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Bible Commentaries

Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures
Daniel 9

 

 

Verses 1-27

Daniel's Intercession and the Seventy-Week Prophecy Regarding Christ's First Coming (538 B.C.) - In Daniel 9:1-27 we have Daniel's prayer of intercession for his people Israel and the vision of the angel who came to reveal to him a greater depth of Jeremiah's prophecy of the seventy-year captivity of Israel. Within this vision we are given the date of Christ's first coming. Because Daniel had been faithful to God in showing several kings the understanding of their dreams and visions, He was going to help Daniel understand his own visions. This is the principle of sowing and reaping. Daniel has probably heard Jeremiah as a young child or teenager speaking publicly to the Jews and giving the prophecy of the seventy years of Babylonian Captivity. Whether he ever knew Jeremiah or not, when Daniel understood from Jeremiah's prophecies that his people would be in captivity for seventy years because of their sins, he began to intercede for Israel because he understood that this time was coming to an end. Thus, while he was praying God sent an angel to show Daniel the proper interpretation of Jeremiah's prophecy, that Israel's full restoration would not take place after this seventy-year period, but after the fulfillment of a seventy-week period. This meant that Israel's return after seventy years was a partial restoration. Thus, we can understand that Jeremiah's prophecy had a two-fold application in that it refers to two separate events, a partial restoration of Israel that would take place in seventy years and a full restoration that would take place in seventy weeks of years, or four hundred ninety (490) years.

Outline - Here is a proposed outline:

1. Daniel Intercedes for His People — Daniel 9:1-19

2. Gabriel's Prophecy of Seventy Weeks of Years — Daniel 9:20-27

God Reveals His Time-line of Redemption to the Jews, the Gentiles and the Church - We know from 1 Corinthians 10:32 that God's plan of redemption for mankind involved three people-groups. He began with the Jews, then moved to the Gentiles and finally created the Church out of the Gentile nations.

1 Corinthians 10:32, "Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God."

Each of the groups of people plays an important role in man's redemption. To each one of them has been revealed God's time-line to work redemption through them. When I first began to study end-time prophecy I looked for a single passage of Scripture that gave me an outline, or structure of end-time prophecy. I did not find one comprehensive time-line, but rather, three separate time-lines, one for each people-group. Daniel 2:1-49 gives us the time-line of God's redemptive plan for the Gentile nations with the vision of the image made up of different types of metals. In addition, Daniel 9:1-27 gives a time-line for the Jews, which is explained in the Seventy-Week Prophecy. We have to go to the New Testament to find the time-line for the Church, which Jesus gave to us in His Eschatological Discourse of Matthew 24:1-46.

God revealed this time-line to King Nebuchadnezzar because he was asking for an understanding of the future events that related to him and his kingdom ( Daniel 2:29). Thus, God showed him the "Times of the Gentiles" in which there will be four periods involving four earthly kingdoms. Later in Daniel's ministry the angel Gabriel visited him and revealed to him the interpretation of Jeremiah's seventy-year prophecy of Israel's Babylonian Captivity. This was revealed because Daniel was seeking to know what was going to take place in the future for His people. When Jesus was leaving the Temple for the last time, His disciples asked Him about the future events of His Second Coming ( Matthew 24:3). This is why He explained to them the events leading up to the end of the Church Age.

Daniel 9:1-19 — Daniel Intercedes for His People - In Daniel 9:1-19 we have the prayer that Daniel prayed to God when Jeremiah's prophecy of the seventy-year captivity of Israel was to him.

Daniel 9:1 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;

Daniel 9:1Comments- Darius the Mede was given rule as a viceroy over the Chaldean region under Cyrus the king of Persia in 538 B.C. Darius reigns a short two years.

Daniel 5:30, "In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain. And Darius the Median took the kingdom, being about threescore and two years old."

Daniel 6:28, "So this Daniel prospered in the reign of Darius, and in the reign of Cyrus the Persian."

