Daniel 9: 24-27
The chronological references for this study will use the "AH"
system (ano hominis) to indicate the years that have passed since the creation
of Adam, i.e., the year of man, which is designated as year 1 AH. Adam
thus died in the year 930 AH and the years are calculated according to
the various chronological notations throughout the bible, the accuracy
of which is not a concern of this present work.
The reference to BC dates will be according to the commonly accepted system
based on Ptolemy's king list which although is inaccurate, will be utilized
to facilitate an orientation to the events referenced.
2. The subject of this prophecy is the nation and the people of Israel.
The occasion for this passage is the DESOLATION of the sanctuary as was its
condition in 538 BCE. The desolation of course, extended to the city of
Jerusalem and the entire nation.
The cause of the desolation is THE transgression of the nation of Israel;
the people as a whole (not everyone, for there was always a core or remnant
of faithful believers scattered throughout the nation).
Daniel 8:12, "because of transgression (pesha) the host will be given over."
Perhaps even at verse 13, "the transgression of (that causes) desolation,"
could refer to the action of the nation.
At Daniel 9:17, Daniel's prayer reflects the condition of the sanctuary.
"Let Your face shine on Your desolate sanctuary." ShAmām
as an adjective describing the CONDITION of the sanctuary. This is a passive
At Verse 18, "see our desolations and the city that is called by Your name."
This is ShAmām
as a qal participle, and still describes a PASSIVE condition.
But it is plural here and includes not only the sanctuary, but the city of
Jerusalem and the entire nation as well.
Almost every occurrence of this word group has a PASSIVE idea in its use.
This is especially seen in connection with Israel under divine discipline
that extends into the last days. Lev. 26:31-32.
God acts and the sanctuaries and land become in a PASSIVE condition of being
Verse 31, "I will make your sanctuaries desolate."
Verse 32, "and I will make the land desolate."
as a hiphil perfect/consecutive.
In 538 BCE, the desolated condition of the sanctuary and the nation under
divine discipline, then becomes a backdrop for this prophecy of the end
times. The decree to restore and rebuild is made in the first year of Cyrus;
536 BCE (3589 AH). The temple will be built in yr. 32 of Darius Hystaspes;
490 BCE (3635 AH).
Likewise, the activities of Antiochus Ephiphanes are seen as a shadow of
what the final world ruler will do.
In 171 BCE, Antiochus removed the high priest Onias and instituted a false
priesthood which included removal of the daily sacrifices. Dan. 8:11-12.
That will last for 2300 days or about 6 1/2 years.
During this time, in 167 BCE, the temple will be totally desolated by
Antiochus as he places the abomination of desolation in the sanctuary. Dan.
8:11 with 11:31 (ShAmām
as a poel participle) and 1 Mac. 1:44-54.
At Daniel 8:13, it is called "the transgression of desolation."
It could be describing the activity of Antiochus as "the transgression
that desolates." Or, as mentioned above, it could refer to the
transgression of the nation that results in the desolation as at verse 12,
"because of transgression."
On December 25, 164 BCE, the priesthood will be restored and the temple cleansed through the Maccabbean revolt under Judas Maccabeus. There is a hint of
this at Daniel 11:32, "but the people who know their God will display
strength and take action."
However, in the prophecy of Daniel 9:26-27, the temple will be destroyed in
70 AD. The people of Israel will be scattered throughout the world and their
nation, their cities and their temple will be left in a condition of
DESOLATION. This is as Jesus said at Luke 21:24, "and they will fall by the
edge of the sword, and will be led captive into all the nations; and
Jerusalem will be trampled underfoot by the Gentiles until the times of the
Gentiles be fulfilled."
In Daniel 9:27, a covenant will be made that allows for the practice of the
Jewish sacrificial system. We know this because when the covenant is broken,
the sacrifices are ceased. That means that sometime between its destruction
in 70 AD, and the cessation of the sacrifices, the people of Israel must be
back in the land of Palestine, inhabiting Jerusalem and have a functional
temple in Jerusalem.
At the present time, while there is a recognized nation of Israel in
Palestine, and they are living in Jerusalem, the people are still under
discipline from God and there is no temple in Jerusalem. Thus, the people
and the sanctuary are still in a condition of DESOLATION.
I hold to the view that the temple will be rebuilt in connection with the
covenant that allows for the practice of the sacrificial system, even while
the nation is still in unbelief and under a condition of discipline from
The condition of DESOLATION will continue, and be aggravated by the beast of
Revelation 13, until Jesus sets up His kingdom after the battle of
In Daniel 9:26-27 the word DESOLATION(s) occurs three times, and each time
it refers to Israel in a condition of DESOLATION.
1. In 586 BCE the city and the temple were
desolated by Nebuchadnezzar.
2. It will be restored through the return to the land in 536 BCE and the
building of a new temple in 490 BCE.
3. In 171 BCE the temple will again be desecrated by Antiochus and remain so
for 2300 days. It will be restored on December 25 in 164 BCE.
4. In 70 AD the temple will again be desecrated and remain so until a new
temple is built 32 months after the start of the millennial kingdom.
Verse 24a - For the people of Israel and
1. Seventy weeks: shebha = a seven
A. a verb: to seven something, to swear or confirm an oath.
B. plural noun: sevens; therefore 70 sevens.
C. It does not mean "week" but seven. The subject can be days, months, sons, cows, or years, etc.
D. Daniel thought that the 70 years of captivity to Babylon would usher
in the promises of Jeremiah 30-33.
E. But Gabriel says no: The nation must first have a shot at another 490
years to fulfill her purpose as God's priestly agent.
1. The 70 years Babylonian captivity was because during
the previous 490 years, the nation failed to honor the sabbatical year. 2 Chronicles 36:20-21
2. In fact, 70 sabbatical years (490 years) were violated from Saul; the (biblical) year 3024 AH until 3520 AH
(1102 BCE - 606 BCE). (there is a 6 year period of usurpation by a non-Davidic king which does not count as the nation's years.)
3. So, from the return from Babylon in 536 BCE, God is giving Israel 490 more years to fulfill their
commission. "For your people and your holy city."
4. The purpose of those 490 years is to bring Messiah on the scene; have Him accomplish His work; and then
spread the message of spiritual and "physical" peace to the world.
5. But the nation rejects the Messiah when He comes on the scene and as a result, the Messiah is cut off out of the
land of the living for whom the stroke was due (Isaiah 53:8).
6. The Messiah was rejected before the nation could fulfill its priestly purpose.
This is called THE TRANSGRESSION. As a result the nation was temporarily replaced by another nation;
a spiritual nation showing forth the fruits of the
kingdom. (Matthew 21:43).
7. The Messiah was cut off at the end of 483 years (the 69th "seven") which ended in 30 AD when the Messiah was
formally presented to the nation in the week before the crucifixion.
8. This interrupted God's plan for the nation and it and the temple were
destroyed in 70 AD. As a result, the final function of the nation as the
representative of God is postponed until the nation is restored to relationship with the God who created her.
9. "The gifts and calling of God are irrevocable." Thus, God will restore the nation and fulfill for her the
promises originally given to Abraham at Genesis 12:1-3
and which were subsequently extended to Isaac, Jacob, and ultimately to David
and Solomon, and through them, to the entire nation of Israel.
10. The 70th week itself is not the completion of God's plan for Israel but the final 7 years "before" that plan is
reinstituted during Messiah's earthly kingdom.
Verse 24b - The 6-fold purpose of Israel's future.
These 6 factors are not all fulfilled within the parameters of the 490
years. Some are fulfilled BASED ON the completion of the 490 years.
1. Three things that deal with the past: three issues for sin.
Israel's national sin (pesha); personal sin (chatath) and the
sin nature (iniquity,
A. To finish the transgression:
1. Finish: kAlAh = complete, bring to an end,
2. THE transgression: pesha + definite article (the); the verb means to rebel
or go beyond a "limit."
a. With "the" = a specific
b. Cf. "sins" and "iniquity" which have no definite
article and indicates a "general" idea.
c. This refers to a "specific" transgression which is common
to the whole nation as a "national" sin.
3. It is THE sin of rejecting Divine policy for them as
of the Messiah. This was their failure throughout most of the nation's
history, but it culminated by the rejection of the Messiah when
he came to the nation in 30 AD. Isaiah 53:1-4, 8; Hosea 5:14-15; 6:1-3; Matthew
23:33-39; Luke 19:41-44 (Isaiah 30:9-11, with application to the Messiah
4. The oppression by Antiochus Ephiphanes in 171 BCE is a shadow of the
oppression under Rome and the oppression from the beast. In that
context, the word TRANSGRESSION (pesha) is the cause for divine
discipline administered by Antiochus. Daniel 8:12, "because of
transgression, the host will be given over along with the regular
The only other place that transgression (pesha) is used in Daniel is at
verse 8:13, where it still seems to refer to the nation's sin. "the
transgression of desolation so as to allow both the Holy Place and the
host to be trampled."
This could refer to the transgression of Antiochus. But the context favors
that it is something that the nation has done to bring about the
desolation. Especially at verse 24 where all 6 purposes for the 70 weeks
deal with Israel first and foremost.
Even though Daniel 9 was written BEFORE the transgression of 8:12-13
will historically occur, verses 9:24ff deal with something that looks to
the far distant end times future. The events surrounding the Antiochus
invasion serve as a shadow of what will come during the tribulation.
5. The end of the 70 weeks will see the end of Israel's national rebellion
and their rejection of the Messiah. Zechariah 12:10; Isaiah 59:20; Hosea
5:14-15; Dan. 12:7
B. To make an end of sins: This is not limited to just Israel, but refers to
all that is accomplished for the world through God's plan for Israel. "in
Abraham, all the nations of the world will be blessed."
Salvation is "to the Jew first, BUT also to the Gentiles."
Since God has chosen to revolve His plan of re-demption around Israel (even
we of the church are Abe's seed, and heirs according to the promise), it is
appropriate that the end of sins refers to others than just Israel.
1. Make an end: tAmam - finish, complete
There is a variation in the text for the verb in this clause.
In various places in the Hebrew Bible there are two "traditions" for
viewing the text.
First, there is what is written in the actual text. This is called the
kethib(v), "what is written."
Second, there is the oral tradition which is what is actually verbalized
when the text is read.
This is called, the kere, "what is read."
At Daniel 9:24, "make an end of sin," has such a textual variant for the
The "what is read" has the verb tamam. It means bring to completion, or
make an end.
