As Abraham was on his way to sacrifice Isaac, the boy made an observation: they had fire and wood, but no lamb to sacrifice. Abraham replied “God will provide himself a lamb.” That day he offered up a ram caught by his horns in a thicket, but we can see something of a prophesy in Abraham’s words: “God will provide himself with a lamb.” Abraham could not have been speaking, at least in his own wisdom, of the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world. But we get it. Now consider these words of Caiaphas:
But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing at all. Nor do you understand that it is better for you that one man should die for the people, not that the whole nation should perish.” He did not say this of his own accord, but being high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation, and not for the nation only, but also to gather into one the children of God who are scattered abroad. (John 11:49-52)
He prophesied that Jesus would die, but like Abraham did not fully understand the implications of what he was saying. It is better than one man die, but he was talking about the nation of Israel being under Roman control, and seeking to keep them from taking direct control and protecting the sect of the Pharisees. Peter describes these events in Acts 2 as “according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God.” Psalm 118 says it is “the LORD’S doing and it is marvelous in our eyes.” Caiaphas prophesied without understand, ironically accusing the other leaders of knowing nothing at all.
Jesus once told a young man “You are close to the Kingdom of God.” Agrippa said to Paul that he was almost persuaded to become a Christian. How many have heard the Gospel, considered Jesus, and walked away? On the day of judgement, close will not be close enough.