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Seventy-Weeks Prophecy of Daniel 9 - Part 1

Discerning The Times / Brian Thomas
The Truth Network Radio
June 24, 2023 1:30 pm

Seventy-Weeks Prophecy of Daniel 9 - Part 1

Discerning The Times / Brian Thomas

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June 24, 2023 1:30 pm

The Seventy Sevens prophecy is found in the book of Daniel 9:20-27. This is one of the greatest prophecies of the Bible because it foretells the timing of the First and Second coming of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. In studying this prophecy, it is important to keep in mind that this message was concerning events related to the Jewish nation BUT have great significance to the Gentiles and the Christian Church today.

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Blessings to Israel presents Discerning the Times, a program committed to encouraging you to view current events through the lens of the Bible. Now in honor of the one and only true God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, please join us for today's program. Welcome to Discerning the Times.

My name is Brian Thomas. So great to be with you as it is always a blessing to open up the mics and speak to you about the great truths that our Lord has presented us with. We are today going to start a series on a prophecy that I'm very excited about. I'm speaking on the 77's prophecy in the book of Daniel. So we're going to dive into it shortly.

I'm going to bring my co-host in. But before I do that, I want to remind you, as we always do, that your eternal state is far more important than your current state. And what I mean by that is not to undermine or minimize your current state because what we do today on this side of life actually determines our eternal state. And so if you've never received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, I encourage you to do so today. Otherwise, you will face an eternity separated from God in the lake of fire. So please receive the free gift that our Lord gave when he died for us at Calvary.

All right. So now I'm going to bring in my co-host, Dr. Bruce Logan. Doc, you're looking forward to diving into the 70 weeks prophecy of Daniel. Yes, I'm so excited. I've been waiting for a couple of weeks now just on pins and needles, just excited about the opportunity to be able to share this prophecy and just to kind of unpack it together for our listening audience. And I just I just can't wait to get into this.

Yeah, we're both looking forward to it because it is a challenging prophecy. And I don't know, Doc, you tell me what you think. But I would go as far as to say probably 90 percent of people that attend church today have probably never heard any teaching on the 77's prophecy of Daniel.

What do you think? Did you say 98 percent, 90, 90 percent? OK, you were being kind.

It's more like 98 or 99. You know, I mean, I mean, that literally maybe I've never heard any teaching on this particular topic. As a matter of fact, most people, when they hear the Book of Daniel, they immediately think about because I've actually done this. I've actually taught classes on Daniel. And then I was opened up by asking, when you think of the Book of Daniel, what comes to mind and automatically is the three Hebrew boys in a fiery furnace and Daniel and the lions, the things we learned back in Sunday school days.

And then that's pretty much it. And so when it comes to the 70 weeks prophecy, it's something that I don't know if I've ever heard it in the church or taught in the series other than when we've done it or what we're about to do. So, yes, you're 100 percent right. And I think it's very sad, as a matter of fact, but it's all the more reason why I'm so excited and looking forward to being able to unpack this passage for our listeners. Yeah, because, folks, there's so much great stuff here. And I said it can be a challenging prophecy, but it's one of those things that you have to be willing to study. And if you just seek the Holy Spirit, he will present it to you.

God is not trying to keep things away from us. He wants us to know and to learn his word. And so if you look to the Holy Spirit, you can understand what the Bible has to say. So, again, we're looking at the 77 prophecy in the Book of Daniel.

We're going to look at Chapter nine, verses 20 through 27. And this is one of the greatest prophecies in the Bible because it foretells the timing of the first and second coming of our Messiah, Jesus Christ. And so when we study this prophecy, it's important to keep in mind, this is a very, very key component when looking at this, that it was concerning events related to the Jewish nation, the nation of Israel. But the the significance of it is very great as it pertains to the Gentiles and the Christian church today. So it applies specifically to Israel. But again, that doesn't mean that the church is not impacted. And and you'll see why I say that as we go forward, as we dive into this series. So, so, Doc, to get us going before we get into verse 20 through 27, share with us some some background as to what leads up to this prophecy.

Well, first of all, to get into really the heart and really to get the context of what is all what this is going to all be about. The Jews at the time had been taken into captivity by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon. And it was in the fulfillment of a prophecy by the prophet Jeremiah that because of the Israel's sin, because of their rebellion against God, that they were going to be taken into captivity, that God was going to give them into the hands of King Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon. And so they had been taken into captivity. And but the prophet Jeremiah had foretold that they were going to be there for 70 years.

And at the conclusion of that 70 years that they were going to be allowed to return to their homeland. And so the background or the context of Jeremiah, I'm sorry, of Daniel, Daniel begins. He talks about the fact that he was reading the book of the prophecies of Jeremiah regarding the 70 weeks. And Daniel is realizing that the 70 week period is nearly up or the 70 year, I'm sorry, the 70 years was nearly up. So at the time where Daniel, we get to Daniel Chapter 9, it's probably right around year 68. So they had been around in Babylon for around 68 years at this point.

And Daniel was now an old man, probably in his early to mid 80s, I would say. And so he gets this prophet, I mean, he's reading the prophet Jeremiah and he realizes that, wow, he does the math in his head and the 70 years are nearly up. And so he begins to pray a prayer of repentance for not only himself, but for the people of Jerusalem and the people of Israel.

