Daniel 9:1-2 "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; 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 was not only a man of prayer; he was also a man who studied very carefully the scriptures, the books of Moses and the writings of the prophets before him and during his time. “A copy of the letters sent by Jeremiah to the Hebrew captives in Babylon, and of the letters sent by the false prophets to these captives and to the authorities of Jerusalem, together with a story of the controversy between the true and the false, is found in the twenty-seventh to the twenty-ninth chapters of Jeremiah. “It was immediately after this interchange of letters between Jeremiah and the elders of the Israelites in captivity, that the prophet was instructed to write in a book all that had been revealed to him regarding the restoration of Israel. This is recorded in the thirtieth and the thirty-first chapters of Jeremiah. These, with the prophecies of the twenty-fifth chapter, are the letters and the records that Daniel the prophet, during "the first year of the reign of Darius the Mede" prayerfully studied, three-score years and more after they were written.
Daniel 9:3 "3 And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes:"
When he learned from the writings of the prophet Jeremiah that Israel was to be in captivity for 70 years and the promise that they would then come back to the land and be a nation again, he did not just think, "Ok, fine, that’s nice. I’ll just wait until it happens". No! He set himself to pray, to plead with God that indeed the promises would be fulfilled. He claimed the promises. Daniel was familiar with the circumstances connected with Jeremiah’s testimonies given very soon after the beginning of the Babylonian captivity. He well knew that the promise of the return was sure; and yet, a short time before, "in the third year of the reign of King Belshazzar" the angel of the Lord had instructed him in vision, "Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed". Daniel "sought for the meaning" of the vision. He could not understand the relation sustained by the seventy years’ captivity to the twenty-three hundred years that were to elapse before the cleansing of God’s sanctuary. Gabriel gave a partial interpretation; and when he declared that the vision “shall be for many days”, Daniel fainted.
Daniel 9:4-5 "4 And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments; 5 We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments."
Now here is a very interesting thing; Daniel is one of the few people in the Bible that we have no record of any sin that he committed, and even his enemies had not been able to get anything bad they could charge him with. He was called ‘greatly beloved’ by an angel, and yet he is here seen repenting in sackcloth and ashes and confessing his sins and the sins of Israel as if he were as guilty of them as the worst law-breaker among them. Truly godly people are ever humble of heart and never boast of their great goodness or sinlessness.
Daniel 9:6 "Neither have we hearkened unto thy servants the prophets, which spake in thy name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land."
Daniel well knew that it was because Israel had turned from her obedience to the Laws of God and followed the ways of the heathen that God had allowed her to be conquered and taken into captivity. He clearly states that this was what the sins of Israel had brought upon her. God had sent many prophets with warning messages, but they had been ignored and persecuted. Reproof is never popular in any age.
Daniel 9:7 "O LORD, righteousness belongeth unto thee, but unto us confusion of faces, as at this day; to the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and unto all Israel, that are near, and that are far off, through all the countries whither thou hast driven them, because of their trespass that they have trespassed against thee."
Daniel does not proclaim his own fidelity before the Lord. Instead of claiming to be pure and holy, this honoured prophet humbly identifies himself with the really sinful of Israel. The wisdom which God had imparted to him was as far superior to the wisdom of the great men of the world as the light of the sun shining in the heavens at noonday is brighter than the feeblest star. Yet ponder the prayer from the lips of this man so highly favored of Heaven. With deep humiliation, with tears and rending of heart, he pleads for himself and for his people. He lays his soul open before God, confessing his own unworthiness and acknowledging the Lord’s greatness and majesty.
Daniel 9:8-11 "8 O Lord, to us belongeth confusion of face, to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee. 9 To the Lord our God belong mercies and forgivenesses, though we have rebelled against him; 10 Neither have we obeyed the voice of the LORD our God, to walk in his laws, which he set before us by his servants the prophets. 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."
In Deuteronomy 28 Moses, just before he died, warned Israel clearly that if they obeyed God and walked in His ways, they would be blessed—but if they did not and went the ways of the heathen, they would be cursed. If they continued in disobedience there would come upon them terrible punishment and yet they had gone into idolatry and all sorts of wickedness.
Daniel 9:12-14 "12 And he hath confirmed his words, which he spake against us, and against our judges that judged us, by bringing upon us a great evil: for under the whole heaven hath not been done as hath been done upon Jerusalem. 13 As it is written in the law of Moses, all this evil is come upon us: yet made we not our prayer before the LORD our God, that we might turn from our iniquities, and understand thy truth. 14 Therefore hath the LORD watched upon the evil, and brought it upon us: for the LORD our God is righteous in all his works which he doeth: for we obeyed not his voice."
