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Nostradamus has captured the world’s attention since the 16th century. His mysterious, cryptic writings have been the subject of endless debate. Hailed by millions, and known the world over, this man is among the most famous people in history.
Many believe Nostradamus’ writings hold the key to understanding the future’s greatest events. To followers, he accurately predicted the French Revolution—the rise of Napoleon—and then Adolf Hitler—the assassination of United States President John F. Kennedy—and the bombing of the World Trade Center—among others.
Nostradamus is revered as a prophet. But was he a true prophet—one sent by God—or a fraud?
Nostradamus has been the subject of many books and films, including popular television programs. According to one scholar, “…Nostradamus is probably the only author who could claim that his work has never been out of print for over 400 years, apart from the Bible. The interest he generates is extraordinary” (Erika Cheetham, The Prophecies of Nostradamus).
In recent years, as millions of people seek to understand end-time prophecy, this interest has increased. Believing him inspired by God, some think his prophecies are on par with those in the Bible.
In light of the interest surrounding this man, we must ask: “Did God send Nostradamus?”
You can know. In fact, by the end of this article, you will.
God does not want His servants in doubt about those He sends. We should know whether Nostradamus—or any other man—was sent by God. You are about to learn things you never knew before.
First, let’s examine Nostradamus’ life. Michel De Notredame—or Nostredame—was born in southern France in 1503 to Jewish parents, who later converted to Catholicism. Europe had been undergoing the Renaissance. This was the time that produced Galileo, Copernicus, Michelangelo, Christopher Columbus and Leonardo da Vinci.
Son of a merchant and grandson of scholars, Nostradamus grew up in an environment of learning. As a young boy, he studied classical languages, astrology and possibly the occult. At 14, he left home to study in Avignon, an ecclesiastical and academic center in southern France. Later, he studied medicine at the prestigious University of Montpellier.
He became a physician. Early on, he traveled throughout France, caring for victims of the infamous Bubonic Plague, and gained a reputation as one who healed patients by innovative, but simple, methods. Gravely ill people recovered, and then so did entire towns and villages. He became a celebrated figure in southern France.
In time, he returned to Montpellier for further study, eventually obtaining a medical doctorate. He married into a wealthy family and settled into the comfortable life of a doctor.
Soon after, the plague hit, killing his wife and two children. Unable to save his own family, his credibility was questioned. Compounding his troubles, a simple remark about a statue led to charges of heresy against the Catholic church. Summoned to stand trial, he chose to flee instead—and spent the next several years traveling in southern Europe. He eventually returned to France in 1544, re-established his practice, remarried and had six children.
A practicing Catholic, Nostradamus became heavily involved in astrology and the occult. He would sit for hours, deep into the night, meditating in a trance before a bowl of water.
Here is his description of this strange ritual: “Sitting alone at night in secret study; it [the bowl of water] is placed on the brass tripod. A slight flame comes out of the emptiness...The wand in the hand is placed in the middle of the tripod’s legs. With water he sprinkles both the hem of his garment and his foot [all of this is speaking about himself]. A voice, fear; he trembles in his robes. Divine splendor; the God sits nearby” (The Prophecies of Nostradamus, book I, verses 1-2, emphasis ours).
During these sessions, Nostradamus would have visions. After returning to his senses, he would record them. He began including them in his Almanacs. The first was published in 1550. These contained predictions for every month of the year. His Almanacs were so popular he produced them annually for the rest of his life.
Nostradamus’ fame grew. His services were now sought by the wealthy and powerful. In 1555, he began publishing a monumental project, a 10-part series of predictions called The True Centuries (Les Vrayes Centuries). Each consisted of 100 quatrains (four lines of rhyming verse) written in Latin, French, Greek, Italian and other languages—but in riddles difficult to understand so as to protect himself from accusations of witchcraft.
Nostradamus eventually attracted the attention of Catherine de Médicis, the French queen. She was so impressed she had him produce horoscopes for the royal family’s children. Later, he was appointed royal court physician.
Nostradamus died in 1566, allegedly stating the day before his death that he would live just one more day.
After his death, the legend grew. Followers claimed he had predicted the death of King Henry II of France—and he was said to have predicted that a young monk Felice Peretti would become pope by addressing him as “Your Holiness.” Peretti did become Pope Sixtus V.
So great was Nostradamus’ influence that in the period following the bombing of the World Trade Center, his name was one of the top Google search terms.
