In the opening of chapter 9 we see Daniel in sackcloth and ashes. The word of God by the prophet Jeremiah was that after 70 years God would visit those of the captivity. He would perform his good word towards them, and cause them to return. (Jer. 29:10-14, 2 Chronicles 36:20-23) Darius the Mede now rules Babylon. It's been 70 years. Yet Daniel and his people remain strangers in a strange land; and Jerusalem unto now, lies in ruins and desolation.

We see Daniel petitioning God for his mercy. That he might turn away his anger and wrath from Jerusalem, and the people who are called by his name. Give ear, O God, and hear; open your eyes and see the desolation… not because we are righteous, but because of your great mercy. O Lord, listen! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, hear and act! For your sake, O my God, do not delay, because your city and your people bear your name. vers. 18-19

We again see here one of the reoccurring themes which we've seen throughout the 3 years passages: that is, the desolation of Jerusalem and the sanctuary and God's people, and the issue of their deliverance. We just reviewed the 2300 days where we saw it there—how long will be the transgression of desolation: the giving of both the sanctuary and the host to be trampled underfoot? Now here in chapter 9 Daniel is in deep desperate prayer…O Lord listen! O Lord forgive! Hear and act and deliver your city and your people who bear your name.

While Daniel was yet making his supplications God was moved to answer. And sent his word by the angel Gabriel who stands in his

 

 

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presence (who also made an appearance in chapter 8).

At the beginning of your supplications the command went out, and I have come to tell you, for you are greatly beloved; therefore consider the matter and understand the vision:

Seventy weeks (seventy sevens) are determined for your people and for your holy city,

to finish the transgressions,

to make an end of sins,

to make reconciliation for iniquity,

to bring in everlasting righteousness,

to seal up vision and prophecy,

and to anoint the Most Holy (or Holy Place).

The angel Gabriel goes on to say

Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the command to restore and build Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince, there shall be seven weeks (seven sevens) and sixty-two weeks (sixty-two sevens); the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublesome times.

And after the sixty-two weeks (sixty-two sevens) Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; and the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end of it shall be with a flood, and till the end of the war desolations are determined. vers. 23-26

Here we have perhaps one of the most profound prophecies ever spoken. With its astounding definitive timeline. Whole books have been written on the 70 weeks of Daniel 9 alone.

But what's going on? Daniel's prayer was that the end and the answer would be soon and now. But if you study the prophecy you will notice that the beginning of the time decreed, before the consummation of it all, it only begins with the commandment to restore and rebuild Jerusalem! That is, the restoration of Jerusalem

 

 

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that Daniel was praying for is not the end; rather, merely the start of the countdown of the 70 weeks (70-7s)!

Furthermore, it not only says that the city will indeed be rebuilt but that the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary…and till the end of the war desolations are determined! Within the timeline the city and the temple are not only rebuilt a second time, but it predicts they will be destroyed a second time!

In addition, it says at the end of 69 of the 70 weeks the Messiah would come and be cutoff! The Messiah is Jesus Christ! His cutting off was his death on the cross in 30AD! Well over 400 years after Daniel's prayer! The sacking of Jerusalem and the destruction of the 2nd temple took place in 70AD by Titus and the Roman army! Read the prophecy carefully again.

What's happening? What kind of an answer is this anyway? God what are you saying?

Primarily two interpretations to Daniel's 70 weeks have emerged. One holds that God's answer had to do with his exclusive dealings with the Jewish nation, and the message of the Messiah to them. As they rejected the gospel and it went out to the Gentile nations, this closed out the 70 weeks. (The destruction of the temple in 70AD also is significant in this view).

The other interpretation believes the last week-the last seven, of the 70 weeks is yet in the future, and pertains to the end-times, and is completed at the second coming of the Messiah.

The seventy weeks, or seventy sevens are seventy sevens of years. The word weeks in the English King James Bible, or the word sevens in the NIV, is translated from the Hebrew word shebuah: which literally means sevened, or a time of seven in general (not being specific as to days, or weeks, or months, or years. But often refers to a week of years: as when Jacob fulfills

 

 

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Rachel's week by serving Laban seven years in Genesis 29:27-28).

The countdown to the time decreed, of the seventy-sevens of years begins from the going forth of the commandment to restore and build Jerusalem. From the command to rebuild Jerusalem to the coming and cutting off of the Messiah would fulfill 69 of the 70-7s of years. (And 69x7= 483 years! - vers. 25-26)

The first command given to the Jews to rebuild Jerusalem was by Cyrus the Great (read Isaiah 44:26-28, Ezra 1:1-4) but it comes about 70 years short of the crucifixion. Therefore, most like to use the decree of Artaxerxes given in 445 B.C. since it lines up with the death of Jesus Christ on the cross. However, the scriptures actually favor the command of Cyrus—he shall perform all my pleasure, saying to Jerusalem, " you shall be built", and to the temple, "your foundation shall be laid." (Isaiah 44:28) The real problem lies in the fact that there is no accurate dating system of the Persian dynasty—its kings, and length of their rule to determine an accurate chronology of the times. Philip Mauro, in his book, "The Wonders of Bible Chronology", discusses this in detail.

The present system, which we use to this day, is a "cannon" of the Persian Monarchy constructed in the 2nd Century A.D. by a Greek astronomer, Ptolemy, based on, it is said, "hearsay" and "guesswork". And there may never be a trustworthy chronology of the times of the Persian Kings, for there are no historic records, or substantial archeological evidence to authenticate one.

