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Deciphering Daniel (Chapter 9)

      The Mystery of the
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that he and most scholars have not consid-

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         Continued from Page 7                   time. Daniel, himsel...
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sixty-two, and one; with gaps of unspeci-        to restore and to bu...
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rebuilding the Temple and its construction        they arrived in Jer...
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because the succession of the prophets one       cut off, but not for...
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as long as it lieth desolate, and ye be in your   centuries — until t...
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The Mystery of The Seventy Weeks - Prophecy In The News Magazine - December 2007


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The Mystery of The Seventy Weeks - Prophecy In The News Magazine - December 2007

  1. 1. Find us on the Internet - Deciphering Daniel (Chapter 9) The Mystery of the Seventy “Weeks” By J. R. Church During the Triumphal Entry … as Je- sus started His descent from the Mount of Olives into the Kedron Valley … He wept over Jerusalem. Throngs of people stood along the road … a veritable sea of hu- manity was overflowing into the valley below … shouting and waving palm branches … yet, the Savior’s heart was heavy. His disciples may have been delighted to see the crowd, but Jesus knew … it was not a throne that lay ahead, but a cross, instead. Luke recorded His words: “And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it, “Saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes. “For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side, “And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation” (Luke 19:41-44). This lament alludes to something the archangel Gabriel told Daniel, in the chapter before us. He said that after the seven weeks and the sixty-two weeks, the Messiah would be “cut off” and the “… people of the prince that shall come, shall destroy the city and the sanctuary” (Daniel 9:26). We know of As Jesus approached the Temple Mount, He wept over the city and said, “If thou no other Old Testament passage that could hadst known ... but now they are hid from thine eyes ... thou knewest not the time of possibly have been on the Savior’s mind at thy visitation.” He was referring to Daniel’s ninth chapter. that moment. Furthermore, had their eyes not been blinded, Jewish scholars might thus fulfilling the prophecy. most famous. He began with a royal Persian have been able to calculate the “time.” Over the centuries, many attempts have decree in 445 B.C.; calculated the number Jesus knew that within a few days, He been made to figure out the timing of of days in 483 “biblical” years; converted would be crucified. He knew that in A.D. Daniel’s seventy weeks … and some calcu- them to solar years; and concluded with the 70, the Romans would destroy Herod’s lations are quite remarkable. I suppose the day of the Savior’s Triumphal Entry. How- Temple along with the city of Jerusalem, study by Sir Robert Anderson is one of the ever, there is something about these verses 6 Prophecy in the News Find us on the Internet -
  2. 2. Find us on the Internet - that he and most scholars have not consid- Prophecy in the News ered. In this chapter, we shall attempt to put Gabriel’s prophecy into perspective. The First Year of Darius The prophecy of the seventy weeks was ... on LBN television network given to Daniel within a year following Belshazzar’s death. On that fateful night, Belshazzar had bequeathed a political posi- tion to Daniel, and the conquering leaders of the Medes and Persians, evidently allowed Sky Angel Satellite him to retain a measure of that authority. Channel 9716 It is possible that they were acquainted with stories of Daniel’s wisdom, and felt Sunday Afternoons that he could be a valuable asset to their 4:00 P.M. Eastern government. As this chapter opens, Darius 3:00 P.M. Central had become king over a new Persian realm 2:00 P.M. Mountain that encompassed the defeated empire of 1:00 P.M. Pacific Babylon. Daniel was reading the scroll of Jeremiah: “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; “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 ac- complish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem. “And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes” (Dan. 9:1-3). Just how Daniel was able to obtain a copy of Jeremiah’s writings is not known, but being a high-ranking government official, he probably sent a letter to the publisher of scrolls in Jerusalem requesting a copy. Watch Prophecy in the News anytime on Not only was Daniel a prophet, but he also studied what other prophets had written. Daniel, being of royal descent, probably read Jeremiah in order to learn details about the political history of his family and the Jewish kingdom in the years leading up to and during the Babylonian captivity. Daniel he was probably saddened to read about have rebelled, even by departing from thy read about the things that occurred in the Zedekiah’s ill treatment of Jeremiah. precepts and from thy judgments: sacred city after his deportation. He might Whatever his reason for studying