Daniel’s Seventy Weeks: The Keystone of Bible Prophecy

 

Daniel's 70 Weeks

Download your free copy of the book which is changing how the greatest Messianic prophecy in the Bible is understood.

Did the Bible really predict the coming of the Messiah before it happened? To answer that question William Struse takes you on a Biblical adventure in search of the promised Messiah. Of all the prophetic texts in the Bible, and by some counts there are over 2000, there is only one prophecy which gives a specific datable timeline for the coming of the Messiah. That prophecy found in the 9th chapter of the book of Daniel is commonly called Daniel’s 70 Weeks.

Did you know?

1. The prophecy of 70 Weeks gives the date for the birth the Messiah.
2. The prophecy also tells of the Messiah’s death and his resurrection.
3. The prophecy warns of the destruction of Jerusalem and its desolation.
4. The prophecy confirms the “covenant and mercy” promised to Abraham and his descendants, the Jewish people.

In a world where some question the Jewish people’s ancestral rights to the land of Israel, the prophecy of 70 Weeks proves mathematically that indeed YHWH’s oath which he swore with Abraham and his “seed” is in fact true, literal, and eternal.

Did you know?

1. That the “covenant and mercy” mentioned in Daniel 9:4 refers to the oath YHWH swore with Abraham and his “seed” in Genesis 22.
2. That the word swore in Genesis 22 comes from the Hebrew shaba and is the very root for the Hebrew word shabuwa (weeks) as in Daniel’s 70 Weeks (Shabuwa).
3. That this covenant made with Abraham is the first recorded covenant YHWH swore (shaba) with any man in the Bible.
4. That this oath of sevens is an underlying covenantal theme of the entire Biblical record.

As you explore the Biblical record in this book, you’ll see why the prophecy of 70 Weeks is the keystone between the Old and New Testaments (Covenants). Quite literally, this prophecy bridges the Old Testament Torah and Prophets, which speak of a coming Messiah, with the New Testament Apostles who record the fulfillment of those very prophecies in the person of a first century Jewish man named Yeshua.

So if you’ve ever wondered whether the Bible’s prophecies which speak of a coming Messiah are true, by the time you have finished Daniel’s 70 Weeks: The Keystone of Bible Prophecy you’ll have an answer to that question and you will know why the Bible is truly different than any other religious text recorded by man.

 

Introduction
Daniel’s Seventy Weeks: The Keystone of Bible Prophecy

If someone asked you to explain how the Bible is different from any other religious text in history, how would you answer? I believe there are several good ways to answer this question, but to my mind the one that stands out is that the Bible predicted future events that came to pass. It is this use of predictive prophecy that is the divine stamp, if you will, on the Bible’s authenticity as a genuinely inspired record of events past, present, and yet to come.

But the Bible is more than just an organized collection of ancient prophetic texts. The Bible is ultimately a tragic yet redeeming love story. It is the story of a Creator who, in a desperate attempt to save His fallen creations, humbles Himself in order to pay the righteous penalty for their transgressions; transgressions which, according to His unbreakable word, require the death of those He loves. In order to accomplish this task, the One who made us humbled Himself and became like us. And when the sentence of death was passed and the time came to pay the penalty, He stood in our place and received the righteous judgment so that we might live.

There are many prophecies in the Bible that speak of this coming Redeemer who would suffer so that we might live. But in the entire biblical record, there is only one prophecy that tells us specifically when these events would take place. That prophecy is found in the book of Daniel, chapter 9. It is known to most of us as the prophecy of 70 weeks, and it is the only prophecy in the Bible that gives us a secular date by which we can accurately calculate the first coming of the Messiah.

But the prophecy of 70 weeks is so much more than a messianic prediction. This prophecy, given to a Judean captive named Daniel, is really the bridge between the Old and New Testaments: a keystone, if you will, that connects old and new. You see, it is the prophecy of 70 weeks that spans the five hundred years of silence between the Bible’s two testaments.

To give you a clearer picture of why this is so important, the word we understand as “testament” (as in Old and New Testaments) also means “covenant.” In other words, the Old and New Covenants are the record of mankind’s reconciliation with our Creator. The Old Covenant texts follow the promised “seed” of the Messiah from Adam, Noah, Abraham, and David up to the Second Temple era and the prophecy of 70 weeks, which foretells the date of the coming of the Messiah, Yeshua. This prophecy then spans the next five hundred years and brings us to the New Covenant when the Messiah at last appeared. The documentation of this covenant, as found in the collection of books commonly called the New Testament, is made up in part of the eyewitness accounts of the Messiah Yeshua fulfilling the Old Covenant promises concerning mankind’s reconciliation to YHWH. The prophecy of 70 weeks is the central biblical proof text to show that a Hebrew man named Yeshua, born during the reign of the Roman empire, was the expected Messiah, who strengthened, confirmed, yea, fulfilled the Old Covenant promises of a coming Redeemer.