Now Daniel declares that the very words written in the Books of Moses had verily been fulfilled and justly so.
Daniel 9:15-19 "15 And now, O Lord our God, that hast brought thy people forth out of the land of Egypt with a mighty hand, and hast gotten thee renown, as at this day; we have sinned, we have done wickedly. 16 O LORD, according to all thy righteousness, I beseech thee, let thine anger and thy fury be turned away from thy city Jerusalem, thy holy mountain: because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and thy people are become a reproach to all that are about us. 17 Now therefore, O our God, hear the prayer of thy servant, and his supplications, and cause thy face to shine upon thy sanctuary that is desolate, for the Lord's sake. 18 O my God, incline thine ear, and hear; open thine eyes, and behold our desolations, and the city which is called by thy name: for we do not present our supplications before thee for our righteousnesses, but for thy great mercies. 19 O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive; O Lord, hearken and do; defer not, for thine own sake, O my God: for thy city and thy people are called by thy name."
False sanctification carries with it a boastful, self-righteous spirit which is foreign to the religion of the Bible. Meekness and humility are the fruits of the Spirit. The prophet Daniel was an example of true sanctification. His long life was filled up with noble service for his Master. He was a man “greatly beloved” of Heaven, and was granted such honors as have rarely been vouchsafed to mortals. Yet his purity of character and unwavering fidelity were equaled only by his humility and contrition. Instead of claiming to be pure and holy, this honored prophet identified himself with the really sinful of Israel, as he pleaded before God in behalf of his people:
Daniel 9:20-21 "20 And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of my God; 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."
As Daniel’s prayer is going forth, the angel Gabriel comes sweeping down from the heavenly courts to tell him that his petitions are heard and answered. This mighty angel has been commissioned to give him skill and understanding— to open before him the mysteries of future ages. Thus, while earnestly seeking to know and understand the truth, Daniel was brought into communion with Heaven’s delegated messenger. Heaven is no further away today than it was for Daniel.
Daniel 9:22-23 "22 And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding. 23 At the beginning of thy supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to shew thee; for thou art greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision."
Have not we as great need to call upon God as had Daniel? The God who heard Daniel’s prayer will hear ours when we come to Him in contrition. Our necessities are as urgent, our difficulties are as great, and we need to have the same intensity of purpose, and in faith roll our burden upon the great burden-bearer. There is as much need if not more for hearts to be as deeply moved in our time as in the time when Daniel prayed.
The amazing time prophecy we are about to study is a very long and significant time prophecy in the Bible. Given more than 500 years before the death of Christ, it accurately pinpoints the time of His sacrifice. And is the only place in the Old Testament that speaks of a coming “Messiah” by that term, it ranks at the top of all Messianic prophecies. Yet this prophecy, found in the eighth and ninth chapters of the book of Daniel, moves beyond the earthly ministry of Christ to provide a panorama of His present work for us in the courts of heaven.
You will remember that the prophecy of Daniel 8 begins with a ram and a goat. After discussing the goat’s horns, the vision then turns to the activities of the little horn, which magnifies itself to defy heaven, casting truth to the ground and trampling upon the sanctuary and the host. When Daniel had heard about the horrible things that the little horn on the terrible beast were going to do to God’s people (Daniel 7), he was sick for a while. Now he has been shown the same power from another angle — after having been shown the vision of the ram being overcome by the he-goat. Again a horn arising from one of the four winds in the end of this vision catches his attention and we see it is the same power.
Daniel needed to understand this vision and Jesus commissions Gabriel, the highest angel who appears to now occupy the place from which Lucifer fell when he became Satan.
The angel began to explain the vision. He told Daniel that the ram represented Medo-Persia; the goat and its horns represented Greece. He enlarged a little on the activities of the little horn, but said nothing more about the time factor involved.
Now after Daniel had been fasting and praying for further understanding, Gabriel returns and tells him more about the amazing time-prophecy.
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."
Seventy weeks is 490 days. Subtract that from the total 2,300 days, and 1,810 days of the prophecy are left. In the Bible God has a special way of showing special time-prophecies. He uses a day to equal a year of real time.
Each day for a year - We also find this in Numbers:
Applying this rule, 2,300 prophetic days is actually 2,300 literal years, the first 490 of which pertained to the Jews. The time period would begin when the command went forth to restore and rebuild Jerusalem.
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."