the “Neither have we hearkened unto thy have been anxious to learn why Nebuchad- scroll, we are told that he came across the servants the prophets, which spake in thy nezzar had treated his family so harshly. passage where Jeremiah prophesied about name to our kings, our princes, and our According to Babylonian accounts, dur- the duration of the captivity being seventy fathers, and to all the people of the land” ing Nebuchadnezzar’s seven-year insanity, years. Realizing that the seventieth year was (Dan. 9:4-6). his son, Evil-Merodach, had befriended fast approaching, Daniel put on sackcloth Daniel reminded the Lord that He was a Israel’s imprisoned king, Jeconiah. It is and ashes, a Jewish custom of mourning, covenant-keeping God, and pleaded with reported that Evil-Merodach released Je- and began to fast and pray. Him to remember Jeremiah’s promise that coniah and the blind Zedekiah from prison. the Jews could return after seventy years. It should be noted that Zedekiah mysteri- Daniel’s Prayer Being from the royal family of Israel’s ously died that same day. We are not told “And I prayed unto the LORD my God, kings, Daniel asked forgiveness on behalf whether he died of some terminal illness and made my confession, and said, O Lord, of his family … for not requiring their sub- or was assassinated. But Jeconiah was al- the great and dreadful God, keeping the jects to keep the Mosaic Law regarding the lowed to live out his life comfortably in covenant and mercy to them that love him, Sabbatical Years … and for the way they Babylon. Perhaps Daniel wanted to know and to them that keep his commandments; had treated the prophets. Daniel realized what caused Jeconiah to be removed and “We have sinned, and have committed that he would not have spent his life in a Zedekiah installed in his place? If so, then iniquity, and have done wickedly, and Continued on Page 33 Find us on the Internet - Prophecy in the News 7
  3. 3. Find us on the Internet - Continued from Page 7 time. Daniel, himself, could not return. He mountain of my God; foreign land, had his family been men of was destined to live out the rest of his life “Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, integrity. I am sure that Daniel knew about in exile and die in Persia. Daniel reminded even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in King Manasseh, one of his previous rela- God that nothing so harsh had ever been the vision at the beginning, being caused to tives, desecrating the Temple and execut- done before. He called Babylon’s invasion fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the ing Isaiah. Overwhelmed with knowledge “a great evil.” His prayer continued: evening oblation. about the checkered history of his family, “As it is written in the law of Moses, “And he informed me, and talked with and the desperation of the Jews in exile, all this evil is come upon us: yet made we me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come Daniel prayed: not our prayer before the LORD our God, forth to give thee skill and understanding” “O Lord, righteousness belongeth unto that we might turn from our iniquities, and (Dan. 9:20-22). thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at understand thy truth. Daniel had not closed his prayer. If Gabri- this day; to the men of Judah, and to the in- “Therefore hath the LORD watched el had not appeared, the prophet would have habitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, upon the evil, and brought it upon us: for probably continued. On another occasion, that are near, and that are far off, through the LORD our God is righteous in all his Daniel prayed for twenty-one days. This all the countries whither thou hast driven works which he doeth: for we obeyed not prayer might have lasted that long, were them, because of their trespass that they his voice” (Dan. 9:13,14). it not for the archangel. Daniel recognized have trespassed against thee. Daniel did not blame God. He admitted Gabriel as the same one who appeared to “O Lord, to us belongeth confusion of that the people could have repented and him a year earlier and told him about the face, to our kings, to our princes, and to did not. None of his predecessors, or their ram and goat, and the little horn that would our fathers, because we have sinned against subjects, had sought repentance. Now, Dan- arise out of the Greeks. Now we find that thee” (Dan. 9:7,8). iel reminded God that He once delivered Gabriel had returned to tell him more about Daniel addressed the sins of his people, the nation from Egypt, and prayed that He this future Antichrist. More than that, how- while realizing that his own royal family would do it again: ever, the archangel told Daniel about the failed to lead the nation in serving the Lord. “And now, O Lord our God, that hast Jewish return to rebuild Jerusalem; about It is the responsibility of the king to set brought thy people forth out of the land of the Messiah and how He would be cut off; the standard of conduct for their people. If Egypt with a mighty hand, and hast gotten and about the Romans who would replace the king does not lead in morality, honesty thee renown, as at this day; we have sinned, the Greek Empire. Furthermore, Gabriel and integrity, the people will not aspire we have done wickedly. referred to the Romans as “the people of toward godly conduct. Ultimately, Daniel “O Lord, according