The "what is written" has the verb, chatham. It means to seal and
indicates a fulfillment of the thing that is the object of the verb,
which in this case is "sins" in the plural.
The fact that "sins" are brought to an end during the time period of the
70 weeks through the Messiah's redemption advent lends strong support
for the verb, tamam. All sins were paid for by Christ's sacrifice on the
cross, and that paved the way for total forgiveness of sins for those
who trust in Him. They are thus, "taken away" or "ended" for those who
This is indeed, what the of the Bible indicates. Acts 10:43, "of Him all
the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in
Him receives forgiveness of sins."
This is a reality for those of the church, looking back to the sacrifice
on the cross (Heb. 10:12-18).
And to those of the Old Testament, looking forward to the sacrifice on
the cross (Isaiah 53).
And to those individuals of the nation of Israel who believe after
Christ's second advent (Jer. 31:34).
With this in mind, in his commentary on Daniel, John Walvoord explains the choice of the
verb tamam over chatham in his footnote at page 221.
-The King James Version bases its translation "to make an end" on the
Kere reading (the hiphil infinitive of tamam, meaning, "to finish,
complete, perfect.) All the ancient versions follow this reading with
the exception of Theodotion. The Kethib reading, followed by Keil, is
the qal infinitive of chatam meaning "to seal, to seal up." The textual
confusion is due to easy interchange of letters. Since chatom "to seal
up (the vision)," is found in the next line, it seems plausible to
suppose that the scribe responsible for the Kethib reading was
influenced by this word. In short, the Kere reading is the preferred
reading, as followed in the King James Version, that is, "to make an
end" or "to finish sins."-
2. sins: chatath - a missing of the goal, a miss-step plural, to refer
to "sins" in general -personal sins.
3. To bring to an end - takes place in 3 stages but it all depends on the
stage which is the sacrifice on the cross.
a. The cross
b. The 2nd advent (this includes the dealing with sin that occurs at the
end of the Mil Kingdom.
c. The last judgment
C. To make atonement (covering) for iniquity:
1. atonement: kAphar (piel infinitive) = to cover over, to make satisfaction.
Used in Leviticus 16 for the day of
atonement. This is another aspect of
Messiah's work on the cross.
2. Iniquity: Awōn - act of departure or
perversion from what is a natural
design or pattern. The condition of
guilt because of one's nature.
3. This word is used consistently for the "sin nature" that resides
in all men. Either the "nature" itself or the expressions of
independence that emanate from that sin nature.
4. This then represents divine judgment on the corrupt "sin"
nature of man, which was initiated on the cross and will be ultimately
via the resurrection of the righteous.
D. By the culmination of these 490 years, the failures of the past will
be resolved. Isaiah 53:5-6, 8; 40:1-2 (context).
1. national sin
2. personal sin
3. sin nature
E. And since the failures of the nation of Israel are used to represent
the failures of the entire human race; and since through the promises to
Abraham (Genesis 12:1-3) the entire human race potentially shares in the spiritual
blessings promised (Galatians 3:7-9), the universal provision to solve
the sin problem
is also in view.
2. Three things that deal with the future of Israel.
A. To bring in everlasting righteousness:
1. bring in: bō, in the hiphil infinitive = cause to come in,
2. THE righteousness of perpetuity: tsedeq ōlAm a specific kind of
righteousness which will avail to the human race and last forever.
3. It first refers to the imputation of God's righteousness on those who
trust in Messiah after His sacrifice on the cross. (Isaiah 53:11; 2 Corinthians
This is a permanent imputation of
divine righteousness on these believers which qualifies them for life with
God for all eternity.
4. But it also and primarily refers to the righteous reign of the Messiah which will
fill the earth with Divine righteousness.
Isaiah 9:6-7; 11:3-5; 16:5; 33:5;
Isaiah 32:16-17; Ezekiel 17.22-24;
Jeremiah 33:15-16; 23:5-6; Isaiah 4:2; 11:1;
Zechariah 3:8; 6:12-13;
B. To seal up vision and prophecy:
1. Seal up: chAtham - speaks of fulfillment or completion. Something
will be brought to completion by Messiah's fulfillment of Old Testament
prophecy. Through the Messiah's historical arrival and career, God will
fulfill His plan for Israel and for the entire human race.
2. vision: chAzōn - specific revelation concerning the spiritual
purpose of Israel as the representative of Messiah and how Israel
relates to the rest of the world. It therefore includes God's revelation
to the church through the apostles and prophets.
The completion of this revelation is when the promised earthly Davidic
kingdom is established.
Thus, the final factor in the list is the anointing of the millennial
temple; the most holy.
3. and prophet: nAbhiy (not prophecy - but prophet). This refers to the
instrument of the vision. The primary subject of the prophets' ministry
has always been the two advents of the Messiah. It therefore includes
God's revelation to the church through the apostles and prophets. The
ministry of these prophets will be completed once the Messiah returns at
His judgment advent and establishes the earthly kingdom.
4. So this refers to total fulfillment of all Messianic teachings that
have come through all of history.
It also indicates that there will be no further visions or prophets once
God's specific revelation is completed.
The final prophets will be the two witnesses of Rev. 11:3-6.
C. And to anoint the most holy:
1. anoint: mAshach - means to anoint, but is used to indicate a dedication
of something to a specific purpose. In this case, dedication to spiritual
2. The most holy: qōdesh
qAdAshiym - used throughout Leviticus and Exodus
in reference to many aspects of the Levitical code. utensils, altars, offerings,
3. So, in view of the context, it is clear that this phrase refers to the
new temple and sanctuary which will be established by the Messiah in His earthly kingdom.
4. According to Dan. 8:14 with 17, 19, and 23-26, this is the
restoration of the Holy Place.
V. 14, "the qAdosh will be made righteous."
The verb is tsAdaq as a niphal perfect/consecutive.
The niphal receives the action, thus "shall be made righteous." This
will happen in the millenniel temple, 2300 days after its desolation.
This will be completed about 32 months into the kingdom.
See details at: Daniel 8
D. Thus, at the culmination of the 490 year period, Messiah will fulfill
all the promises related to the great kingdom of righteousness.
1. Messiah's righteous reign
2. fulfillment of all prophecy
3. establishment of the new perfect temple
Verse 25a - The beginning of the 70 weeks:
1. So: introduces details of the chronology of the 490 year
2. You are to know: yAda - basic perception
3. And discern: sAkal - gain insight. This indicates
concentration and application to the frame of reference.
A. Take new information and correlate with previously learned information
and arrive at divine viewpoint orientation.
B. Proper growth process is always necessary to accurately understand divine policy for history and for one's personal
C. What kind of year? That involves an independent study, but the conclusion
is that it is the "normal" Jewish year of 354 days and not the
prophetic year of 360 days. (Every 3rd year there was a 13th month added
to bring the system up to par with the solar year)
4. That from the issuing of a decree: dAbhAr = a word
A. From: min - preposition to indicate the starting point for designation
of a specific time period.
B. A decree "in general" (no def. article).
C. But God's plan for His people is always verifiable from His word, so
for Daniel, there should be no guess work required to determine what decree
is in view.
5. To restore and rebuild Jerusalem:
A. Jerusalem includes both the city and the temple.
B. Restore and rebuild includes both the city and the temple.
C. Two words are used to emphasize a return to a former status.
D. It is the intent of Gabriel that Daniel should have clear understanding
of God's timetable.
E. Therefore, Daniel must be aware of the
decree in view.
1. He either knows now what decree is in view.
2. Or if not, he will be alive and aware of it when it comes.
F. Daniel's frame of reference which is to be used, contains the information
found in Isaiah 44:28 and 45:1, 13. A prophecy that Cyrus would issue such
a decree as is in view.
G. Daniel will also be alive two years from "now" (the prophecy
was received in 538 BC [3587 AH]) when Cyrus will actually fulfill the
prophecy by issuing a decree.
Daniel 10:1; Ezra 1:1-4
H. Daniel is about 88 years old.
1. Daniel 1:1: 605 BC (3520 AH)
2. Daniel 1:4: youths = a young man, 20 or younger
3. 3520 AH + 68 years of captivity = 3587 AH (538 BC)
4. 20 years old + 68 years = 88 years old.
I. The context demands that Daniel either knows now of the decree or
will be alive when it is given.
J. Only one decree was prophesied. Cyrus. Even if another decree is given
later, if Daniel is not alive, that decree is no issue.
K. The next decree of Persia is given by Darius Hystaspes in his 2nd year - 3605 AH (520 BC) - Ezra 6:1-12 (18 years later).
Daniel would be about 106 years old if alive. And Daniel is not mentioned
as alive in the book of Ezra.
L. The decree of Darius is simply a confirmation of the decree issued by
Cyrus (Ezra 6:1-5) in 3589 AH (536 BC) and has no merit itself.
M. There are no other decrees issued that are pertinent to the facts before
1. Ezra 7:11-26: Artaxerxes (actually, still Darius) year 7. 515 BC
(3610 AH) A decree to all Jews that they are free to go to Jerusalem and
worship. With the decree are financial provisions for sacrifices and other needs.
2. Nehemiah 2:4-8: Artaxerxes (Darius), yr 20, (502 BC, 3623 AH).
a. Nehemiah asks to go Jerusalem to rebuild it
since the task has been incomplete since 536 BC.
b. The request is granted, but not in the form of a decree.
c. The king issues letters of credit to Nehemiah, not a decree to build,
since permission to build had already been established years before in 536 BC (3589 AH).
N. But it is contended that Cyrus did not fulfill the prophecy. And that
the decree was not issued until year 20 of Artaxerxes, which they claim
is not Darius and is the year 445 BC.
1. The context shows no evidence of a decree, just
simple letters of
2. 445 BC would be 93 years after 538 BC when Daniel was 88 years old.
So in 445 BC, he would be 181 which is very unlikely (besides the fact
that he is not mentioned).
3. But, it is necessary for Daniel to be alive at the issuing of the decree,
or to have specific knowledge of the decree.
4. Therefore, it is not logical for this event in 445 BC to fulfill the requirements of Gabriel's message.
5. A thorough study on "who" issued the decree as it relates
to the Persian king lists, the Jewish king list for Persia, and the Ptolemic
king list for Persia will resolve the apparent problem concerning where
the 483 years can fit. It is resolved by accepting the Jewish king list for the Persian Empire instead of Ptolemy's
king list which is highly suspect as to its accuracy. What it amounts to
adjusting the "BC" dates by 82 years in order to accommodate the "true" biblical chronology which "must"
begin with the decree of Cyrus.
