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1. What did Daniel say after Gabriel explained the meaning of the ram, goat, and horns vision? Daniel 8:27 NKJV
“And I, Daniel, fainted and was sick for days; afterward I arose and went about the king’s business. I was astonished by the vision, but no one it.”
While Gabriel explained the meaning of the beasts and horns, he did not clarify the 2,300 days or “evenings and mornings.” All Gabriel said was that it was true and would be sealed for many days (Daniel 8:26). And that’s when Daniel faints from the horrible thought that God’s truth and sanctuary will be trampled and desolate for this long period.
When Daniel awakens, he is perplexed and says he didn’t understand the meaning of the vision. What part didn’t he understand? Gabriel explained the beasts and horns. The only piece left unsolved was the 2,300 days (Daniel 8:13, 14).
2. What is on Daniel’s mind in the opening verses of chapter 9? Daniel 9:2 NKJV
“I, Daniel, understood by the books through Jeremiah the prophet, that He would accomplish seventy years in the of Jerusalem.”
Chapter 8 ends with Daniel mystified about how the 2,300-day time prophecy relates to the desolation of Jerusalem. Interestingly, the next chapter begins with him studying this very topic—a time prophecy concerning the desolations.
Daniel would have naturally thought of the temple in Jerusalem in connection with the 2,300 days. He had often gone there as a boy, but he well knew that it, and the whole city of Jerusalem, was destroyed decades before by the Babylonians.
3. From his study, what does Daniel decide the 2,300 days mean? Daniel 9:17-19 NKJV
“Cause Your face to shine on Your , which is …. O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and act! Do not .”
As Daniel studies the meaning of the 2,300 days and the desolate sanctuary, he concludes God may increase the time for the Jerusalem sanctuary to lie in ruins. He most likely knew that his contemporary, Ezekiel, was shown in prophetic vision that a day symbolizes a year (Ezekiel 4:6). Daniel cannot bear to consider that God is adding 2,300 years to their captivity. He immediately seeks the Lord in fasting and prayer to plead with God to “not delay” (or KJV: “defer not”) the Jews return to Jerusalem to rebuild the sanctuary.
4. What happened in response to Daniel’s earnest prayers? Daniel 9:21-23 NKJV
“While I was speaking in prayer, the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, reached me about the time of the evening offering. And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, ‘O Daniel, I have now come forth to give you skill to …. Therefore, consider the matter, and understand the .’”
The same Gabriel he had seen in vision in chapter 8 returns to fulfill God’s command to “make this man understand” the 2,300 days (Daniel 8:16). Daniel’s persistence in prayer and Bible study paid off! God will also respond to our earnest prayers to understand prophecy. Perhaps this study series is His divine answer to your prayers!
5. What part of the chapter 8 prophecy does Gabriel explain? Daniel 9:24 NKJV
“Seventy are determined for your people and for your holy city.”
Gabriel’s first words are about the time prophecy and how it relates to the subject of Daniel’s prayer—the Jews and sanctuary in Jerusalem. The Hebrew word for “determined” is chathak and means “cut off” as in to “amputate.” Since Daniel was praying about the 2,300 days years and Gabriel came back to “make him understand,” Gabriel is telling Daniel, “Seventy weeks are cut off from the 2,300 days for your people and for your holy city.” Daniel had mistakenly thought the entire 2,300 days was for his people, but Gabriel informs him only the first 490 days apply to the Jews.
6. What do the 70 weeks or 490 days represent?
a. “I have laid on you a day for each .” Ezekiel 4:6 NKJV
b. “Forty days, for each day you shall bear your guilt one ,namely forty years.” Numbers 14:34 NKJV
We saw in a previous lesson that in prophecy a symbolic day represents a full year of literal time. Additionally, the original Hebrew for “seventy weeks” is most often translated as “seventy weeks of years” (Daniel 9:24). Since there are 490 days in 70 weeks, this symbolized 490 years in real time that applied to the Jewish nation.
7. When does the 70 weeks prophecy begin? Daniel 9:25 NKJV
“Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the to restore and build Jerusalem until Messiah the Prince, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks.”
Gabriel tells Daniel the prophecy would begin with the command to rebuild Jerusalem. Here was the exact assurance Daniel had been looking for: Jerusalem would be rebuilt! Daniel must have been thrilled to hear this along with the assurance that the promised Messiah would visit His people. Gabriel even explained the rebuilding would take 7 weeks (49 years) and an additional 62 weeks (434 years) until the Messiah arrived—a total of 69 weeks of the 70 weeks.
8. When did the command go forth to rebuild Jerusalem? Ezra 7:7-13 NKJV
“Some of the children of Israel … came up to Jerusalem in the year of King Artaxerxes…. This is a copy of the letter that King Artaxerxes gave Ezra the priest… I issue a
decree that all those of the people of Israel and the priests and Levites in my realm, who volunteer to go up to Jerusalem, may go with you.”
