DANIEL 9:24-27 Interpreting the Seventy Weeks of Daniel’s Prophecy

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Edward D. Andrews
EDWARD D. ANDREWS (AS in Criminal Justice, BS in Religion, MA in Biblical Studies, and MDiv in Theology) is CEO and President of Christian Publishing House. He has authored over 140 books. Andrews is the Chief Translator of the Updated American Standard Version (UASV).

Daniel 9:24-27 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)

The Seventy Weeks

24 “Seventy weeks are decreed about your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, and to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal both vision and prophet, and to anoint a most holy place. 25 Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with squares and moat, but in times of distress. 26 And after the sixty-two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and shall have nothing. And the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. Its end shall come with a flood, and to the end there shall be war. Desolations are determined. 27 And he shall make a strong covenant with the many for one week, but in the middle of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the offering to cease. And upon the wing of abominations shall come the one causing desolation, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed, is poured out on the one causing desolation.”

Daniel 9:24-27 gives us a prophetic time period, wherein there would be a word to restore and build Jerusalem that would initiate a time that would run up unto the coming of an anointed one, the Messiah, who would then be cut off and closing out of the seventy weeks of years with the end of the Abrahamic covenant.

The prophet Daniel gave this prophecy some 500 years before the birth of Jesus Christ. Regardless of the time, Daniel was moved along by the Holy Spirit, given information by the Cherup angel Gabriel on several events leading up to the exact time when Jesus would arrive as the long-awaited Messiah. Daniel was inspired to write, “Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and rebuild Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with squares and moat, but in times of distress.”​—Daniel 9:25.

If we are going to fully understand Daniel’s prophecy, we have to know when the prophetic time period starts that will lead us to the Messiah. The prophecy gives us that starting point, it is “from the going out of the word to restore and rebuild Jerusalem.” When did this “going out of the word” occur? For this, we look to another Bible author Nehemiah, who tells us that the “going out of the word to restore and rebuild Jerusalem” occurred “in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes.” (Nehemiah 2:1, 5-8)  Historians establish that the year 474 B.C. was Artaxerxes’ first full regnal year as ruler. Therefore, the twentieth year of his rule would have landed on 455 B.C.E. This gives us our starting point for Daniel’s prophecy of when they were to expect the Messiah, namely, 455 B.C.

Next, Daniel gives the reader exactly how much time before they should expect “an anointed one,”, that is, the Messiah. The prophecy states, “seven weeks” and “sixty-two weeks,”​ which is a total of sixty-nine weeks. Many translations understand these to not be literal days, and most commentators as well accept that we are talking about weeks of years, not days. In other words, each week is seven years. In fact, the Jews during this period were familiar with this way of thinking. For example, they kept a Sabbath year every seventh year. (Exodus 23:10, 11) Therefore, doing the math, the prophetic sixty-nine weeks is a total of 483 years.

John Walvoord. writes,

The conservative interpretation of Daniel 9:24–27 usually regards the time units as years. “Weeks” is literally “sevens,” and can refer to a week of days (i.e., 7 days, Gen. 29:27) or to a week of years (Lev. 25:8). – Daniel (The John Walvoord Prophecy Commentaries) . Moody Publishers. Kindle Edition.

Thus, if we simply subtract 483 years from 455 B.C., it takes us to the year 29 C.E. This was the exact year when Jesus was baptized, making himself known as the long-awaited Messiah! (Luke 3:1, 2, 21, 22) If we take a technical look at it, it runs this way, from 455 B.C. down to 1 B.C., we have 454 years. Then, from 1 B.C. to 1 A.D., we have one year as there was no zero year. Furthermore, from 1 A.D. to 29 A.D., we have 28 years. When we added the three figures, we get a total of 483 years. Jesus was “cut off” in death in 33 C.E., during the seventieth week of years. (Daniel 9:24, 26)

The “anointed one shall be Cut off” in the middle of the week. the cherub angel Gabriel additionally said to Daniel: “And after the sixty-two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and shall have nothing.” (Dan. 9:26) This is pretty straightforward, in that, the anointed one, the Messiah, was cut off in death after the end of the ‘seven weeks of years plus sixty-two weeks of years,’ which was specifically three and a half years afterward, that is, 33 A.D. The Messiah, Jesus Christ gave his life as a ransom sacrifice. – Isaiah 53:8; Matthew 20:28; Romans 5:12, 18.

APOSTOLIC FATHERS Lightfoot APOSTOLIC FATHERS

“And he shall make a strong covenant with the many for one week.” The full text of Daniel 9:27a says: “And he shall make a strong covenant with the many for one week [of years], but in the middle of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the offering to cease. ” The “covenant” referred to here could not be the Mosaic Law covenant, for the ransom sacrifice of Christ, three and a half years earlier the Mosaic Law was removed: “having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and he has taken it [Mosaic Law] out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.” (Col. 2:14) Also, “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us, because it is written, ‘Cursed is everyone who hangs on a tree,’ in order that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might come to the Gentiles, so that we would receive the promise of the Spirit through faith.” (Gal. 3:13-14) So, “And he [Jesus Christ]” only accepted the Jewish people into the new Christian faith for three and a half years after his ransom sacrifice, extending the Abrahamic covenant to those who were the direct offspring of Abraham. The first Gentile to become a Christian was the Italian Cornelius, in 36 A.D., which was the end of the seventy weeks of years, that is, 490 years from 455 B.C. – Acts 3:25, 26; 10:1-48.

