Convincing prophetic evidence supports the Bible. The Old Testament foretells events that come to pass as foretold. The odds against hundreds of prophecies coming true are beyond remote. In 590 BC, for instance, the prophet Ezekiel (Ezekiel 26:1 to 28:19) foretold that Nebuchadnezzar's army would siege Tyre, that other destroyers of the city would scrape her foundations to bare rock and would lay her stones and debris in the midst of the sea. Ezekiel prophesied further that she would never be rebuilt and that she would be a place for the spreading of nets. After Nebuchadnezzar did, indeed, siege Tyre her remaining citizens, in 586 BC, rebuilt the city on an island one-half mile from shore. Nebuchadnezzar completed destruction of the coastal city in 573 BC, fulfilling the first part of the prophecy.
In 333 BC, Alexander the Great began his attack on Tyre. To get at new Tyre, he built a 60-foot wide jetty made up of the ruins of the old city. Alexander's army carted the wall and all other rubble into the sea, leaving no trace of the city. Scuba divers today can dive along the jetty to see many of the granite columns Alexander's army dumped into the sea. In all of history, Tyre is the only city to have all of its rubble cast into the sea.
The prophecy came true to the last detail. Tyre has never been rebuilt to its former splendor, even though it is at an attractive location. Only a small fishing village remains in the area today. Even the prophetic detail of the fishing nets has proved accurate. For hundreds of years fishermen have spread out their nets to dry on jetty rocks. Details corroborating the Biblical account of Tyre's destruction are in secular sources such as the Encyclopedia Americana, 1995, XXVII, p. 331. One should be struck hard by the accuracy of God's prophecies.
God's prophecy concerning Babylon is another example of the irresistibility of His word. Babylon was one of the greatest cities of ancient times. Her hanging gardens were one of the wonders of the world. The 196 square miles of Babylon were surrounded by walls 14 miles long, 187 feet thick and 200 feet high. Her towers extended another 100 feet above the walls, yet God said (Jer. 51:58, 62): "The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly broken." On surveying what remained of Babylon, Major Keppel, in the Narrative of his travels, said, "We totally failed to discover any trace of the city walls."
After gaining the throne of Rome in the fourth century AD, Julian the Apostate warred with Persians and completely tore down the walls of Babylon. No rational person will take seriously the skeptic who tries to claim that the destruction of the walls preceded Jeremiah's prophecy, since the completion of the prophecy did not occur until over 300 years after Christ. Scholars had translated the Tanach into Greek 300 years earlier. The Dead Sea Scrolls containing Jeremiah are dated from 100 BC to 135 AD.
Jeremiah prophesied that Babylon would be a desolation forever (Jer. 51:62) and would not be inhabited (Jer. 50:39). When Alexander the Great issued orders to rebuild Babylon, he was struck dead within a week and his project was abandoned. After Saddam Hussein started his Babylon renaissance rebuilding, the Gulf War forced him to give the project a low priority.
Jeremiah further prophesied (Jer. 49:17) that the cities of Edom, a settlement southeast of the Dead Sea, would become a desolation, a desert wilderness. No traces of Edom remain.
Ninevah listened to Jonah's call to repentance and delayed its destruction only to have the prophet Nahum say (Nahum 2:10) that Ninevah would be empty, void and a waste. Today no outward traces of the city are visible. Only by digging down did archaeologists find Ninevah's remains and her library containing thousands of inscriptions. Nahum prophesied that Ninevah would be destroyed by flood (Nahum 1:8, 2:6), fire (Nahum 2:13, 3:13), and the sword (Nahum 2:13, 3:15). Greek historian Diodorus Siculus (c. 30 BC) wrote that during the third year of Ninevah's siege, the Tigris river, swollen during an extra heavy rainy season, overflowed its banks and broke down about two and a half miles of city walls. The Babylonian led armies of Cyaxares and Nabopolasar rushed through the breech and took the city, as chronicled in the tablet of Nabopolasar. Historian Siculus also noted killing by both fire and sword. Archaeologist A. H. Layard said that fire damage was evident at every major Ninevah dig (Prophet Motive by Kenny Barfield, p. 62).
The now lost but once thriving cities of Egypt God spoke against. Pathros would be made desolate (Ezek. 30:14); Zoan (Tanis) would be burned (Ezek 30:14); No (Thebes) would be cut off (Ezek 30:15); and Sin (Pelusium) would receive God's fury (Ezek. 30:15). All came to destruction as foretold. At a time when Egypt was a major world power Ezekiel further prophesied (Ezek. 29:15) that she would become a base nation and that she would not rule over other nations. Egypt today, as one can see, is a third-world country.
There are also precise
mathematical prophecies pinpointing the Babylonian captivity, razing of Jerusalem and arrival of Messiah.
The Old Testament accurately predicts over 70 details of Christ's life before He is born. Nobody other than Jesus can be the Messiah, e.g., Daniel 9:25 predicts that the Messiah will come exactly 483 years after the order to rebuild the Temple (Nehemiah 2:1-6, Luke 9:51). Also accurately predicted are Messiah's Davidic lineage (Isaiah 16:5, Luke 2:4), being born of a virgin (Isaiah 7:14, Matthew 1:18, 24, 25), being of the tribe of Judah (Genesis 49:10, Luke 3:33), place of birth (Micah 5:2, Matthew 2:1), escape to Egypt (Hosea 11:1, Matthew 2:14), ministry in Galilee (Isaiah 9:1-2, Matthew 4:13), teaching in parables (Psalms 78:2, Matthew 13:34), healing the blind and the deaf (Isaiah 35:5, Matthew. 9:35), arrival in Jerusalem on the foal of a donkey (Zechariah 9:9, Matthew 21:1-11), rejection by Jews (Isaiah 53:3, John 1:11), betrayal by a friend (Psalms 41:9, Mark 14:10), being sold for thirty pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12, Matthew 26:15), betrayal money used for a potter’s field (Zechariah 11:13, Matthew 27:9), false testimony given against (Psalm 35:11, Mark 14:56), not answering his accusers (Isaiah 53:7, Matthew 27:12-19), being hit and spat upon (Isaiah 50:6, Mark 14:65), crucifixion with sinners (Isaiah 53:12, Mark 15:27), being watched from afar by friends (Psalm 38:11, Luke 23:49), being sacrificed for sinners (Isaiah 53:5, 6, 10, Romans 5:6, 8),
hands and feet pierced (Psalms 22:16, John 20:27), side pierced (Zechariah 12:10, John 19:34), given gall and vinegar to drink (Psalms 69:21, Matthew 27:34), having no bones broken (Psalm 34:20 and Exodus 12:46, John 19:36), abandoned by God (Psalm 22:1-2, Matthew 27:46), dimming the sun (Amos 8:9, Matthew 27:45), followers scattered (Zechariah 13:7, Mark 14:27, 50), clothing distributed by lots (Psalms 22:18, Mark 15:24), buried in a rich man's tomb (Isaiah 53:9, Matthew 27:57-60), resurrection (Psalms 16:10, Luke 24:36-48) and ascension (Psalms 68:18, Acts 1-9).