Time to examine the last week of the 70 weeks of Daniel's vision for his people and his holy city. There are three separate periods of weeks: 7, 62 and 1 = 70. We have discussed the first seven and 62 weeks, which led to Jesus' coming and death. Now we climb the sacred mountain of the 70th week, which I am convinced no one has gained the final revelation knowledge and skill needed to interpret.
Many scholars and believers have dissected this 70th week and come up with tremendous insight. The sheer volume of theories on when this week happens gives me caution to say one is right.
My calling from God is not to give a timeline but to announce the season of Jesus' return has come upon us and to encourage us to live as Jesus taught us to live in this season of preparation for our King to come.
With that said let us take a look at verse 27, which is a long verse of Scripture and has some very difficult and complex words that scholars have written books on in order to decipher the full meaning of this aspect of the vision.
I am not going to do that. Instead, I will highlight some thoughts as applicable to how we should live in this season of the 70th week, which we are either on the verge of entering or have already started.
"Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week;" Who is he? Jesus the Messiah or the anti-Christ or someone else? What is this covenant? Who are the many?
When does this week begin and when does it end so we can know the middle of the week? " ... but in the middle of the week he shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering..." Again, who is he, when is the middle of this week, what is the sacrifice and offering?
I have read some fascinating books that sought to answer these questions. I read one book where the scholar says the meaning of seven is an integer of seven so this week could be seven years or 14 or 21 or 28...any whole number that divides by seven.
This means the last week could have started at the beginning of the aliyah in the late 19th century; then the middle of the week when sacrifice and offering are ended refers to the Holocaust and 1945. It made a lot of sense to me but so do the other theories I have studied.
I know this: Jesus is coming back soon. It is imminent, and we need to be following His orders as given in Matthew 24 and 25 to prepare the way!
The last part of this verse brings us back to the word desolation, which we have already discussed. Desolate meaning ruin, laid waste, uninhabitable, which I take as representing death as opposed to life which the Messiah brings.
In this last week comes one who commits abominations, who makes desolate. Abomination is the evil of idolatry against God. This will last until "the consummation," which is determined by God.
This wickedness of idolatry is rampant today in many forms: in secular humanism, the worship of false gods and counterfeit religions.
The consummation is the Messiah's return to bring all that God determined in verse 24, all six of them as we have discussed, to closure. The Jews will be home in Israel. Jerusalem is their capital. Sin will be no more and the anointed King of God, Jesus, will reign. All the covenant promises are now fulfilled.
Those who are dead in their sin and unbelief are desolate. We who believe are alive to the fullest extent of all the covenant promises. That is something to shout about with fervor and fire in our lungs as we bow in worship of Jesus.
Are you ready?
Called to a Daniel Lifestyle
The prophet Daniel becomes one of our primary role models in this season of Jesus' return. We gain a mature picture of one who is devoted and in love with God, living by faith, never compromising with his culture and being used by God to join Him in shaping world history. This is what the Bible means by a consecrated life. All of us in Christ are called to such a life of love and service.
That draws me to study Daniel's life and to pray, "God, create in me a heart and life like Daniel's. Use me for Your glory and do in me what I cannot do in myself. Grant me the discipline that will produce such fruit that I will walk with You in holy victory in a world of sin and darkness. Let my light shine for You and lead men and women into a life of love with you to be used for Your glory."
We learn in chapter one that Daniel suffered terrible upheaval in his life as his nation was conquered and his city, Jerusalem, destroyed. He was taken from his family and sent far away to a foreign land to be reeducated in the way of Babylon. He basically lost all he loved and held dear in this world.
We know he was a gifted young man, good-looking, full of wisdom, possessor of knowledge, a fast learner with a servant heart. He was given a new name, a new diet and called to a whole new way of life. Yet, he resisted the indoctrination and refused to compromise.