to all thy righteous- the prince that shall come” (Dan. 9:26). realized that God’s righteous judgment had ness, I beseech thee, let thine anger and Here is another clue to the genealogy of the fallen upon his people. He begged God for thy fury be turned away from thy city Jeru- Antichrist. Though he will ascend through mercy: salem, thy holy mountain: because for our Greek royalty (as we noted in chapter 8), he “To the Lord our God belong mercies sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, will also descend from the leaders of Rome! and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled Jerusalem and thy people are become a Gabriel explained: against him; reproach to all that are about us. “At the beginning of thy supplications the “Neither have we obeyed the voice of “Now therefore, O our God, hear the commandment came forth, and I am come the LORD our God, to walk in his laws, prayer of thy servant, and his supplications, to shew thee; for thou art greatly beloved: which he set before us by his servants the and cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctu- therefore understand the matter, and con- prophets. ary that is desolate, for the Lord’s sake. sider the vision. “Yea, all Israel have transgressed thy “O my God, incline thine ear, and hear; “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy law, even by departing, that they might not open thine eyes, and behold our desola- people and upon thy holy city, to finish the obey thy voice; therefore the curse is poured tions, and the city which is called by thy transgression, and to make an end of sins, upon us, and the oath that is written in the name: for we do not present our supplica- and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and law of Moses the servant of God, because tions before thee for our righteousnesses, to bring in everlasting righteousness, and we have sinned against him. but for thy great mercies. to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to “And he hath confirmed his words, which “O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, anoint the most Holy” (Dan. 9:23,24). he spake against us, and against our judges hearken and do; defer not, for thine own God heard Daniel’s prayer, and sent that judged us, by bringing upon us a great sake, O my God: for thy city and thy people the archangel to tell Daniel about another evil: for under the whole heaven hath not are called by thy name” (Dan. 9:15-19). extended period of time — this one would been done as hath been done upon Jerusa- Daniel begged God to turn His righteous be 490 years long. The English translation lem” (Dan. 9:9-12). anger away and have mercy upon Jerusalem “week” should not be mistaken for a seven- Realizing the specific sin against the and its people for His Holy name’s sake. day week. These seventy weeks are weeks Law, Daniel admitted that his family and Perhaps thinking that his people could of years. The Hebrew text refers to each the wayward Jewish nation deserved their never expect God to love them as He once “week” as a guca shavuah, a seven-year punishment. At the same time, however, did, Daniel asked that God save the nation Sabbatical cycle. suspending the sovereignty of the nation for purely out of His own mercy and grace Gabriel used the Leviticus (25-26) pas- seventy years was a worse punishment than — for His “own sake.” sage as a reference point. However, just the forty-years in the wilderness. There, all as the original 490 years did not accrue who were under twenty years of age when Gabriel Responds to Daniel’s Prayer consecutively, but rather accumulated over they left Egypt, were allowed to enter the “And whiles I was speaking, and praying, a period of 830 years, Daniel should expect Promised Land. Here, however, hardly any- and confessing my sin and the sin of my these “seventy weeks” to stretch out over one who remembered their homeland would people Israel, and presenting my supplica- a longer period of time, as well. In fact, survive to return. Seventy years was a life- tion before the LORD my God for the holy Gabriel divided these “weeks” into seven, Find us on the Internet - Prophecy in the News 33
  4. 4. Find us on the Internet - sixty-two, and one; with gaps of unspeci- to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the were not yet laid, they began the daily sac- fied years between the seventh and eighth Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, … rifice services on Rosh Hashanah (the new “weeks,” and between the sixty-ninth and the street shall be built again, and the wall, moon of September 24, 536 B.C.). More seventieth “weeks.” even in troublous times” (Dan. 9:25). than a fourth of those who returned with These “weeks” (Hebrew ohgca shevuim) The “commandment to restore and build Zerubbabel were from tribes other than would be seven-year cycles, each beginning Jerusalem” has been dated to the decree Judah and Benjamin. Construction on the with year one and concluding with year of Artaxerxes in 445 B.C., as given in the Temple began the following spring, in the seven — as it was established in the days opening chapter of Nehemiah. However, month of Iyar (April/May 535 B.C.). of Joshua. In other words, the first year there was an earlier commandment — given On September 14, 35 B.C., the people of the seventy could not begin in, say, the only a year after Daniel received this vision. observed