Promise: a statement telling someone that you will definitely do something or that something will definitely happen in the future
We like when people keep their promises and we even tell people we are going to do something by saying the words, “I Promise”. Promises are made all the time but they only are valid when the person who is making the promise actually keeps the promise they say they are going to keep. We have all been around people who have made promises but then they either had no intention of fulfilling them or they lacked the discipline to carry through on what they said they were going to do. There are some people we do not even listen to any more simply because what they say to us is meaningless because of the broken promises they have made in the past.
God has made promises throughout the Bible that we can count on because God does not fail and He always does what He says He is going to do. Some people expect things out of God that He never promised or they misread what He has written in His word but there is not one time that God has failed to fulfill a promise He has made.
Daniel read one of those promises that the captivity should last only 70 years and so Daniel being one of the first exiles taken knew the captivity was to be close to the end and therefore he sought God’s wisdom and God’s mercy for him and his people. Daniel knew God’s promises and he knew that God would fulfill that promise because God always keeps His promises. We can trust God for the future because the promises He already made that have already come true.
When we talk about future events in the Bible we call them prophecy because they are what is told will happen in the future. A prophecy is nothing but a promise of what God said would happen. 28.5% of the Old Testament is prophecy and 21.5% of the New Testament is prophecy. There are over 300 prophecies about Jesus Christ and a little over 100 of those prophecies came true the first time He came to earth. Because the prophecies that have already been fulfilled have come true, we can be sure that the promises that are yet to come will happen just the way God said they would.
Read Daniel 9:20-23
Highly Esteemed: Someone who is counted as precious. The term is used to speak of the value of gold.(Ezra 8:27) and costly garments (Gen. 27:15) and it is how God views His children. Never doubt your preciousness as Gods children even when life does not seem to be going the way you thought it would. One of the first things people tend to do when God does not come through for them like they thought He should is to doubt their preciousness to Him. God loved us enough to die for our sins (John 3:16) and that was not based on our behavior but on His love. (Romans 5:8) He died for our sins so that we could be back in a right relationship with Him and He is the one who made all the initiative to get the relationship back (Romans 3:11) so we must always remember we are precious to Him no matter how we might feel.
Read Daniel 9:24-27
1) The Promise Made to Israel
These passages are crucial and some of the most controversial passages of scripture but most of this apply to the nation of Israel and not to America. I have read and heard people try and take the passages of scripture and make them about the U.S.A. They even show in the word Jerusalem that the word U.S.A. is in there. (JerUSAlem). The promises that are made in these passages are for Israel and although there is some application for all of God’s children most of this is specific to them and the plans God has for them.
Sevens means that each year holds seven years each based on Leviticus 25:1-7. So every Seven would represent 49 years. According to 2 Chronicles 36:21 the Babylonian captivity was because the Jewish people rebelled against God by not allowing the land to rest every seven years as was commanded and the years of captivity were in conjunction to how many years they rebelled.
To finish transgression: this was the specific punishment of the rebellion of Israel toward God.
Israel will repent and turn toward God when Jesus comes again. (Zechariah 12:10-13:1; Romans 11:25-27)
To put an end to sin: this prophecy will not be fulfilled till Jesus rules the earth at His second coming.
To atone for wickedness: people will be pardoned for their wickedness which was done through Jesus Christ something the Jews will finally understand and accept at Jesus second coming.
To bring everlasting righteousness: Israel will not rebel against God again.(Jeremiah 31-34; Ezekiel 36:22-32) or it means that Jesus rule will be righteous. (Isaiah 11:1-5; Jeremiah 23:5-6; 33:15-18)
To seal up the vision and the prophecy: No more prophecies will be needed when Jesus rules
To anoint the most holy: referring to the Temple (Ezekiel 40-48) that will be in place during the millennial reign of Christ.