In his devotion to God, he found God's favor with those who ruled over him. In his resistance to the temptations of his captors, God gave him three close friends. All four of them received from God "knowledge and skill in all literature, wisdom and understanding in all visions and dreams."
This in turn gave Daniel favor with the king because he far exceeded all the scholars and wise leaders in the realm. Thus, he is like a Joseph to be used by God to bless his people and to bless the nations of the earth as promised to Abraham and his descendants.
So, instead of falling into despair and depression due to the horrors he suffered, Daniel put his trust in God and rose above the circumstances of his life to become one of the great heroes and men of God in all human history.
God is looking for such men and women today to be His world-changers, to impact nations and prepare the way for Jesus to come. God will give you all you need to be His light in the darkness, to withstand the pressures of your culture and to study and understand with skill the prophecies of God concerning Jesus and His return.
Pray for a Daniel lifestyle; pray for a Daniel heart to love and serve God; pray for Daniel's courage that resists the world, the flesh and the devil; and pray to be God's ambassador of truth, righteousness and prophecy.
As you study his life and writing, you will see you will not have it easy; you will be persecuted and challenged on every front. Daily, you will take up your cross, deny yourself and follow Jesus. But you will know the love and glory of God that transcends this world. Your joy will be complete.
Conclusions from Daniel and the 70 weeks
What can we conclude from our study of the 70 weeks? First, God has a plan for the Jews and for Jerusalem, which would include the nation of Israel. God will be faithful to bring about the seven determinations He has ordained for their history in connection with the Messiah. All God has planned for them flows in and through the Messiah.
When I tie in Revelation with Daniel 9, I have to believe the Jews will lead the Messiah into the new kingdom rule of Jesus. This leadership will come forth when, as Paul writes in Romans 11, they will see their Deliverer come out of Zion and all will be saved.
We can also conclude that the first 69 weeks of the vision have already been fulfilled. We still have the 70th week to happen, which will end in the consummation of God's divine plan for the Jews and Jerusalem in connection with the reign of Jesus Christ.
Now, I know everyone has their own theories on the 70 weeks and they, for the most part, are very good but in my spiritual gut I believe they miss a key revelation in their determination of this week.
I believe we are at the end of the 70th week and it is not a seven-year period but an integer of seven. I see the middle of the 70th week as the Holocaust ending in 1945 and the beginning of the 70th week is somewhere at the end of the 19th century when the aliyah began as a trickle.
I estimate the end of the 70 weeks is 70 years from 1967 when Jerusalem stopped being trampled by the Gentiles and came under the rule of Israel as their capital; that would be around 2037. This is my estimate to say we are in the season of His return. I am not trying to give a day or hour or specific year.
I choose 70 years because that is the prophetic number from Daniel that he read from the prophecy of Jeremiah; that the exile of the Jews in Babylon would last 70 years. Jesus also prophesied in Matthew 24 that one generation would last until all of this was fulfilled.
One generation in the Bible can be 40, 70 or a 100 years as best I can determine.
My point is not about the date or numbers, except I believe the last week is an integer of seven, which changes everything that most scholars have defined the last week of Daniel. I may be totally wrong in the dates but I hold fast to the prophecy that we are in the season of Jesus' return, as prophesied in Matthew 24 and 25 by Jesus Himself.
The final conclusion is that if we are to understand God's prophetic word. We are called to a Daniel lifestyle of full surrender and devotion to God in Jesus Christ. We must resist the world's call to compromise with our culture and seek and love God with all of our hearts to be used by God in this season of Jesus' return.
We must not let our society define our identities and destinies but find both our identities and destinies in Jesus Christ as Daniel found his in the God of Abraham. That means we are called to action. How does your lifestyle define you in your identity and destiny in Jesus Christ?
In Greater Love, author Blake Lorenz shares a captivating story of one man's journey through time after God has chosen him to prepare Israel and the world for the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. All the proceeds will go to our mission and evangelism work around the world and in Central Florida. blakelorenzministries.com
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