THE DETAILS for the chronology are presented at the end of this chapter.
Verse 25b - Until Messiah a Prince
1. Until: adh - indicates an ending of a time period as it is used in conjunction with the "min" above.
2. Messiah: mAshiyach - with no def. article (the) anointed one (used 38 times)
A. used of the priests: Leviticus 4:3, 5, 16: 6:22
B. The king: 27 times
C. the believer: 2 times - 1 Chronicles 16:22; Psalm 105:15
D. Cyrus: Isaiah 45:1
E. Messiah: 1 Samuel 2:10; Ps. 2:2: 132:17; Daniel 9:25-26
3. Prince: nAgiydh - without a definite article (the).
A. The two words together refer to a specific person who is an "anointed"
prince. But these are 2 nouns and should therefore be rendered as "Messiah
B. The word nAgiydh is difficult here. It occurs 3 times in Daniel. And
yet, each time it seems to be referring to someone different.
1. At Daniel 11:22, the prince of the covenant is certainly an historical
reference to Onias who was the high priest murdered during the oppression
from that "despicable person" (v.21), Antiochus Ephiphanes.
2. Here in Daniel 9:25 we have a prince who is specifically noted as "anointed
one" or Messiah. In addition, at v.26a, he is specifically mentioned again as "the anointed one."
3. And v. 26, we have the people of the prince who is to come. The literal
reference cannot be mistaken here, in that it takes us forward to the Roman
army which destroys the city and the temple in 70 AD. There is no other historical reference to which this could
4. And in the context of Daniel we have 2 "princes" who have
a dominant role in the book, but neither one is referred to as a prince
except here in Daniel 9:25-26.
a. The Messiah, viewed at
Daniel 7:13,14, 27.
b. And the political oppressor who is viewed at, Daniel 7:23-26; 8:23-25
5. Furthermore, it should be obvious that it is not "the people
of 'Messiah Prince'" who will destroy the city and the temple, but
the people of a "human" ruler.
There is a theory that "an anointed one, a
prince," does not refer to Jesus the Messiah, and should not be translated as
"unto Messiah the Prince."
The person seen here is neither a PRIEST nor a
PRINCE, but he is a priest-king. The Old Testament does not show us anyone who
shall be BOTH priest AND king except the one who is the promised Savior. Zech.
6:11-13; Ps. 110:1-4. Melchizedek, who is indeed, both king and priest
(Genesis 14:18-19), is a person from the ancient past and is not a candidate
for fulfilling this prophecy. In fact, the status of Melchizedek and the
prophecy of Psalm 110:4 confirms that the one in view here is indeed, the
The lack of the definite article is not a problem, for the prophecy is not
looking to THE anointed prince, but speaks rather of an “unknown” SOMEONE who
will be demonstrated to be both priest and king via fulfillment of the various
and many prerequisites found in the Old Testament and known by the people.
This is the one spoken of so much in the book of Isaiah and the Psalms, that
there can be no misunderstanding as to the nature of the Messianic hope that
was the foundation for Israel’s theology and the expectation of the faithful
among the people. Surely the dozens of Messianic passages in Isaiah need not
be adduced at this time.
And all the prophets who prophesied about the
Messiah searched and investigated the details of the promise in order to
determine the arrival time of the Messiah (christos – the anointed one). But
it was revealed to them that they were speaking of a future generation; “you”
as Peter writes, referring to the generation of the first century AD. 1 Peter
SPECIFICALLY, for Daniel, there was previous
revelation given to him that pointed to “an anointed one, a prince,” Whom
Daniel understood to be the promised Messiah proclaimed by the previous
Verse 13, ”I was watching in the night visions, “And with the clouds of
the sky one like a son of man was approaching. He went up to the Ancient of
Days and was escorted before him.”
This is a clear reference to
Psalm 110:1, “The LORD said to my Lord, ‘Sit at My right hand, until I make
Your enemies a footstool for Your feet.’”
This is a specific prophecy of the ascension of Jesus to the Father’s right
hand after His crucifixion and resurrection. The title “Son of man” should
connect the reader with Psalm 2:1-12, where this COMING ONE is designated as
the LORD’S Anointed one at verse 2, and at verse 7, “you are My Son,” and at
verse 12, as THE SON.
Verse 14, “To him was given
ruling authority, honor, and sovereignty. All peoples, nations, and language
groups were serving him. His authority is eternal and will not pass away. His
kingdom will not be destroyed.”
Here the issue of RULING
AUTHORITY is established, which clearly aligns with the term, PRINCE at Daniel
Psalm 2:4-10 shows us this factor with the word, KING, and the fact that He
will inherit the nations.
At Daniel 8:25, we are told
that an EVIL king will arise and oppose the “prince of princes.” Although a
different Hebrew word is used here (sar), it still speaks of ruling authority
and would add to Daniel’s frame of reference concerning the coming Messiah.
The great Messianic prophecy at Isaiah 9:6, would
be well known by Daniel.
”For a child has been born to us, a son has been given to us. He
shoulders responsibility and is called: Extraordinary Strategist, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”
Again, “Prince of peace”
communicates the KINGLY nature of this coming Messiah.
The word for prince, is sar, as at Daniel 8:25, but the CONNECTION remains the
same; there are clear and specific prophecies of one to come, who is “an
anointed one, a prince.”
Let's go back even further: At
1 Samuel 2:10 we have a very clear reference to the Anointed One; the Messiah
in Hannah's beautiful prayer.
will judge the ends of the earth;
And he will give strength to his king,
And exalt the horn of his anointed (Messiah).
Ezekiel prophesied of this
FUTURE RULER, but used different vocabulary. Ezek. 21:25-27.
Speaking of the destruction of Jerusalem in THREE stages (605 BCE, 597 BCE and
586 BCE), the judgment is pronounced on the kingly line of Judah, which will
be removed and NOT be restored until the promised Messiah COMES.
”A ruin, a ruin, a ruin, I shall make it. This also will be no more, UNTIL He
COMES, whose right it is; and I shall give it to Him.”
There was no king sitting on the throne of David from that time (586 BCE)
onward, and will not be until Jesus returns and takes His rightful place as
David’s princely and priestly heir.
CLAIM that since the Daniel 9 passage is not quoted in the New Testament, its
reference to the Messiah is suspect, is an invalid claim.
Many of these Isaiah passages
(Isaiah 9:6, for example) and from the other prophets are NOT QUOTED in the
New Testament, but we do not question their applicability to Jesus. Many times
there are GENERAL references to some passages, but we have similar GENERAL
references to the time line given to Daniel. The argument that such an
important passage SHOULD be quoted to give it validity is a very relative and
Genesis 3:15, the FIRST and KEY Messianic promise is not quoted in the New
FURTHERMORE, and perhaps even more compelling
that “an anointed one, a prince” is to be viewed as the coming Messiah, is
that in verse 24, TWO specific factors must be connected DIRECTLY with that
coming SAVIOR. At Daniel 9:24, of the 6 future resolutions that will come
through the fulfillment of the 490 years. Numbers TWO and THREE obtain ONLY
through the sacrificial death and subsequent resurrection of the Messiah.
Accordingly, it is most natural, and perhaps even NECESSARY, that the prophecy
include a specific reference to the arrival of The Messiah; the sin bearer of
Daniel was shown a time line that has pertinence
NOT TO 70 AD, directly, but specifically to the arrival of the promised
Messiah. Many of the faithful believers at the time of Christ’s birth KNEW
that it was time.
The term, “waiting for the kingdom of God
(heaven),” indicates that these believers knew that the time was at hand. Simeon was such a one who is described as
“expectantly looking for the comfort of Israel.”
John’s message was “the time is fulfilled and the
kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Mark 1:15
The Jews had counted the years. They used their
own system and the “natural” chronology that is in the Old Testament. They did
not use the distorted king list and chronology of Ptolemy. They knew that it
would be 483 years from the decree of Cyrus until the arrival of the Messiah.
The magi knew that the time had come for the
birth of the Messiah. It was not JUST because they saw “his star” in the East,
but because they had made the calculations themselves and the progression of
time TO that arrival date made the appearance of the star significant to them.
Everyone was looking for THE Messiah – the RULER
(king, prince) who would be an anointed one (priest). This was the REAL FOCUS
of Gabriel’s message to Daniel. It was not to focus on some event that would take
place a clear 40 years AFTER the MOST SIGNIFICANT event in all of human
history – the career of Jesus the Messiah.
4. So - Until Messiah Prince there will be 7 weeks: or sevens. Thus we have the first division of 7 sevens; i.e.,
groups of 7, which adds up to 49 of something. The unit in view is "years." Thus, the first division will be 49 years.
The phrase, "there will be" is not in the Hebrew but is properly translated
based on the construction.
5. And 62 weeks: or sevens, or groups of 7. The second division is 7 x 62 which = 434 years.
And the total of the first two divisions = 483 years.
6. The first division is explained in the last of the verse.
A. It: the city includes the temple.
B. Will be restored: This is a repetition of the earlier verb, shūbh. Here,
it occurs as a qal imperfect, 3rd feminine singular.
C. and built again: And this is a
repetition of the earlier verb, bAnAh.
Here, it is is a niphal perfect consecutive, 3rd feminine singular.
D. The repetition of these two verbs, shūbh
and bAnAh, gives a DIRECT connection to the first part of the verse and
shows that the fulfillment of the restoration and building does in fact,
take place in direct connection with the decree, thus, within the first 49
E. With plaza and moat: fully functional and protected
F. Even in times of distress: during the time of construction there is much conflict.
Ezra 4:4-5, 24; Nehemiah 1:3; 4:7-9
G. Fulfilled in yr. 32 of Darius Hystaspes: 3635 AH (490 BC)
1. Nehemiah 5:14 cf. 6:1, 15; 7:1, 4
2. 3589 AH to 3635 AH = 46 years - i.e., within the 49 years.
536 BC to 490 BC = 46 years.
There is a theory that the traditional
translation at Daniel 9:25, “. . . there will be 7 weeks and 62
weeks; it will be restored and built again . . .,” should be rendered, “. . .
there will be 7 weeks. Then for (or during) 62 weeks it shall be built again .