2) The Promise of the Messiah
Vs 25 From the time the word goes out to rebuild Jerusalem to the time of the anointed one
Nehemiah 2:1-5 In the month of Nisan in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when wine was brought for him, I took the wine and gave it to the king. I had not been sad in his presence before,2 so the king asked me, “Why does your face look so sad when you are not ill? This can be nothing but sadness of heart.” I was very much afraid,3 but I said to the king, “May the king live forever! Why should my face not look sad when the city where my ancestors are buried lies in ruins, and its gates have been destroyed by fire?” 4 The king said to me, “What is it you want?” Then I prayed to the God of heaven,5 and I answered the king, “If it pleases the king and if your servant has found favor in his sight, let him send me to the city in Judah where my ancestors are buried so that I can rebuild it.”
The first sevens (49 years) start with the rebuilding of the Temple. Some say this started with King Cyrus allowing the Jewish people to return home (Ezra 1:2-4; 6:3-5) but many believe that it was the time Nehemiah went to rebuild the city which was 445B.C. There is some discussion about the calendar years being 365 days or 360 days but everyone believes that the each seven meant seven years which means that the Messiah had to be on the earth when Jesus Christ was here. This means that according to the Old Testament there is not other time that the Messiah is to come but that He already came.
The Anointed one means a priest or King or both. Jesus Christ fit another promise that was made about the coming messiah but they seem to miss that He was the one. There are several discussions about when exactly the Messiah would show Himself and one of them was when Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a colt.
Luke 19:35-39 They brought it to Jesus, threw their cloaks on the colt and put Jesus on it. 36 As he went along, people spread their cloaks on the road.37 When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:38 “Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!”[b]“Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”39 Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples!”
The religious leaders should have known that the messiah should be on the earth at this time and Josephus the historical Jewish writer even talks about how there was talk about the messiah coming during that time. Jesus fulfilled a promise that was given hundreds of years earlier that the religious leaders again should have recognized.
Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, Daughter Zion! Shout, Daughter Jerusalem! See, your king comes to you, righteous and victorious, lowly and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.
Scripture is always how we confirm the truth about the promises God has made to us. When John the Baptist began to doubt in prison if Jesus was the Messiah, Jesus made sure he knew that Jesus fulfilled all the attributes of the Messiah that was to come.
Matthew 11:2-6 Now when John heard in prison about the deeds of the Christ, he sent word by his disciples 3 and said to him, “Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?” 4 And Jesus answered them, “Go and tell John what you hear and see: 5 the blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers[a] are cleansed and the deaf hear, and the dead are raised up, and the poor have good news preached to them. 6 And blessed is the one who is not offended by me.”
“The coming of the Messiah at the end of the sixty-nine sevens could refer to Christ birth, His baptism, or his presentation to Israel as its promised Messiah on Palm Sunday. Jesus baptism is the most likely choice since it was at that time Jesus officially took upon Himself the role of the Messiah and began His public ministry.” (The New American Commentary, Stephen R. Miller, Pg. 265)
If the nation of Israel was looking for a Messiah then it had to happen at this time. A Rabbi named Leopold Kahn studied the 70 weeks of Daniel chapter nine and gave his life to Christ because he knew the Messiah had to have come to the earth already.
Everyone has to do something with Jesus Christ. Every religion has a statement about what they believe about Jesus Christ and if He was just a great teacher, a prophet, an older brother or if He was God in the flesh. The prophecy of Daniel was met perfectly when Jesus Christ walked the earth at that exact moment in time proving that the promises of God have come true.
John 20:30 Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book;31 but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.
The things that are written in the Bible are there to help you believe that God made a way for you to be back in a right relationship with Him through Jesus Christ. Jesus was God in the flesh who came to redeem the people He not only created but loves very much.
Every time the Bible mentions the first coming of Christ it mentions 8 times of His second coming. We know He is coming again because He came the first time and He will keep His promise because He has always kept His promises.
What will you do with Jesus Christ? Ignore Him? Make Him into something He is not? Or trust Him that He was God in the flesh who came to die for our sins putting us back into a right relationship with God?
3) The Promise of Jesus Death
“The anointed one will be put to death (cut off) “
The Word “Cut Off” was used for the death penalty (Leviticus 7:20-27) and meant a violent death (1 Samuel 17:51; Obadiah 9; Nahum 3:15)Daniel saw that God would not only be rejected by His people but they would violently try and get rid of Him. A violent death is exactly what Jesus suffered for us because death by crucifixion was one of the worst ways to die. You can only wonder how disheartened Daniel was that he would know that his own people would reject the very person they longed for to come. Daniel saw that Jesus should have been given the throne but He was given the cross, He should have been received but He was rejected.
