Saturday, October 17, 2015

Christian Outdoor Object Lessons 1: GPS Object Lesson

Key Text

"For there will arise false christs, and false prophets, and they will show great signs and wonders, so as to lead astray, if possible, even the chosen ones." Matthew 24:24 (WEB)


GPS is a cool technology. GPS, which stands for global positioning system, is a complex set of satellites that work with a palm size computer to pinpoint your exact location. Most smartphones and car navigation systems now come equipped with this capability. With a GPS we can find any point on earth. It doesn’t matter if we have ever been there. A GPS can give you directions to any place on the globe no matter if it is on a high peak or in the middle of the ocean.

With just 12 or so numbers in the right sequence we can find a lost person anywhere in the world. One person out of 7+ billion people, at one point out of 197 million square miles of earth’s surface! If they can send out their GPS location to Search and Rescue those little numbers are all that’s needed. Likewise, we only need a few pieces of information to find out that Jesus was the Messiah as he claimed. He was born in just the right place, at just the right time to fulfill the prophecies of the Messiah. No other person could meet all the requirements.

Jesus said that false messiah’s would come claiming to be him (Matt 24:24). How do we know that Jesus was the only true Messiah? With a few key prophecies we can see that Jesus fulfilled predictions made centuries before him. We can read in the New Testament how Jesus fulfilled each of those prophesies. Listed below are several important prophecies concerning the Messiah from the Old Testament with corresponding texts showing that Jesus fulfilled them.

Born in Bethlehem - Micah 5:2 -- Matthew 2:1;
Was poor and lowly - Isaiah 53:3 -- Mark 2:7; Matt. 8:19-20
From the lineage of David - Jeremiah 23:5 -- Luke 3:31
Herod kills the children - Jeremiah 31:15 -- Mt 2:16-18
Light to Gentiles - Isaiah 49:6 -- Acts 13:46-48
Brings a new covenant - Jeremiah 31:31 --  Matt. 26:28, Mark 14:24
Is a suffering servant that bore our sins - Isaiah 52:13-53:12 -- Matt. 20:28, Mark 10:45
Would be resurrected - Psalm 16:8–11 -- Acts 2:22–32

There are over 300 prophecies about the Messiah in the Old Testament. Some of these seem less clear or specific than others. In the book Science Speaks by Peter Stoner, he discuses a research project that took just 8 of the most obvious prophecies about the Messiah and determined the probability of one man fulfilling them. In chapter three he mentions the findings. “we find that the chance that any man [who] might have lived down to the present time and fulfilled all eight prophecies is 1 in 10^17.”

That is 1 with 18 zeros after it! A one in one quintillian (1,000,000,000,000,000,000) chance that any person could fulfill those 8 prophecies. Those are pretty impossible odds that anyone else could have fulfilled those prophecies. Praise God that we have evidence that Jesus did. We serve an awesome God!


What is the most interesting place you have visited with the help of a GPS?

Does knowing that Jesus fulfilled prophecy increase your faith in him?
Why do you think some people choose to not believe despite all the prophecies?

1. Peter Stoner, Robert C. Newman, Science Speaks, (Chicago: Moody Press, 2002), last modified November 2005,, Online Edition.

Written By David F. Garner

Photo Credit: David F. Garner