People have always wanted to know what the future holds. They have also always consulted with soothsayers, fortune-tellers, clairvoyants, palm readers, so-called prophecy experts, prophetic texts—alongside the Bible—to learn it.
With world troubles multiplying, there is an explosion of interest in prophecy. Everyone wants to know what is coming. Books on prophecy are often instant bestsellers. Remember, Nostradamus is regarded by many as a prophet.
But again, did God send him?
How does God describe those who are not sent by Him? “And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? For the living to the dead? To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them” (Isa. 8:19-20).
There is no evidence whatsoever that Nostradamus ever based his prophecies on the Bible. They came solely from visions. He neither spoke, nor attempted to speak, according to God’s Word—or Law. Therefore, GOD says—not I—there is “no light in him.” Think of it this way. The man was not enlightened—he cannot shed light on the future. We will later learn why some of his predictions did come true.
It is widely acknowledged that many of Nostradamus’ prophecies failed. One author outlined five:
(1) Venice would have great power and world influence by 1792. False.
(2) The Catholic clergy would fall in 1609. False.
(3) Persecution would arise against the Catholic church, also in 1792. False.
(4) Astrologers would be persecuted in 1607. False.
(5) And China would subdue the northern part of the world by 1700. False.
But other predictions never came true:
(1) The Bourbon line of kings would be restored to the French throne.
(2) French king Charles IX would live to 90—he died at 24.
(3) A dramatic reduction in world population in the 18th century would occur due to famine and disease. Instead, population exploded during the 18th-century Industrial Revolution.
These events clearly did not happen. Based on number and size of failures, Nostradamus is a particularly poor prophet. Among false prophets, he falls into extra false.
Now ask: Could the God of the Bible inspire prophecies that did not come to pass? What about even one? No. If so, He becomes a liar. Read what He says: “...I am God, and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure” (Isa. 46:9-10).
Only God can declare the future. And Hebrews 6:18 says it is impossible for Him to lie. His Word is certain. What He foretells—God does not predict—will come to pass. Even one failed prophecy means one was not sent by God.
Nostradamus was known to be involved in the occult, having a large occult library. In a book dedicated to his son, who carried on after him, he wrote: “Dreading what might happen in the future, after reading them [his occult books], I presented them to Vulcan [the pagan Roman god of fire], and as the fire kindled them, the flame...shot forth an unaccustomed brightness, clearer than the light is of natural flame, resembling more the explosion of powder, casting a subtle illumination over the house...” (Nostradamus, Preface a Mon Fils). Very strange!
God utterly condemns the occult. Notice: “There shall not be found among you any one...that uses divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or witch, or charmer, or consulter with familiar spirits, or wizard, or a necromancer [one who supposedly can reach the dead]. For all that do these things are an abomination unto the Lord...” (Deut. 18:10-12).
How many know that this early psychic consulted the dead? Ask: would God send someone who is involved in practices He condemns? Of course not.
Either one believes such verses or he does not.
False prophets prey on people’s natural fascination with the future. The apostle John warned of them. Let’s read: “Believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world” (I John 4:1). Jesus added this warning: “And many false prophets shall arise, and deceive many” (Matt. 24:11). Now ask: how many worry about being deceived? Most ignore these passages. But that comes with a price.
Understand. God calls such possessors of “enlightened” knowledge “angels of light” (II Cor. 11:13-14)—I would add—who are only too willing to share their “knowledge.”
Jesus stated, “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves” (Matt. 7:15).
It is not always easy to detect these deceivers. None of them wear signs exposing who they are. They are smooth operators, but their teachings tear people’s understanding as wolves rip prey.
How can you tell a false prophet? Let Christ answer: “You shall know them by their fruits...” (Matt. 7:16). And then, “By their fruits you shall know them” (Matt. 7:20). The key to knowing whether a prophet is true or false is by fruits—good or bad. Nostradamus did weird, strange things—followed practices God condemns—and did not otherwise practice obedience to God’s laws. While possibly sincere, he was deceived and false.
Remember, most of Nostradamus’ prophecies failed. And again, this could not occur with a prophet of God. Let’s see: “We [Christians] have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto you do well that you take heed, as unto a light that shines in a dark place...” (II Pet. 1:19). God’s prophecies are sure. They never miss. Not one! And they do shed light in dark places.