Daniel 9:2 In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem.

Daniel 9:2Comments - The seventy-year prophecy given by Jeremiah is recorded in Jeremiah 25:11-12; Jeremiah 29:10. Jeremiah wrote letters to the Jewish captives in Babylon and sent them by the hands of Elasah the son of Shaphan, and Gemariah the son of Hilkiah ( Jeremiah 29:3). Therefore, Daniel had access to one of these prophetic letters seventy years later, towards the end of the Captivity.

Jeremiah 25:11-12, "And this whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment; and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. And it shall come to pass, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king of Babylon, and that nation, saith the LORD, for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans, and will make it perpetual desolations."

Jeremiah 29:10, "For thus saith the LORD, That after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon I will visit you, and perform my good word toward you, in causing you to return to this place."

Jeremiah 29:1, "Now these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem unto the residue of the elders which were carried away captives, and to the priests, and to the prophets, and to all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon;"

Daniel 9:11 Yea, all Israel have transgressed thy law, even by departing, that they might not obey thy voice; therefore the curse is poured upon us, and the oath that is written in the law of Moses the servant of God, because we have sinned against him.

Daniel 9:11Comments - The blessings and cursings of the Mosaic Law are found in Deuteronomy 27:1 to Deuteronomy 30:20.

Daniel 9:21 Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the evening oblation.

Daniel 9:21Word Study on "the man" - Strong says the Hebrew word "man" (‘iysh) ( אִישׁ) (H 376) means, "a man as an individual or a male person." The Enhanced Strong says this word is used 1639 times in the Old Testament, being translated in the KJV as " Prayer of Manasseh 1002, men 210, one 188, husband 69, any 27, misc 143." Strong tells us that it is a contraction of the Hebrew word ( אֱנושׁ) (H 582), which also means, " Prayer of Manasseh , mortal Prayer of Manasseh , person, people," which comes from the primitive root ( אָנַשׁ) (H 605), which means, "to be weak, frail."

It is used somewhat figuratively in Daniel 9:21 to describe how the angel Gabriel held the features of a Prayer of Manasseh , but was not truly flesh and blood like himself.


Verses 20-27

Gabriel's Prophecy of Seventy Weeks of Years - Daniel 9:20-27 gives us one of the greatest passages in the Old Testament regarding end-time prophecy. In this passage, the angel Gabriel comes to Daniel during his time of prayer and tells him the time-line by which all future events regarding the nation of Israel will occur. Note that this time-line is designed to signify the national and spiritual redemption for the nation of Israel and not necessarily for the Church. We must wait for the New Testament writings in order to receive this time-line.

Scholars teach that the seventy-week period refers to four hundred ninety (490) years. Daniel's vision divides this period of time into three parts: an initial period of forty-nine years, a second duration of four hundred thirty-four (434) years, and a final period of seven years.

Various Interpretations- Adam Clarke proposes this prophetic period began in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes (465 to 424 B.C.) based on ancient historical accounts, which would be around 445 B.C. 113] Wallace says Daniel's prophecy of Seventy Weeks gives us an accurate date for Jesus' Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem on March 30 of A.D 33, and gives a similar date of 444 B.C.

113] Adam Clarke says, "Abul Pharaje, in his history of the dynasties, says, that the seventy weeks of Daniel are to be dated from the twentieth year of Ardsheer Dirazdest, the Artaxerxes Longimanus of the Greeks, (called Bahman above,) and the same to whom Nehemiah was sakee, or cup-bearer. Other orientalists are of the same opinion. This shall be considered more at large when we come to the prophecy itself. Artaxerxes had the name of Longimanus, or Long-handed, from the great extent of his dominions." See Adam Clarke, Daniel , in Adam Clarke"s Commentary, Electronic Database (Seattle, WA: Hendrickson Publishers Inc.), 1996, in P.C. Study Bible, v 31 [CD-ROM] (Seattle, WA: Biblesoft Inc, 1993-2000), "Introduction."

