Seventy weeks are decreed

“Seventy weeks are decreed about your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, and to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal both vision and prophet, and to anoint a most holy place. Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with squares and moat, but in a troubled time. And after the sixty-two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and shall have nothing. And the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. Its end shall come with a flood, and to the end there shall be war. Desolations are decreed. And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half of the week he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator.” Daniel 9:24-27

Today’s verses are some that can lead to disagreement even among Christians. So I start with a warning that today is what my research leads me to believe. As always feel free to research this on your own. I also looked at these verses in my “Daniel’s 70 Weeks of Years” email/posting March 18, 2013 when we looked at Jesus in the Old Testament.

At that time I wrote that these verses were one of the reasons, if not the main reason, that the Messiah was expected when Jesus began His ministry. Then I mentioned that what is translated in English as weeks is actually the Hebrew word שָׁבוּעַ  (šā•ḇûaʿ) which really means sevens similar to the English word dozen which means twelve. So while the Hebrew word can mean a week it can also mean any period of seven. In this case it refers to seventy sevens of years, or 490 years. But Daniel divides the 490 years into three periods as follows: seven weeks (49 years) plus sixty-two weeks (434 years) plus one week (7 years). More on this later.

In today’s verses God told Daniel that six things would happen before the end: 1) Finish transgression, 2) Put an end to all sin, 3) Atone for wickedness, 4) Bring in everlasting righteousness, 5) To seal up vision and prophecy (finish/complete) and 6) To anoint the most Holy.  Looking back from today we can see that most of this has not happened. In fact the only one that has been completed is the atonement.

Let’s take a more detailed look at how the 490 years are calculated, realizing that when we are talking about ancient times the dates I use are close but may not be exact. One calculation based on these verses is as follows.. The clock starts with the decrees: Cyrus – 538 BC – Jews to return to Jerusalem, Darius – 519 BC – Reaffirmed Cyrus’ decree and allowed the rebuilding of the temple and Artaxerxes – 458 – first decree and then in 445 the second decree to rebuild Jerusalem

The sevens are first seven sevens (49 years) was the time it took to rebuild the temple then sixty-two sevens  or the time from the finishing of the rebuilding to the triumphal entry (Luke 19:41-44).

Artaxerxes decree was issued on March 14, 445 BC. The Messiah was to come 483 years later. This is 173,880 days (note: there was only 1 year between 1 BC and 1 AD, there was no year 0) this would put the triumphal entry on April 6, 32 AD, a Sunday. This calculation puts Jesus entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday during what many consider the proper timeframe.

Daniel 9:26 tells us that the Anointed One will be cut off as well as the destruction of the city and the Temple. This leads us to the last seven which has yet to come. This would be The End Times or the seven years of the Tribulation. Finally Daniel 9:27 tells us of             The Antichrist.

Why the gaps? I cannot say for sure but I think the gaps are misdirection. What I mean is we can focus on the gaps and miss what God is telling us. We want things on our timetable and to fit how we think things should work. When we do that we are putting God in a box. That is the last thing anyone needs to do.

Have a blessed day,



About dwwork

The name of this blog is taken from 1 Peter 3:13 - “always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience. This verse became special to me over ten years ago when I was asked to teach an adult Sunday school class on Christian apologetics. This interest grew over the years to the point that I took some graduate level classes in apologetics. I think the best way to be prepared to give and answer to everyone who asks is to know scripture. It is my hope that through these short devotionals the reader will become more familiar with each verse. I have tried when possible to make them personal hoping in some small way to show that God’s word written over two thousand years ago is still relevant today. In the writing of these short devotionals I have been able to better understand how God’s word impacts my life. It is my hope that you too will come closer to our Lord Jesus and develop a closer relationship with Him. Finally, if the reader finds anything in conflict with scripture please let me know. God’s word is the final authority always overrules anything I might write. David
This entry was posted in Bible, Devotional, God, Prophets and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Seventy weeks are decreed

  1. John Paine says:

    The Cyrus Cylinder provides an interesting backdrop to this history. See

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s