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My Insights from the Bible
Daniel’s Vision of the Antichrist 3
"Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, 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 and to anoint the most holy place. So you are to know and discern that from the issuing of a decree to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince there will be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; it will be built again, with plaza and moat, even in times of distress. Then after the sixty-two weeks the Messiah will be cut off and have nothing, and the people of the prince who is to come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. And its end will come with a flood; even to the end there will be war; desolations are determined. And he will make a firm covenant with the many for one week, but in the middle of the week he will put a stop to sacrifice and grain offering; and on the wing of abominations will come one who makes desolate, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed, is poured out on the one who makes desolate." (Daniel 9: 24 - 27 NASB)
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The seventy weeks prophecy
This is Daniel’s prophecy for the first coming of the Messiah. Does it also apply to the second coming, and how? Theologians have shown how the maths for the seventy weeks lines up exactly with the life of Jesus at His first coming. We can look at this view and see how the events are depicted in these words recorded by Daniel. How close to reality are the descriptions? What is literal and what is symbolic? By probing such questions we can get a better idea of how prophecies on Christ’s second coming can be viewed and interpreted.
Details that should be noted from the wording of prophecy include the sequence of events and the timing of them. This means we can see what events in the fulfilment are portrayed in the Bible text, and what are not, and the importance of each. We are better able to see how events prophesied span out in the timeline of their fulfilment.
In the prophecy of chapter 9 events follow events closely, giving us the impression everything happens rather quickly. The reality is somewhat different, with years between events. Many of the Old Testament prophecies have a double, even a triple, interpretation. Jesus realised that some prophecies about Him were to be fulfilled more than once. When He read from the book of Isaiah in the synagogue in Nazareth He stopped short of quoting the whole prophecy. He fulfilled part of it at His first coming, and will fulfil all of it at His second coming.
Of course we see the Antichrist portrayed in this prophecy as outlined in the text above. Scholars claim that he makes a covenant with the people for seven years, and breaks it after 3 ½ years. In Matthew’s gospel (Matt 24: 15) Jesus warns those who will be around at the time this happens to keep watch and leave town quickly when the abomination that makes desolate occurs. I believe this warning applies to all of us, wherever we are living, and not just to the Jews in Jerusalem or Judea.
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