DANIEL’S 70TH WEEK The Great Tribulation?
In the Gospel of Matthew verse 24, Jesus
is quoted as using the phrase " Great Tribulation," and in the book of Daniel verse 24 the "70 weeks of years" are introduced.
It is commonly agreed among most Biblical
Prophecy teachers that everything prophesied concerning the 70 weeks has already been fulfilled with the exception of the
last “week.” This is most often referred to as the 70th week of Daniel.
70TH WEEK CONCERNS WHO AND WHAT?
Daniel 9:24 says, "Seventy weeks are determined
upon thy people and upon thy holy city."
In the verse above, we see two things explained
- The 70 weeks concern only the people of Daniel (the Jews).
- The 70 weeks concern only the Holy City of Daniel (Jerusalem).
In Daniel 9:21-24 Gabriel is speaking to
Daniel referring to Daniel’s people [the Jews], and in Daniel 6:10 Daniel is praying towards [his city] Jerusalem).
This is a prophecy that concerns not only
the Jews and Jerusalem exclusively, but it concerns the Jews only when they are in possession of Jerusalem. That is the reason for the long gap between the 69th and 70th weeks. That
gap represents the time the Jewish people were not in possession of their land.
70 WEEKS DEFINED
"Seventy weeks are determined upon
thy people (Jews) and upon thy Holy city (Jerusalem).”
We understand from scripture that this
is not referring to a 7-day week (verse 25 makes that clear). Genesis 29:27-28 gives the key to understanding how long each
week is: "Fulfill her week...serve with me yet seven other years. Jacob did so and fulfilled her week." Thus we see that, according to Biblical definition, the 70 weeks in Daniel 9:24 are
70 weeks of years with each week equaling 7 years (70x7 equals a total of 490 years)
The prophecy we see in Daniel 9:24-26 Covers
the time period beginning with the commandment of Cyrus to rebuild the wall of Jerusalem to the time of the crucifixion of
Christ. Both history and Daniel 9:25 agree that the total time period from Cyrus’ proclamation to rebuild the wall to
the crucifixion of Christ equals 483 years (69 weeks).
But 70x7years=490 years. That leaves a
total of 7 years that has yet to be accounted for. This is additional proof of a pre-tribulational rapture—the focus
shifts from the Church to Israel 3 ½ years before the antichrist reveals himself, then he and spends another 3 ½ years in
brutal persecution of all who oppose him—equaling a total of 7 years.
The last seven years of prophecy in Daniel
9:24-27 have not yet been fulfilled, because the 70 weeks that have been determined upon the people of Daniel and his holy
city are for a certain purpose, and can only be fulfilled while the Jews are occupying their own land (remember the 70 weeks
are concerning the Jews only while they are in possession of Jerusalem).
PURPOSE OF THE 70 WEEKS
We have seen that the 70 weeks are dealing
only with Daniel's people (Jews) only while they are in possession of Daniel's holy city (Jerusalem). We have determined that
the 70 weeks are not 7-day weeks, but rather weeks of years with each week equaling 7 years.
In Daniel 9:24, 6 reasons are given as
the purpose for these 70 weeks. They are to:
- 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
Each of these purposes will be looked at
in detail in the following section.
Seventy weeks are determined
upon thy people and upon thy holy city to..."Finish the transgression..."
The word translated finish in Daniel
9:24 means literally to finish/restrict/hold back/prohibit, the first purpose of the seventy weeks is to restrict,
prohibit, hold back – finish (bring to an end) the transgression.
Is this speaking of the great transgression—Adam's
transgression? I don't believe it is, because this passage is dealing only with Daniel's people (the Jews) and Daniel's holy
city (Jerusalem—Daniel 9:24).
The transgression in Daniel 9:24 is referring
to Jewish transgression. Not Jewish sin in general but a specific Jewish transgression in particular—one that has a
beginning and must run its full course to the end.
