“Seventy [sevens] 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.”Daniel 9:24
The entire Bible is Israel-centric — emphasizing the chosen people of God and the chosen land of God. Daniel’s prophecy of 70 weeks [Hebrew shabua – שְׁבוּעַ] is no different. God has revealed through this prophecy that all of His purposes and plans for His people will be fulfilled in a determined window of 490 years.
In the same way Daniel understood by reading the prophet Jeremiah that the Babylonian exile would be 70 years, Gabriel informed Daniel that the entire prophetic program of Israel would fit into a period of 70 times 7 years = or 490 years. Much of what was prophesied — the first 69 weeks — initially has been fulfilled at the first coming of Messiah, but there remains a final 7-year period — one last week — to bring everything to its appointed end. This final shabua is sometimes referred to as Daniel’s 70th week, and it is yet future.
Before I examine some critical details, I should address one unfortunate objection that many raise to this and many other Biblical prophecies. Some distinguish the covenant people of Israel from the Gentile believing community and claim that this prophecy does not pertain to the “church.” Others are preterists and believe that all 70 weeks of this prophecy has been fulfilled in the past. Both ideas of replacement theology and preterism grossly have misinterpreted the prophetic word and disregard the future salvation and restoration of Israel on the Day of the LORD.
As a Gentile believer, I have been incorporated into the commonwealth of Israel. I have been adopted into the family of Israel. I have been grafted in to the original tree of Israel. I have been granted the blessing to participate in the everlasting covenants of Israel. I have been given the right to enjoy God’s eternal promises made to Israel. I have become a citizen of the Kingdom of Israel to serve the King of Israel — Yeshua.
“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”Galatians 3:28
You get the point. One God. One people. One faith. One kingdom. One Lord Jesus Christ.
Now this is important because Daniel’s prophecy of 70 weeks has been decreed about God’s people (Israel) and God’s holy city (Jerusalem). Having been granted the privilege to participate in the commonwealth of Israel, this prophecy applies primarily to covenant Israel — first the Jew — but also to all believers for all time.
So let’s look a little closer at how God has promised to bring about these specific conditions at the completion of Daniel’s 70th week.
- To finish the transgression
- To make an end of sin
- To make atonement for iniquity
- To bring in everlasting righteousness
- To seal up vision and prophecy
- To anoint the most holy place.
All Israel will be Saved!
Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written,
“The Deliverer will come from Zion,Romans 11:25-27
he will banish ungodliness from Jacob”;
“and this will be my covenant with them
when I take away their sins.”
The first three promises that will be fulfilled at the conclusion of the 70th week involve a surviving remnant and the leadership of Israel corporately turning to God in repentance and faith — believing in Jesus Christ. In this way, the perpetual transgression and rebellion of God’s people will be finished, God will take away their sins and banish ungodliness from Jacob, and the atoning sacrifice of Christ will be applied to all who believe. This will happen when Christ returns — the Deliverer who comes from Zion!
There is no short supply of passages that describe this amazing turning of Israel to Messiah at the end of the age. Here are a only a few.
“And on that day I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and pleas for mercy, so that, when they look on me, on him whom they have pierced, they shall mourn for him, as one mourns for an only child, and weep bitterly over him, as one weeps over a firstborn.”Zechariah 12:9-10
“On that day there shall be a fountain opened for the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and uncleanness.
In the whole land, declares the LORD,Zechariah 13:1, 8-9
two thirds shall be cut off and perish,
and one third shall be left alive.
9And I will put this third into the fire,
and refine them as one refines silver,
and test them as gold is tested.
They will call upon my name,
and I will answer them.
I will say, ‘They are my people’;
and they will say, ‘The LORD is my God.’”
“For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And no longer shall each one teach his neighbor and each his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they shall all know me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”Jeremiah 31:33-34
The Coming Kingdom of Everlasting Righteousness
When the Lord Jesus Christ returns as King of kings and Lord of lords to establish His kingdom on earth, then and only then will there be everlasting righteousness. At the end of the 70th week, this present age of injustice and evil will be brought to a close and the new age of justice will dawn upon the earth.
Again, there are so many passages that convey this fulfillment. Here are some key Scriptures concerning everlasting righteousness.
“For to us a child is born,Isaiah 9:6-7
to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon his shoulder,
and his name shall be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and of peace
there will be no end,
on the throne of David and over his kingdom,
to establish it and to uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
from this time forth and forevermore.
The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.“
But about the Son he says,
“Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.”Hebrews 1:8-9
To Seal up Vision and Prophecy
One of the amazing benefits of the return of Jesus will be the revealing, fulfilling, and unveiling of all mysteries, prophecies and visions. Our faith will become sight and all things will fall into place as we are changed and transformed into the image of the Lord Jesus. Everything will make sense for the very first time, and beyond that, we will have access to the personal teaching of Messiah Himself, as He will expound on the Word of God and open up the Scriptures to us in ways we never conceived or imagined.
“Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.”1 John 3:2
“For the earth will be filledHabakkuk 2:14
with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD
as the waters cover the sea.”
God’s Holy Hill — Zion — Will be Anointed
As I shared in my last post, Zion is God’s dwelling place forever and throughout all generations. When Christ returns, He will take His rightful place on His throne upon the holy mountain of God, which is Mount Zion in Jerusalem. At that moment, Zion will be the most holy place in the universe.
This reality has not yet happened — when heaven and earth are reunited under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Consider how the Scriptures speak of the day when God will anoint His most holy place and dwell with His people once again.
It shall come to pass in the latter daysIsaiah 2:2-3
that the mountain of the house of the LORD
shall be established as the highest of the mountains,
and shall be lifted up above the hills;
and all the nations shall flow to it,
and many peoples shall come, and say:
“Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD,
to the house of the God of Jacob,
that he may teach us his ways
and that we may walk in his paths.”
For out of Zion shall go forth the law,
and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
“In that day the branch of the LORD shall be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the land shall be the pride and honor of the survivors of Israel. 3And he who is left in Zion and remains in Jerusalem will be called holy, everyone who has been recorded for life in Jerusalem, 4when the Lord shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion and cleansed the bloodstains of Jerusalem from its midst by a spirit of judgment and by a spirit of burning. 5Then the LORD will create over the whole site of Mount Zion and over her assemblies a cloud by day, and smoke and the shining of a flaming fire by night; for over all the glory there will be a canopy.”Isaiah 4:1-5
“So you shall know that I am the LORD your God,Joel 3:17
who dwells in Zion, my holy mountain.
And Jerusalem shall be holy,
and strangers shall never again pass through it.“
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. 2And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. 3And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God.”Revelation 21:1-3
As you can see, Daniel’s 70th week has yet to be fulfilled. Next time, we will take a look at the amazing prophetic precision of the first 69 weeks — or 483 years — and how they were fulfilled at the first coming of Jesus Christ!