Here is God’s command regarding prophets: “And if you [ask] in your heart, How shall we know the word which the Lord has not spoken? [God’s answer] When a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken, but the prophet has spoken it presumptuously: you shall not be afraid of him” (Deut. 18:21-22). This states that men can presume to speak for God. This is very serious to God. It should also be serious to you. You must know if God sent a man—or if the man sent himself.
The true prophet Ezekiel recorded, “Son of man [Ezekiel], prophesy against the prophets of Israel...and say you unto them that prophesy out of their own hearts, Hear you the word of the Lord; thus says the Lord God; woe unto the foolish prophets, that follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing” (Ezek. 13:2-3).
Think of the worldwide fear that Nostradamus’ presumptuous prophecies have engendered. But God declares, “you shall not be afraid of him” (Deut. 18:22). What was the Old Testament punishment for false prophets?: “But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in My name [meaning, by GOD’S authority], which I have not commanded him to speak...even that prophet shall die” (Deut. 18:20).
Again, this is serious to God—and it should be to you!
But what if a prophecy is correct? Some of Nostradamus’ seemed to be: “If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams [one who sees visions, like Nostradamus], and gives you a sign or a wonder, and the sign or the wonder come to pass...you shall not hearken unto the words of that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams: for the Lord your God proves you, to know whether you love the Lord your God with all your heart...You shall walk after...and fear HIM, and keep HIS commandments, and obey His voice [How many preachers teach that all 10 of God’s Commandments, including the Sabbath day, must be kept? Almost none!], and you shall serve Him, and cleave unto Him. And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams [here it is again], shall be put to death...So shall you put the evil away from the midst of you” (Deut. 13:1-5).
Of course, this cannot be done today. The point is: get away from the evil.
Another point. Nostradamus’ prophecies are interpreted after events pass, not before. What is the value of this? Nothing! One author admitted, “As far as is known, Nostradamus did not leave a ‘key’ to his predictions...If he did, it has certainly been lost in the dust of the centuries. The need of having to interpret his predictions without the help of such an aid has led to some curious and widely varied versions of his quatrains” (Rene Noorbergen, Nostradamus Predicts the End of the World).
Prophecies—and true prophets—present events before they occur, never afterward. That’s what historians do.
Nostradamus was also an astrologer. In short, stemming from the natural tendency toward superstition within human nature, this is one who seeks guidance from the stars. God also condemns this practice: “Thus says the Lord, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen [or pagans] are dismayed at them” (Jer. 10:2).
Get this. Nostradamus literally produced the horoscopes that God condemns. In total disobedience to God’s command, millions today are also fascinated with their daily horoscopes.
In addition, Nostradamus never recorded good news. All of his writings involve bad news—assassination, war, famine, dictators—never anything good.
The Bible is a Book filled with good news about the future. In fact, it contains the best news human ears could hear, that of the coming kingdom of God—a soon-to-appear supergovernment that will bring joy, happiness, peace and prosperity to a sick and suffering world.
Make yourself confront the source of Nostradamus’ prophecies—where they actually came from: “Whether the majority of his visions came...from a psychic inspiration, necromancy, tarot cards or a refined form of witchcraft, we will probably never learn. We might conclude, however, that his hidden source of knowledge knew much of the course history would take, and possibly had the power to control or at least influence some of the major future historical developments” (ibid.).
What could be this hidden source? The Bible describes the existence of a spirit world. On the one side are God, Christ and righteous angels. In opposition are Satan and fallen angels. Earlier we saw Nostradamus spoke of a “god that sits nearby.” Who is this god? The Bible describes Satan as the “god of this world” (II Cor. 4:4).
Satan and his demons are the true authors of Nostradamus’ visions and writings—not the man himself, and certainly not God. Understand. Demons have a certain partial, but always twisted, knowledge of how God’s Master Plan will play out. This allows them to predict the future through humans. I have seen this many times.
The Bible records a story of the apostle Paul encountering a demon-possessed girl: “And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying [fortune-telling]: the same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the most high God [yes, demons will sometimes acknowledge God if it benefits them], which show unto us the way of salvation. And this did she many days. But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit [not the girl], I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And he came out the same hour” (Acts 16:16-18).
Nostradamus was almost certainly demon-possessed. Having also cast out demons, I know.
How many search God’s Word for instruction about astrologers, palm readers and psychics? Most do not care what God says, and besides, it is too much work. They enjoy the fascination, but ignore the danger, of toying with powerful, destructive spirits who want people looking to them, not God.