the beginning of a Sabbatical Year, fourth year of a Jewish Sabbatical cycle, It was issued by King Cyrus in the autumn which continued until October 2, 534 B.C., but in its first year. This is something that of 537 B.C., within a few months following at which time the first year of Gabriel’s first most scholars do not take into account when his ascension to the throne. King Darius set of seven Sabbatical cycles commenced. trying to calculate the time. Nor do they un- only ruled one year (538-537 B.C.), then We should note that the seventy weeks had derstand that there would be a gap between turned the throne over to his son-in-law, to follow the Sabbatical cycles. Therefore, the seventh and the eighth “weeks.” Cyrus, the Persian, as a dowry for marrying we should begin counting the first seven The ultimate goal of these Sabbatical his daughter. This was the Cyrus of which weeks (49 years) on October 2, 534 B.C., cycles would be to complete the desola- Isaiah had prophesied: rather than in 536 B.C., the year of their tions of Jerusalem. Jeremiah had quoted “That saith of Cyrus, He is my shepherd, initial return. In my opinion, Gabriel’s first the prophecy from Leviticus — that, if the and shall perform all my pleasure: even seven-week period ended with the death of people did not let the land rest every seven saying to Jerusalem, Thou shalt be built; King Ahasuerus, husband of Queen Esther, years, God would drive them into exile. and to the temple, Thy foundation shall be in the Sabbatical Year of 486/85 B.C. Only then could the land enjoy its Sab- laid” (Isa. 44:28). When construction first began, the Sa- baths. The land had been deprived of rest “Thus saith the LORD to his anointed, to maritans volunteered to help, but were dis- for seventy Sabbatical Years. That was the Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden, to couraged. After that, the Samaritans bribed reason for the Babylonian captivity. subdue nations before him …” (Isa. 45:1). certain courtiers of Cyrus and disrupted the However, there was something about the Isaiah wrote that Cyrus would say to Jews in their work of building the Temple. Leviticus passage that Jeremiah did not Jerusalem, “Thou shalt be built; and to This was probably the reason why Daniel address. God had promised: “… if ye will the temple, Thy foundations shall be laid.” fasted for three weeks, as we shall see in not yet for all this hearken unto me, then I God called him “my shepherd” and “his chapter 10. will punish you seven times more for your anointed.” Is it not obvious that this is King Cyrus reigned for seven years, sins” (Lev. 26:18). This was the reason for the date God had in mind when Gabriel plus a month or so, and died in 529 B.C. the seventy weeks in this chapter. Daniel told Daniel about the “commandment” to His son, Artaxerxes (Cambyses), took the was told that another exile is coming, that restore and build Jerusalem? Medo/Persian throne in 529 B.C., and ruled it would begin when the “people of the Why should the Jews have to wait another for seven years. Bishop James Ussher tells prince” destroy the city and the sanctu- 91 years (until 445 B.C.) for the “com- us that in 522 B.C., the Samaritans wrote ary, and be concluded in the days of the mandment?” The last verse of Daniel’s a letter asking Cambyses to “... forbid the “prince that shall come” — namely, the opening chapter tells us that the prophet “… further building of Jerusalem. They claimed Antichrist. continued even unto the first year of king it was a rebellious and wicked place which, There were six goals to be met during the Cyrus” (Dan. 1:21). This was the year of if it were rebuilt would never pay tribute to course of the seventy weeks: the “commandment.” It does not mean that the kings of Persia. Artaxerxes [Cambyses] 1. To finish the transgression — the viola- Daniel died that year. Quite the contrary, sent a letter forbidding the rebuilding of tion of the Law of the Sabbatical Years. it can only refer to the “commandment” Jerusalem until he should so order. The 2. To make an end of sins — to be ac- that Cyrus delivered to Zerubbabel at the Samaritans, encouraged by this reply, came complished by the sacrifice of God’s Son conclusion of the seventy-years exile. swiftly to Jerusalem and forced the Jews to for the sins of the world. A Jewish publication entitled, The Jewish stop building both the city and the Temple, 3. To make reconciliation for iniquity Time Line Encyclopedia: A Year-by-Year although Cyrus had expressly ordered them — God’s plan to offer salvation by grace History from Creation to the Present, to finish the temple. They stopped all work through faith. by Mattis Kantor, said of Cyrus: “Cyrus until the second years of the reign of Darius 4. To bring in everlasting righteousness became king and the power of the empire [Ahasuerus]” (James Ussher, TheAnnals of — the future return of Christ to establish moved to Persia. Cyrus immediately en- the World, p. 124). the Messianic kingdom. couraged the Jews of Babylon to return King Cambyses, son of Cyrus, was 5. To seal up the vision and prophecy to the land of Israel and to rebuild the mentally unstable. He married two of his — the final installment of the seventieth Temple. Over 40,000 people [49,697 to sisters (one of whom was Atossa, also week. be exact] returned with Zerubbabel (who called Vashti); killed his brother; conquered 6. To