Alleged unfulfilled Bible prophecy

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Skeptics, Bible critics, and atheists sometimes advance allegedly unfulfilled Bible prophecy in support of their claims that Christianity is false.

However, the accuracy, reliability and remarkable nature of biblical prophecy makes biblical prophecy one of the strongest arguments for the divine inspiration of the Bible (see: Science speaks - Prophetic accuracy by Dr. Peter Stoner).

Ezekiel 26: Tyre prophecy

Claim: Skeptics allege that the prophecy indicates Nebuchadnezzar would completely destroy the city of Tyre and that Tyre would never be built upon again.[1]
Response: Skeptics indicate that this contradicts the prophecy because, they claim, the Bible says that Nebuchadnezzar would completely destroy Tyre. In reality, it says no such thing. It says that he would attack the city, which he did, and that he would "destroy the walls of Tyrus and break down her towers:" (26:4), which he did. In verse 14, rather than "and they will," we see, "And I will make thee like the top of a rock..." God did do so, as he said, by Alexander the Great in 332 B.C.[2]
Claim: "Tyre still exists."
First, response: Careful Bible exegesis and the historical record shows the complaint about the prophecy being unfulfilled is completely unmerited (see: Ezekiel 26:1-14: A Proof Text For Inerrancy or Fallibility of The Old Testament?).
Secondary Response: God said that Tyre wouldn't be rebuilt (26:14), and it wasn't. One can still visit the ruins. A city exists nearby, named Tyre, but this is not the same Tyre. This is a different civilization, built much later, despite its location.

Ezekiel 29:8-15: Egypt would become a desolate waste for 40 years

Claim: Egypt has never become a desolate waster for forty years where men have not walked through it.
Response 1: Though no such period is recorded in Egypt's history, Egypt's historians have not been known to be the most truthful. Egyptian monarchs commonly exaggerated their reigns in historical records, for example. This could lead to a lack of data about a 40 year period of desolation.
Response 2: This prophecy about Egypt is yet to be fulfilled, and will be after the end times. The desolation may be the result of the wars of these end times.

Ezekiel 30:12

Claim: There is a lack of historical evidence concerning the Bible passage of ["I will dry up the streams of the Nile,"].
Response 1: The King James Version says "I will make the rivers dry," rather than "the streams of the Nile." This may be a metaphor for the commerce of Egypt, since many of its industries depended upon these rivers.
Response 2: This may be a prophecy for the future, considering the Nile and Euphrates are drying up.[3]

Isaiah 7:1-7

Claim: Isaiah 7:1-7, which said that the king of Judah should go to battle, because he would not be harmed, was false, as is seen in 2 Chronicles 28:1-8.[4]
Response: 2 Chronicles 28:1-8, and the parallel passage in 2 Kings 16:5, do not say this. They both say that the battle against Judah failed. 2 Chronicles, which is more specific here, says that King Ahaz and others were captured and killed by Syria, but that the king of Syria was then killed by Israel. Isaiah does not say that king Ahaz wouldn't die, but rather that Judah would not be defeated.

Isaiah 19:1-8

Claim: Isaiah says that the rivers of pagan Egypt, which ceased to exist in the 4th century, would dry up. This never happened.[5]
Response: This would've been fulfilled during the Babylonian and Assyrian invasions of Egypt, a period with few historical records. The flow of the Nile has, in the past, after drought, diminished greatly.[6]

Resources

  1. Tyre in Prophecy by Kyle Butt, M.Div.
  2. Henry M. Morris, The Henry Morris Study Bible, (Green Forest, AR: Master Books), p. 1212.
  3. Walid Shoebat, The Nile and The Euphrates Are Drying Up: Both Rivers Are In The News And Both Rivers Are In The Bible (An Inevitable Famine Is Plaguing The Muslim World), Shoebat.com, March 23, 2015.
  4. Biblical Prophecies, RW
  5. Biblical Prophecies, RW
  6. Henry M. Morris, The Henry Morris Study Bible, (Green Forest, AR: Master Books), p. 1030.