Since a major accentual divider in the verse, the
Atnach, occurs AFTER the words, “seven weeks” (that is, UNDER the first
occurrence of the word, “weeks”), some have decided to interpret the next
words, “and 62 weeks,” as an accusative of duration (thus, “and during 62
weeks). They accordingly, connect it directly with “it will restored, etc,”
and want there to be a duration of construction or EXISTENCE for that period
of 62 weeks (434 years).
However, there are three reasons that this is not
a viable interpretation.
According to the KEIL AND DELITZSCH commentary on Daniel, “This
circumstance, however, in and of itself decides nothing, since the Atnach does
not always separate clauses, but frequently also shows only the point of rest
within a clause; besides, it first was adopted by the Masoretes, and only
shows the interpretation of these men, without at all furnishing any guarantee
for its correctness.”
(2) This idea puts all the focus on the temple
which is very unreasonable, and just not true. The focus is on God’s promises
to His people and specifically THE MESSIANIC promise.
(3) The direct correlation between the TWO pairs
of verbs repeated two times:
The decree is TO RESTORE (shūbh) and TO REBUILD (banah) Jerusalem
refers to the decree of Cyrus and refers DIRECTLY to the restoration and
rebuilding that will take place as a result of THAT decree. This was completed within 49 years.
Later in the verse we encounter a strange
dilemma. All translations render this part at, “It will be built again . . .”
However, this is incorrect. The Hebrew REPEATS
the two verbs used earlier, “command to restore and to build,” and the phrase
should be translated as, “It (or she) shall be restored and be built.” What
all these translations have done is to take the second occurrence of SHUBH and
make it adverbial, thus, “It will be built AGAIN.”
But there is no basis for this. The REPETITION of
the two verbs is OBVIOUSLY an intentional connection to the first mention and
indicates clearly that this last phrase in the verse is given to show the
fulfillment of the command stated earlier.
KEIL AND DELITZSCH writes, “The words, tAshūbh (shūbh)
wenibhnethAh (bAnAh), (it will be restored and rebuilt), refer undoubtedly to
the expression, lehAshibh (shubh) welibhnōth (bAnAh), (to restore and to
rebuild), according to which, tAshūbh is not to be joined adverbially to wenibhnethAh, but is to be rendered intransitively, corresponding to hAshiybh
(shall be restored).”
Now – that might be a bit confusing so let me
We find at this verse, two phrases which are practically identical and should
accordingly be interpreted as intricately connected. (1) the decree to restore
and build. It has TWO verbs, shūbh and bAnAh. (2) then occurring after “7
weeks and 62 weeks,” is the phrase, “it will be restored and built (having the
same two verbs, shūbh and bAnAh) with plaza and mote, even in times of
Every English translation has IGNORED the second
occurrence of the verb, SHūBH, and has accordingly, not only distorted the
text, but has lost the DIRECT connection to the first occurrence of the verb.
I cannot speak to the reason WHY this has
happened. I can only state the FACT that the verb SHūBH occurs two times in
the verse and by its connection both times with BANAH, it is necessary to
translate BOTH times as “restore and rebuild.”
What this does of course, is to totally destroy
the theory, that the phrase, “and 62 weeks” should be “during (or for) 62
weeks,” and extends to the destruction of Jerusalem in 70
This is also clear when we understand that the
city WAS IN FACT “restored and built” within that FIRST period of seven sevens
or 49 years, as shown above.
Nehemiah 6:1, “. . . it was reported . . . that I
had rebuilt the wall, and that no breach remained in it, although at that time
I had not set up the doors in the gates.”
V. 6:15, “so the
wall was completed on the 25th of the month.”
(This was in the year 3634 A.H. or 490 BCE in the
32nd year of Artaxerxes).
Someone might contend, “But this is no city!” But
we are not talking about a thriving metropolis here. We are talking about a
temple structure completed (Neh. 6:10) with SOLID
walls surrounding it in which there was no breach. THAT – is a rebuilt city.
The infra structure, of course will be built up over many additional years,
but the CITY is built.
Verse 26a The end of the 7 + 62 weeks (69 weeks)
1. then after: acheray - not before, not during, but after the 483 year
2. The 62 weeks: 7 + 62 = 69 = 483 years. The use of the word "after" with the word "until" indicates
that the event in view will take place immediately after the 69 weeks.
3. Messiah will be cut off: kArath
A. Used in Genesis 9:11; Jeremiah 11:19; Psalm 37:9
B. This indicates then, a disassociation with the nation of Israel that
comes about by that nation's rejection of the Messiah and the resultant
death of the Messiah.
At Isaiah 53:8, the Messiah is "cut off" out of the land of the
living. This is not the same Hebrew word, but it refers to the same moment
of time when the Messiah is formally rejected by the nation as they have
C. Now as we will see, the rejection of the Messiah interrupts Israel's
time allotment at 69 weeks (483 yrs) and postpones the final week (7 years)
to a future generation which will "nationally" embrace Jesus
as the Messiah.
D. There is a definite event that ends the 69 weeks (the coming of the
Messiah) and a definite event that occurs after His coming.
E. What event constitutes the arrival of the Messiah?
1. His birth?
a. Prophecy: Isaiah 7:14; Micah 5:2; Is. 9
b. But there is no "Messianic" activity until much later. Luke
1:32-33; Matthew 1:21; Luke 1:68-75; 2:25-35
c. The child: Luke 2:40, no Messianic activity. But compare
Luke 4:46-47, 49
d. 33+ years follow until "cut off."
This is not contextually feasible.
2. His baptism:
a. No prophecy except Malachi 3:1; Isaiah 40:3 with
regard to the ministry
of the "forerunner."
b. Matthew 3:13-17; Luke 3:23; John 1:29-34
c. This event is personal: It is for John and the disciples.
d. Also, it is about 3 1/2 years until "cut off."
e. If one wants to make this period the first half of the 70th week, then
there must be a significant other "3 1/2" year period after the
crucifixion - which there is not.
There must be uniformity. If the first 3 1/2 years is specifically
referring to Christ's ministry, then the NEXT 3 1/2 years MUST refer to
something specific. But there is nothing. Contextually, there can be no
gap between the "two" 3 1/2 year periods.
3. The beginning of His ministry: much prophecy about it.
a. Matthew 4:12-17
b. Luke 4:16-21
c. These events are local without national impact even though He covers
d. And as above, there is still that period of 31/2 years before the crucifixion.
4. The Triumphal entry
a. Prophecy: Zechariah 9:8-10
b. Matthew 21:1-9; Luke 19:41-44; Matthew 23:37-39
c. Very clearly, a national focus.
d. Very clearly, worded as a climactic event.
e. Only a few days until "cut off."
f. Although the whole nation had encountered the message of Jesus, the
events of his final week constitute an official and "formal"
announcement and presentation of the Messiah to the nation.
g. This event is the focal point for both phrases in Daniel 9.25 "unto
Messiah" and "Messiah cut off."
h. the disciples related the kingdom to
Messiah's "formal" arrival at
THIS IS THE END OF THE 69TH WEEK.
4. And have nothing:
A. Isaiah 53:8-9; John 1:10-11
B. This is from the human perspective with regard to His earthly kingdom.
The nation rejects Him and is rejected. Acts 2:23
C. He does not take possession of a physical kingdom; He does not take
His seat upon the throne of David.
D. From a spiritual perspective, Messiah receives ultimate promotion
1. Resurrection and session:
Isaiah 52:13; 53:10-12; Hebrews 10:12-13; Philippians 2:9-11
2. The receipt of many brethren: the spiritual offspring of bringing many
sons into glory. Hebrews 2:10-13; Isaiah 53:10-12
Verse 26b The nation's destruction or desolation.
1. and the people: the armies of Rome as described by both the scriptural
and historical contexts.
2. Of the prince who will come:
A. A ruler distinct from the one identified in verse 25 as "Messiah Prince."
B. And yet, it needs to be a ruler revealed earlier in the book:
Daniel 7:8, 21-25; 8:23-25; (11:36-39)
C. The ruler of the Roman Empire (both proper and revived).
D. But it is not THIS prince who will destroy the city, but it is the
3. Will destroy the city and the sanctuary: fulfilled in 70 AD by Titus of
Rome the son of Vespasian, who later became emperor in 79 AD.
A. This did not happen between the restoration from Babylon and the
ascendancy of Rome.
B. And it will not happen in the end times, since Messiah will return and
deliver the city before it can be destroyed. Zechariah 14:1-3
C. Although Antiochus desolated the sanctuary, he did not destroy it or the
D. In 63 BC, Pompey destroyed the outer walls of the city, but not the inner
city or the temple.
E. But in 70 AD as an administration of divine discipline, there was a total
destruction of the city and the temple. As a result the nation was placed in
a DESOLATED condition.
5. And its end: qāts
- noun with 3ps suffix for possession and can either be rendered as "its" or
A. His end: The masculine would refer to the defeat and destruction of the
Roman ruler which would take our focus off the city and the nation, and to a
far distant judgment from God on the oppressive prince. But it seems that
"his" end is not in view here.
B. Its end: The neuter keeps our focus on the city and/or the sanctuary, and
allows the next phrase to naturally pick up from that "end" and move forward
from 70 AD concerning the history of the nation until verse 27 comes to
C. Although Keil and Delitzsch prefers the masculine, most translations
render it as a neuter.
LEB, JUB, KJV, NKJV, NASB, NCV, NRS, ASV, DBY, ESV, HNV, NRSA, OJB, RHE,
RSV, TMBA, TMB, WBT, WEB, WYC, YLT.
Walvoord in his Daniel commentary prefers a reference to the city. "The
closing portion of verse 26, although not entirely clear, indicates that the
destruction of the city will be like the destruction of a flood." Page 231.
6. Will come with a flood: This certainly describes the nature of the
destruction of Jerusalem and the temple in 70 AD.
The desolations upon the nation of Israel are permitted by God as the
administration of divine discipline for the nation's rejection of Jesus as
the promised Messiah.
Luke 19:43-44, "For the days will come upon you when your enemies will throw
up a barricade against you, and surround you and hem you in on every side,
44 and they will level you to the ground and your children within you, and
they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not
recognize the time of your visitation."
Luke 21:22-23, "these are the days of justice. . . wrath to this people."
Justice is the Greek noun, ekdikāsis;
Wrath is the Greek noun, orgā.