In fulfilling God’s command, three kings of Persia would need to make decrees regarding the rebuilding of Jerusalem.
The final decree, that of Artaxerxes, is recorded in Ezra 7, and went into effect in the autumn of 457 B.C. 457 BC + 2300 years =1844 AD The Messiah was to appear after seven weeks and sixty-two weeks.
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."
Sixty-nine weeks are 483 prophetic days. From the autumn of 457 B.C., 483 years takes us to the autumn of A.D. 27. According to the prophecy, that is when the Messiah would appear. "Messiah" is the Hebrew word for "anointed one". The Bible tells us that "God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power".
That anointing took place at His baptism.
Jesus was baptized in the autumn of A.D. 27, the precise time foretold in Daniel’s prophecy. After Jesus was baptized, God sent a special anointing of His Holy Spirit, this was the Messiah, which means Anointed One.
Over 300 Prophecies were fulfilled in Jesus life and ministry! As Jesus began His public ministry, He showed His awareness of His prophetic dateline from the Daniel Prophecy.
Paul said that Jesus came right on schedule.
In the ‘middle of the week’ Jesus’ death on the cross as the Lamb of God, slain from the foundation of the world, brought to fulfillment the sanctuary sin offerings and the Passover Lamb, and thus brought them forever to an end. Although unbelieving priests continued to offer sacrifices for a while, these ceremonies no longer had meaning.
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."
That “week” would be the last seven years of the “70-week” portion of the prophecy. It extended from the autumn of A.D. 27 to the autumn of A.D. 34. In the spring of A.D. 31, exactly half way through that seven-year period, Jesus brought to an end the whole system of sacrifices and oblations by offering Himself as the Lamb of God, to whom the whole sacrificial system had pointed. On the 14th day of the 1st month at 3 PM; Jesus our Passover was slain for us—this was an exact fulfillment! Also as we see in Verse 26; it is telling us that because of the rejection of ‘Messiah’ the Prince, the city and temple would be destroyed. This finally occurred in AD 70, but no Christians perished in that siege because they believed the warning Jesus had given, recorded in Matthew 24. Thus they fled from the city, when they saw the signal Jesus told them to watch for, before the final siege happened.
An event also happened in the temple in Jerusalem when Jesus died at the exact time for the sacrifice of the Passover Lamb which signified that its ritual services would never again have any meaning.
The “seventy-week” portion of the 2,300 years ended in A.D. 34. In that year Israel’s probationary time ceased, and they sealed their rejection of Christ by stoning Stephen. With the Jews were no longer God’s chosen people, the gospel began to be proclaimed to the Gentiles, and the Christian church inherited all the privileges promised to the descendants of Abraham.
The temple and the city of Jerusalem were destroyed by Roman armies in A.D. 70.
But the vision of the 2300 days still left 1810 more days/years, ending in 1844.
From the autumn of A.D. 34, 1,810 years of the prophecy remained. Add 1,810 to 34 and it brings us to the autumn of the year 1844, which the prophecy refers to as “the time of the end”, that is, the end of the time prophecy. At the end of the “2300-day” period the Sanctuary was to be ‘cleansed’:
The angel told Daniel this vision was not for his day.
The part of Daniel’s book dealing with these extended time prophecies, was ‘sealed; that is it would not be fully understood until towards the time these prophecies were due to end. ‘Time of the End’ here meant the end of the time prophecies.
‘Running to and fro’ in the Hebrew meant searching here and there in the scriptures for the purpose of understanding their meaning, and the promise is that ‘knowledge would be increased’.
In the early 1800s all over the world people began to turn to the book of Daniel and many began to bring out the secrets of the ‘sealed book’ and preach or write on these mysteries. Let us look now at the Gospel in the Old Testament and the end-time cleansing work of Christ. At no time in the world’s history has anyone ever earned salvation by his own works, or by rituals and ceremonies. No one ever bought their salvation with the blood of animals, or gifts and money.
In both Old and New Testaments, people were saved by the Grace of God and Faith in the merits of Jesus. The offering of the sacrifice was to show faith in the coming Redeemer. The following texts make it clear that people who lived before the cross were saved on the same terms as were people in New Testament times.
The Old Testament itself teaches salvation through Christ. The “scriptures” spoken of in the following texts are the Old Testament. These texts make it clear that the Old Testament scriptures teach the same gospel of salvation through Christ that we find in the New Testament.
The Bible presents one gospel from Genesis to Revelation, one plan of salvation for humanity. The Bible calls it "the everlasting gospel".
It is also called the "everlasting covenant".