"I find Hoehner's analysis (in Chronological Aspects of the Life of Christ) convincing: the prophetic clock began ticking on March 1, 444BCE, when the decree to rebuild the walls was issued (during the time of Nehemiah). Then, it continued successively for 69 weeks of prophetic years (= 360 day years), that Isaiah , for 173 ,880 days. The end of the 69th week was March 30, 33CE—the very day Jesus made his "triumphal entry" into Jerusalem (on Palm Monday). What confirms this view is that in Jesus' lament he speaks of eschatological judgment (which, in our hindsight, includes both the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 CE and Daniel's 70th week—that Isaiah , the tribulation) as does Daniel ( Luke 19:43-44; Daniel 9:26-27)." 114]

114] Daniel B. Wallace, Luke: Introduction, Outline, and Argument, in Biblical Studies Foundation (Richardson, Texas: Biblical Studies Press, 1998) [on-line]; accessed 1September 2000; available from http://www.bible.org; Internet.

Daniel 9:24 Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.

Daniel 9:24Comments- Daniel 9:24 refers to six prophetic events that are to be accomplished during the Seventy Week period of history. These events are a part of God's fulfillment of His divine plan of redemption for mankind. These events refer to Christ's first coming as He paid for the sins of mankind and reconcile us to back to God.

"and to anoint the most Holy" - The phrase "most holy" is made up of one Hebrew word used twice ( קֹ֥דֶשׁ קָֽדָשִֽׁים). The Hebrew word קדשׁ (H 6944) means, "sacred," and has the literal translation in Daniel 9:24 of "sacred of sacred," which is a Hebrew idiom. This phrase is translated "most sacred place" (Goldingay) 115] and refers to the inner sanctuary of the Temple where the Mercy Seat and Ark of the Covenant resided.

115] John E. Goldingay, Daniel , in Word Biblical Commentary: 58 Volumes on CD- Romans , vol 30, eds. Bruce M. Metzger, David A. Hubbard and Glenn W. Barker (Dallas: Word Inc, 2002), in Libronix Digital Library System, v 21c [CD-ROM] (Bellingham, WA: Libronix Corp, 2000-2004), comments on Daniel 9:24.

The Hebrew phrase ( קֹ֥דֶשׁ קָֽדָשִֽׁים) is used in reference to the Holy of Holies, the inner sanctuary where the Ark of the Covenant resided ( Exodus 26:33-34, 1 Kings 6:16; 1 Kings 7:50), as well as being used to refer to the articles and sacrifices of the Temple.

Exodus 26:33-34, "And thou shalt hang up the vail under the taches, that thou mayest bring in thither within the vail the ark of the testimony: and the vail shall divide unto you between the holy place and the most holy. And thou shalt put the mercy seat upon the ark of the testimony in the most holy place."

1 Kings 6:16, "And he built twenty cubits on the sides of the house, both the floor and the walls with boards of cedar: he even built them for it within, even for the oracle, even for the most holy place."

1 Kings 7:50, "And the bowls, and the snuffers, and the basons, and the spoons, and the censers of pure gold; and the hinges of gold, both for the doors of the inner house, the most holy place, and for the doors of the house, to wit, of the temple."

The burnt altar of sacrifice is called "most holy" ( Exodus 29:37; Exodus 40:10), as well as the articles of the Tabernacle ( Exodus 30:26-29).

Exodus 29:37, "Seven days thou shalt make an atonement for the altar, and sanctify it; and it shall be an altar most holy: whatsoever toucheth the altar shall be holy."

Exodus 40:10, "And thou shalt anoint the altar of the burnt offering, and all his vessels, and sanctify the altar: and it shall be an altar most holy."

