For your Sunday enjoyment. Religion is another facet I hope to bring to the WE, and certainly in particular the goodness and the history of the West’s religion, Christianity.
The Old Testament contains over 300 specific prophecies pertaining to the coming of Christ to Earth. These prophecies constitute absolute proof for the inspiration of the New Testament, since the Old Testament is easily verified to have been completed centuries before Christ’s advent. Indeed, eight centuries before Jesus Christ arrived on the planet, the prophet Isaiah predicted and described His coming in detail. For example, in a strongly Messianic section of his oracles, Isaiah described the mistreatment of the Christ would endure at the hands of His enemies: “I gave My back to those who struck Me, and My cheeks to those who plucked out the beard; I did not hide My face from shame and spitting” (Isaiah 50:6).
Observe the specificity of this prophetic utterance. Among other things, the prophecy predicted that Jesus would endure a physical ordeal that included being spit upon. Such a bold, forthright allusion is certainly daring—if the predictor is merely guessing. Nevertheless, this prediction was minutely fulfilled some 700 years later, as recorded in the New Testament. Matthew records that at His trial before the Jewish high priest, unnamed individuals “spat in His face and beat Him; and others struck Him with the palms of their hands, saying, ‘Prophesy to us, Christ! Who is the one who struck You?’” (Matthew 26:67; cf. Mark 14:65). Some hours later, under the authority of the procurator Pontius Pilate, Roman soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium, where the entire garrison of soldiers subjected Him to numerous indignities, including being stripped of clothing, having a crown of thorns pressed down upon His head, and being mercilessly mocked. “Then they spat on Him, and took the reed and struck Him on the head” (Matthew 27:30; cf. Mark 15:19). Incredibly, Jesus even predicted His mistreatment, including the spitting, before it happened (Mark 10:34; Luke 18:32).
How could a man writing 700 years earlier predict something as minute as one person spitting on another? And keep in mind that the two separate occurrences (one before the high priest and the other before the Romans) were committed by perpetrators who were not the least interested in fulfilling prophecy. To predict hundreds of years in advance that someone would spit on Jesus is proof of Bible inspiration. Isaiah and the rest of the writers of the Bible demonstrate that they functioned under the superhuman, overruling power and influence of the Holy Spirit. They were guided by the God of the Universe. (Apologetics Press)