anoint the most Holy — the glorious was of the royal family), including Joshua Egypt; and then went stark raving mad. He appearing and official inauguration of the (the priest, a nephew of Ezra), Nehemiah, came back to Persia and died of an accident King of kings. and Mordecai, but the majority remained (a self-inflicted wound with his sword while behind” (p. 69). mounting his horse) in 522 B.C. The First Seven Weeks In the spring of 536 B.C., Zerubbabel and In 521 B.C., Darius (also called Artax- Now, let us look at the seven weeks: Joshua led the initial return. In September, erxes the Great and Ahasuerus) began his “Know therefore and understand, that they rebuilt the altar in Jerusalem. Although reign. The next year (520 B.C.), Haggai and from the going forth of the commandment the foundation stones of the second Temple Zechariah challenged the people to finish 34 Prophecy in the News Find us on the Internet -
  5. 5. Find us on the Internet - rebuilding the Temple and its construction they arrived in Jerusalem on the first day of were come again out of the captivity made resumed. In 518 B.C., Ahasuerus banished the fifth month. They rested for three days, booths, and sat under the booths: for since Vashti (also called Atossa, daughter of then weighed the gold and silver brought the days of Jeshua the son of Nun unto that Cyrus and former wife of Cambyses). In from Persia and stored the treasure in the day had not the children of Israel done so. 515 B.C. King Ahasuerus married Esther. Temple, along with other furnishings. And there was very great gladness. In the spring of that same year, the new When Ezra discovered that many of the “Also day by day, from the first day unto Jerusalem Temple was dedicated. In 510 men had intermarried with Gentile women the last day, he read in the book of the law of B.C., Haman was hung on the gallows he in the area, he demanded that they “put away God. And they kept the feast seven days; and had made for Mordecai. In 485 B.C., Aha- their heathen wives and the children whom on the eighth day was a solemn assembly, ac- suerus died, having reigned for 36 years. they had fathered” (Ussher). Over the next cording unto the manner” (Neh. 8:14-18). We are not told what happened to Esther three months, his edict was carried out. In my opinion, these “troublous times,” upon the death of Ahasuerus, but Vashti’s predicted by Gabriel, were not part of the son, Xerxes, may not have appreciated Nehemiah seven weeks, nor of the sixty-two weeks the woman who took his mother’s place. Though Ezra had instituted many reforms, that followed, but of the interim period However, if she had not been well treated, he did not fortify Jerusalem. The wall was between the two prophecies. Artaxerxes someone would have surely recorded it. still broken down and the gates burned. The and his wife, Damaspia, both died on the Xerxes, son of Ahasuerus and Vashti, city was in such ruin, it was difficult for a same day in 425 B.C., leaving the throne to ascended the Persian throne in 485 B.C., horse to find footing in the streets. The news his son, Xerxes, who reigned for one year. and was the richest monarch of his genera- of this reached Nehemiah in December (445 When he was “roaring drunk” on a festival tion. We are told that he launched a battle B.C.), at Susa, the winter quarters of the day, he was killed in his chamber while against Greece with 1,700,000 soldiers, Persian king. He was grieved at the report sleeping. His brother, Secundianus, born of 80,000 horses, plus camels, and chariots. and began to fast and pray that God would Aloguna, a Babylonian woman, murdered The Greeks never forgot this Persian intru- help him do something about it. him with the aid of a eunuch. sion. It took them 150 years to prepare for Three months later, around the first In 424 B.C., Secundianus (second son of vengeance and, eventually, Alexander, son of Nisan (444 B.C.), he took his turn as Artaxerxes) took over the throne. His army of Phillip of Macedonia, would take up the cupbearer to the king. But his countenance hated him for killing his brother. He also challenge to crush the Persian monarchy. caught the attention of King Artaxerxes and plotted to kill Ochus, his other brother, but In my opinion, the first seven “weeks” Queen Damaspia. Nehemiah told them of was killed instead. Ochus/Darius (third son of Gabriel’s prophecy was fulfilled in 485 the news about Jerusalem, and was given of Artaxerxes) lured Secundianus to meet B.C., with the death of King Ahasuerus, permission and supplies to go and rebuild him and make a treaty. In 423 B.C., Ochus husband of the famed Queen Esther. An the walls. In spite of opposition from two captured and executed him for the murder ominous cloud of suspense may have swept governors, Sanballat, the Horonite of Moab, of Xerxes. Ochus took the name Darius and over the Jewish community. Their future and Tobiah, the Ammonite, Nehemiah man- reigned for 19 years. He died in 404 B.C., may have seemed in peril. A period of aged to rebuild the walls in 52 days. The leaving the throne to his son, Arsicas. He “troublous times” (v. 25) descended upon workers worked with a trowel in one hand gave his other son, Cyrus, rulership over Jerusalem. and a sword in the other. the seacoast provinces of Ionia and Lydia, The wall was finished on the 25th day across the Aegean Sea, east of Greece. The 77-Year Interim Period