And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you: whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began. (Acts 3:20–21)

If you’ve read Book I in this series, The 13th Enumeration: Key to the Bible’s Messianic Symbolism, you saw how Yeshua fulfilled the sacrificial symbolism found in the Old Testament and how it was the apostle Matthew, in his inspired arrangement of Yeshua’s lineage, who provided us with the key to understanding this symbolism. How appropriate, then, that we find this lineage of Yeshua anchoring the first chapter of the first book of the New Testament. It is here in Matthew 1 that it is recorded that Yeshua is the son of David and of Abraham. It is also in Matthew 1 that we find clues that point us back to Daniel 9 and the prophecy of 70 weeks, thus inexorably linking both covenants together.

Let’s take a look once again at Matthew’s amazing lineage of Yeshua:

(You may view or print a high reslolution PDF copy of the charts in this book at the following link: Daniel’s 70 Weeks: Charts & Tables)

Matthew1_List_Full500

Look closely at the second column with its missing kings. Notice the single missing name between the 13th and 14th generations. The missing king is named Jehoiakim. As we saw in Book I of the Prophecy and Patterns series, Jehoiakim means “YHWH raises up.” Indeed, it was Yeshua, the 13th generation of Matthew 1, whom YHWH raised up to become the 14th generation as well, thus completing the list. But let’s look a little deeper. Jehoiakim was left out for another, equally important reason. As we will discover in subsequent chapters, this single missing name between the 13th and 14th generations of Yeshua is indeed a key to interpreting the greatest messianic prophecy in the Scripture.

In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon unto Jerusalem, and besieged it . . . And the king spake unto Ashpenaz the master of his eunuchs, that he should bring certain of the children of Israel, and of the king’s seed, and of the princes . . . Now among these were of the children of Judah, Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. (Daniel 1:1–6)

As we read here, a young man named Daniel, really not much older than a boy, was taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar along with the Judean king Jehoiakim. It was nearly 70 years later that this same Judean captive, now a very old man, received the prophecy of 70 weeks.

In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans; in the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of YHWH came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem. (Daniel 9:1–2)

Keep in mind that when Daniel read about the 70 years of captivity prophesied by Jeremiah, he knew without any doubt that this period of time was drawing to a close, because his own captivity began those 70 years! It was in this context that Daniel raised his moving intercessory prayer to YHWH for his people and the city of Jerusalem. A short time later, the angel Gabriel came to Daniel and gave him the prophecy of 70 weeks.

In the following pages I’d like to ask you to join me on a thrilling adventure as we explore this wonderful prophecy given to a Judean captive named Daniel. The importance of this prophecy cannot be overstated. Again, it is the only prophecy in the entire Bible that provides a specific, datable timeline for the coming of the Messiah. This prophecy proves that indeed Yeshua was the Messiah promised in the Scripture!

But this prophecy does not come to us without controversy. What if I told you that most of what scholars have told us about Daniel 9 and the prophecy of 70 weeks has been built upon erroneous assumptions that have altered our view of the prophecy so much that we have lost our focus on the Messiah? Did you know that most commentators on Daniel 9 cannot give a single biblical chronological synchronism that clearly defines the starting point for the prophecy of 70 weeks during the Persian era? Did you know that the most widely held measure of time used to calculate Daniel 9 is not even related to a biblical reckoning of time, nor can it be found in the historical record? The uncomfortable truth about Daniel 9 is that it is one of the most widely known but least understood prophecies in the Bible, and the consequences of misunderstanding it are far-reaching—they shape our understanding not only of Yeshua’s coming but also of the end of the world and our own place in redemptive history.

Here is the point. Daniel 9 and the prophecy of 70 weeks influences nearly every aspect of how we see the Yeshua’s life and ministry. The prophecy helps us date Yeshua’s birth, His ministry, and His death. Daniel 9 is also a large part of the framework upon which we have built our view of the consummation of this age and Yeshua’s return. That’s an incredible weight hanging on just a few verses out of the thousands in the biblical record. Daniel 9 and the prophecy of 70 weeks is without a doubt the most influential prophecy in the Bible. Because of the weight we place on it, it is incumbent upon us to ensure that our understanding is based upon sound biblical fact, not well-intentioned traditions.

So once again, as I asked when we began Book I, The 13th Enumeration: Key to the Bible’s Messianic Symbolism, let’s roll up our sleeves and dig into the words of the living God. Let’s search for the treasures He has left for us to find. At the end of this journey I can’t promise you that you’ll agree with everything I’ve written about the prophecy of 70 weeks, but I will guarantee that once you’ve finished this book, you will have a knowledge of the subject, strengthened by sound and reasonable biblical facts, which will serve you well in building a strong contextual foundation for your own understanding of this incredibly influential prophecy.

One final note: You’ll find that I quote many passages of Scripture in this book, and it is my hope that you will not gloss over them. They are the real substance of this book. My words in the following pages are but the rough and uneven stitches holding together some of the beautiful pieces of our Creator’s grand tapestry, in which He reveals His intention to reconcile all mankind through Yeshua the promised Messiah. So let’s begin the adventure . . .

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One thought on “Daniel’s Seventy Weeks: The Keystone of Bible Prophecy

  1. Jaime Eiler

    Love your work…greatly missing the old content on your website, particularly the timeline. I reference it often in my own work. Off subject for this book, but I downloaded the free copy of the 13th enumeration and it is not readable by kindle nor my phone. Just thought you should know. Thanks for all your hard work! Ive watched it develop over the last several years, since about 2010.

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