After two previous kings’ failed attempts to restore Jerusalem, Artaxerxes issues an effective command in his seventh year (457 B.C.) that successfully provides everything necessary to fully restore the sanctuary service and Jewish law (Ezra 7:14-27).
We can now calculate the historical fulfillment of the 70 weeks prophecy. Starting with the decree to restore Jerusalem in the autumn of 457 B.C., we count down 49 years (7 weeks) to 408 B.C. for the completion date of the rebuilding, and then another 434 years (62 weeks) to the Messiah the Prince in A.D. 27. (Remember, B.C. dates count down and A.D. count up.)
9. Who is the Messiah the Prince that was to come in A.D. 27? John 1:40-42 NKJV
[Andrew] “said to him, ‘We have found the Messiah’ (which is translated, the Christ). And he brought him to .”
First century Jews anticipated the arrival of the Messiah around A.D. 27 because of the 70 weeks prophecy. This is evident in Andrew’s announcement to Simon Peter that he had found the Messiah. This text points out that both the Hebrew word for “Messiah” and the Greek for “Christ” mean the same—”anointed” (see most Bible margins). Whenever you say “Jesus Christ” it means you believe Jesus is the Messiah, the anointed Son of God prophesied in Daniel 9.
10. When was Jesus anointed to start His gospel ministry?
a. “God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy and with power.” Acts 10:38 NKJV
b. “It came to pass that Jesus also was baptized…. And the Holy descended in bodily form like a dove upon Him.” Luke 3:21, 22 NKJV
c. “The of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to preach the gospel.” Luke 4:18 NKJV
The only recorded date in Jesus’ life—His baptism—remarkably confirms He fulfills the 70 week prophecy! We read in Luke 3:1-3, 21-22 that Jesus was anointed with the Holy Spirit at His baptism in the fall of A.D. 27! (Tiberius’ fifteenth year began October A.D. 27.)
After His baptism, Jesus preached, “The time is fulfilled,” declaring the 70 weeks were being fulfilled (Mark 1:14, 15). The story of Jesus’ life revolves around Daniel 9. Consider this: Jesus understood His mission at the age of twelve (Luke 2:49-52), but He waited until exactly A.D. 27 to begin His public ministry. If He had started one year earlier or later, Jesus would not have fulfilled this prophecy.
11. How did Gabriel predict Christ’s ministry and death? Daniel 9:26 NKJV
“And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be off, but not for Himself.”
The same time prophecy that told Jesus when to start His ministry also guided when He was to be cut off or killed. (See Isaiah 53:8 “cut off out of the land of the living.”)
12. When did the prophecy say Jesus would die as the sacrifice for our sins? Daniel 9:27 NKJV
“Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; but in the of the week He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering.”
Jesus ministered for an exact 3 1/2 years (half a week) in fulfillment of this prophecy. This is the reason He avoided death before His time (John 7:1-8). And it is why He went to the cross 3 1/2 years after His baptism in A.D. 31 “My hour has come” (John 12:23-27; 13:1). When Jesus became the sacrifice for our sins, God tore the veil in the temple to show the end had come to sacrifices (Matthew 27:50, 51). We no longer need to bring animal sacrifices to receive forgiveness—Jesus is the all sufficient sacrifice! (Hebrews 9:11-14). “For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us” (1 Corinthians 5:7).
13. What happened at the end of the second half of the last week? Acts 7:59-8:4 NKJV
“And they stoned Stephen. At that time a great persecution arose against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered…. Therefore, those who were scattered went preaching the word.”
For 3 1/2 years after the crucifixion, the apostles preached the gospel only to Israel. But with Stephen’s death the Christians “went everywhere preaching the word.” Stephen was stoned in A.D. 34 at the end of the 70 week prophecy. With this last act the Jewish nation rejected God’s call to be His exclusive people to carry the gospel to the world. Shortly after this, Saul was converted to be the apostle to the Gentiles (Acts 9:15; Romans 11:13). Individual Jews can be saved if they accept Jesus Christ as their Savior, but the kingdom of God was given to the Christian church (Matthew 21:42-45; 1 Peter 2:4-10).
The 70 weeks rates as the Bible’s most important prophecy because it unquestionably proves Jesus is the Messiah. He came on time, lived a pure, sinless life, and died as a sacrifice for our sins. He was obedient to the prophecies that dictated every detail of His life so that He could save us. Shouldn’t we give our hearts to Him and obediently follow the truth we find in prophecy?
14. Have you accepted Jesus as your Messiah and Savior?
This response will be awarded full points automatically, but it will be reviewed and possibly adjusted after submission.