THE SEVENTY WEEKS OF DANIEL Pt. 2
Written by: Camping, Harold Posted on: 05/12/2003
Category: Bible Studies
So far in our study of Daniel 9:24-27, we have seen that every phrase in
this intriguing passage is beginning to make sense, once we have caught the
key. Once we discovered the major clue, that the city and the sanctuary
discussed in these verses are not a literal city and a literal temple, these
verses began to open up for us. We discovered that the city and the
sanctuary refer to Christ Himself or to His body, the believers in Him who
will hear the Gospel or hear the law of God and thus become saved. Once we
discovered this we began to see that every phrase in this passage began to
fit into place.
In our study of the seventy sevens, we determined that the time period in
view begins in 458 B.C., when King Artaxerxes I, the Medo-Persian King,
gave to Ezra the scribe the command that he was to go to Jerusalem to
reestablish the law, that is, to rebuild the spiritual city. We have found
that there was one path that went directly from 458 B.C. to the cross 490
years later, in 33 A.D. (vs. 24).
Then is verses 25 and 26 we saw a more difficult path that consisted
first of seven sevens or a Jubilee period. This was followed by an un
broken path of 62 sevens or 434 years, which brought us to the year 29
A.D., when Christ was baptized. It was at this time that He officially began
His work as Messiah.
Christ Confirms His Covenant
Let us begin to unravel verse 27 of Daniel 9. There God declares that He
shall confirm the covenant with many for one seven. How are we to understand
this phrase? Who is "he?" What covenant is it that He will confirm? Who are
the many with whom He will confirm this covenant?
Many theologians stumble on this verse. They suggest that the "he" is the
antiChrist, who will make a covenant with the Jews. Moreover, they
insist that this verse is concerned with the tribulation period that must
come, as prophesied in Matthew 24:21. Is this what this phrase is discussing?
When we looked at verses 25 and 26, we saw that God was talking about the
Prince who was to come, who could be only the Messiah. Therefore, the
antecedent of the "he" that shall confirm the covenant can only be the
Messiah of verses 25 and 26. There is no suggestion in these verses that
the "he" of verse 27 could be antiChrist.
Furthermore, we shall see that this verse cannot be discussing the final
tribulation period because shortly we will see that sacrifice and
offering ceased in the middle of the week, and that can refer only to the
time when Christ was hanging on the cross. It was at that time that He
completed the ceremonial laws and ended sacrifices and offerings.
The Covenant of Salvation is in View
Moreover, we find that ordinarily in the Bible when God is speaking of
a covenant, He has in view God's covenant of grace or redemption that He has
made with believers. This word "covenant" in the old Testament is the Hebrew
word "berith." It is found some 280 times in the Old Testament.
Sometimes it is translated "league," as for example when one political
nation had made a league with another. But in more than 877 of the times
that it is used in the Old Testament, it definitely relates to the covenant
of grace or the covenant of salvation.
In the New Testament the word "covenant," which is also translated
"testament," is the Greek word "diatheke." It is found 33 times in the New
Testament, and in every instance it relates to the covenant of
For example, when Jesus instituted the Lord's Supper, He declared, "This is
My blood of the new testament." In Romans 11:27 God quotes from the Old
Testament as He explains why a remnant chosen by grace was coming into the
body of Christ from national Israel. There He declared, "This is My covenant
unto them when I take away their sins." Hebrews 12:24 declares, "Jesus, the
Mediator of the new covenant." Again, Hebrews 13:20 speaks of the "blood of
the everlasting covenant." These references to the covenant can be
speaking only of Christ, who went to the cross that God's covenant of grace
or salvation might become effective for all who would believe on Him.
When Jesus stood on the shore of the River Jordan, John the Baptist
looked at Him and said, "Behold the Lamb of God that taketh away the sin
of the world." Christ came as the Lamb to confirm the covenant.
Going back to Daniel 9:27, God indicates that He shall confirm the covenant
with many. The many for whom Christ came to confirm His covenant of
salvation are those He came to save: "Thou shalt call His name Jesus for He
shall save His people from their sins." "He gave His life a ransom for many."