Understand. Satan and his demons want to destroy mankind, and will stop at nothing to achieve their goal. This includes using phony visions to confuse man’s understanding of God’s plan of salvation. Nostradamus was simply a tool of Satan, the father of lies. Read John 8:44.
Now notice: “Regard not them that have familiar spirits, neither seek after wizards, to be defiled by them...” (Lev. 19:31).
The apostle Peter compared false prophets in the Old Testament to false teachers in the New. Notice: “But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you...” (II Pet. 2:1).
False ministers come in many shapes and sizes. Some specialize, particularly today, in confusing, incomplete, deceitful theories of how the future will play out. The utter nonsense of these conflicting scenarios is almost without end.
While the most famous, Nostradamus is but one of many who have sought to interpret the future. Other well-known ones include Edgar Cayce and Jeanne Dixon. Astrologers, psychics, wizards, seers and fortune-tellers have exploded in number all over the world in recent years. So have supposed experts on end-time Bible prophecy.
All of these bring their own interpretations—none of them correct. The Bible warns that “no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation” (II Pet. 1:20). God works through His chosen servants—and no one else. Ephesians 4:11 and I Corinthians 12:28 show that He does occasionally send a prophet, but this would only be within His Church. In fact, Revelation 11 reveals that two final prophets will arise at the very end.
Understand. God does not—and would never—send different people to say different things—private interpretations—about the SAME events. In fact, this is one of the greatest ways you know that the many disagreeing prophecy writers so popular today cannot be of God. I repeat: God’s servants speak with one unified voice. Read I Corinthians 1:10.
Over the years, many have predicted that monumental events will happen on certain dates. Today, the craze is December 21, 2012—the Mayan calendar date when supposed cataclysmic, end-of-the-world events will occur. Large numbers visit our websites having “googled” 2012. And millions rushed to the movie of this title.
Many set dates, with most focusing on when Christ will return. But He said, “Of that day and hour knows no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but My Father only” (Matt. 24:36).
The only way to know the future is to have God’s keys to understanding prophecy. Let’s notice: “Whom shall He teach knowledge? And whom shall He make to understand doctrine? Them that are weaned from the milk...For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little” (Isa. 28:9-10).
The Bible is a jigsaw puzzle. One must assemble all related verses to understand a doctrine—any doctrine. Prophecy is no different.
So then, who can understand prophecy? Notice: “Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but He [first] reveals His secret unto His servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7). Only God can reveal what lies ahead—and He does this.
Next notice: “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man [men’s own ideas]: but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (II Pet. 1:21).
Prophecy was meant to be understood. Why else would God make one full third of the Bible such history written in advance?
Here is why most will never comprehend future events—any of them. The first step to understanding prophecy (Psa. 111:10) is literally to stop sinning (I John 3:4)—to obey God. Most will not do this. They want to be titillated by special prophetic knowledge more than they want to obey their Creator.
Understanding true conversion and obedience to God opens the door. Read Acts 2:38 and 5:32, among many other verses. Without God’s Spirit, which is given only to those who truly repent and obey God, one cannot understand the Bible, which means he will never correctly understand—beyond misapplied bits and fragments—what the future holds.
You have come in contact with the only Church on the face of the earth that truly understands prophecy. On The World to Come program, we teach the meaning of today’s events, and what lies ahead for the world—and do so in detail.
Behind the scenes, enormous events are taking shape. Prophecy will soon culminate in events terrifying beyond description. These will shake every nation on Earth. Vast numbers will perish. But this has never meant the end of the world. Nostradamus was a false prophet. Give him not one more second of your time.
NEVER fear this world’s seers—including all the phony prophecy writers and supposed prophecy scholars. They are wrong. They do not know what they are talking about. God did not send them. They do not speak according to His Law—or almost any other of the plain truths of His Word. They are FALSE! And on God’s authority I tell you—reject them! They will only confuse you.
And follow Paul’s instruction to prove what I say. Compare it with your own Bible. I am not afraid to say that. You will see what we teach is right. Keep reading The Real Truth. You will understand we let the Bible interpret itself on all matters of prophecy.
You can know what the future holds. Here are just some of the many books and booklets we offer about prophecy: Revelation Explained at Last!—Are These the Last Days?—America and Britain in Prophecy—The ANTICHRIST – All-powerful, Worse Than Any Expect—and Close!—Tomorrow’s Wonderful World – An Inside View!—Who or What Is the Beast of Revelation? Read all of these materials beside—and compare them to—your Bible! Then decide if I am God’s servant and speak the truth of what He says!