The transgression referred to in Daniel
9:24, began with the rejection (on a national level) of Jesus Christ as the Messiah of Israel. First, the religious/political
leadership of that nation rejected him, then the common people rejected him (Luke 19:39-44, 47, 23:1, 21, 23).
Jesus told them that not only would they
reject him, the true Messiah, but when the false messiah came (Man of Sin/ antichrist/ Beast/ Assyrian) they would accept
him as being sent by God (John 5:43).
The transgression that began with the rejection
of Jesus Christ as Messiah (John 5:43 John 18:38-40 Mark 15:11-15) will reach its completion (full maturity) when the false
messiah is accepted by the nation of Israel. And if that transgression is not held back, restricted, brought to an end, finished,
utter planetary destruction will follow (Malachi 4:5-6). But God, in his mercy, will not allow that to happen.
Isaiah 28:14-18 gives a brief overview
of what happens at that time. The prophet foretold that Israel will enter into a disastrous treaty with this false messiah.
Isaiah calls it a covenant with hell and death. And the only thing that will ultimately save her is that her husband (God—her
maker) will disannul her agreement according to the Mosaic Law (Isaiah 54:4-8/Numbers 30:8-9).
The transgression, which had its beginning
just prior to the crucifixion of the true Messiah, will be brought to full maturity when Israel makes her covenant with hell
and death (7 year treaty with the antichrist). It will then be finished when the covenant with the false messiah is
disannulled. That means the consequences of the transgression will be restricted, held back and prohibited, because
Israel’s husband is going to see that the agreement made by his adulterous wife is disannulled—it shall not stand.
Seventy weeks are determined upon
thy people and upon thy holy city to....
"Make an end of sins..."
The word end, as used in Daniel
9:24, means to close up, to seal up, to stop sins. Remember, this passage is referring to Daniel's people (Jews)
and to Daniel's holy city (Jerusalem). It is Jewish sin that will be stopped.
According to Daniel 9:24, when the 70 weeks
are finished, and the consequences of the transgression have been prohibited, the Jewish sin of rejecting the true Messiah
will come to an end. Never again will the Jews deny Jesus Christ, the son of David is the anointed one of God. Their
eyes will be opened, and their ears will never more be dull of hearing.
Seventy weeks are determined
upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to..."make reconciliation for iniquity..."
It didn't take Christ 490 years to make
reconciliation for iniquity. He did it in a matter of hours (John 19:30 Colossians 1:20-22). The reconciliation brought about
by the death of Christ is available to all (both Jew and Gentile) and has been ever since his resurrection.
Yet we see here, in Daniel 9:24, the prophet
Daniel being told that it was going to take 490 years to complete the six items listed in that verse—one of which was
"to make reconciliation for iniquity."
The iniquity referred to in this passage
must be the national, Jewish, sin of rejecting the laws of God (which caused their dispersion in the first place), then his
Christ and finally topped off by entering into a covenant with a false Christ.
Israel's husband permanently prohibited
and brought an end to the consequences of this sin, opened his wife’s eyes, so she would never be unfaithful again,
disannulled her agreement with hell and death (knowing everything in advance, her husband/creator had inserted a loophole
into the Mosaic Law that he used to rescue his wayward wife—Isaiah 54:5/Numbers 30:8-9), and now she must be reconciled.
We see a beautiful picture of this in Zechariah
3:1-5. Joshua, who was a high priest of Israel during the prophet Zechariah's life (Zechariah 3:1 Haggai 2:2), is shown standing
before the angel of the Lord clothed with filthy garments.
Joshua, in this passage, is representing
the nation he is high priest of at the time—Israel.
The Lord said, "Take away the filthy garments...
I have caused thine iniquity ("The Transgression" John5:43, Isaiah 28:14-18) to pass from thee (we are reconciled)
This is a national reconciliation
not a personal/ individual one, and it is a future reconciliation. Now, in this time, all individuals (Jew or gentile)
can be reconciled to God by faith in Jesus Christ who made peace for us and reconciled us by the blood of his cross (our sins
and iniquities are covered and not imputed to us).