From the above, then, we can see that the phrase we are studying does not
have any Biblical validation to suggest that it is antiChrist who would
make some kind of a covenant. Moreover, we see that emphatically it relates
to the covenant of grace, which is such a major subject throughout the whole
As we have seen, the end of the 62nd week of Daniel occurred in 29 A.D., when
Jesus was baptized. It was at that time, as the Holy Spirit came upon
Him, that He was officially anointed as High Priest; He was officially
declared to be the Messiah. It was also that year that became the
beginning of the seventieth week. Therefore, we see that everything is
fitting into place exactly as it should.
Thus we must come to the conclusion that when verse 27 declares, "He shall
confirm the covenant . . . ," the "he" is the Lord Jesus Himself. The covenant
is the covenant of grace, and of course, He came to give His life a ransom
for many (Matthew 20:28). Therefore He confirmed the covenant for many.
But what about the rest of the seventieth seven? If we go from 29 A.D. for
seven years, we end up at approximately 36 or 37 A.D., but the Bible tells
of nothing significant happening in either of these years. Maybe we are on
the wrong path after all. Let us continue to study verse 27 and see.
Sacrifice and Offering has Ceased
The Bible says, in the second phrase in verse 27, "And in the midst of
the week (that is, for half of the seven) He shall cause the sacrifice and
oblation to cease." This is a tremendous statement, which offers a clue
that we are on exactly the right path. God is declaring by this language
that in the midst, or in the middle, or for half of the seventieth seven,
sacrifice and offering will cease. This important piece of information must
be faced in any possible solution to the 70 sevens of Daniel 9.
Consider! There is only one time in history when sacrifice and offering
ceased, and that was at the cross. When Jesus hung on the cross the veil of
the temple, that huge veil some 50 feet high and several inches thick, which
separated the holy of holies from the holy place, was rent in two from top
to bottom. That is, it was rent by God. Never again would the holy of holies
be a place where only the High Priest could go to meet God. The whole
business of sacrifices had ended. The whole Old Testament priesthood had ended
with Christ going to the cross. Never again would there be blood sacrifices.
Oh, it's true that the Jews for a number of years after this continued
to offer blood sacrifices, but insofar as God's plan is concerned,
these sacrifices had no meaning whatsoever.
Sacrifices had been instituted from the beginning of time. We see this in
the fact that Abel offered a blood sacrifice. We see this in the fact that
Noah offered a blood sacrifice. It was further articulated on Mount Sinai
when God gave all the commands about blood sacrifices and burnt offerings.
But all of these sacrifices were pointing to "The Sacrifice," the Lord Jesus
Christ Himself. By His death He completed all of these burnt offerings,
all of these blood sacrifices. Never again would a sacrifice of an animal or
any kind of a burnt offering have any meaning whatsoever in God's
timetable. Christ completed all of this. Never again will we come under the
Therefore, when Daniel 9:27 indicates that for half the week, or in the
midst of the week, sacrifice and offering will cease, we can know that 33
A.D. was in view. But 33 A.D., the spring Passover Day when Christ
hung on the cross, at which time sacrifice and offering ceased, was
three and one-half years later than 29 A.D. when the 62 sevens ended, when
Christ was officially designated as the Messiah, as John the Baptist
declared, "Behold, the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world."
Can you see, dear friend, that the seventieth seven began with Christ's
baptism in 29 A.D., and three and one-half years later, at the end of the
first half of the seventieth seven, sacrifice and offering ceased because
Christ hung on the cross? Therefore, we now have a very clear path from the
giving of the law in 458 B.C., when Ezra went to reestablish the law, that
is, to rebuild the spiritual city, right to the cross, insofar as the
first sixty-nine and one-half sevens are concerned.
The End of the Seventieth Week
But now, what about the last half of the seventieth seven? Let us read again
"And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one
week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the
sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the
overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate,
even until the consummation, and that determined shall
be poured upon the desolate (or upon the desolator)."
Of what is this speaking? It is giving us information that after the
cessation of sacrifice and offering, which would have to be 33 A.D., there
would be a time of the overspreading of abominations. But that sounds like
the events that will occur just before the end of time. When we study the
Bible we find that it is near the end of time that Satan is loosed to
deceive the nations (Revelation 20). It is at the end of time that
the rebellion comes. We read about this in II Thessalonians 2, in relation
to the man of sin, who takes his seat in the temple. It is at the end of time
that wickedness will multiply, as Jesus tells us in Matthew 24. This is
the time of the overspreading of abominations.