Luke 21:24, "and they will fall by the edge of the sword, and will be led
captive into all the nations; and Jerusalem will be trampled underfoot by
the Gentiles until the times of the Gentiles is fulfilled."
Notice at Luke 21:22, "in order that all things which are written may be
The destruction of Jerusalem fulfills this passage in Daniel as well as
Deut. 28:49-68 and Lev. 26:27-28 and 39 (because of their iniquity . . . and
the iniquity of their forefathers."
It is the fulfillment of "decreed desolations" that are permitted by God as
Some have suggested doubt that THIS destruction of the
city is looking to 70 AD, or indeed, even to a
significant PHYSICAL destruction of the city. The
following observations are offered in support of the
idea that 70 AD is the “ruin” that is in view.
1, The Hebrew word for DESTROY is shAchath. It can
mean to spoil, ruin, destroy, corrupt, and the like.
It occurs in the Hiphil stem, which means to CAUSE to
ruin or destroy, etc. Thus, as a hiphil imperfect, the
simple rendering, DESTROY is the best translation.
I suppose that OUR understanding of RUIN can be taken
a variety of ways, but the USUAL use of this word in
this stem is to DESTROY or ruin something physically.
But TECHNICALLY it does have to mean a PHYSICAL
2. To further support the idea that this is a
DESTRUCTION that RUINS the city, and in fact, THE
specific destruction of 70 AD, we have the next
phrase at Dan. 9:26, which says, “and its END will
come like a flood.”
Here we have a sudden and violent destruction that
ENDS (for all intents and purposes) the status and
function of the city and the sanctuary.
We have no other historical event that does this, do
we? As already mentioned, in 63 BC, Pompey destroyed
the OUTER walls of the city but not the inner city or
3. Furthermore, I appeal once again to the chronology
of the passage. It appears to me that the NORMAL
understanding is that the events mentioned here are in
a rigid chronological order.
A. First: There is INDEED a chronology of events that
fits the specific
language of this passage.
B. There is no CLEAR reason to look for something other
than a precise
C. That precise order is:
1. 7 weeks
2. 62 weeks
3. Messiah cut off
4. People of the Roman prince destroy the city and
temple (its end)
5. indeterminate amount of time: UNTO THE END -
there will be war.
6. He makes a covenant for 7 years
7. At the 3 1/2 year mark, he breaks the covenant.
8. Stops the sacrifices via abomination
9. Which causes desolation
10. The desolation comes to an end.
4. The HISTORICAL prophecy of Antiochus in 167 BC,
recorded at Daniel 11:31, does not fulfill Daniel 9:26
because there is no destruction of the city and the
temple at that time. While one could say that the
temple was RUINED, it was not destroyed, and certainly
the CITY was not destroyed.
In addition, there is a specific reference to the
destruction of the city and the captivity of the people at
Daniel 11:33. The details of that passage can be seen at:
7. The next phrase is quite emphatic having no regular verb to clarify.
A. And unto the end: qātz,
end. This is not the same "end" that is mentioned above, "its end will
This is looking to some point in the future extending FROM the fall of
Jerusalem in 70 AD to the fulfillment of God's plan for the nation of
This whole section revolves around the future deliverance and blessing of
the nation of Israel in the context of the nation being DESOLATE.
The prophecy specifically looks to the END of the promised "70 weeks" - "to
anoint the most holy."
This will occur when the nation's desolations have been totally removed
through Messiah's victory over the kingdoms of the world and the cleansing
of the land at the start of His 1000 year kingdom.
But until that fulfillment, there will exist for the nation, endless
violence. And the nation and the people will be in a condition of DESOLATE.
C. War: milchAmAh is a feminine singular noun.
Indicates a war type environment as they are driven and persecuted
throughout the world.
Lev. 26:33, "and I will draw out a sword after you, as your land becomes
Verse 36, "and even when no one is pursuing, they will flee as though from
the sword, and they will fall."
Verse 37, "They will therefore stumble over each other as from the sword."
Deut. 28:66, "So your life shall hang in doubt before you; and you shall be
in dread night and day, and have no assurance of your life."
1. Although the focus is on the nation and the people of Israel, war will
also Characterize the historical trends of human history from the time of
Messiah's 1st advent until His return.
2. Thus at Luke 21:9-10, "And when you hear of wars and disturbances, do not
be terrified; for these things must take place first, but the end does not
follow immediately. Nation will rise against nation and kingdom against
D. The next statement is an independent clause that stands in apposition to
1. a decree of: chAratz is a niphal participle, feminine singular used as an
noun to describe the divine source of the desolations. They are decreed.
2. desolations: shAmām
is a qal active participle used as a noun feminine plural = desolations. And
again the idea is a PASSIVE condition that will exist.
a. It is decreed as a specific expression of divine
b. It will result in massive desolations specifically upon Israel (Luke
21:22-24), as prophesied in Leviticus 26:31, "I will make your sanctuary
Verse 32, "And I will make the land DESOLATE."
Verse 33, DESOLATE; verse 34-35, DESOLATION. shemAmAh
Thus, Israel will be considered the desolated one.
This word describes the condition of Israel at the time that God will
complete His plan for the nation when the DESOLATION will be removed.
Ezk. 36:34-36, And the DESOLATE land will be cultivated instead of being a
DESOLATION in the sight of everyone who passed by. And they will say, This
DESOLATE land has become like the garden of Eden; and the waste, DESOLATE
and ruined cities are fortified and inhabited. Then the nations that are
left round about you will know that I, Yahweh, have rebuilt the ruined
places and planted that which was DESOLATE I, Yahweh have spoken and will do
Amos 9:14, "And they will rebuild the DESOLATED cities."
Isaiah 54:3, "they will resettle the DESOLATED cities."
It will last "until a completion and what is decreed is poured out on the
desolated." Verse 27.
al + shAmām(poel
participle used as a noun) upon the desolated one.
Verse 27 - the 70th week
1. And he: refers to the most recently mentioned of the 2 princes.
2. Will make a firm covenant:
A. make a firm: gAbhar - means to be strong or mighty. It occurs in
the hiphil imperfect which means, "to cause" to be strong. Thus
to make firm - not make "a" firm, but to make "something" firm,
ie, a covenant. To establish.
B. with the many: the vast majority of the populous involved. In fact it
would indicate a particular social or national entity, as in having the
compliance of the leadership of that entity. And in fact, it refers to
the nation of Israel as the subject of the phrase "for your people
and your holy city."
C. For one week: keeping the literal perspective, this is a 7 year period
of time and refers to the final one of the 70, thus the term, "the
70th week of Daniel."
1. The Messiah was cut off at the end of 483 years.
2. The remaining 7 years cannot find fulfillment immediately after the crucifixion.
There is nothing that historically correlates with a specific 7 year period
nor with the language used to describe that 7 year period.
3. The final 3 1/2 years of that 7 year period is what is in view at Daniel
11:36-45 and at Daniel 12:1-11.
4. Daniel 12:6, "How long until the end of these wonders" relates
back specifically to the events which began at Daniel 11:36, but have been developed
all throughout the book as seen at Daniel 7:25.
3. The covenant:
A. The covenant has something to do with the temple and the sacrifices
since in the middle of the week the sacrifices are prohibited.
B. Since in verse 26, the city and the temple were destroyed, the covenant
must involve a restoration to temple activity. That would include not only
the building of a temple or sanctuary, but also the freedom to conduct
C. The temple was destroyed and the sacrifices stopped in 70 AD and have
not been a reality for Israel since then.
D. The prince who is to come will make a covenant with Israel that will
allow them to build a sanctuary and conduct sacrifices.
1. Daniel 8:23-25
a. skilled in intrigue: a political genius
b. deceit: suggests a false covenant
c. destroy many while at ease: the covenant "puts them to sleep,"
sets them up for the kill.
2. The implication that the covenant involves the temple and the sacrifices
is made from the fact that when the covenant is broken 3 1/2 years into
the week, the sacrifices are stopped
by the one who made the covenant.
---------Comments on the covenant of Daniel
9:4; 11:22 and 32--------------
There are two covenants in Daniel.
1. The general covenant of relationship between God and the people of
Daniel 9:4, God who keeps His covenant and grace-kindness, for those who
love Him and keep His commandments.
This is the covenant of Deut. 7:9, "He is God, the faithful God who keeps
the covenant and grace-kindness to a thounsanth generation with those who
love Him and keep His commandments."
Exodus 19:5-6, "if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then
you shall be My own possession . . . and you shall be to Me a kingdom of
priests and a holy nation."
Thus, "the ark of the covenant."
And this covenant can be traced through the rest of the OT in dozens of
Part of that covenant is the Levitical priesthood - the service of the
Mal. 2:4-6, "Then you will know that I have sent this commandment to you,
that My covenant may continue with Levi,” says the Lord of hosts. 5 “My
covenant with him was one of life and peace, and I gave them to him as an
object of reverence; so he revered Me and stood in awe of My name. 6 True
instruction was in his mouth and unrighteousness was not found on his lips;
he walked with Me in peace and uprightness, and he turned many back from
For the lips of a priest should preserve knowledge, and men should seek
instruction from his mouth; for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts."
The high priest was considered "the leader (ruler) of the covenant."
Seleucus IV, Philopater ruled in Syria from 187 to 175 BCE. Dan. 11:20.
In 175 BCE Antiochus Epiphanes takes over rule in Syria after Seleucus is
mysteriously killed at his home. Dan. 11:21
In 171 BCE, Anitochus murders the High Priest Onias.
V. 22, "and the overflowing forces will be flooded away before him and
shattered, and also the leader (ruler, prince) of the covenant."
The Hebrew, nagiyd can mean ruler, leader or prince.
Notice, "leader of the house of God," at Neh. 11:11; 2Chron. 31:13.
At Dan. 11:31-32 Antiochus continues with his oppression of the Jews.
He sets up HIS abomination of desolation (which is only a prototype of the
one set up by the beast at the tribulation).
This is a further attack on the PRIESTLY COVENANT. And many of the Jews will
apostatize and "act wickedly toward THE COVENANT."
That is they reject THE covenant between God and the people of Israel.
Like what is shown at Malachi 2:8, 10, "corrupted the covenant of Levi,"
"profane the covenant of our fathers."
2. At Daniel 9:27, the subject is A COVENANT - not the covenant.
It introduces a whole different idea from what Daniel was talking about in
And has nothing to do with the "leader of the covenant" of 11:22 and 32.
