The codes are found by searching for equidistant letter sequences–that is, words occurring in the text of the Bible that have certain intervals between the letters. For example, the 5th, 10th, 15th, 20th, and 25th letter of the text might spell out a five-letter word.
The Bible codes are real but there is nothing special about them. Any large book will have similar clusters of words that match those found in the Bible. What makes the codes appear to be supernatural is the simple fact that people are looking for what they want to find.
One gentleman found words in a passage of the Bible that he says pointed to the 1995 earthquake that devastated the Japanese city of Kobe. A computer search found encoded in the Bible words like: “Kobe, Japan,” “1995,” “earthquake,” “fire,” and “the big one.”
The wiggle room in the Bible codes is endless. Those conducting the search have the option of looking for hundreds of words. In the Kobe example, words that did not turn up might have been “faultline,” “devastate,” “seismic,” and “shake.” Of course, there would be a problem if the following words were found: “no quake,” “1997,” and “safety.”