Daniel’s 70 Weeks – Antichrist, really?

23May11

Dan 9:27 And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and [after] 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 desolate.”

We begin somewhat where we left off last time. Who is the “he” referred to here in the beginning of verse 27. The answer to that question greatly impacts how one views the entire passage as a whole. But as a review let us remember that Daniel is clear that what is being discussed here would take place within 490 years of a decree to rebuild the city which we previously saw took place in 457 BC by Artaxerxes I.

Next we need to remember that the author never adds a new character. The first character introduce is Messiah the prince and at no time is another character introduced. The term “prince” is used, but again, since Messiah the prince reflects the person of Jesus there is no warrant to think that the term “the Prince” used by itself should be someone else. The “he” would refer back to the previously used male character, the Prince, who is Jesus Christ.

But now let us consider the passage at hand to discover if the actions of the “he” are related to the work of Jesus Christ to help us confirm this interpretation.

We are first told that this “he” will confirm a covenant with many for one week. The mysterious action is often interpreted to be the antichrist making some sort of treaty or pact with the nation of Israel at the beginning of the Seven Year Tribulation in which animal sacrifices will be reinstituted in a rebuilt Temple. So, from this little verse you get a rebuilt Temple and the reinstitution of animal sacrifices! That should be the definition of eisegesis! There is no mention of a rebuilt temple. It is forced into the passage despite it not being there at all!

Also, who, Biblically speaking makes covenants? Does the Devil? No, what we see in Scripture is that covenants are the work of a holy, just and sovereign God! But the Dispensational model gives us an antichrist making covenants.

The real question should be; who makes this covenant with the many for one week?

Jeremiah 31:31 Behold, the days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah

Luke 22:20 And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.

Hebrews 8:13 In speaking of a new covenant, he makes the first one obsolete. And what is becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away.

We are told that one day God would make a new covenant with those that are His. Jesus makes that covenant while celebrating the great covenantal feast of Passover. This new covenant, as we are told in Hebrews, makes the old covenant obsolete and it was to be seen as vanishing away.

But what do we make of the many and the idea that this covenant was for one week? All of this ties together, so I am begging for a little patience as we slowly walk through these ideas.

First we must address the “putting an end to sacrifices” before dealing with the many and the week. Getting a grasp on this will help the other portions fall into place. This is actually the easiest part of these last two verses to understand.

Who put an end to sacrifices?

Again we know that the week started at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry and that His death takes place 3 ½ years later…MID WEEK! And even a cursory glance at the book of Hebrews should help us see who it is that puts an end to sacrifices.

Hebrews 10:10 And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.

Hebrews 10:17 Then he adds: “Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.” 18 And where these have been forgiven, there is no longer any sacrifice for sin.

12 But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God

Jesus clearly, as the book of Hebrews declares, put an end to sacrifices. It literally cannot be plainer. One would literally have to convince oneself that the book of Hebrews is not saying what it is saying. And remember this…the book of Hebrews was written for the benefit of the Jews!

So, now that we know who put an end to sacrifices, let us re-examine the question as to who are the many and why is it just a week?

The many, in my estimation refers to the Jews. From the very beginning of Jesus ministry to the sending out of the Disciples to the first few years after Jesus’ death the Gospel was proclaimed nearly exclusively to the Jews.

Matthew 26:28 for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.

Romans 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek.

Acts 2:5 Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven.

Add passage regarding the House of Israel.

For the 3 ½ years after the crucifixion, the Gospel remained primarily in Jerusalem and Judea. The seedling Church stayed close to its origins and did not venture out beyond its Jewish border. But we must then as what happens at the end of the week to expand the covenant for the “many” to include one for the “all.” Put another way, what happens 3 ½ years later?

We must consider two basic issues when trying to determine the end of the last week. The first is what event took place about 3 ½ years later and how would that event have a part in transferring this covenant from the exclusive many (the Jews) to the rest of mankind.

Two different events have been postulated that would be more than satisfactory. I believe the latter event makes for a stronger case, but like several other issues, this is definitely not a hill I would die on.