The overspreading of abominations is to be followed by the
consummation. It will be followed by the determined end, the determined
decree, that shall be poured upon the desolator. It is at the end of time
that Judgment Day will come, at which time God's judgments are poured out
upon the unsaved and upon Satan. This is the consummation, the time of the
decreed end. Therefore God is suggesting here that the last half of the
seventieth seven goes all the way from the cross, when sacrifice and
offering ceased, to Judgment Day itself, right to the end of time.
The Prerogative of God to Use Numbers as He Desires
We might begin to argue right at this point, "Now wait a minute! You just
can't do that! It's one thing to try to see a Jubilee period as a solution
to the first seven weeks. And it is possible to see a spiritual building as a
solution to the language relating to the building of Jerusalem. But to go
from literal years to calling the whole New Testament period, from the cross
to Judgment Day, a period of three and one- half years . . . that is asking
too much. To go from literal years to some kind of a symbolical use of
numbers all in the same passage . . . that does not seem believable."
Indeed, our human logic may say all of this, but we must remember it is God
who wrote the Bible. I did not write the Bible, neither did any other speaker
or teacher or preacher write the Bible. It is God who wrote the Bible, and
we have to sit very humbly under the teaching of the Bible and let God show
us what He had in mind.
As a matter of fact, you will notice in our study of Daniel 9:24-27
that God does not say there were 70 weeks of years. Rather, He says
there were 70 weeks. He is not indicating whether they are years or some other
unit of time. While it is true that in the first path we followed in going
from Ezra to the cross, 70 weeks was indeed a period of 490 years; in the
second path we followed the initial period was a Jubilee period. This was so,
as we have seen, inasmuch as a Jubilee period comes after each and every
seven weeks or 49 years. Thus God points us to a Jubilee period by the
reference to seven weeks. Therefore, the actual transpired time before the
62 weeks began was the period 458 B.C. to 407 B.C. which is a period
slightly longer than that which would result if we were to stay strictly
Likewise, as we look at the last half of the seventieth week, we are under
no stricture insofar as the language of Daniel 9:27 is concerned to insist
on literal years. Rather, we have to search the Bible to let it tell us what
this period is. As we have seen, verse 27 clearly shows that it is the
period from 33 A.D., when Christ hung on the cross, to Judgment Day at
the end of time. Later, in closing this study on Daniel 9:24-27, we will
see that God reinforces the fact that the last half of the seventieth week is
indeed the New Testament period. This will be seen by the language found
in Revelation 11, 12, and 13.
Judgment Day is the End of the Seventy Weeks
Thus we have found in studying Daniel, Chapter 9, that God in a very
interesting and beautiful way is showing us two paths to Judgment Day or
the coming of Christ. One path was given in verse 24, which was a direct path
of 490 years, going from 458 B.C. to 33 A.D., when Christ was here on earth
paying for our sins as He was receiving the awful judgment of God on behalf
of our sins.
The second dramatic path that God is opening up here also began in 458 B.C.
It is a more complex path, however. It begins with a Jubilee period, which
in turn is followed by 434 years. Thus we arrive at 29 A.D., when Christ
was baptized and officially began His work. This is followed by the first
half of the seventieth week, which is the period of Christ's word from the
time of His baptism until His crucifixion. It was at that moment
that sacrifice and offering ceased. We saw then that the last half of the
seventieth week included the whole period from the cross to the end of time.
Thus this second path also ends at Judgment Day and the coming of Christ. It
will be the second coming of Christ when Christ returns on the clouds of
glory to judge the living and the dead.
We see therefore a beautiful parallel, a beautiful cohesiveness in these
verses. There are two paths, both of which begin at the same point in 458 B.C.
and both of which end with the coming of Christ. Both end with Judgment Day.
One was the first coming of Christ and the Judgment Day at the cross, when
the believers' sins were paid for. The second is the coming of Christ on the
Last Day, when the unsaved and Satan and all of his evil hosts will be
judged for their sins.
