Eschatology is one of the most controversial topics in theology today. In my experience, people tend to look at scripture in light of a system they learned that had its basis in some scriptural statements but then took them beyond those statements and interpreted all else in light of those statements. I don't think the scriptures themselves are that had to interpret, at least in their basic message about the end times. What I'm primarily doing in this post is explaining what seems pretty clear to me (or at least very likely) in the scriptural teachings on the end times. This all assumes the divine origin of the scriptures. I'm not giving any argument here. I'm just summarizing my conclusions about what the scriptures say. Also, some of this assumes some background in the terminology.
Some people say something like the following:
"You can't quote the Bible to prove the Bible because it's circular reasoning."
There's something about what they're saying that's right. The following is a bad argument:
1. The Bible says it's the word of God.
2. I can trust what it says, since it's the word of God.
3. Therefore, I can trust it when it says it's the word of God, so I should believe that it's the word of God.
However, that's not the only thing someone can mean when saying that the Bible can count as evidence for Christianity. I have in mind a very different kind of argument. What Christians call the Old Testament (and what scholars today call the Hebrew Bible) could have taken something like 1500 years to produce, perhaps shorter but certainly well over 1000 years even by liberal estimates (though how much of it one says is early depends on one's presuppositions). Adding in the New Testament (or Greek Bible, if you prefer that name) brings it to 1500-2000 years. Think about what's happened in the last 2000 years.
Two related arguments come to mind. One has to do with prophecy. The other is from the unity of the Bible.
Jeremy Pierce is a philosophy professor, Uber/Lyft driver, and father of five.