of Elul, the sixth month. A week later, on There is a gap of 77 years between the sev- the Feast of Trumpets, the Jews came to The Sixty-Two Weeks enth and eighth weeks. The counting of the Jerusalem to hear Ezra read and expound Near the end of the reign of the Persian sixty-two weeks was resumed in 408/07 B.C., upon the Mosaic Law. It was an emotional king Ochus/Darius (423-404 B.C.), Judah the 21st Jubilee Year. During the time of this time for the Jews, and a time of great re- observed the Sabbatical Year of 409/08 B.C. gap, in 464 B.C., Artaxerxes (son of Xerxes) vival. For the next three weeks, the Jews This was the seventy-seventh year after the ascended the Persian throne. He sent Ezra kept the festivals of the High Holy Days. death of Ahasuerus, husband of the beloved with furnishings for the Temple in 457 B.C., Nehemiah wrote: and revered Queen Esther. This Sabbatical and, in 445 B.C., sent Nehemiah to rebuild “And they found written in the law which Year was followed by Judah’s twenty-first the walls and gates. Nehemiah built the walls the LORD had commanded by Moses, that Jubilee Year in 408/07 B.C. I think Gabriel of the fortified city in 52 days amidst threats the children of Israel should dwell in booths intended to resume the counting of the of war. These were the “troublous times” in the feast of the seventh month: next sixty-two Sabbatical cycles with this mentioned by Gabriel in Daniel 9:25. “And that they should publish and pro- Jubilee Year. claim in all their cities, and in Jerusalem, Bishop James Ussher wrote that the twen- Ezra saying, Go forth unto the mount, and fetch ty-first Jubilee was the last one seen by the According to most scholars, in 457 B.C., olive branches, and pine branches, and prophets of the Old Testament. The period Ezra, a priest and scribe (lawyer) skilled in myrtle branches, and palm branches, and of the prophets came to an end. Malachi, a the Mosaic Law, obtained permission from branches of thick trees, to make booths, as contemporary of Nehemiah was the last of King Artaxerxes (464-425 B.C.) to take it is written. the Old Testament prophets. The first-cen- seven counselors and a contingent of Jews “So the people went forth, and brought tury historian Flavius Josephus wrote: to resettle in Judah and establish a govern- them, and made themselves booths, every “From the death of Moses to Artaxerxes, ment based on their religion. This grant one upon the roof of his house, and in their king of Persia, who succeeded Xerxes, the once again allowed all the Jews to return. courts, and in the courts of the house of prophets wrote thirteen books. From Ar- On the first day of the first month, in 457 God, and in the street of the water gate, and taxerxes to our time, all things indeed have B.C., Ezra left Babylon with a large number in the street of the gate of Ephraim. been likewise committed to writing, but of Jews. After a journey of four months, “And all the congregation of them that not held in the same esteem as the former, Find us on the Internet - Prophecy in the News 35
  6. 6. Find us on the Internet - because the succession of the prophets one cut off, but not for himself” can only refer spreading of abominations he shall make after another has been uncertain” (Josephus, to the crucifixion. Jesus was not executed it desolate, even until the consummation, Against Apion, bk. 1, pp. 8). because He was guilty of some crime. All and that determined shall be poured upon Following Malachi, there were no bibli- of the charges leveled against Him were the desolate” (Dan. 9:27). cal books until Matthew. We have basically bogus. Pilate, a cynical and hardened Most scholars agree that this seven- 400 years of silence, with only Malachi’s procurator, could see through that. Jesus tieth week is the notorious Tribulation promise that Elijah would return to intro- died completely innocent. He died for the Period. The Roman Prince will feign to duce the Messiah. We need 434 years — the rest of us, not for Himself. Gabriel could be a peacemaker. He will launch an effort number of years in sixty-two Sabbatical not have been more clear, without tipping to restore peace — but where? Gabriel cycles. If Gabriel’s sixty-two “weeks” off the Sanhedrin Court. The crucifixion said the covenant would be with “many.” began in the Jubilee Year of 408/07 B.C., was divinely ordained and orchestrated However, I think the “covenant” that will which ushered in the “silent years,” then in order to pay for the sins of the world. be “confirmed” (possibly through military sixty-two Sabbatical cycles later would Jesus expressed it perfectly when He said, strength) will specifically concern the city bring us directly to the Sabbatical Year of “If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in of Jerusalem and its territory — the Holy A.D. 26/27, and the emerging ministries of this thy day, the things which belong unto Land. Let us not forget that the prophecy of John the Baptist and Jesus Christ. thy peace! but now they are hid from thine the seventy weeks is all about the desola- eyes” (Luke 19:42). tions of Jerusalem. That is what Daniel was Sir Robert Anderson praying about. And that was the subject ad- It is unlikely that Sir Robert Anderson’s The Prince that Shall Come dressed by Gabriel in this prophecy. dating, concluding with the Triumphal Gabriel gave Daniel a very important The future Antichrist will