In order to arrive at the two ends of time under the figure of 70 weeks, one
at the cross and one at Judgment Day, obviously God has to do something
special with the numbers. It is God's province, it is God's prerogative, it
is God's right to take the last half of the seventieth seven and make it
cover the whole New Testament period. We know this last half of the
seventieth seven must begin at the time of the cross because that is
when sacrifice and offering ceased. This path must go from the cross all the
way to the end of time because Daniel 9:27 declares that the seventieth
seven ends with the time of the overspreading of abomination and the
determined end, or the decreed end, being poured out upon the desolator or
the desolate. That time is Judgment Day and the end of time.
Judgment Day Signifies that the Atonement has been Completed
The end of time, when Judgment Day occurs, is also the time when our
salvation is completed. Remember, verse 24 speaks about 70 sevens that
begin with the building of Jerusalem and end with the finishing of
transgression, the ending of sins, the making of reconciliation and the
bringing in of everlasting righteousness. Christ completes our salvation
when He returns in judgment. The Bible says that we are saved, but the Bible
also says that we will be saved. We are saved in the sense that our sins
have all been paid for. We are saved in the sense that we have received
our resurrected souls. But we have not received our resurrected bodies as yet.
That will occur at the completion of our salvation. Then He will have
finished transgression in a total way. Then He will have made an end of sins
in a total way . . . not only an end of our sins but also an end of the
sins of the unsaved, in that they will have been cast into hell. Then
He will have made reconciliation for iniquity . . . not in the sense that
He went to the cross, but in the sense that He will have given us our
redeemed bodies. He will have reconciled the rest of us to Himself.
Our bodies, as they go into the grave, are unsaved. But they will have been
resurrected perfect spiritual bodies. This is the ultimate completion of what
God has in view. Therefore, we see that both paths fit all the language of
When we study Revelation 11 we find further evidence that shows us that the
period of time from the cross to Judgment Day is symbolized in the
Bible by the figure of three and a half years. We might recall that in
Daniel 9:27 God is saying that the last half of the seventieth seven is
the whole New Testament period, from the cross until Judgment Day, or until
the return of Christ on the Last Day. One-half of seven years is three and
one-half years. This equals 42 months or 1,260 days. That is precisely the
time period that Revelation 11:3 is talking about:
"And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they
shall prophecy a thousand two hundred and threescore
days, clothed in sackcloth."
A study of these two witnesses would show that they must be the New
Testament church because Revelation 11:4 speaks of them as olive trees, a
figure also found in Romans 11, where it is used in speaking of the body of
Christ. Revelation 11:4 also declares that they are the two candlesticks
standing before the God of the earth. In Revelation 1 and 2 God shows us that
every congregation, every church, is represented in heaven by a
candlestick. God speaks of two witnesses because it is "out of the mouths of
two or three witnesses that God's Word is established." Thus these two
witnesses are a representation of the New Testament church as it brings the
The Church brings the Gospel during the Last Half of the Seventieth Week
Because the Bible is one cohesiveness whole, God reaches back to Daniel 9:27
and picks up the time period that is the last half of the seventieth seven,
the time period from the cross until Judgment Day at the end of time,
and uses that figure here in Revelation 11:2, when He declares, "The
temple will be trodden under foot forty and two months." He uses it again in
verse 3 when He states, " . . . and they shall prophesy a thousand two
hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth." This period of time as we
saw from Daniel 9:27 is the whole New Testament period. Do we see the
beautiful symmetry, the marvelous cohesive oneness of the Bible? It all
begins to tie together, does it not? Once we find the key, the clue phrases,
we see how it ties together.
