Prophetic Blunders

According to Moses, “When the prophet speaks in the name of Yahweh and the word does not come to pass, that is the word Yahweh has NOT spoken.” If this guideline remains applicable, many churches have embraced an interpretive school of prophecy that does not represent what the Bible says, namely, Dispensationalism, and this is demonstrated by its long history of failed predictions, speculations, and expectations.

There have been many supposed prophets and prophecy “experts” over the centuries who have predicted the soon return of Jesus. Though the details have varied from one prediction to another, two things have remained the same.

Schedule Board - Photo by Jo Szczepanska on Unsplash
[Photo by Jo Szczepanska on Unsplash]

First, the perpetrator either did not heed the warning of Jesus that no one except God knows the timing of his return, or he created loopholes in Christ’s words. Second, 
EVERY such prediction has failed, and the failure rate remains at 100%. Great effort is made to find exceptions to his warning and to rationalize why his words do not mean what they do or do not apply to us today.

For example, popular preachers claim that though Jesus said we could not know the “day or hour,” he did NOT say we could not know the general “season” of the end. This argument employs false logic, an argument from silence, forming a conclusion based on what Jesus did NOT say.

Neither did he say we could not know the week, the month, the year, the decade, or the century of his return. Should we now assume we can predict his return within all those timeframes with the only exception being the precise day and hour of his arrival?

This line of reasoning is contrary to the Lord’s clear intent, which was to stress that God alone knows the timing of the end. Moreover, that is precisely why he repeatedly exhorted his disciples to remain prepared for his sudden and unexpected arrival.

Furthermore, Jesus did declare that his followers could not ascertain the “season” or ‘kairos’ of his coming. Before his ascension, he warned the disciples that it was “NOT for you to know TIMES,” plural, “and SEASONS,” plural, information that God alone knew and knows to this very day – (Mark 13:33, Acts 1:7-9).


Dispensationalism has become what should be described as an End-Time Prophecy Industry. It has thrived over the last several decades despite its many failed attempts to produce verifiable prophetic fulfillments. Make no mistake, it is a money-making endeavor. It can only maintain its audience and income by peddling heightened expectations about the immediate future.

For example, until 1988, the “experts” claimed Jesus would return within a "biblical generation" of the founding of the nation of Israel in 1948, and according to them, this “biblical generation” is approximately forty years in length. That would mean the Lord should have returned by 1988.

Since that date, rather than admit error and return to the biblical drawing board, the Prophecy Industry has worked tirelessly to redefine what a “biblical generation” is so that now the “prophecy experts” claim it ranges anywhere from forty to one hundred and twenty years. Having learned their lesson, they build comfortable fudge factors into their guesswork.

Similarly, the Prophecy Industry sold books, seminars, and videos in which they predicted the Soviet Union or “Rosh” would become the army of "Gog and Magog" and invade Israel from the north. Instead, the U.S.S.R. collapsed under its own weight in one of THE most pivotal events of the last century, one that NONE of the “prophecy experts” saw coming.

In the 1960s and 1970s, prophecy teachers claimed the European Common Market would evolve into a ten-nation confederacy centered in Rome, a revived Roman Empire from which the Antichrist would reign over the nations. Instead, it morphed into the European Union, which today has twenty-seven member states and is based in Brussels, Belgium, and it is now teetering on economic and military collapse.

Sheep - Photo by Marco Bianchetti on Unsplash
[Photo by Marco Bianchetti on Unsplash]

Examples can be multiplied, but the more relevant question is, “When has the 
End-Time Prophecy Industry ever made an accurate prediction that came true?” More telling is how the Industry reacts to its failures. Rather than admit its blunders, it redefines terms, recalculates dates, and reformulates chronologies.

The history of Dispensationalism and its failures should warn us to heed the Lord’s warning about coming deceivers who would propagate false information about his coming and thereby “deceive MANY.” We must recognize the End-Time Prophecy Industry for what it is, a vehicle for propagating some of the same deceptions that Jesus warned us to expect, and an effective scam for “making merchandise” out of God’s people.

  • Apostasy - (Paul warned the Thessalonians of the future apostasy which he linked to the unveiling of the Man of Lawlessness, the Son of Destruction)
  • His Repeated Warning - (Jesus stressed critical information that is vital for his disciples if they wish to avoid deception by false prophets and other deceivers)
  • In the Assembly - (John identified false teachers in the church as ‘antichrists’, and their deceptive teachings confirmed that the Last Days had commenced)



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