The first under consideration is the stoning of Stephen. Two things took place as a result of this event. The first is the introduction of Saul (Paul) who would become the Apostle to the Gentiles. The other result is the dispersion of the early Church out of Jerusalem and Judea and into other parts of the Roman Empire, thus taking the Church throughout the empire and to the Gentiles.

The second event possibility is the revelation to Peter regarding the Gentiles. When he is told by God to eat the unclean animals presented before him he realized that the gentiles are part of this covenant and are in need of the Gospel. This event marks the true embrace of the early Church of the Gentiles and the unbridled desire to preach the Gospel to them.

Either of these events fit the model. What both declare is that the Gospel of the New Covenant was to expand beyond the many and to include the gentiles. This would fulfill God’s original covenant with Abraham that through him all nations would be blessed. The truth of the matter that Dispensationalist refuse to accept is that the original covenant was not exclusive to the Jews only in respect to a relationship with almighty God, but included the blessing of all nations.

Dan 9:27 ... And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolate.”

The last item quickly to discuss is the last line of this passage. The interpretations are as vast as the translations. Here again, as mentioned previously, the translations are multiple. The question is to whom or what is the “end” poured out on. Is it poured out on a “him” like the Dispensationalist argue, that him being the soon coming antichrist? Is the desolate the city of Jerusalem or the temple? This would makes sense given Jesus’ declaration in Matthew 23.

Or is it possible that the “desolate” are the Jews who caused the desolation in the first place. The most literal way of looking at the intensely difficult final line is…”desolations poured out on the which makes desolate.”

I would argue that the first is impossible since this passage has nothing to do with an antichrist and there is no need to postpone this desolation beyond the desolation occurring in 70AD. The second would make sense and I have no problem with this interpretation. I fall more in line with the last one simply because it matches the idea that “that which is poured out” is actually poured out on that which causes the desolation. This would be the first century Jews who, again remember this, killed the Lord of Glory and was the generation condemned by Jesus to take the wrath of all of the previous generations (Matt 23).

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4 Responses to “Daniel’s 70 Weeks – Antichrist, really?”

  1. 1 Yehoshuamyking

    I agree with what you have written and concluded !!!

    Bye the way…I thought that i had every modern English translation of the Holy Scriptures…But i do not have the one that you use… The ESV right?

    The King James Version or AV will remain my favorite though…However,after reading what you have written today and previously,using that THAT [ ] MODERN ENGLISH translation. Man Alive! The King James ONLY argument flounders this day…For me anyway…

    • 2 low5point

      I actually normally like the ESV since it is patterned after the KJV and AV in regards to it’s literary roots. Every translation has some troubles with it, but the modern struggle in interpreting things at times rather than translating things…and this lends many translations to favor a dispensational translation when more than one word can be used in that particular setting. The ESV was done by a great group of people and there is a wonderful Reformed Study Bible version of with the Ligonier people involved with it…just when it comes to very difficult to interpret passages they lean dispensational. It’s the King James that is way off on the Matt 24 section or world and age…

      They all struggle and it’s why I compare alot…

  2. 3 Yehoshuamyking

    Hi
    I have a question for you…It is about what you said about some translations leaning dispensationally,when it comes to the difficult to interpret passages.

    I have not picked up a copy of the ESV yet,so you will have to tell me wether or not in Revelation 7:14 it says “great tribulation” or ” the great tribulation”? All of the modern English translations that i have read,say “the great tribulation” including the NKJV.

    Someone else said that the definite article “the” in the modern English translations simply mean UNPRESIDENTED tribulation…

    I would be comfortable in believing that if it were not for the fact that so many of our brothers and sisters believe that that passage [Rev 7:14] supports their view of a seven year tribulation… With the last half or three and a half years being the worst of it…The definite article “the” is not used in KJV or AV in that passage…

    1… Is it because the definite article in that passage is not actually found in any Greek manuscripts?

    2… Or that it is not found in the manuscripts that were used by the King James Version translators?

    3… Or is it because the definite article “the” was PLACED there by the translators of the modern English versions because they [the translators] lean dispensationally?

  3. th/j qli,yewj th/j mega,lhj

    Oops, Here it is!


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