Bible Ballistics: What Day Of The Week Is It??? Vol. 6#23
We continue our look at Daniel chapter 9 this week. If you remember, we saw Daniel in the latter years of his life in service to the Medo-Persian Empire and deeply grieved for the unrepentant condition of his people. We considered his prayer of compassion for his own people as he studied the writings of Jeremiah, referencing the return of Judah to their land at the end of 70 years. Daniel’s deep grief was for a people who weren’t ready to walk right with God, yet He has called on God for forgiveness and restoration. A prayer that should always be on our hearts and lips—for we live among an unrepentant people, who also have no desire to walk after our God or His Son Jesus Christ. Let’s dig in to see what else Daniel has to say, and what God’s response is to this precious man of faith and prayer.
“19 O Lord,
for thine own sake,
O my God:
for thy city and thy people
are called by thy name.
20 And whiles I was speaking,
and the sin of my people Israel,
and presenting my supplication
before the Lord my God
for the holy mountain of my God;
21 Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer,
even the man Gabriel,
whom I had seen in the vision
at the beginning,
being caused to fly swiftly,
about the time of the evening oblation.
22 And he informed me,
and talked with me,
I am now come forth
to give thee skill
23 At the beginning of thy supplications
the commandment came forth,
and I am come to shew thee;
for thou art greatly beloved:
therefore understand the matter,
and consider the vision.” Daniel 9:19-23
Daniel has been praying and fasting because of the things he read in the Word of God by Jeremiah the prophet:
“And I set my face unto the Lord God,
to seek by prayer
and sackcloth, and ashes:” Daniel 9:3
When we get down to the business of real prayer, when we get real and open with God, when we commit to time and energy to give ourselves to God in prayer—then we will see amazing things and hear from God—regardless of what His answer is. And this is just what happened with Daniel. He sought his God and He heard from him, and did he hear from God–in such a powerful way.
Daniel was given his answer via the angel Gabriel. And while it isn’t the first time he has seen this messenger (See Daniel 8:16), it is still an awesome experience, and the message timeless and imperative in God’s plan of the ages. Daniel’s prayer has brought a first-hand message right from the throne of God. I also find it interesting that the answer was on the way from the moment that Daniel began to seek God’s face in prayers and fasting, but God allowed him to finish this prayer before Gabriel made himself known to Daniel. Gabriel has come to give Daniel “skill and understanding”—this man who has devoted his whole life to serving God in all he does—in personal commitment, with full integrity in public service, and friendship and communion with those of like mind. This man of God receives his commendations from God rather than man. Who’s approval are we seeking? Oh, to hear God say, “thou art greatly beloved”!!! I can think of nothing equal to that declaration—may it be so of me in all my ways. I want to please God and serve others through devotion to God and the proclamation of HIS Word! But Gabriel doesn’t stop there; he has a most powerful message for this man of God. We’ll lay it out with our usual analytical format:
“Seventy weeks are determined
upon thy people
and upon thy holy city,
to finish the transgression,
and to make an end of sins,
and to make reconciliation for iniquity,
and to bring in everlasting righteousness,
and to seal up the vision and prophecy,
and to anoint the most Holy.
25 Know therefore
that from the going forth
of the commandment
and to build Jerusalem
unto the Messiah
shall be seven weeks,
and threescore and two weeks:
the street shall be built again,
and the wall,
even in troublous times.
26 And after threescore and two weeks
shall Messiah be cut off,
but not for himself:
and the people of the prince
that shall come
shall destroy the city
and the sanctuary;
and the end thereof shall be with a flood,
and unto the end of the war
desolations are determined.
27 And he shall confirm the covenant
for one week:
and in the midst of the week
he shall cause
the sacrifice and the oblation
and for the overspreading of abominations
he shall make it desolate,
even until the consummation,
and that determined
shall be poured
upon the desolate.” Daniel 9:24-27
Wow! What a revelation to Daniel. While our purpose today is not to cover the entirety of the end times, we will look at what this unparalleled revelation tells us about the purpose, sequence, and outcome of the ‘end-of-times’ are set to accomplish. So let’s get started—remember, “How do you eat an elephant?” “One bite at a time”! And that’s how we’ll lay this passage out—we will let scripture say, what scripture says!
First let’s look at the facts—the who, what when, where, why and how of this passage!
