Nostradamus was a Frenchmen who lived from
1503 to 1566. He is famous for writing a book entitled Les Prophesies
("The Prophecies") now referred to as "The Centuries." The first
edition appeared in 1555 but the book has rarely been out of print since the
death of Nostradamus. The book supposedly contains various prophecies
in the form of what is called quatrains (a stanza of poetry consisting of
four lines). Nostradamus has been credited with predicting the rise of
Napoleon to power, the rise and fall of Adolf Hilter, the dropping of the
atomic bomb, the landing on the moon, and the assassination of John F.
The latest claims regarding the prophecies of Nostradamus have contributed
to the production of a movie entitled "2012" and a television show entitled
The Nostradamus Effect aired on the History Channel. In
addition, several books have been published, such as Lawrence Joseph's
Apocalypse 2112: A Scientific Investigation into Civilizations End,
which predicts widespread catastrophe in the year 2012. According to
these claims Nostradamus predicted that the world will come to an end in
2012. Along with this supposed prophecy of the end of the world by
Nostradamus, some have declared that an ancient Mayan calendar (dated
between 300-900 AD) also predicts the end of the world in 2012. This
calendar was designed to predict events such as the winter and summer
solstices thousands of years into the future. But the calendar stops
predicting these future events on December 21, 2012 - thus the conclusion by
some of the end of the world on that date.
There are some very
obvious flaws in the way the so-called prophecies of Nostradamus are
interpreted. Having read some of his quatrains, it is obvious that
they can be made to mean whatever the reader wants them to mean. They
are vague rather than specific and are purposely written in cryptic
language. If any of the claimed prophecies resemble the fulfillment of
actual events it is mere coincidence not prophetic ability. If your
author predicted that it would rain in 2012 (assuming Christ has not yet
come) would he be a prophet? No one in his right mind would consider
such a prediction a sign of special prophetic ability. So it is with
Nostradamus and his "prophecies" which are filled with vague references to
such things as wars, earthquakes and the rise and fall of world leaders, all
of which obviously are common to every century. When one reads the
prophecies of the Bible, however, he finds an entirely different approach.
Most of the prophecies found in the pages of the Bible are very specific to
refer to nations, kings, times and locations by name. Indeed, one of
the proofs of the inspiration of the Bible is the accuracy by which its
prophecies have been fulfilled (Deut. 18:21-22).
Another problem with
the "prophecies" of Nostradamus is that even among his most devoted
followers there has been disagreement as to the interpretation of them.
Brother Wayne Jackson give this example:
"...during World War II, devotees of the seer in Great Britain claimed
that Nostradamus had predicted the defeat of Germany in the war, while
fellow disciples in Germany were claiming their prophet had foretold the
destruction of England. The truth is, neither prediction had been
made." (Christian Courier, Nostradamus - Prophet or Pretender? By
There is sufficient evidence to declare that Nostradamus
was not a prophet or the son of a prophet. His writings are no more
able to predict future events than any other self-proclaimed prophet.
Any prediction that seems to be a possibility is mere coincidence. As
one writer put it, "arrows shot
in all directions, even in the dark, are bound to hit something
occasionally" (McClintock and Strong 1969, 198). The
only true prophets are those whose records are found in the pages of the
As for the Mayan calendar - there is absolutely no reason to conclude
that because the authors ended their calendar on a certain date, that the
date of its end marks the end of the world. USA Today quotes
University of Florida anthropologist Susan Gillespie as saying that the 2012
phenomenon comes "from media and from other people making use of the Maya
past to fulfill agendas that are really their own."
many, the agenda is likely nothing more than financial gain.
These latest predictions of the end of the world fall into the same
foolishness as all of the prior failed predictions of specific dates by so
many. The world will end in God's time, not that of the biased
interpreters of Nostradamus or the Mayan calendar. The time of the end
of the world is unknown to man and will not be known until it happens.
"But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but
My Father only." (Matthew 24:36). "For you
yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so comes as a thief in
the night." (1 Thessalonians 5:2). Acts 17:31 reads,
"because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in
righteousness by the Man whom He had ordained. He has given assurance of
this to all by raising Him from the dead." This is God's
prediction and you can depend on it!
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