“In the middle of the week he [the anointed one, Jesus] shall cause the sacrifice and the offering to cease.” The expression Hebrew [ שָׁבַת shabath] ‘cause to cease,’ here referring to “the sacrifice and the offering,” means, “observe the sabbath, formally, rest, i.e., do the religious practice of ceasing from all activity or work.”[1] The “sacrifice and the offering” that are ‘caused to cease,’ here in Daniel 9:27b, is a direct result of Jesus’ ransom sacrifice. It refers to the “sacrifice and the offering” of the Mosaic Law that was given by the Jewish people at the temple in Jerusalem, which would be ‘caused to cease’ by Jesus’ ransom sacrifice.

“The  middle of the week” would actually be in the middle of seven years. In other words after three and a half years within seventieth “week” of years. As has been mentioned, the seventieth “week” of years began in 29 A.D. when Jesus was baptized, having been annointed to be Christ. Thus, half of that seventieth week would be three and a half years that would run from 29 – 33 A.D. The apostle Paul tells us, “When he said above, ‘Sacrifices and offerings and whole burnt offerings and offerings for sin you did not want, nor did you delight in,’ (these are offered according to the law), then he added, ‘Behold, I have come to do your will.’[51] He takes away the first in order to establish the second. By which will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.’” – Hebrews 10:1-10.

AN ENCOURAGING THOUGHT_01

Seventy weeks are decreed about your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression. When Jesus offered his perfect life in 33 A.D., ‘the anointed one was cut off’ in death, to then be resurrected and finally ascending back to heaven “to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness.” (Dan. 9:24)

Jesus’ being cut off in death, his resurrection, and his appearance in heaven resulted in ‘terminating transgression and finishing off sin as well as in making atonement for error.’ (Da 9:24) Paul asked and answered a question for the Galatians, “Why then the law? It was added because of transgressions, until the offspring [Jesus] should come to whom the promise had been made …  But the Scripture imprisoned everything under sin, so that the promise by faith in Jesus Christ might be given to those who believe … Now before faith [Jesus] came, we were held captive under the law, imprisoned until the coming faith would be revealed. So then, the law was our guardian until Christ came, in order that we might be justified by faith. But now that faith [Jesus] has come, we are no longer under a guardian …” (Gal. 3:19-25) Paul in forms us at Romans 5:20-21, “The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” The Messiah’s sacrifice ‘atoned for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness.’

“To bring in everlasting righteousness.” The importance of Christ’s death cannot be overstated as it provided a reconciliation for those who repent and place their trust (πιστεύω pisteuō) in that ransom sacrifice. (John 3:16, 36) Jesus made a “propitiation for the sins of the people.” (Heb 2:17) Again, we go  to Romans,

Romans 3:21-26 Updated American Standrd Version (UASV)

Righteousness through faith

21 But now apart from law the righteousness of God has been manifested, being witnessed by law and  the Prophets, 22 even the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all those who believe; for there is no distinction; 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 being justified as a gift by his grace through the redemption which is in Christ Jesus; 25 whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in his blood through faith. This was to demonstrate his righteousness, because in the forbearance of God he passed over the sins previously committed; 26 it was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

REASONABLE FAITH FEARLESS-1

“To anoint a most holy place.” “And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him.” However, here ‘the anointing of the most holy’ is referring to more that the anointing of the Messiah, it is referring to “the Most Holy, ” which is the expression used in reference to the sanctuary of God. (Da 9:24; Ex 26:33, 34; 1Ki 6:16; 7:50) Therefore, the book of Hebrews again helps us to understand Daniel. “But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things having come [45] then through the greater and more perfect tent not made with hands, that is, not of this creation; 12 and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through his own blood, he entered the holy place once for all, obtaining eternal redemption.” (Heb. 9:11-12) So, the heavenly realm where God dwells had been set apart (anointed) as the “most holy place” when Jesus was baptized with the Holy Spirit in 29 A.D. – Matthew 3:16; Luke 4:18-21; Acts 10:37, 38; Hebrews 9:24.

THE CREATION DAYS OF GENESIS gift of prophecy

“To seal both vision and prophet.” All that took place in that seventieth week of years from 29 – 36 A.D.: Jesus’ ministry, his ransom sacrifice, his resurrection, his ascending to heaven offering that ransom to the Father, had made ‘a seal both vision and prophet.’

“And upon the wing of abominations shall come the one causing desolation, even until a complete destruction.” Matthew 24:15 tells us “Therefore when you see the abomination of desolation, which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand).” The abomination of Desolation: (Gr. bdelugma eremoseos) An expression by Jesus recorded in Mathew 24:15 and Mark 13:14 referring to Daniel 11:31 and 12:11. Bdelugma refers to something that is an abomination, unclean, which horrifies clean persons, leaving them disgusted. Eremoseos has the sense of an extensive desolating act or destruction, which caused total ruin, leaving no place for shelter. It was Titus the Emperor of Rome, who was the leader of the Roman army that came against Jerusalem, entering Jerusalem and into and into the temple as well. It was the Roman army “standing in the holy place” that was the “abomination of desolation.” God decreed that “to the end there shall be war. Desolations are determined … even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed, is poured out on the one causing desolation.”

Mosaic Authorship HOW RELIABLE ARE THE GOSPELS

Seventy Weeks of Years

[1] James Swanson, Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains : Hebrew (Old Testament) (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997).

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4 thoughts on “DANIEL 9:24-27 Interpreting the Seventy Weeks of Daniel’s Prophecy

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  1. so many books isnt it enough to read THE BIBEL ?i hard understand the BIBEL in think meditation complatation is the best WAY to come futher towards HOLY GHOST becoming doctor of others

  2. Matthew 24 “let the reader understand” is better because When you solve the math in Daniel 12: 9-12 you can go solves the one in Revelation 11: 1 and you have Objectively proven the Anti-Christ is the Madhi (12th Imam) and that Jesus is absolutely the Son of God. “I can objectively prove God is God in any reasonable court of law.” Daniel 12: 3, 4.

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