This scene (in Zechariah 3) will not happen
until after the time of Jacob's Trouble—The Day of Atonement—is completed.
Seventy weeks are determined upon
thy people (Jews) and upon thy holy city (Jerusalem) to... "Bring in everlasting righteousness..."
The bringing in of everlasting righteousness
has specifically to do with the Jewish people (remember who and what the 70 weeks are for). When Jesus physically returns
to this earth, a few changes will be made. Israel will become the head nation, and Jerusalem will become the capital city
of the world. Isaiah 2:4 tells us that “Out of Zion shall go forth the Law (the earth, during Christ's reign, will not
be a lawless place) and the Word of the Lord from… Jerusalem.”
Seventy weeks are determined upon
thy people (Jews) and upon thy holy city (Jerusalem) to... "Seal up the vision and prophecy..."
The word translated, seal, means
just that—close up/ seal/ stop.
It was the only the Jews who were the oracles
of God. It was the Jews through whom Christ descended, and it was the Jews who prophesied of him. We were given the Word of
God through the Jewish prophets and the Jewish apostles. It will be during the 70 weeks, spoken of in Daniel 9:24, that prophecy,
and vision, will be sealed up—stopped—permanently. There will be no more.
We are told, in 1 Corinthians 13:8, 12,
that when that which is perfect is come (Jesus’ 2nd coming), knowledge
(learning), tongues and prophecy will cease. There will be no more bits and pieces, no more line upon line, here a
little, there a little (Isaiah 28). We will obtain, at that time, the whole. We will be given the missing pieces of the puzzle
that learning, tongues and prophecy dole out, a little at a time, for us now.
By the end of 490th year (the length of
the time allotted to Daniel's people for the 6 purposes of God, for them, to be accomplished) all vision and prophecy
will be ended forever.
The scriptures say that anyone who prophesies
during the reign of Christ will be executed. There will be no more prophets after Christ returns physically and sets
up his Kingdom here on earth (Zechariah 3:2-5).
And Christ must return by the end
of the 490th year in order for Daniel 9:24 to hold true. Most everything contained in the 24th verse is dealing with the very
end of the seventy weeks—i.e., the 70th week. The last week of the 490 years is the 70th week.
Seventy weeks are determined upon
thy people (Jews) and upon thy holy city (Jerusalem) to... "Anoint the most Holy..."
Anoint means to rub oil on, to consecrate.…
If we have not been convinced that Christ
must return before the end of the seventieth week, purpose number 6 confirms it. No one, but Jesus Christ, can be called the
The anointing of the Most Holy completes
the 6 purposes of the 70 weeks. Jesus Christ is presently our savior, friend, brother, high priest and captain. He will soon
be our reigning King.
Let's not forget that Daniel 9:24
is dealing with Daniel's people (Jews) and Daniel's holy city (Jerusalem).
Israel rejected God from being their king
while the prophet Samuel was judge. God anointed Saul and then David (from whom the man Christ Jesus descended) to
become king over Israel. However, the man Christ Jesus was never anointed as King when he came the 1st time.
When he returns, the man, Christ Jesus,
the seed of David, will reign, and Israel will once again have their God reigning as King (Colossians 2:9).
Jesus qualifies for succession to the throne
on both counts as man—and as God.
The 69th week of Daniel ended
when the leadership, followed by the general population, of Israel rejected Jesus Christ as their Savior and King. At that
time, God stopped dealing with Israel on a national level (which he had done from the time he created the nation until that
point [Israel is the only nation ever to be created by God—Isaiah 43:15]).
In the Bible, Israel is called God's wife.
She became a widowed wife when she killed her husband, but since he did not stay dead, her widowhood will be nullified along
with her agreement with hell and death (Isaiah 28 & 54).
Daniel’s people are presently in
possession of their city, but the 70th week has not yet begun. In order for that to happen, this present age (dispensation)
of grace must be consummated when Christ comes in the air for his bride. At that point, God will once again begin dealing
with his people Israel on a national level.
That period of time (as we will show later
in this work) will last for precisely 7 years.