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Sunday, December 20 2015
Daniel 9: The Seventy Sevens In History And Prophecy
"Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks"
Daniel was one of the greatest true prophets of all time because he faithfully delivered the Word of God, purely and precisely, as the LORD (see The Identity Of The LORD God and The LORD God Our Saviour) had given it to him - just as the LORD had done with all of the true prophets before him. Notice how Daniel knew that the exile of the people of Judah would last seventy years simply by reading the Word of God as it was given to an earlier prophet i.e. "I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem" (see The LORD's Letter To The Exiles In Babylon).
"9:1 In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans [see also The Medes And Chaldees Prophecies]; 9:2 In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem. 9:3 And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes" (Daniel 9:1-3 KJV)
Based on his historic knowledge of the reason that the people of Judah had brought the wrath of the LORD upon themselves, along with the prophetic knowledge that the duration of the exile would be for a prescribed time of seven decades, one day Daniel prayed to the LORD with a very specific request. The prayer began with a confession of Judah's guilt: "We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments" (see Why Did Judah Fall To Babylon?).
"9:4 And I prayed unto the LORD my God [i.e. Daniel was a Christian - see Who Is The LORD?], and made my confession, and said,
Daniel was aware of the promise of the prophesied return - there was no need to pray about that. But he prayed that the people of Judah would, while in Babylon, not further make themselves unworthy of the return, "for we do not present our supplications before thee for our righteousnesses, but for thy great mercies."
"9:15 And now, O Lord our God, that hast brought thy people forth out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and hast gotten thee renown, as at this day; we have sinned, we have done wickedly. 9:16 O Lord, according to all thy righteousness, I beseech thee, let thine anger and thy fury be turned away from thy city Jerusalem, thy holy mountain: because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and thy people are become a reproach to all that are about us.
"Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city"
Many have sought to "interpret" a meaning for themselves (or even, for those who claim themselves to be so great that, in their delusional minds, the Holy Bible is merely about themselves and their present-day politics) about "Daniel's seventy weeks prophecy" (as it is commonly known). It has long been one of the most debated and disputed prophecies of the Holy Bible - variously used to calculate the year of the Messiah's first coming after the Babylonian exile, to the yet-future time of His Return, to specific Messianic events. Amazingly, even the true Church of God has held differing views of Daniel's vision, which was given to him, and then explained to him, by Gabriel: "I am come to show thee; for thou art greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision." The "seventy weeks prophecy" was an answer to Daniel's prayer, as we read above, for an "exodus" out of "Babylon."
"9:20 And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of my God; 9:21 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, touched me about the time of the evening oblation. 9:22 And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding. 9:23 At the beginning of thy supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to show thee; for thou art greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision." (Daniel 9:20-23 KJV)
Note carefully however that the next statement is addressed to Daniel personally.
"9:24 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." (Daniel 9:24 KJV)
Keeping in mind that the people of Judah were returning to Jerusalem solely for the purpose of the coming Messiah, the prophecy then becomes entirely Messianic ("to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah") and dynamic. Just as Daniel was also given prophecies about the multi-fulfillment "abomination of desolation" (see the Fact Finder question below), so too the "weeks" of prophecy apply to the restoration of Jerusalem from the exile (a necessary fulfillment for the others to happen), the abomination of desolations (plural), including the 42-month (3 ½ years) infestation by the antichrist, the "cutting off" of the Messiah and the ultimate restoration of the His Sacrifice (see the Fact Finder question below).
"9:25 Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. 9:26 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. 9:27 And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week 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." (Daniel 9:25-27 KJV)
Fact Finder: What are the elements of the fulfillments (plural) of "the seventy weeks" prophecy?
This Day In History, December 20
69: Roman emperor Vitellius was murdered and his body was dragged through the streets by the supporters of his rival Vespian, who then became Emperor (see A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars and The Politics Of Rome).
1046: At the Synod at Sutri in Italy, German Emperor Heinrich (the German version of Henry) III dismissed Pope Gregory VI (see Emperors and Popes and listen to our Sermon Constantine's Papacy). Four days later, Clement II was elected as Pope. The German Empire became the successor of the original Roman Empire, also thereby inheriting the Church of Rome (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).
1192: Richard the Lion-Heart was captured and imprisoned by Leopold V of Austria while returning to England after signing a treaty with Saladin to end the Third crusade (see Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy).
1552: Katherine von Bora died at age 53. The former nun married Protestant reformer Martin Luther in 1525, when Luther was 42 and she was 26. They had 6 children.
1606: Patriotic English settlers for the Virginia Company, a joint stock company chartered by King James I earlier that year, left London to establish English royal colonies in the wilderness of "New England."
1699: Following the lead of the Church of Rome, Peter the Great announced a reorganization of the Russian calendar, decreeing that the new year would begin on January 1 instead of September 1 (see How Did Rome Change True Time? and The Restoration Of The True Week And Month Is Coming).
1780: The Fourth Anglo-Dutch War (1780-1784) began.
1860: In defense of slavery, South Carolina became the first state to secede from the Union; it was not readmitted until 1868, after the Civil War.
1919: Canadian National Railways was established. It is today North America's longest railway with 31,000 miles / 50,000 kilometers of track.
1922: Fourteen Russian republics were combined as the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. The USSR lasted 70 years before collapsing to the failure of socialism as a viable economic system.
1933: The Nazi government of Germany announced that 400,000 citizens were to be sterilized because of "hereditary defects" (included in the "defects" were anyone who opposed the government).
1955: Cardiff was proclaimed the capital city of Wales, United Kingdom.
1973 In Spain, General Franco's prime minister and right-hand man, Admiral Luis Carrero Blanco, was assassinated as he rode through a Madrid street.
1983: Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and 4,000 PLO ("Palestine Liberation Organization"; "Palestine" is a variant English translation of "Philistine"; see Where Is Palestine?) loyalists were evacuated from Lebanon during an Israeli invasion (see also Jordan's West Bank Invasion).
1987: A collision between the Philippine ferry Dona Paz and a tanker caused the deaths of 4,386 passengers and crew, all but 11 aboard the ferry - the worst peace-time tragedy at sea. The Dona Paz was licensed to carry just 1,500.
1989: The U.S. invaded Panama to install a new puppet government after President Manuel Noriega began moving Panama toward a declaration of independence from the U.S.
1996: Astronomer Carl Sagan died at age 62 (listen to our Sermon The Creator of Cosmos).