John 19:14-18 It was the day of Preparation of the Passover; it was about noon. “Here is your king,” Pilate said to the Jews.15 But they shouted, “Take him away! Take him away! Crucify him!” “Shall I crucify your king?” Pilate asked. “We have no king but Caesar,” the chief priests answered.16 Finally Pilate handed him over to them to be crucified. So the soldiers took charge of Jesus. 17 Carrying his own cross, he went out to the place of the Skull (which in Aramaic is called Golgotha). 18 There they crucified him, and with him two others—one on each side and Jesus in the middle.
The Death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is the crucial theme of Christianity because without God dying in the flesh there would be no forgiveness of our sins. (Hebrews 9:22) When Jesus rose again from the dead He defeated death making it possible for us to live for eternity with Him. (Romans 6:4-10)
4) The Promise of the Temple’s Destruction
And the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. (26)Gabriel just promised the rebuilding of the temple but now saw a future time when the temple would be destroyed again. Jesus made the same claim when He was on the earth.
Luke 19:41-44 As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it42 and said, “If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes.43 The days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment against you and encircle you and hem you in on every side.44 They will dash you to the ground, you and the children within your walls. They will not leave one stone on another, because you did not recognize the time of God’s coming to you.”(See Also Matthew 24:1-2)
The Temple was destroyed in 70 AD and we know from history that the temple was not supposed to be destroyed but it was lit on fire and all the gold melted between the stones causing the army to then have to turn over the stones to retrieve the gold. Because that happened the prophecy Jesus told came true even though it seemed like an outlandish thing to happen and Jewish Historical writer Josephus understood that the destruction of the temple was predicted by Daniel.
The Gap Years
What happened between the 69th and 70th week of the sevens?
John 1:11-1211 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—
When Jesus was rejected by His people He turned his attention to the gentiles. The gentiles were always part of God’s plan and the children of Israel were supposed to be a blessing to the other nations by living and telling about the true God. (Genesis 12:1-3) This period of time between the 69th and 70th week are called the church age.
The reason that there is a gap between the 69 h and 70th week is that Prophecies can be separated by periods of time even though they are in the same verse of scripture. Isaiah 9:6 is a perfect example of this as we see that Jesus came to us but the government will not be on His shoulders until He comes to reign eternally.
Isaiah 9:6 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given,and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
The church age was a mystery in the Old Testament and it was not shown to Daniel because Daniel was specifically asking about Israel. Some believe that the gap year will end when the church is raptured and all attention will focus once again on Israel. Some say the clock on Israel is paused but will restart when the Anti-Christ takes power and makes a covenant with Israel.
5) The Promise of the Anti-Christ
Daniel 9:27 “And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half of the week he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator.”
This verse deals with what the antichrist will do and the promises he will break with Israel. This is the tribulation mentioned in Revelation 7:14 and Matthew 24:21 when the anti-Christ will make a peace treaty with Israel and half way through (3 ½ years) he will break the treaty and set himself up to be worshiped as God. (Revelation 11:2;12:4; 13:4-8)
2 Thessalonians 2:4 He will oppose and will exalt himself over everything that is called God or is worshiped, so that he sets himself up in God’s temple, proclaiming himself to be God.
Matthew 24;15 So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’[a] spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand—
The temple in Jerusalem must be rebuilt and the sacrificial system that has not operated since 70 AD will be reinstituted. There is some debate about all of this since Jesus Christ died on the cross the institution of sacrifices will not be needed. Of course the Israelites will not give themselves to Christ fully until He comes and destroys the anti-Christ and rules during the millennial reign. Although the temple through the years has had abominations happen to it this will be like no other time in history. The promise of the anti-Christ has yet to be fulfilled but the last seven will happen one day. Although people may mock the delay we are promised by God that this is exactly how things will happen. We can believe Him because every promise He has made has come true. We can have peace in this world because God already knows the future and what exactly will happen.