I got half way through thief in the night last year, then got distracted and never returned to it till now, and am reading from the start again. Got a question....
The second proof William Sears discusses uses the quote "and the Holy City (Jerusalem) shall they tread under foot for forty and two months". Which works out to be 1260 years. He explains that 1260 is 1844 on the Islamic calender, but the quote talks about the number of years the Jewish people will be banished from the land, not the year they will be allowed to return. Would this be correct? Help!
All research or scholarship questions
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Sorry I can't help you out with this particular question, but I just wanted to also recommend Hushidar Motlagh's I Shall Come Again in addition to Thief In the Night if you're interested in Christian prophecy fulfilled from a Baha'i perspective. Just remember that prophecy is a really dodgy game in discussions and a lot of Christians won't be convinced with just prophecies.
"To be a Bahá'í simply means to love all the world; to love humanity and try to serve it; to work for universal peace and universal brotherhood." -- `Abdu'l-Bahá
Sorry, I'm a bit rushed to give a condensed answer, but you can find your references easily by loading the whole Some Answered Questions file ( http://bahai-library.com/writings/abdul ... aqall.html ) and then searching for 1260 or "twelve hundred".
Poppa-Stylez wrote:He explains that 1260 is 1844 on the Islamic calender, but the quote talks about the number of years the Jewish people will be banished from the land, not the year they will be allowed to return. Would this be correct?
In my view the prophecies are not always stated or fulfilled in exact engineering-school style precise statements.
For example in Daniel 12:6 the prophecy is 3 and one-half years "until the end of these wonders" and also "to scatter the power of the holy people" which may mean the banishment of the Jews or may mean spreading the influence of the holy ones (e.g. the "scattering angels of the almighty"). In Revelation 11:2 the same time period expressed as 42 months is the time that the Holy City will be trodden underfoot. In Revelation the same time period expressed as 1260 days is the period of time the two Witnesses "will prophesy." So was the Holy City underfoot for that whole amount of time, and did they issue prophecies for that time period? No, it all has to do with different aspects of matters of great moment.
For comparison, in Daniel's prophecy of the date of Christ's crucifixion which Abdu'l-Baha discusses in Some Answered Questions, it gives the year that the Messiah will be "cut off". It is possible to assume that this would mean that He would be physically "cut", if someone wanted the prophecy exactly fulfilled, though I think a more logical explanation is that the date is given that His life is cut short. But my point is that these prophecies are intentionally in veiled and symbolic language. The prophecies are often not very specific; the laws on the other hand are written with great precision and clarity.
Taken as a whole, as Abdu'l-Baha says after discussing these date prophecies referring to the Bab and Baha'u'llah, "There are no clearer proofs than this in the Holy Books for any Manifestation." (Some Answered Questions, p. 71)