You will remember in Daniel 9 we saw that the city and the temple was
referring to Christ, or to His body, the church. That is the same figure
used in Revelation 11:1, where God speaks about measuring the temple of
God. The temple is the body of Christ that is being measured. In verse 2, He
speaks of the Holy City, which shall be trodden underfoot forty and two
months. The Holy City must also be the body of Christ. We are the Holy City;
we are the Jerusalem that God has in view here. We are trodden underfoot by
the Gentiles in the sense that we do not rule on this earth. Oh, yes, we are
kings, even as God declares throughout the whole Bible and particularly in
Revelation. We are kings, but our kingdom is Heaven. Our homeland is Heaven;
our throne is in Heaven. We are on this earth as strangers and pilgrims
even as Abraham was, to represent Christ, to be His ambassadors, to share the
Through us, Christ continues to confirm His covenant with the many who are
being saved, even as it was promised in Daniel 9:27. But we do not rule over
the nations of this earth. Now we are the ones who are trodden underfoot. We
are persecuted; we are afflicted. We are walking in the shoes of Jesus, who
stripped Himself of all of His glory as He came to bring the Gospel and
as He went to the cross to die for our sins. He walked humbly, without any
apparent glory whatsoever. This is the way we are to bring the Gospel, even as
verse 3 of Revelation 11 teaches. Remember, there God speaks of the
witnesses being "clothed in sackcloth."
Revelation 12 also Relates to Daniel 9
In Revelation 12 God again picks up the figure of a half week with the
language of verse 6:
"And the woman fled into the wilderness, where she hath a
place prepared of God that they should feed her there a
thousand two hundred and threescore days."
The woman in view in this verse can be shown to be the believers from whom
Christ was born. Christ is shown to be the man child in Revelation 12:5.
There the Bible speaks of the woman giving birth to a child whom we know to
be Christ. When He was caught up into God, that is, He ascended into
Heaven, the woman, whom we might also call the New Testament Church,
continues in the wilderness, where she is nourished by God.
The wilderness is a figure taken from the Old Testament. You will recall that
the Israelites left the land of Egypt and spent 40 years in the wilderness
before they entered the promised land, the land of Canaan. That wilderness
sojourn again would be the whole New Testament period. We will have crossed
the Jordan River and entered the land of Canaan in the fullest sense of the
word at the end of time when we receive our resurrected bodies. The 1,260 days
equals 42 months or 3 1/2 years. God has again reached back to Daniel 9:27
to show that this is the New Testament period.
In Revelation 13 God again uses the figure of 42 months. In verse 5 He
speaks of the authority of the beast (Satan's kingdom) continuing for
this period of time. We know, therefore, that again in this verse God is
speaking of the whole New Testament period.
We see, therefore, in these three chapters of Revelation, that God has given
us beautiful validation of the concept taught in Daniel 9:27 . . . that the
last half of the seventieth week is the period from the cross to Judgment Day.
We have looked very carefully at Daniel 9:24-27. When we discovered
the key to these verses, we were enabled to come up with a solution that
meets all the Biblical requirements. That key was the fact that God did not
have in view in these verses a literal, physical city or temple that
was to be built or destroyed. Rather, He had in view the city and the
temple which is the body of believers, which was to be built by teaching the
law of God. He also had in view the cutting off of the Lord Jesus Christ,
who was the spiritual city and sanctuary.
With this knowledge we were enabled to find two paths to the coming of
the Lord Jesus Christ. The first path went directly from 458 B.C., at the
time Ezra went to Jerusalem to reestablish the law, to 33 A.D., when Christ
hung on the cross on behalf of those who were to be saved as He experienced
judgment for our sins.
The second path went to the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, at
which time He will complete the salvation of the believers and bring the
unsaved into judgment. That path consisted of an initial Jubilee period
signified by seven weeks followed by an unbroken period of 434 years,
signified by 62 weeks, which brought us to 29 A.D., when Christ was
baptized. This was the beginning of the seventieth week, at which time
He officially began His program to confirm the covenant of salvation with
all who would believe on Him.
The middle of the seventieth week, we saw very clearly, was 33 A.D., when
Christ was crucified, because it was at this time that sacrifice and offering
ceased. We then saw that the last half of the seventieth week embraced the
whole time from the cross to the return of Christ at the end of time.
Finally, we briefly looked at Revelation 11, 12, and 13 and saw that God
used the figure of 3 1/2 years or 42 months or 1,260 days to signify the New
Testament period from the cross to Judgment Day. It surely became obvious
that this figure of time was taken from the last half of the seventieth week
of Daniel 9.
Could it be that this study will encourage us all to continue our search of
the Scriptures, knowing that under God's gracious provision slowly truth
can develop for us.
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