The anointing of the Most Holy Place would refer to the sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ upon the mercy seat, an event that Ron Wyatt testifies literally took place as the blood of Jesus Christ ran down from the Cross, through the rocks that were rent, and onto the mercy seat located in a cave twenty-feet below. 116]

116] Bill Fry, "The Ark of the Covenant Including the Crucifixion Site and Tomb of Christ," [on-line]; accessed 8 November 2011; available from http://www.arkdiscovery.com/aoc-1.htm.

Daniel 9:25 Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.

Daniel 9:25Comments- Many scholars believe that the first seventy-week period consisting of forty-nine years began with the call of Nehemiah to rebuild the city of Jerusalem around 445-444 B.C. We read in Nehemiah 2:1-10 where King Artaxerxes decreed the rebuilding of the city. Daniel 9:25 tells us that this 49-year period of rebuilding the city of Jerusalem would be troubling times. We see evidence of this in the book of Nehemiah as many adversaries stood against them. With regards to the distinction between a 7-week period and a 62-week period, there seems to be no particular historical event that takes place seven and sixty-two weeks that justifies a distinction. However, Otto Zöckler believes the first 49-years refer to a period of Jewish reform; nor does he believe that the sixty-two weeks have to commence immediately after the seven-week period. 117]

117] Otto Zckler, The Book of the Prophet Daniel , in Lange's Commentary on the Holy Scriptures, trans. James Strong (New York: Charles Scriber's Sons, 1876), 213-214.

Regarding the coming of "the Messiah the Prince" after seven plus sixty two weeks (or 69 weeks), in which a seven-day week symbolizes seven years, sixty-nine weeks reflect 483years. The Jewish year is made up of 360 days, while the Gregorian calendar consists of 365 days, which John Walvoord justifies the 360-day Jewish year by the 1 ,260 days ( Revelation 11:3; Revelation 12:6), forty-two months ( Revelation 11:2; Revelation 13:5), and time, times and half a time 3 years] ( Daniel 7:25; Daniel 12:7) predictions in the Scriptures. 118] We know that 483Jewish years equals 173 ,880 days, while 483Roman years equal 176 ,295 days, so that 483Jewish years are equivalent to 476 Roman years. If Daniel prophesied that Jesus would appear 476 Jewish years (476 Roman years) after the rebuilding of Jerusalem (445 B.C.), then the Messiah would need to appear in the year A.D 31, which is approximately the year that Jesus was baptized by John in the river Jordan in order to make His public appearance to nation of Israel.

118] John F. Walvoord, Every Prophecy of the Bible (Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook, c 1990, 1999), 254.

The final week, or 7-year period, may refer to Jesus' three-and-a-half years of public ministry and Passion and Resurrection, and the final three-and-a-half years may end at the time of the stoning of Stephen and the dispersing of the New Testament Church into the nations, which effectively brought an end to the role of the Jew nation in prophetic history until the period leading up to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. 119]

119] Bill Fry, "The Ark of the Covenant Including the Crucifixion Site and Tomb of Christ," [on-line]; accessed 8 November 2011; available from http://www.arkdiscovery.com/aoc-1.htm.

Daniel 9:26 And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.

Daniel 9:26 — "And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off" - Comments - Daniel's prophecy tells us that the Messiah will both appear and be cut off after sixty-nine weeks (7 weeks plus 62weeks), which brings us to the year A.D 31-32, so that we can justify this prophecy to refer to the three plus years of public ministry and Passion on the Cross. At this time the "Messiah" is cut off, or Crucified, in behalf of His people for their redemption. However, this calculation only works if we count using the Hebrew year, which consisted of thirty days in each month for a total of three hundred sixty (360) days in a year.