4. And in the middle of the week (group of seven) he will put a stop to
sacrifice and grain offering.
The one who stops
the sacrifices (he) in the context, reasonably goes back to the "he" who
made the covenant. There is no implication that a different person is in
view, and no other reasonable antecedent in the context.
A. According to Matthew 24:15, the abomination of desolation
will be set up in the "holy place" (ie, the sanctuary) which would obviously
put an end to the sacrifices.
B. According to 2 Thessalonians 2:7, the man of lawlessness will establish
himself in the "temple" and lay claim to being God.
C. It takes place at the 2nd seal (Rev. 6:3) and will involve the breaking
of THE peace established at the first seal (v.2).
D. According to Rev. 11:1, the holy city (including the temple) will be
"polluted" by the nations under the authority of the beast for
3 1/2 years (Revelation 13:5).
E. This is the period of time from the breaking of the covenant in the
middle of the week until the end of the week (3 1/2 years later) at which
time Christ will destroy the kingdom of the beast and the rebel nations
of the world at Armageddon.
F. Isaiah 33:1-12 has an historical application to Assyria in 711 BC but
based on the context from verses 13-24 and 34:1-17, it looks to the day
of the Lord and the oppression from the beast prior to the Messiah's return.
1. Thus, based on that, "destroyer" in v. 1-12 has application
specifically to the oppressor of the great tribulation.
2. And at verses 7-9 we find the condition of the land of Judah because
of that oppression and a mention of the
covenant being broken in verse 8,
"he has broken the covenant."
Isaiah 28:15-18 might have a double application to this end times
context. "covenant with death;" "covenant will be cancelled."
But reference might also be made to "the everlasting covenant" of Isaiah
24:5 and 55:3.
5. The stoppage of the sacrifices:
Wording in Dan. 12 is the same as in 8:8-13 - AND - the same as in 11:32.
That is, each uses “the” tAmiydh for the regular sacrifice.
But the word for “stoppage” is different.
At 8:11, the word is “it removed (NASB)” = rūm, means to be high or lifted up
which occurs here in the
hophal stem = “cause” to be high or lifted up.
The word is used for any idea associated with “lifting up” - and one of those
is to lift
up AND AWAY - thus to
remove (several examples) and that is the use here.
The LXX uses the Greek, tarassō, which means to be disturbed (ie, interrupted
Daniel 8:11 was fulfilled historically by Antiochus Epiphanes as confirmed by
1 Mac. 1:44-49.
“And the king sent letters by messengers to Jerusalem and the cities of Judah;
he directed them to
follow customs strange to the land, to forbid burnt offerings
and sacrifices and drink
offerings in the sanctuary, to profane sabbaths and feasts,
to defile the sanctuary and the
priests, to build altars in sacred precincts and shrines
for idols, to sacrifice swine
and unclean animals, and to leave their sons
This quotation also confirms that the use of the word, “tAmiydh” is used for
“continual” or “permanent”
sacrificial practices rather than the idea of the “daily”
also, that “prayers” are not mentioned in the quote).
The word for the “stoppage” at Dan. 9:27 is shAbhat - the same word for
and “rest” in connection with
the sabbatth. It is a hiphil imperfect, which means to
“cause” to cease, i.e., to put
a stop to. Nothing “permanent” is required by the word.
anything, one could see it as a “temporary” stoppage in that the word also
“rest from activity.” Thus, to
cause the sacrifice to cease or rest - only to be started
up once again at the
proper time and in the proper way (ie, during the kingdom -
The word for “stoppage” at 11:31 and 12:11 is sūr, which means to turn aside.
It occurs in the hiphil and means “cause to (turn aside); depart, common word
remove, take away.” (BDB
1. At 11:31, it is a hiphil plural: forces from him will . . . do away with
to be removed) the regular sacrifice (the tAmiydh).
2. While at 12:11, it is the “hophal” stem, which is PASSIVE causative,
thus the translation, “the tAmiydh is caused to be removed.”
3. But these two are not referring to the same event.
a. 11:31 is clearly fulfilled by Antiochus as the quote from 1 Mac. 1:44ff
and 12:11 is clearly the end times as Dan. 12:1ff indicates.
G. The one who stops the sacrifices (he) in the context, reasonably
goes back to the "he" who made the covenant. There is no implication that a
different person is in view, and no other reasonable antecedent in the
Technically there are two individuals involved. The one who makes the
covenant is the #7 of Rev. 17:10. "The other (#7) has not yet come, and when
he comes he must remain a little while." He remains a little while because
#7 is the one who is killed.
When he is brought back to life he will be #8- the beast out of the sea,
indwelt by Satan. He is the one who breaks the covenant, but is still the
person who established it.
At Rev. 13:3, it is "one of his heads" that is slain (#7).
His fatal wound was healed, brought back to life. This is #8, the one who
breaks the covenant, "and the whole earth was amazed and followed after the
Also, as I see it, the rider on the white horse is #7 who makes the
covenant. And rider on the red horse is #8 who breaks the covenant and takes
THE PEACE from the earth.
Translation: And in the
middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and
by means of the wing of abominations (he) causing desolation, even until a
completion and what is determined is poured out on the desolated one.
6. And on:
the waw connective (and) plus the preposition, al (upon or by means
of). Perhaps the "and" can have the idea of "even"
which adds to the
of the prince.
It is translated like this in the next phrase, "even unto a
completion" in the
NASB. This recognizes the usage as a valid option. And it
could be valid here,
so that "on the wing" can be seen as what will result from
the removal of the
sacrifices. And it still fits with the context to translate it as
The preposition, "al", is used to indicate the instrument
of progress and
success. Thus, "even by means of. "
However, it seems that "and" is a smoother translation and
will not change the
Here, I think the NASB has added too many "helping" words, but it is
consistent with most translations. However, that does not validate the addition
of the verb, "comes" or of another person, "who." That
might sound a bit inconsistent since I appeal to the translation consensus
from time to time, but in this case, I think the context does not allow for
the afore mentioned liberties.
"and on the wing of abominations [will come one who makes] desolate."
This is ADDING an active verb and a new person where there is no NEED in the text to do so.
The verbs here are participles.
Yes, this section is elliptical, but adding "will come one who" is assuming
too much. The vision is STILL talking about the one who will put a stop to
sacrifice. The following phrases simply describe further what happens
through the removal of the sacrifices.
If we take it literally we can see it this way: "And in the middle of the
week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and on the
wing of abominations, (he) causing desolation, even until a completion and
what is determined is poured out on the desolated one."
7. the wing: kAnaph - fem. singular noun
(construct = wing of). Even the singular is sometimes used for "wings." It is
by means of wings that something gains "flight" and accomplishes its
purpose. In this case, the purpose is to cause the abominations in the
rebuilt temple in Jerusalem and around himself as he promotes himself to be
god. The word, wing, although sometimes used for a part or extension of a
building seems out of place here. The abominations are the various acts of
idolatry as described first by the placement of the abomination as at
Matthew 24:15; 2 Thes. 2:4 and then the idol worship of Rev. 13:14-15.
Keil and Delitzsch quotes Kliefoth, "Thus in this passage wings are
attributed to the shiqutsiym, idol objects, and to idolatry with its
abominations , because that shall be the power which lifts upwards the
destroyer and desolator, carries him, and moves with him over the earth to
8. of abominations: shiqūts-
masc. plural noun = detestable things.
A. It is a reference to idolatrous practices centered in and around the
of the beast and his image.
B. This is what happens after he removes the proper sacrifices from the
C. This will be the tool to further the promotion of himself as God.
The image at Revelation 13:14-15; Matthew 24:15
D. The beast will use the abominations to bring desolation to the
9. desolation: The verb is shAmām
again as a masculine singular poel participle used as a noun. It describes the result of what
the abomination does. But the poel describes a PASSIVE condition. It is the
condition of being desolate or desolated. It refers to the condition of the
nation of Israel (sanctuary and cities); desolated. The masculine of the
participle takes us back to the one who removes the sacrifices. It further
describes his activities after he removes them. The subject of the
participle, "causing desolation" is that person.
10. Even until: we adh The NASB recognizes
a valid translation of the waw connective as being EVEN.
The word UNTIL governs two things; "a completion" and "what is determined."
11. a Completion: kAlAh is the noun. The completion would be the fulfillment
of God's plan for giving the people a special time allotment of 490 years.
It refers to the completion of the discipline for rejecting their Messiah.
That completion won't be accomplished until the beast is removed from power.
At Daniel 12:6 the question is asked, how long until the end of these
wonders? The word "wonders" is pele and refers to the wondrous things of the
vision; specifically the events of verses 11:36 through 12:1.
Those events constitute the oppression during the tribulation. "And there
will be a time of distress such as never occurred since there was a nation
until that time."
The answer is given at 12:7, "and when the shattering of the hand
(rebellion) of the holy people is completed, all these things will be
The word "hand" can be figurative to refer to power, but it can also refer to the action and
deeds of someone. There is no POWER in the nation at this point; there is no
power to shatter. What they have is a history of rebellion and
transgression. It is the action of arrogant rebellion against God that
will be shattered and removed. It is THE TRANSGRESSION (the
rejection of Jesus as their Messiah) that will finally be once and for all
removed from the history and reputation of the nation. It is this COMPLETION
of Israel's great national sin that will also bring to completion the times,
time and half a time for the establishment of the Messiah's kingdom.
The times, time and half a time is APPROXIMATELY 3 1/2 years. The exact time
span is explained in Daniel 12:11-12 as being 75 days beyond the 3 1/2 years
or 1260 days.
The verb, shattering, is nAphats as a qal participle and functions as the
subject of the phrase. "and when the shattering of the action of the holy
people is completed. . ."
The word, completed, is kAlAh, first as a piel infinitive and then as a qal
". . . all these things will be completed."
And this takes us back to Dan. 9:27, "unto a completion."
12. And what is determined: we (and) Plus chArats - niphal participle
feminine singular. This refers to God's plan for the nation of Israel. That
is the subject of the whole passage. There is a "completion" point when what
has been "planned" or "determined" is over.
This would be the "end" mentioned in verse 26, "until the end, war; a
determination of desolations."
"Until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled," Luke 21:24.
13. Is poured out: The verb is nAthak as a qal imperfect feminine singular.
This goes with the feminine subject, "what is determined."
Administration of divine justice in His timing.
What is it that is poured out? It is the decree of desolations ON ISRAEL.
The decree is directed toward Israel, not the abominator. Just as is seen at
Daniel 12:7, "when shattering the hand of the holy people is completed."
It is the chosen people of Israel who are unique (holy) and even though
under discipline, the nation will be delivered and "all Israel will be
But first, the prophecies must be fulfilled, the discipline completed, and
THE TRANSGRESSION ended."
14. upon the desolate: al + shAmem (poel participle used as a noun). The
poel is intensive PASSIVE. That would indicate that the participial noun
should RECEIVE the action. Thus, upon what is desolated or the desolated or
desolate, or even desolate one.
This refers to the sanctuary and by extension to the people of Israel and the city of Jerusalem. All will have been desolated by the placement of the abomination
of desolation. And this is perfectly consistent with what I have pointed out
from the beginning. The subject is the desolation condition of Israel as
allowed by God as an extension of Israel's national discipline.
It is the land/nation of Israel which is under discipline from God and in a
condition of desolated.
The KJV renders it as desolate, as do several other translations.
NKJV, Darby, ASV, HNV, LXX (the desolation), YLT (the desolate one), WEB,
Some translate it as a desolator, which would refer to the one who stops the
sacrifices and desolates the temple. But although the placement of the
abomination will CAUSE desolation, the prince (the abominator) is not the
one who is in view here. As previously established, the poel participle
requires a PASSIVE translation. It is one who is in a devastated condition
who is the recipient of the verb, poured out.
Some have suggested that the meaning,
"desolated" does in fact refer to the ruler because he will be ruined
(desolated) by the judgments from God. However, the ruler will not be
desolated until AFTER the judgments; not before.
1. Then the king will do as he pleases, and he will exalt and magnify
himself above every god: He will declare himself as the ONLY god.
2. and will speak wondrous things against the God of gods: This is when he
takes over the Jewish temple and proclaims himself to be THE GOD. Daniel
2 Thes. 2:3-4, 8-9.
3. And he will prosper until the indignation is finished:
A. The indignation refers to the period of time where Satan pours out his
wrath upon the Jews and Christians during the tribulation. At Daniel 8:19 it
is called "the final period of indignation." And at Isaiah 26:20, it is
referred to as "until indignation runs its course." Here, the Jews are
instructed to "hide;" find a place of protection. Mat. 24:16-20 and Rev.
The noun is zAam and means anger. It corresponds with orgā in the Greek.
But given the warning that is given here, the anger is NOT upon the faithful
ones of Israel, but upon the unfaithful ones. The faithful ones are
instructed to find safety.
B. His reign will be successful until the tribulation is cut short and ended
by the return of Jesus in the clouds of the sky with power and great glory.
C. Even after the end of his reign, he will still be fighting for survival
during the 30 days of the final wrath of God upon him. He will then come to
his end at the battle of Armageddon. Revelation 19:19-20.
4. for that which is decreed will be done.
This explains how it is that this ruler will succeed in CAUSING desolation
upon the people of Israel.
It is because it was DECREED as desolation upon the nation and people of
The verb, chAratz as a niphal participle refers to what was decreed at Daniel
Corrected Translation of verse 27: And he will make firm a covenant with the
many for 1 week, (7 years) and in the middle of the week he will put a stop
to sacrifice and grain offering, and by means of the wing
of abominations, causing desolation, even until a completion, AND what is
decreed is poured out on the desolated.
The big question that remains is by which system of measurement can
we trace the year from Cyrus' decree to the completion of the first 483
years? For according to the accepted chronology, that decree was made in
536 BC. But counting forward 483 years brings us to 53 BC, a whopping 82
years before the formal presentation of Messiah to the nation of Israel
in AD 30. The answer lies in the actual length of the Persian Empire and
determining the actual list of Persian kings who reigned between Cyrus
and Alexander the Great who conquered Persia in 331 BC.
I shall let another give the details. D. L. Cooper gave an excellent
analysis of this in Messiah: His First Coming Scheduled which was published
in 1937 by his Biblical Research Society. I here provide an orientation
to this chronological problem as presented in chapter 14, pages 446 to
The Uncertainty of the Data Underlying the Present System of Chronology
An examination of the data that underlie the current system of reckoning
time will reveal the fact that it is not built upon the firm foundation
of established facts but upon surmises, guesses, and hypotheses. The following
quotations from Anstey will make this point clear.
"The Sedar Olam Rabbah, i.e., The Large Chronicle of the World,
commonly called the Larger Chronicon, is a Jewish Talmudic Tract, containing
the chronology of the world as reckoned by the Jews. It treats of Scripture
times, and is continued down to the reign of Hadrian (A.D. 76-138). The
author is said to have been Rabbi Jose ben Chaliptha, who flourished a
little after the beginning of the 2nd Century after Christ, and was Master
to Rabbi Judah Hakkodesh, who composed the Mishna. Others say it dates
from A.D. 832, and that it was certainly written after the Babylonian Talmud,
as it contains many fables taken from thence.
"The Sedar Olam Zeutah, i.e., Small Chronicle of the World, commonly
called the Lesser Chronicle, is said to have been written A. D. 1123. It
is a short chronicle of the events of history from the beginning of the
world to the year A.D. 522.
"Both contain the Jewish tradition respecting the duration of the
Persian Empire. This tradition is 'that in the last year of Darius Hystaspes,
the prophets Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi died, that thereon the spirit
of prophecy ceased from among the Children of Israel, and that this was
the obsignatian or sealing up of vision and prophecy spoken of by the prophet
Daniel (Dan. 9: 24). The same tradition tells us that the Kingdom of the
Persians ceased also the same year, for they will have it that this was
the Darius whom Alexander the Great conquered, and that the whole continuance
of the Persian Empire was only 52 years, which they reckon thus
Darius the Median reigned 1 year
Cyrus 3 years
(whom they identify with the Ahasuerus who married Esther) 16 years
Darius (whom they will have to be the son of Esther) 32 years
Total = 52 years
"'This last Darius, they say, was the Artaxerxes who sent Ezra
and Nehemiah to Jerusalem to restore the state of the Jews, for they tell
us that Artaxerxes among the Persians was the common name for their Kings,
as that of Pharaoh was among the Egyptians.'
"Now we may say with Dr. Prideaux in his Historical Connection
of the Old and New Testaments, published in 1858, from which the above
extract is taken, that 'this shows how ill they have been acquainted with
the affairs of the Persian Empire,' and that 'their countryman, Josephus,
in the account which he gives of those times, seems to have been but very
little better informed concerning them,' or, we may draw the contrary conclusion,
that Josephus knew the history of his own country better than Ptolemy.
"How long did the Persian Empire last? We may ask the Persians
themselves, and if we do they will tell us that they have no records of
the period, these having been all swept away by the Greek and Mohammedan
Invasions. But they have certain vague, floating, national traditions,
cast into an epic poem by Firdusi, and from these we learn that the succession
of the Persian Monarchs was as follows: (1) Darius Hystaspes, (2) Artaxerxes
Longimanus, (3) Queen Homai, the mother of Darius Nothus, (4) Darius Nothus,
the bastard son of Artaxerxes Longimanus, and (5) Darius, who was conquered
by Alexander the Great. All the Kings between these two Dariuses they omit.
"Or again we may ask the Jews, and if we do they will tell us that
the Persian Empire lasted only 52 years, from the first of Cyrus to the
first of Alexander the Great. We may go to Ptolemy, and if we do he will
determine the length of the period and make out a list of kings for us
by means of astronomical calculations and conjectural identifications of
recorded with calculated eclipses, and then we shall get a Persian Empire
lasting 205 years. But if we take the account given in Nehemiah, and the
years specified by the prophet Daniel, we shall find that the Persian Empire
continued for a period of 123 years.
"The Jews shortened it to 52 years. 'Some of them,' says Sir Isaac
Newton, 'took Herod for the Messiah, and were thence called Herodians.
They seem to have grounded their opinion on the 70 weeks, which they reckoned
from the first year of Cyrus. But afterwards, in applying the prophecy
to Theudas and Judas of Galilee, and at length to Bar Cochab, they seem
to have Shortened the reign of the Kingdom of Persia.' This explains why
the Jews underestimated the duration of the Persian Empire, and it shows
that originally they reckoned about 123 years.
"Now, From 1st year Cyrus to 1st year Alexander the Great 123 years
From 1st year Alexander the Great to Herod (B.C. 331-4) 327 years
From 1st year Cyrus to the birth of Christ 450 years
"If, then, the wise men from the East had heard of Daniel's prophecy,
and had kept an accurate account of the years, and if the Jews of Palestine
were also expecting the Messiah at the very time when He was born (B.C.
4) on the ground that it was then within 33 years of the 483 predicted
in Daniel for His appearance, and therefore now time for Him to be born,
this would indicate that they reckoned the time between the 1st year of
Cyrus and the birth of Christ as a period of 450 years. And since the 327
years (B.C. 331 to B.C. 4) from Alexander the Great to the birth of Christ
were in all probability accurately computed by the Greeks, for they began
their reckoning by Olympiads within 60 years of Alexander's death, it leaves
exactly these 123 years for the duration of the Persian Empire, and abridges
the accepted Ptolemaic chronology by 82 years for 205 - 123 = 82, which
is the exact year expressed for these events in the Chronology of the Old
Testament, as developed in these pages, for Cyrus' 1st year is shown to
be the year AN. HOM. 3589, whence 3589 + 483 = 4071 (inclusive reckoning),
for the Crucifixion, and as Christ was about 30 years of age when He began
His ministry, and His ministry lasted three years, He was born AN. HOM.
4038, or exactly 450 years after the 1st year of Cyrus, Christ having been
born four years before the commencement of the Christian Era. But 450 years
before the actual date of the birth of Christ is B.C. 454. The true date
of the 1st year of Cyrus is therefore B.C. 454, not B.C. 536, which makes
the Chronology of this period 82 years too long.
"It may be objected that in the Battle of Marathon, which was fought
B.C. 490, Darius Hystaspes was defeated by the Greeks, and that the Greek
Chronology, which was reckoned by Olympiads from B.C. 776 onward, cannot
be at fault to the extent of 82 years. But that is just the very point
in dispute. The Greeks did not make a single calculation in Olympiads,
nor had they any accurate chronological records till sixty years after
the death of Alexander the Great. All that goes before that is guesswork,
and computation by generations, and other contrivances, not the testimony
of contemporary records.
"The Sedar Olam, therefore, may be called as a witness, and it
is not to be ruled out of court by any objection raised by the Greeks,
but it must be called as a witness only, not as arbitrator or Judge."
In another connection Anstey gives us the facts concerning the insecurity
of the chronology which is based upon Greek and Roman history. He also
calls our attention to the way in which the present era was begun. All
of the facts lead one to the conclusion that one cannot depend upon the
present scheme as it has been worked out and given to us. Mr. Anstey's
summary of the situation is very enlightening.
"It is through the Greeks that we have received our knowledge of
the history of the great Empires and civilizations of the East. Even Sanchoniathon
and Berosus and Manetho, have all come to us through the Greeks. It was
the Greeks who created the framework of the Chronology of the civilized
ages of the past, and fitted into it all the facts of history, which have
reached us through them. Apart from the Bible, the vague floating national
traditions of the Persians and the later Jews, and the direct results of
modern exploration, all our chronological knowledge reaches us through
Greek spectacles. Here as everywhere else it is 'thy sons 0 Zion against
thy sons, 0 Greece' (Zech. 9:13). It is Nehemiah and Daniel against Ptolemy
and Eratosthenes. It is Hebraic Chronology against Hellenic chronology.
And here the Greek has stolen a march upon the Hebrew, for he has stolen
his Old Testament and forced his own Greek Chronology into the Hebrew record,
Hellenizing the ages of the Hebrew Patriarchs in the Greek LXX.
"Are we then to accept the testimony of the Greek as correcting
or antiquating the testimony of the Hebrew? By no means. Let the Greek
be heard as a witness, but let him not presume to pronounce sentence as
a Judge. Clinton's Fasti Hellenici is perhaps the most valuable treatise
on Chronology ever produced. But it is not infallible. Clinton's standard
is Ptolemy's Canon; Sayce's standard is the Monuments. But neither of these
sources is competent to correct the Hebrew Old Testament, which must be
placed in the witness-box alongside of them, not in the dock, to be sentenced
"To begin at the beginning, the point of departure for Greek Chronology,
the 1st Olympiad, B.C. 776, upon which everything else depends, rests upon
no firmer foundation than that of tradition and computation by conjecture.
"The opening sentence of Clinton's Tables reveals the basis upon
which he builds. He says: 'The first Olympiad is placed by Censorinus in
the 1014th year before the Consulship of Ulpius and Pontianus, A.D. 238
= B.C. 776. Solinus attests that the 207th Olympiad fell within the Consulship
of Gallus and Verannius. These were Consuls A.D. 49, and if the 207th Games
were celebrated in July, A.D. 49, 206 Olympiads, or 824 years had elapsed,
and the first games were celebrated in July, 776.'
"But Censorious wrote his De Die
Natali, A.D. 238, and Solinus
also belongs to the 3rd Century A.D. They are not, therefore, contemporary
witnesses, and we do not know how far their computations were derived from
hypothesis and conjecture, or how far they rest upon a basis of objective
fact. Nevertheless, this point has been made the first link in the chain
of the centuries, a chain flung out to float in the air, or attached, not
to the solid staple of fixed fact, but only to the rotten ring of computation
and conjecture. The Canon of Ptolemy rests upon this calculation. Eusebius
(A.D. 264-349) adopted it, and set the example of making Scripture dates
fit into the years of the Greek Era. Eusebius is based upon Manetho (3rd
Century B.C.), Berosus (3rd Century B.C.), Abydenus (2nd Century B.C.),
Polyhister (1st Century B.C.), Josephus (A.D. 37-103), Cephalion (1st Century
AD.), Africanus (3rd Century B.C.), and other sources now lost. Eusebius'
Chronology was contained in his 'chronocon.' This was translated by Jerome,
and has been followed by all subsequent writers down to the present day.
"The one infallible connecting link between sacred and profane
Chronology is given in Jeremiah 25:1. 'The fourth year of Jehoiakim, which
was the first year of Nebuchadnezzar.' If the events of history had been
numbered forward from this point to the birth of Christ, or back from Christ
to it, we should have had a perfectly complete and satisfactory chronology.
But they were not. The distance between the 1st year of Nebuchadnezzar
and the birth of Christ was not known. It has been fixed by conjecture,
with the assistance of Ptolemy. Clinton fixes it at B.C. 606, Sayce at
B.C. 604, and from this date, thus fixed, Chronologers reckon back to Adam
and on to Christ. The distance between the 1st year of Nebuchadnezzar and
the birth of Christ has not been measured by the annals or chronicles of
any well-attested dated events. It was originally fixed by Ptolemy, by
means of computation and conjecture and recorded events have been fitted
into the interval by computing Chronologers as far as the fictitious framework
"The opening sentence of Sir Isaac Newton's Introduction to his
Short Chronicle from the first memory of things in Europe to the Conquest
of Persia by Alexander the Great shows how entirety fluid and indeterminate
were those first years of Grecian history.
"'The Greek Antiquities,' says Newton, 'are full of poetic fictions,
because the Greeks wrote nothing in prose before the conquest of Asia by
Cyrus the Persian.'
"The uncertainty as to the epoch of the foundation of Rome and
the Era which dates from that event, is just as great as the uncertainty
as to the beginnings of the history of Greece. The following is a list
of the dates that have been sanctioned by various writers
"Varro, Tacitus, Plutarch, Dion, Aulus
Gellius, Censorinus, etc.
Cato, Dionysius of Halicarnassus, Solinus, Eusebius, etc. . .752 B.C.
Livy, Cicero, Pliny, and Velleius Paterculus 753 or 752 B.C.
Polybius 751 B.C.
Fabius Pictor and Diodorus Siculus 747 B.C.
L. Cincius 728 B.C.
A margin of 25 years.
"These uncertainties in Greek and Roman chronology, and the late
and purely conjectural character of the foundation upon which they rest,
show how impossible it is for us to erect the Chronology of the classic
literature of Greece and Rome into a standard by which to correct the Chronology
of the Hebrew Old Testament.
"Nearly all the great Empires of the East seem to have thrown the
origin of their dated history back into the 8th Century.
"Babylon (Nabonassarean Era) 747 B.C.
Greece (1st Olympiad) 776 B.C.
Rome (Foundation of the City) 753 B.C.
Lydia 716 B.C.
China 781 B.C.
Media 711 B.C.
"It may be of interest to add the following remarks respecting
the origin of the Vulgar Christian Era
"It was not until the year A.D. 532 that the Christian Era was
invented by Dionysius Exiguus, a Scythian by birth, and a Roman Abbot.
He flourished in the reign of Justinian (A.D. 527-565). He was unwilling
to connect his cycles of dates with the era of the impious tyrant and persecutor
Diocletian, which began with the year A.D. 284, but chose rather to date
the times of the years from the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ 'to
the end that the commencement of our hope might be better known to us and
that the cause of man's restoration, namely, our Redeemer's passion, might
appear with clearer evidence.' The year following that in which Dionysius
Exiguus wrote these words to Bishop Petronius was the year 248 of the Diocletian
Era. Hence the new Era of the Incarnation as it was then reckoned was 284
+ 248 = A.D. 532. Dionysius abhorred the memory of Diocletian with good
reasons, for in the 1st year of his reign, from which the Diocletian Era
begins, he caused a number of Christians who were celebrating Holy Communion
in a cave to be buried alive there. The Diocletian Era was, from this fact,
sometimes called the Era of the Martyrs.
"Dionysius reckoned the year of our Lord's birth to be the year
A.U.C. 753, according to Varro's computation, i.e., the year 45 of the
Julian Era. Dionysius obtained this date from Luke's statements that 'John
the Baptist began his ministry in the 15th year of the reign of Tiberius,'
and that 'Jesus was beginning to he about 30 years of age' (Luke 3:1-23).
Tiberius succeeded Augustus, August 19th, A.U.C. 767. Therefore his 15th
year was A.U.C. 782. Subtract the assumed year of the Nativity, 753, and
the remainder is 29 years complete or 30 current.
"But according to Matthew, Christ was born before the death of
Herod, that is, according to the computation of the Chronologers, before
749. Hence the year of the Incarnation, the year A.D. 1, was fixed four
years too late, and to remedy this we have to express the true date of
our Lord's birth by saying that He was born B.C. 4. It was subsequently
discovered that the source of the error lay, not with the Evangelists,
Matthew or Luke, but in the fact that Tiberius began to reign as colleague
or partner with Augustus some years before Augustus died, and that the
length of his reign after Augustus' death was not 26 years, but 22. In
this way the difficulties were cleared up. The Era of the Incarnation was
allowed to remain and the birth of Christ was set down as having occurred
in the year B.C. 4."
The accepted chronology contradicts many of the outstanding facts which
are clearly set forth in various writers during the period 480-340 B.C.E.
It creates more problems than it solves; in fact, it unravels none hut
makes many difficulties which otherwise would never appear. It necessitates
the forcing upon the record strained and unnatural meanings. We must, therefore,
reject it and take our stand upon the chronology which is afforded by the
correct interpretation of Daniel's inspired prophecy, and which was shown
in the preceding chapter.
The evidence which has been presented in this chapter shows conclusively
that a most serious error has been made in the received chronology with
reference to the length of the Persian period. Insurmountable difficulties
have been discovered which prevent one's accepting this system, that, as
we have seen, is based upon speculation and assumption. It is utterly impossible
to square the known facts, presented in the Scriptures, with this system
of reckoning time.
The decree for the rebuilding of Jerusalem, announced by Gabriel, was
issued by Cyrus. He did this in 3589 A.H. Zerubbabel with his principal
associate, Joshua the High Priest, began the long trek homeward and the
work of rehabilitation.
Since the history of the Persian period is in such hopeless confusion,
one cannot rely upon it for material out of which to construct a chronological
The time from 3589 A.H. must be reckoned by the seventy weeks of Daniel's
prophecy. From that year to the cutting off of King Messiah were to be
483 years (inclusive reckoning). We take our stand upon the infallible
Word of God and are convinced that He came on scheduled time.
The chronological difficulties that may be brought
to mind in reference to Ezra, Nehemiah and Esther are easily resolved but
explanations are too lengthy for the scope of this article. Please inquire
if you find data that appears to be insurmountable to taking the written
word of God at its literal face value in reference to the decree of Cyrus
and the cutting off of the Messiah 483 years later.