2001-03-06- Prophecy Fulfilled
The Prophecy Fulfilled Series, Part 20
Hosea 11:1 When Israel was a youth I loved him, and out of Egypt I called My son.
Matthew 2:14, 15 "And he arose and took the Child and His mother by night, and departed for Egypt; and was there until the death of Herod, that what was spoken by the Lord through the prophet might be fulfilled, saying, 'Out of Egypt did I call My son.'"
It might seem like this prophecy is almost too insignificant to mention. After all, what does the fact that Christ came out of Egypt have to do with salvation and daily walking in faith? On the surface it might seem that very little of a practical nature can be drawn from this prophecy and fulfillment. However, it is in Matthew 2:15 where we learn why this prophecy is important and why it must have been fulfilled.
The prophecy had to be fulfill because it had been made. Can you imagine how detractors of the Christian faith would scoff at Christians if they could point to unfulfilled prophecy regarding the coming of Christ? Christians would never hear the end of it and we would constantly be asked how our God could be trusted if He had failed in the past. This is one reason why this prophecy had to be fulfilled.
Another reason why this prophecy had to be fulfilled is for us. How could we trust God if He had failed in the past. If we could look into our Bibles and find a prophecy that was never fulfilled, it would certainly shake our faith in the authority of the Bible. But we can't and thus our confidence and trust in the Word of God is established even firmer. So this prophecy is not insignificant and none of them are.
It is interesting that Christ would have left His people, the Jews, and gone to a people that were outside the Covenant family of God. The Jews were to be separate from the other nations, holy, and set apart for God. It is pure speculation, but I wonder if this is was an initial pre-curser to the gospel going forth to the gentiles (Acts 10: 9-16, Romans 1:16, 17) It is also interesting that before Christ began His ministry to the Jews, He had already lived among the gentiles. But all of that is for some New Testament scholar to figure out.
Fulfilled prophecy gives us hope in the eschatological promises of God. These promises of God are like prophecies that have yet to be fulfilled. Jonathan Edwards knew this and wrote, "God's absolute promise makes the things promised NECESSARY, and their failing to take place absolutely IMPOSSIBLE." (His emphasis not mine) And that is why knowing and learning about fulfilled prophecies can only increase our trust, dependence, and faith in God.
Soli Deo Gloria,