confirm or Entry, was correct. He didn’t take into ac- clue as to the lineage or background of the strengthen an existing covenant, setting the count the Sabbatical cycles — the “weeks.” Antichrist. He said that Jerusalem would be time-frame for its full deployment at seven Anderson wrote: destroyed by “the people of the prince that years. In order to fall within the framework “The Julian date of that 10th Nisan was shall come” (Dan. 9:26). Since we know of the seventieth week, it must begin in the Sunday the 6th April, A.D. 32. What then that the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and first year of a Sabbatical cycle and conclude was the length of the period intervening Herod’s Temple in A.D. 70, we may assume in a Sabbatical Year, seven years later. between the issuing of the decree to rebuild that the future Antichrist will be from one If the Antichrist follows Solomon’s solu- Jerusalem and the public advent of ‘Mes- of the royal families of the ancient Roman tion, he will seek to “divide the baby,” so siah the Prince,’ — between the 14th March, Empire. That could be a reference to Euro- to speak. It is possible that Jerusalem will 445 B.C., and the 6th April, A.D. 32? The pean royalty or, for that matter, anyone with remain a divided city, but this time, Israel interval contained exactly and to the very family ties to the royal bloodline. will be allowed to erect a sanctuary on the day 173,880 days, or seven times sixty-nine In Daniel 7, the little horn rises out of Temple Mount. According to Ezekiel, a wall prophetic years of 360 days, the first sixty- the fourth beast — the Roman Empire. will be built to make a separation between nine weeks of Gabriel’s prophecy” (The In Daniel 8, the little horn rises out of the the sanctuary and the “profane place” (Ezk. Coming Prince - 1895). he-goat — the Greek Empire. In Daniel 9, 42:20). In Revelation 11, John was told to He tried to squeeze 483 years into 477 Gabriel returned to the subject of the Roman measure the area of Jewish worship, but to years. To do this, he converted the 173,880 Empire as the source of the “prince that leave the Gentile area alone. days in 483 years (claiming they were 360 shall come.” How can the future Antichrist It is possible that current negotiations days each) into 477 solar years of 365.25 be both Roman and Greek? In Daniel’s over the destiny of Jerusalem will result in days each. Unfortunately, he failed to un- following chapters, we shall discuss this a divided city and a divided Temple Mount. derstand the Mosaic Law concerning Sab- subject further. Since the Moslems have already developed batical Years. He overlooked the “weeks.” Gabriel did not end the prophecy there. the southern half of the Temple Mount, The seventh year of the sixty-second The gap between the sixty-ninth and the with three mosques in the area, perhaps “week” ended in the year our Lord was seventieth weeks began with the appear- Israel will be given the northern half of the baptized, not when He made His Triumphal ance of the Messiah, but will conclude with compound for the restoration of Temple entry. Gabriel continued: three signs: a flood, desolations, and war liturgy. Some kind of Jewish presence “And after threescore and two weeks (Dan. 9:26). The world is still awaiting the has to be there, because Gabriel links the shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: flood, the desolations, and the war. We do abomination of desolation to the Antichrist and the people of the prince that shall come not know how or when these events will stopping “the sacrifice.” This will occur in shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; occur, but we can be certain that they will the middle of the Tribulation Period. and the end thereof shall be with a flood, happen before the beginning of the seven- and unto the end of the war desolations are tieth week. We cannot be dogmatic about The Desolation determined” (Dan. 9:26). these events, but it seems that the seventieth The term “desolation,” as used in “abom- Note that Gabriel said, hrvt ahrei, “after week could begin in the aftermath of some ination of desolation,” is a direct reference to …,” meaning that the death of our Lord great war. The next verse explains that the the Mosaic Law of the Sabbatical Years: would occur some time after the conclusion Roman Prince will “confirm” or strengthen “And I will bring the land into desola- of the sixty-second “week.” Furthermore, a covenant with many. tion: and your enemies which dwell therein Gabriel included the destruction of Jerusa- shall be astonished at it. lem in the same statement. Yet, we know The Seventieth Week “And I will scatter you among the hea- that the Romans destroyed Jerusalem in “And he shall confirm the covenant with then, and will draw out a sword after you: August of A.D. 70, some forty years after many for one week: and in the midst of and your land shall be desolate, and your the Savior’s crucifixion and resurrection. the week he shall cause the sacrifice and cities waste. The prophecy that the Messiah would “be the oblation to cease, and for the over- “Then shall the land enjoy her sabbaths, 36 Prophecy in the News Find us on the Internet -
