In Part 1 of the Bahá’í Faith Basics series, the appearances of the prophesied Anointed Ones was explained. Now learn how their appearances fulfilled Bible prophecies.
A short reminder: The Báb was the first Anointed One to appear, in 1844. He foretold the coming of another manifestation of God who would appear shortly after him; that person was Bahá’u’lláh, the new Messiah to Jews, Christians, and Muslims (among others). The Báb was born in 1819 and was martyred for his teachings on July 9, 1850. Bahá’u’lláh was born in 1817 and passed from this world in 1892 as an exile in the Holy Land.
Many people mistakenly believe that Bible prophecies do not give any hint of the time that the Messiah would return. You hear it all the time:
“But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.” (Matthew 24:36)
True, the Bible does not give the hour and the day of the return, but it does give the year! In several places:
“Then I heard a holy one speaking, and another holy one said to him, ‘How long will it take for the vision to be fulfilled — the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, the rebellion that causes desolation, the surrender of the sanctuary and the trampling underfoot of the Lord’s people?’
“He said to me, ‘It will take 2,300 evenings and mornings; then the sanctuary will be reconsecrated.’
“As he came near the place where I was standing, I was terrified and fell prostrate. ‘Son of man,’ he said to me, ‘understand that the vision concerns the time of the end’ “ (i.e. the latter days). (Daniel 8:13-14 & 17)
The “2,300 evenings and mornings” means 2,300 days.
“Days” in Bible prophecy mean actual years to humans. So, 2,300 days means 2,300 years to us humans. This meaning has been understood by Bible scholars for centuries based on several verses in the Bible: Gen. 29:27-28; Numbers 14:34; and Ezekiel 4:6.
But, when does the count start? That answer is given in Daniel 9:25 –
“Know and understand this: From the time the word goes out to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One,…””
It is the same starting point as for the prophecy having to do with the “70 weeks” until the coming of the first Messiah in Daniel 9:25-27 (which was, of course, Jesus the Christ). The starting date for that prophecy was the year 457 BC when the decree to rebuild Jerusalem was issued by Artaxerxes (Ezra 7). This date has been accepted by Bible scholars as the only decree of many that were issued that actually resulted in the rebuilding.
Figure 1 shows the starting point of 457 BC on the left as the start of the counting for both the “70 weeks” prophecy until the Messiah of the 1st Advent (Jesus) and the “2,300 evenings and mornings” (days) until the Messiah of the 2nd Advent. “Anointed one” means “Christ” in Greek and “Messiah” (Mashiach) in Hebrew; therefore, Messiah = Christ in meaning (you’d be surprised how many people do not know that).
The end point of the 2,300-day (-year) period is the year 1844 AD / CE (common era) – the year that the Báb proclaimed his being the promised one. (NOTE: There is no year zero. So if you do straight math: 2,300 minus 457, you will get 1843. But then you have to add a year to account for there not being a year zero. The correct answer is 1844.)
Does Figure 1 look familiar to any of you? Seventh-day Adventists may consider it very familiar, indeed. In the early 1840s, many Christian Bible prophecy enthusiasts were proclaiming throughout North America and Europe the imminent appearance of the returned Messiah. Most pinpointed the year 1844 for the return of Christ based on the prophecies in the Book of Daniel and others. This was the time period later referred to as The Great Awakening and The Adventist Movement.
When Jesus did not come down out of the sky on a literal cloud in the year 1844 as these Bible scholars predicted, his followers were devastated. Rumblings ensued that the Bible lied – or the advocates lied, or they all lied, or the Bible is not truly from God, etc. Or so they thought. This was termed The Great Disappointment. The Seventh-day Adventists, however, accepted that Jesus came back in 1844, but only in heaven.
The big question: When Jesus did not descend from the sky and land at their feet, why did his devoted followers not make every effort to go look for him? After all, there are several places in the Bible where Jesus said that he would come back like a thief in the night: Luke 12:39-40; Matt. 24:42-44; Rev. 3:3; Rev 16:15.
The Bible even said WHERE God would set his throne: in Elam:
“I will set my throne in Elam and destroy her king and officials,” declares the Lord.” (Jer. 49:38)
The Báb was born in Shiraz, Iran in southwest Iran, an area known in ancient times as Elam. The Báb made his proclamation of his identity as a manifestation of God on May 23, 1844 (in the year 1260 of the Islamic calendar) in Shiraz, Iran.
Two (2) Bible prophecies fulfilled precisely by the appearance and proclamation of the Báb!
But that’s not the end of it. There are yet additional time prophecies in the Book of Revelation which confirm the year of 1844.
“And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days (1,260) days, clothed in sackcloth.” (Rev. 11:3)
These two (2) witnesses were Muhammad and his cousin Ali. The Red Dragon beast of Revelation was Abu Sufyan and his son Mu’awiyya (of the Umayyad clan) who, through skullduggery and murder, assumed the leadership of Islam and deviated it from its true path. Muhammad had expressed his wanting Ali and his descendants to lead Islam. This desecration of Islam is reflected in the Bible verse below:
“And they of the people and kindreds and tongues and nations shall see their dead bodies three days and a half, and shall not suffer their dead bodies to be put in graves.” (Rev. 11:9)
The dead bodies of the two witnesses signifies the condition of Islam. That it was dead but not yet put into a grave means that the religion continued on, but the pure spirit within it was dead because of the usurpation of the successorship of the leadership of Islam by the murderous Umayyad clan. (NOTE: The Qur’an remains as Muhammad revealed it and was untouched by the Umayyads.)
The “spirit of life from God” returning (i.e. “they stood upon their feet”) means that God would send new manifestations (aka messengers, prophets) to renew religion at the end of those three and a half days (years).
So … what does the period of time signified by 3½ days mean?
We know that a day in Bible prophecy is a year to us humans. A year is made up of 360 days (in Bible prophecy years), which, in turn, equals 360 years. So … 360 times 3 (days) equals 1,080. The half year is equal to 180 days, which is 180 years. Therefore, 1080 + 180 = 1,260 years. This time period is referred to elsewhere in the Bible as 42 months or “time, times and a half” which all equal 1,260 days, thus equals 1,260 years (prophetic months are 30 days in length).
This means that at the end of this 1,260-year period, new manifestations of God would appear. What is the starting point? Obviously, it is the beginning of the faith of Islam counted from when Muhammad fled Mecca and went to Medina in 622 AD, known as the Hejira or Hegira, and the Islamic calendar began. The years are counted according to the lunar calendar of Islam.
Confirmation once again! And, there are even more confirmations. Too many to recount here.
There are many books available that provide an avalanche of evidence that the Báb and Bahá’u’lláh fulfill Bible prophecies of the coming of the Messiah. One book I have found a great resource is “I Shall Come Again”, by Hushidar Motlagh, Ed.D., which is available through this website. Another is “Thief in the Night: The Case of the Missing Millennium” by William Sears.
To see a free video (1.5 hours long) on how Bible time prophecies of the coming of the Messiah have been fulfilled, see the video on YouTube, titled Christ Has Returned.
The next part of this series will give more details on the life – and death – of the Báb.
For more information: