God of the exact: Daniel’s Seventy Week ProphecyA remarkable prophecy pinpoints the time of the Messiah:
Daniel 9:25-26: “Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: . . . And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself.”
The starting point of this prophecy is the decree to rebuild Jerusalem. The only decree that fits is in Nehemiah 2:1, where King Artaxerxes Longimanus grants the request of Nehemiah to have the city rebuilt. The time period is given in verse 1: “In the month Nisan, in the twentieth year of Artaxerxes the king.”
According to Smith and Eastman, the Hebrew tradition says that if the day of the month is not specifically given, then it means the first day of that month or, in this case, the first day of Nisan. This date of the decree of Artaxerxes corresponds to March 14, 445 B.C. The date indicated for the decree to rebuild Jerusalem above has been verified by astronomical calculations at the British Royal Observatory.
Many ancient calendar years were 360 days in length, including the biblical calendar years. According to Anderson, the length of the biblical prophetic year was also 360 days, from the internal evidence of the Bible itself. Therefore, for the prophetic calendar Jews used 360-day years. So how long would sixty-nine weeks of years be? It would be 69 x 7 years x 360 days = 483 years, or 173,880 days. This is the duration of the prophecy, the time between prediction and fulfillment.
The endpoint is the coming of the “Messiah the Prince.” The Hebrew word for “prince” is nagid, which actually means “king.” Now in the Gospels, on many occasions, people tried to take Jesus and make Him king by force. He did not allow that to happen until on a particular day, during His triumphal entry into Jerusalem ( now called Palm Sunday), four days before His crucifixion.
Can scriptural clues help us determine this date? In the Gospel of Luke, Luke informs us of the start of John the Baptist’s ministry: “Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar. . .the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness” (Luke 3:1, 2). In the fifteenth year of Tiberius Caesar, John the Baptist began his ministry. According to Anderson, Tiberius Caesar began to reign in August of 14 A.D. So the fifteenth year of Tiberius Caesar would have been 28 A.D. (the year Tiberius’s fifteenth year began, his first year beginning August of 14 A.D.), with Jesus beginning His ministry in the fall of that year. Most scholars agree there were four Passovers and three and a half years in Jesus’ ministry and that He was crucified on the last of those four Passovers. This would correspond to the year 32 A.D., on the fourteenth of Nisan. This was equivalent to April 10, 32 A.D., and the triumphal entry into Jerusalem would therefore be dated April 6, 32 A.D. (the tenth of Nisan).
So how does the data compare? We determined above that the beginning date for the prophecy was March 14, 445 B.C., that the length of time was 173,880 days and that the endpoint of the prophecy was April 6, 32 A.D. So how many days are actually between March 14, 445 B.C., and April 6, 32 A.D.?
From March 14, 445 B.C., to March 14, 32 A.D., is 476 years (remember: there is no year 0). That is 476 years x 365 days/year = 173,740 days. Leap year days need to be added, and they don’t occur in century years unless divisible by 400, so we must add 3 fewer leap year days in four centuries, which equals 116 total additional days. From March 14 to April 6 is an additional 24 days. So the total days = 173,740 + 116 + 24 = 173,880 days!! The exact number of days!! Coincidence?! Or an amazing demonstration that God is able to see the beginning from the end and that the inspirer of this prophecy indeed can see outside the time domain? Surely this has to be one of the most remarkable prophecies of the Bible.
 Smith and Eastman, Search for Messiah, 1996, 105-106.
 Sir Robert Anderson, The Coming Prince, 1957, 124
 One example would be ancient Babylon.
 Anderson, The Coming Prince, 67-75. Anderson refers to many places in the Bible, especially the books of Daniel and Revelation, in demonstrating this.
 Ibid., 96.
Ibid., 106-118, 127-128
Do you want to know why Simeon and Anna were waiting for the consolation of Israel which was the coming of the Messiah? They understood the book of Daniel
Thankfully, neither your salvation, nor mine, hangs in the balance with getting Daniel 9:24-27 exactly right. But God has already laid down when the Messiah was coming when Danial was in Babylon
Daniel 9:24,27 Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy Place . Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.
DANIEL 9 & THE 70 WEEKS
Daniel was next told by Gabriel that the 70 sevens are to accomplish six purposes.
1) The first is to finish transgression. The Hebrew word translated “to finish” means “to restrain firmly,” “to restrain completely” or “to bring to completion.”
2) The second purpose of the 70 sevens is to make an end of sins. The Hebrew word translated “to make an end” literally means “to seal up” or “to shut up in prison.”
3) The third purpose is to make reconciliation for iniquity. The Hebrew word translated “to make reconciliation” is “kaphar,” which has the same root meaning as the word “kippur,” as in Yom Kippur. The word “kaphar” literally means “to make atonement.”
4) The fourth purpose of the 70 sevens is to bring in everlasting righteousness. More literally this could be translated “to bring in an age of righteousness,”
5) The fifth purpose is to seal up vision and prophecy. Here Daniel used a word which means “to shut up.” So “to seal up” means to cause a cessation or to completely fulfill. Thus, vision and prophecy are to be completely fulfilled.” Vision” is a reference to oral prophecy, while “prophecy” refers to written prophecy. Both oral and written prophecy will cease
6) The final purpose of the 70 sevens is to anoint the most holy. A better translation here would be “to anoint a most holy place.” This is a reference to the Jewish temple which is to be rebuilt when Messiah comes.
THE PREDICTED TIME.
The time of the 70 Sevens Daniel 9:24,27 “Seventy sevens are decreed upon thy people and upon thy holy city…” The focus of the program of the sevens was “thy people and…thy holy city.” the Jewish people. The Hebrew text is shavuim, which means “sevens.” The word refers to a “seven” of anything, It was not “70 years,” but “70 sevens of years,” a total of 490 years (70 times seven).
The Start of the 70 Sevens Daniel 9:25 “Know therefore and discern, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem.…”
Artaxerxes to Nehemiah (Nehemiah 2:1-8 ), issued in the year 444 B.C.E. This decree specifically concerned the rebuilding of the walls around Jerusalem.
The 70 sevens are divided into three separate units—seven sevens, 62 sevens and one seven. During the first time period (49 years) Jerusalem would be “built again, with street and moat, even in troublous times.” The second block of time (62 sevens, a total of 434 years) immediately followed the first for a total of 69 sevens, or 483 years. The last seven is known as the seven-year tribulation.
Daniel taught that 483 years after the decree to rebuild Jerusalem had been issued, Messiah would be here on earth. “unto Messiah the Prince.” “Would be cut off but not for himself” v26
THE PREDICTED DEATH.
“the Messiah shall be cut off and not for himself” The Hebrew word translated “cut off” is the common word used in the Mosaic Law and simply means “to be killed.”
The Hebrew expression translated “and not for himself” has two meanings. It may mean “nothingness,” emphasizing Messiah’s state at death and he died for others rather than for himself.
The point of this phrase is that between the end of the second subdivision (the 69th seven) and before the start of the 70th seven, Messiah would be killed and not for himself. During this interim period “the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood.…” The city and the temple that were to be rebuilt would now be destroyed. So sometime after the Messiah was cut off, Jerusalem and the temple would suffer another destruction. The Romans, and Jerusalem and the temple were destroyed in year 70 C. E. Based upon this verse, it is also clear that the Messiah should have both come and died prior to the year 70 C.E.
THE PROVIDED WITNESS.
In Luke 2:25-38, we learn about Simeon and Anna who also obeyed and clearly understood the time the Messiah was coming according to Daniel in God’s Word.
Daniel was in Babylon, so he would have used the Babylonian calendar, and not the Jewish calendar. The Babylonian calendar is 360 days and the Jewish is 365.
Some scholars I have read have a hard time lining up the Daniel 9 timing with Jesus's death because they assume the Jewish calendar was used.
Using the 365 day calendar produces errors in dating. However if you use the 360 day calendar, it works out to the very day that Jesus entered into Jerusalem the day of His triumphal entry.
One wonders at the reception He was given. He was hailed as the Messiah very clearly. The people knew from Daniel's prophecy that the time of the fulfillment was at hand.
THEY WERE WAITING FOR HIM!
Jesus delayed His trip so that His entry to Jerusalem would line up exactly with Daniel's prophecy, when the correct calendar was used.
353 Prophecies Fulfilled in Jesus Christ
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