What?—70 weeks are determined —
Who?— By God–
For the people of Israel—
For the city of Jerusalem—
finish the transgression–
make an end of sins–
make reconciliation for iniquity–
bring in everlasting righteousness–
seal up the vision and prophecy–
anoint the most Holy—
So the subject is 70 weeks. This is 70 ‘prophetic’ weeks that God has declared to accomplish His purposes in and among mankind, and particularly Israel—the apple of His eye. So 70 weeks means what? Without going into too much detail, we can simply let the reason of scripture and observation of it, determine that only one of the six things listed as the purposes, has been accomplished. So it must not be literal 7-day weeks, which would have already passed. It cannot be weeks of weeks, as that also has already passed. It cannot be weeks of months for the same reason. So we lay it out as weeks of years and reasonably find a fit in scripture and history of time already past. 70 weeks of years that will accomplish all of God’s plan of the ages to redeem His creation, and His own. Let’s continue to see what we can determine from the rest of the message.
When?—From a decree to rebuild the city of Jerusalem-
Until Messiah is cut off—
Will equal 62+7 weeks, or 69 weeks—
70 weeks of years equals 490 years—
69 weeks is equal to 483 years—
From a decree to rebuild Jerusalem–
Until Messiah-Jesus is 483 years—
(69 of the 70 weeks)
Messiah Cut off is the death of Jesus—
Not for Himself, but for our salvation—
70 AD Jerusalem is destroyed by—
The Romans= the people–
Of the ‘prince to come’–
(another prince NOT the Messiah)
Who will be the “beast”-
Of Daniel 7
Of Revelation 13—
1 Week (the remaining 7 years)—
Will begin with a covenant–
With this other “prince”–
For 7 years-
Will be broken in the middle-
Two periods of 3 ½ years-
The first with the “prince”-
The second with the “beast”-
(When his true nature is seen).
Will be ended with the
God said it –that settles it. God is never surprised!!! While we could go into great detail here, my objective is to help you see scripture for yourself. The prophecy given to Daniel unfolds the plan of the ages. While this skeleton gives us all the essentials, other scriptures fill in the body of details. We’ll simply consider a few to help to get a grasp on truth. Let’s begin with the end. What will bring this “prince/beast” to an end? Paul clearly defines this for us in 2 Thessalonians 2:8-9:
“And then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of his mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of his coming: 9 Even him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders,”
This one who comes with all the power and deception of Satan, will meet his destruction when Jesus Christ returns to this earth to establish His earthly kingdom. This one, along with his “False Prophet”, will be the first residents in the lake of fire.
“And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that wrought miracles before him, with which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone.” Revelation 19:20
We also see in the gospel of Matthew, that Jesus Himself, confirmed the prophecies of Daniel and particularly this one in chapter 9:
“When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) 16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:” Matthew 24:15-16
This one who will make a covenant of some kind with Israel (perhaps a “peace” treaty) will break that covenant and stand in God’s place in the Temple (a temple will be rebuilt!). He will claim to be “God” and demand ‘worship’!
“Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.” 2 Thessalonians 2:4
So what have we seen thus far? We see that God declared to Daniel, via the angel Gabriel, that Messiah would come (and when) and die for the sins of the people, and then, “be cut off”—die, be buried, resurrected and ascend back to heaven for a time. But God clearly declares, that He would return to destroy the one who would set himself up to destroy the people of God and God Himself—the chief imitator, the ‘Anti-Christ’. And praise our Lord God Almighty we know who wins, and God has always known, and is accomplishing HIS purpose even NOW!
We could spend weeks building on this prophecy but we simply want to lay out God’s truth and let it speak with the “whole counsel” of God—His Word. Our focus is simply Daniel 9 and the gist of this prophetic picture of God’s plan for the ages. Scripture will interpret Scripture most of the time (for some things we just don’t understand yet), if we will but apply ourselves diligently and with integrity to search out the truth and let His Holy Spirit lead and direct our study through prayer and devotion to hear and understand. We must remember that God has called us to know Him through His Word.
“Study to shew thyself approved unto God,
a workman that needeth not to be ashamed,
rightly dividing the word of truth.
16 But shun profane and vain babblings:
for they will increase
unto more ungodliness.” 2 Timothy 2:15-16
And what are we to study to be “approved unto God”? Of course the Word of that very God we strive to please.
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God,
and is profitable
for instruction in righteousness:
17 That the man of God
may be perfect, (Mature not sinless)
unto all good works.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17
So the choice is yours. Dig into the Word, and please the one who gave His life for yours. Or not! The choice is yours, completely yours. But remember every choice will bring it’s own consequences. Which consequences would you prefer? Oh, dear ones, the prayer of my heart is that I will be found faithful, and that you too would seek HIS face and HIS favor.
I hope this has helped you to get at least a handle on this important passage of scripture. If you have any particular questions please feel free to ask, and I’ll answer, as I am able to from scripture.