the One I worship? He is REAL!
20 Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen. (Ephesians 3: 20 – 21)