Yet, even though the command given by Cyrus, said to be in 538 BC, can itself be off by 70-80 years; even using the unreliable dating system, we can still get a sense of the awe and wonder of God's wonderful foreknowledge: who can declare, "that from the time of the command to rebuild Jerusalem to the cutting off of the Messiah, there shall be exactly 483 years"! Who would even dare

 

 

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to make such a prophecy? What book? Only God's Word! The Bible!

For this booklet however, it is the last week, the last seven years, which has to do with the last 3 years. The last week—which brings to consummation the 70 weeks, and which brings to completion and closes out and seals up the vision and prophecy on that which is decreed.

The angel Gabriel says of the last week:

And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week (seven years): and in the midst of the week (3 years into it, with 3 years left) he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. ver.27-KJ

Of the two primary views it is the last week which causes such contention and great controversy. For one, verse 27 is messianic—the he is Jesus Christ. Who conforms the covenant with many for one week-the New Covenant. To the Jews first.

And in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease-Christ's death at Calvary brings to an end temple worship and sacrifice.

And for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate-Christ's death and resurrection now makes the temple and its service desolate, and those who continue to seek atonement through it, and reject the true sacrifice and messiah abominable.

Until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate-in AD 70 armies of Rome complete the desolation destroying the temple. The Kingdom of God now given to the gentile nations.

The other view holds that verse 27 is end-time prophecy. He is the antichrist. Who confirms a covenant, a 7-year peace treaty with many. The treaty having to do with Jerusalem…perhaps making it

 

 

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an international city and religious center…and which would somehow allow for the rebuilding of the temple and the reinstitution of the sacrificial system.

But half way into the seven years, in the midst of the week, the daily sacrifice is stopped, and the abomination that causes desolations set up.

Even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate-in the perfection of time the end comes; vision and prophecy are fulfilled; and the people and the holy city delivered. And again, it is the second coming. The Messiah who was cut off will return. And all who put their hope in Him shall not be ashamed. He it is who consummates; who will bring it to a close and finish it. But with the end comes a new beginning.

The last week puts the last piece of the end-time puzzle precisely in its place, and extends the picture out to seven years. If in fact the confirming of a seven-year covenant with many by the AC will allow for the rebuilding of the 3rd temple…this will be a sign signaling all who will see, that the last-days are upon us! It would start the countdown, the clock ticking: starting at the seven years with the confirming of the covenant and rebuilding of the temple; followed by the daily sacrifice which begins the 2300 days; then comes the 3 years and the great tribulation, the trampling of the sanctuary and the host, until the consummation and the return of Jesus Christ the Messiah!

In the last part of Daniel 11 we see the contemptible one rising up to power. In those verses we also read about a holy covenant, and a league made with him:

And after the league made with him he shall work deceitfully: for he shall come up, and shall become strong with a small people. ver 23

And just before his forces invade Jerusalem and defile the sanctuary it says: therefore he shall be grieved, and return in

 

 

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rage against the holy covenant, and do damage. So he shall return and show regard for those who forsake the holy covenant. ver 30

And again, just after the daily sacrifice is stopped and the abomination set up it says: those who do wickedly against the covenant he shall corrupt with flattery; but the people who know their God will be strong and carry out great exploits. ver 32

Could the covenant and the league mentioned in the last of Daniel 11 be the same one that begins the last week of Daniel 9? Does it all seem far-fetched? Well, the end-time version of the last week, the last seven years fits Daniel's prayers. Remember chapter 9 opens with Daniel in deep, desperate prayer and fasting for the holy city and his people. Where he is crying out to God in his mercy for deliverance from the desolations. It can only be through the second coming that there can and will be complete and perfect salvation. When Jerusalem and the people of God will truly be delivered.

While the other interpretation says to Daniel: at the end of that which is decreed the desolations on the city and the people won't end…they will only be consummated by the destruction of the 2nd temple.

A couple other comments on Daniel 9 and the 70 weeks: one is that many disfavor the end-time interpretation largely because of its big gap of time between the 69th week and the last week. If God decreed that there would be 490 years, how can you add over 1900 more years and counting and not do violence to the Word? And make God out to be a deceiver, and trickster?

In the original Hebrew however, there are no 490 years. It is stated in seventy-sevens. Seventy-sevens of years are determined. If 69 of the sevens were fulfilled at the coming and cutting off of the Messiah, and one yet remains…which will begin when he shall confirm a covenant with many…if presented in this fashion, I

 

 

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don't see why there cannot be a gap and it still hold its integrity, and intrigue, and the marvel of God's proclamation.

Also, there are those who hold to the end-time interpretation of the 70 weeks who yet insist that its dealings are exclusively with the Jewish nation. As it does say in verse 24 that seventy weeks are determined for your people (Daniel) and for your holy city. The same wording is in Daniel 12:1 where it says: and at that time your people shall be delivered. But it adds "everyone who is found written in the book". At that time your people shall be delivered, everyone who is found written in the book.

Daniel was really of two people groups: physical Israel and spiritual Israel (of the saints, and those who believe in the Messiah).

Jesus came to the Jewish nation but was rejected. He came unto his own but his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them he gave the right (authority, power) to become children of God, to those who believe in his name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. (John 1:11-13) Where there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male or female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ's then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise. Gal. 3:28-29

I say, this is the people: those who believe on His name, who receive Him—the 70 weeks are determined on them—the true children of God! These are the ones who will be saved and delivered in the end, in the consummation of time, everyone who is found written in the book!

 

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