  7. 7. Find us on the Internet - as long as it lieth desolate, and ye be in your centuries — until the Jews returned. [cuegh], and David my servant, so that I will enemies’ land; even then shall the land rest, In the Hebrew text of Leviticus 26:42, not take any of his seed to be rulers over the and enjoy her sabbaths. “Jacob,” which is normally spelled cegh seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob: for I “As long as it lieth desolate it shall rest; Yac-v, here is spelled cuegh Yacov with an will cause their captivity to return, and have because it did not rest in your sabbaths, added u vav (pronounced as an “o”). This mercy on them” (Jeremiah 33:25,26). when ye dwelt upon it” (Lev. 26:32-35). is the only time in the five Mosaic books “But fear not thou, O my servant Jacob, The Antichrist will fulfill this prophecy of where Jacob is spelled with a u vav. How- and be not dismayed, O Israel: for, behold, desolation when he commits the abomina- ever, Jeremiah used this spelling four times, I will save thee from afar off, and thy seed tion of desolation. Evidently, the Babylo- each of them referring to the days of the from the land of their captivity; and Jacob nian captivity did not end the “desolations” final Jewish return to their homeland. Com- [cuegh] shall return, and be in rest and at of the land. It has continued down through menting on this, some have suggested that ease, and none shall make him afraid” the centuries — until the return of the Jews the u vav stands for the Messiah, and that (Jeremiah 46:27). in the last century. Yet, even though the land Israel will return and the Messiah will come “The portion of Jacob [cuegh] is not like now has trees and crops, the Temple Mount to Jacob. Today, we await the Messiah. The them; for he is the former of all things: remains desolate of a Jewish sanctuary. four Jeremiah passages are: and Israel is the rod of his inheritance: the Why has Israel continued to suffer over the “Thus saith the LORD; Behold, I will LORD of hosts is his name” (Jer. 51:19). past two millennia? Wasn’t their Babylo- bring again the captivity of Jacob’s [cuegh] Why would Jacob be spelled in this par- nian captivity enough? Moses tells us: tents, and have mercy on his dwellingplac- ticular way? Moses and Jeremiah did not “And if ye will not yet for all this hearken es; and the city shall be builded upon her misspell his name. This is not the bungled unto me, then I will punish you seven times own heap, and the palace shall remain after work of some scribe? It seems that God more for your sins” (Lev. 26:18). the manner thereof” (Jeremiah 30:18). placed a cryptic message in these verses It seems that Gabriel was addressing this “Thus saith the LORD; If my covenant to help Israel understand the timing of its very subject when he spoke about a future be not with day and night, and if I have fulfillment. In each case, the context points “seventy weeks.” Going one step further, not appointed the ordinances of heaven to the revival of the nation in the latter days God may have multiplied those 490 years and earth; — when the Messiah (typified by the vav u) by seven! If so, the prophecy could be a “Then will I cast away the seed of Jacob will come to Jacob. ◆ reference to 490 Sabbatical cycles, or 70 Jubilees — 3,430 years. Counting from Joshua’s first Sabbatical Year in 1431/30 B.C., there have been 490 Sabbatical cycles (3,430 years) — leading up to the signing of the Israeli/Palestinian Peace Accord on September 13, 1993, just a few days before Israel’s 490th Sabbatical Year in 1993/94, which was followed by what should have been their 70th Jubilee in 1994/95. Did a Jewish messiah arrive on the scene that year? If so, where is he? In any case, he could not have been the right one. We are still waiting for Jesus to return. However, Watch Prophecy in the News while Israel awaits their messiah, Gabriel promised that the Antichrist will come first. Perhaps this “prince” will try to revive Internet Podcast on your big-screen TV with APPLE TV. the failed Peace Accord, divide the city, establish a Palestinian State, and deploy a multinational military garrison to keep Your computer is the center of your digital life. Your TV is the center the peace. of your entertainment life. But what if you want to watch Prophecy in the News? Why not put us on your TV and watch in comfort? We currently have The Mysterious u Vav in Jacob’s Name over 100 half-hour programs on prophetic subjects — all available through In Leviticus 26:40-42, we are told about iTunes with the click of a button. Apple TV comes in 40GB and 160GB models the final conclusion of the Jewish exile in starting at $299. Apple TV brings iTunes and more to the big screen. the end of days: Apple TV puts your iTunes library on your TV. And your digital photos “If they shall confess their iniquity … appear in high definition, so you can put on a big-screen slideshow. With “Then will I remember my covenant with up to 200 hours of video, 36,000 songs, or 25,000 photos at your command, Jacob, and also my covenant with Isaac, there’s always something good on TV — including Prophecy in the News. and also my covenant with Abraham will I remember; and I will remember the land” Just go to and check out their new (Lev. 26:40,42). This passage deals with Israel’s return lineup of Apple TVs, Ipods, Iphones, and computers. after the land has fulfilled its years of deso- There are over 25,000 podcasters on the Internet. lation; and history attests to the fact that the Promised Land was desolate for many Find us on the Internet - Prophecy in the News 37