Daniel 9:26 — "but not for himself" - Comments- The Hebrew literally reads "and not to (for) him." Thus, such a simple reading has resulted in a variety of translations and interpretations. Some understand this phrase to refer to His redemptive act on the Cross and reads, "but not for Himself." Others understand this phrase to mean that the Messiah is not given rulership over the holy city at this time of His First Coming and translate it as "and the city and the holy place are not his." 120]

120] Albert Barnes, Daniel , in Barnes" Notes, Electronic Database (Seattle, WA: Hendrickson Publishers Inc, 1997), in P.C. Study Bible, v 31 [CD-ROM] (Seattle, WA: Biblesoft Inc, 1993-2000), comments on Daniel 9:26.

Daniel 9:26 — "and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary" - Comments- Many scholars believe that the "prince" refers to Titus , the son of Vespasian and "the people" would be the Romans. 121] We know that soon after the Messiah was cut off in A.D 29 that the Romans under Titus came in A.D 70 and destroyed the city of Jerusalem and killed millions of Jews. We may see this event as the fulfillment of "the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary." It takes place after the 62-week period is ended during an unspecified time in which the world is to wait for 2 ,000 years before the final week is to be fulfilled, which is the seven-year Tribulation Period.

121] Adam Clarke, Daniel , in Adam Clarke"s Commentary, Electronic Database (Seattle, WA: Hendrickson Publishers Inc.), 1996, in P.C. Study Bible, v 31 [CD-ROM] (Seattle, WA: Biblesoft Inc, 1993-2000), notes on Daniel 9:26.

Daniel 9:26 — "and the end thereof shall be with a flood" - Comments- This phrase attempts to describe the awesome event of the destruction of Jerusalem in which the Roman soldiers slaughtered millions of Jews.

Daniel 9:26 — "and unto the end of the war desolations are determined" - Comments- Daniel's final vision in chapters 10-12will describe a series of wars and desolations that are determined against God's people before the end of time comes.

Daniel 9:27 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.

Daniel 9:27 — "and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate" - Comments- Adam Clarke says the literal Hebrew translation reads, "and upon the wing of abominations causing amazement." This has always been a challenging phrase for commentators. Clarke tells us that a thirteenth century Hebrew manuscript smoothes this phrase out to read "and in the temple (of the Lord) there shall be abomination." He supports this translation by referring to similarities translations found in the Latin Vulgate, the Septuagint and the Arabic translations, as well as by Theodotion and the Syriac Hexapla. 122] Clarke says:

122] Adam Clarke, Daniel , in Adam Clarke"s Commentary, Electronic Database (Seattle, WA: Hendrickson Publishers Inc.), 1996, in P.C. Study Bible, v 31 [CD-ROM] (Seattle, WA: Biblesoft Inc, 1993-2000), notes on Daniel 9:27.

The Vulgate reads, "Et erit in templo abominatio," or "And in the temple there shall be abomination."

The LXX reads, "Kai epi to hieron bdelugma ton eremoseon," or "And upon the temple there shall be the abomination of desolation."

The Arabic, "And upon the sanctuary there shall be the abomination of ruin."

This translation agrees with the events of the profaning of the Temple by Antiochus Epiphanies in 167 B.C. as well as Jesus Christ's prediction in Matthew 24:15 during the End Times.

Matthew 24:15, "When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)"

Daniel 9:27Comments- Daniel 9:27 describes the work of the antichrist during the seven-year Tribulation period. He will usher in the seventieth week by making a peace treaty with many nations. But in the midst of this seven-year period he will come to the Temple in Jerusalem and defile it in much the same way as Antiochus Epiphanes did in 168 B.C. This time of defilement will continue until the end of the Tribulation Period. Paul refers to this individual as the "son of perdition" in 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12. He will sit in the Temple of God exalt himself above God.

2 Thessalonians 2:3-4, "Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; Who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God."

 


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These files are copyrighted by the author, Gary Everett. Used by Permission.
No distribution beyond personal use without permission.

Bibliography Information
Everett, Gary H. "Commentary on Daniel 9:4". Gary H. Everett's Study Notes on the Holy Scriptures. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ghe/daniel-9.html. 2013.

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