Much has been written on the prophetic
text of the Babylonian exile of Judah in
an attempt to answer the question,
When are Daniel’s 70 Weeks Fulfilled?
Perhaps no prophetic text suffers more
at the hands of exegetes than does that
of Daniel 9:24–27.
Dispensationalist Thomas Ice and others in that movement argue for
a literal interpretation of the 70 weeks.
However, their literalizing of the text results in both a logical contradiction and abandonment of their premise by inserting a 2000 plus year gap.
They insert thousands of “weeks” into the final week resulting in non-fulfillment of the prophecy. However, the prophecy contains a very simple guide-post which solves the mystery and defines its scope.
When Are Daniel’s 70 Weeks Fulfilled?
Seventy weeks are determined for your people and for your holy city,
- to finish the transgression,
- to make an end of sins,
- to make reconciliation for iniquity,
- to bring in everlasting righteousness,
- to seal up vision and prophecy, and
- to anoint the Most Holy.
In addition, the text cites:
- the command to restore and rebuild Jerusalem,
- the coming of the Messiah the Prince,
- the cutting off (crucifixion) of the Messiah,
- the confirmation of the covenant,
- the end of sacrifice and offerings,
- the abomination of desolation and
- the destruction of the city of Jerusalem.
Whatever one makes of the calculations of Daniel’s seventy weeks, they do not extend beyond the time of fleshly or national Israel and their holy city.
In other words, the prophecy ends at the the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD. That is the meaning of “Seventy weeks are determined for your people and for your holy city.”
Secondly, it is clear that 69 of the 70 weeks, divided into two parts consisting of seven weeks and sixty-two weeks brings us to the time of the Messiah, i.e. Jesus Christ, Daniel 9:25).
Thirdly, after the 69th week, (calculated by adding the two periods of the seven and sixty-two weeks together,) the Messiah is cut off i.e. crucified.
Fourthly, the event which follows the cutting off of the Messiah is the destruction of the city and the sanctuary, i.e. the temple. This brings us to the events of Matthew 23–24 and Luke 21, which describes Jerusalem’s destruction in the first century.
While this appears to all happen in one sweep, the facts are that the destruction of Jerusalem does not occur until about 40 years following the actual death of Christ.
Dispensationalist take this as a opportunity to insert a gap of 2000 plus years to hypothesize a pre-tribulation Rapture and fantasize a literal millennial earthly reign of Christ resulting in the rebuilding of a new temple.
This, they assert happens before the final week begins. Yet, the text ends with Jerusalem’s destruction in 70 AD, allowing no room for a 2000 year gap.
It is not the seventy first or more weeks. It is the seventieth weeks. There is no weekly interger between 69 and 70 or the last week of the prophecy. So whatever occurs after the 69th week happens in the 70th week. That includes Christ’s crucifixion and the destruction of the city.
We are well aware that this upsets the theory that each represents a literal year falls apart at the 70th week. However, it is God’s method not ours.
But that does not mean that we abandon the formula for a gap theory. Did not Christ come to declare the “acceptable year of the Lord?” (Luke 4:19; Isa. 61:2)
Does not the day of vengeance, i.e. the destruction of the city of Jerusalem consummate the acceptable year of the Lord?
Thomas Ice and Tim LaHaye cite this very verse in their Charting the Endtimes as that which includes the “church age,” terminating in the 70 Weeks of Daniel.
What they don’t get is the fact that the “church age” is the pre-parousia reign of Christ which ends with the “day of vengeance of our God,” per Isaiah 61:2. That is the conclusion of Daniels 70 weeks prophecy!
This is therefore, the admission from top Dispensationalist authorities that Daniel prophecy ends with Jerusalem’s fall in A.D. 70. The day of vengeance is clearly Israel’s end by the Romans, (Deut. 32:35, 41; Lk. 21:20–22; Heb. 10:30).
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