He begins to pray because he realizes that that time is nearly up. Now, one of the things I wanted to just add also is that this is, as you beautifully articulated in your introduction, that this is an amazing prophecy in the Bible. Because not only as you articulate it, it gives us information about the future and God's plan, not only for the Jews and God, but also God's plan for the Gentiles. But this particular passage, along with several other passages in the Book of Daniel, gives us a clear example, a comprehensive example that the Bible is truly the Word of God. It gives us a comprehensive example, a piece of evidence that demonstrates that the Word of God could not have been written by man, but it had to be written by a God who exists outside of our human understanding of space and time. Because he's able to see the end from the beginning and the fulfillment and the meticulous way in which these prophecies were fulfilled demonstrates beyond a doubt that the Bible is truly the Word of God. And so, again, with that, also, Daniel goes on to pray because he realizes that God's Word is true. The 70 years was nearly up. And as he goes on and he enters into this prayer, and the prayer is interrupted by the angel Gabriel.

And then it starts to really get good at that point. Yeah. And I'm glad you pointed out the age of Daniel to help give people context, because, as you said, he was nearing 90 years old at this point. And if you recall from when Daniel first went into captivity in Daniel chapter one with with he and Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, they were they were very young at that time.

They were believed to be probably their early teenage years. So, you know, you imagine he's he's basically spent his entire life in captivity. And so that provides great context. And, you know, you talk about the faithfulness of Daniel. And I think you mentioned that, you know, Daniel and of course, the rest of the Hebrews, they've been taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar. But by the time we get to this point is when the kingdom had actually sort of changed hands and that the Medo Persians came in and so they were taking over the rulership in that in that land. And, yeah, but I think, you know, one of the things just looking at this background for for us to think about in our lives today, because I see so much of a lack of accountability from people that they think that they can just live their lives as they want in disobedience to God without any repercussions. And God made it clear to Israel way back when he brought them out of the land of Egypt, that if they disobeyed him, there would be consequences. And one of the consequences was they were taken into captivity.

A foreign nation came in and took them over. And so, as you said, Daniel is praying because he knows based on reading, as you said, the Book of Jeremiah, that this 70 year period of judgment from God is coming to an end. So any more you have any more in the background before we dive into it?

Yeah, I just want to I just want to yeah, I just want the listeners to be able to, you know, be able to connect the dots. So verse one opens up in Daniel chapter nine and verse one says, In the first year of Darius, the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king, which in other words, he was appointed king and many scholars believe by Cyrus over the region or the realm. And the Persians, they called it the realm. It was another name they used for was the satrap. And so over the realm or the satrap of the Babylonia, I mean, of the Persian Empire, of that particular area, Darius was the one who was in charge.

Okay. And so in that year, and of course, Daniel had been doing the math, he says, the verse two goes on to say, I, Daniel, understood by the book, the number of years whereof the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah the prophet that he would accomplish 70 years in the desolations of Jerusalem. So that's just kind of a background. And just for the listeners, maybe if they want to write this down and maybe do, because the history behind why they ended up in Babylon could be an interesting study in and of itself. And so he was probably reading, well, in fact, not even probably, he was definitely reading Jeremiah chapter 25 verses one through 11 and Jeremiah 29 verses 10 through 11 and Jeremiah 25, 11 says, and this whole land shall be a desolation and an astonishment and those nations shall serve the king of Babylon. Notice what it says, 70 years, verse 12 says, and it shall come to pass when 70 years were accomplished that I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation saith the Lord for their iniquity and the land of the Chaldeans and will make it a perpetual desolation. So Daniel was realized, and then he also goes on to in verse 10 and chapter 29 in verse 10 and says, thus saith the Lord that, and this is, of course, the book of Jeremiah, that after 70 years be accomplished at Babylon, I will visit you and perform my good works toward you in causing you to return to this place. Now, I wanted to read that because it's amazing because this overall narrative, and we haven't even gotten to the actual 70 weeks prophecy yet, but the fact of the matter is that God had made this prophecy of 70 years, nearly 68 years prior. And what's amazing is that the 70 year period was fulfilled precisely as God declared that it would be to the prophet Jeremiah. And it demonstrates, number one, the authenticity and the accuracy of God's word. But it also, as you also pointed out, it demonstrates the faithfulness and the faith of Daniel because he actually, he read the word of God. He saw it said 70 years and didn't even question it. He believed it with all of his heart that 70 years they were going to be allowed to return to their homeland. And just as the prophet Jeremiah had worn through the inspiration of God, that it was going to happen, it did take place in 586 BC.

Jerusalem was destroyed and overtaken by Nebuchadnezzar and Babylon. And Jeremiah, you know, he was one of those prophets. And I try to remind people of this today because, you know, doc, we're in a time in which most preachers today don't want to talk about sin. They don't want to talk about judgment. What did they want to talk about?

Your best life now. All the blessings that God is going to bestow upon you and all he's going to do for you and all of that. Nothing about the plans that I have for you.

You want to get all of this and all of that. Nothing about repents for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. No, no turning and even worshiping. You know, that's that's we are we were created to worship God. But we are now there's a me centered theology in which is all about us. You see it in the worship music. You see it in the sermons where it was all about us. We are the basically we have made ourselves gods and God is this this genie in a bottle to what he's going to do for us.

But no, that's not the way it works. We are supposed to be worshiping and serving him. He is the focus. And of course, we know he'll he'll bless us if we do do what he asked of us.

But that should not be our primary focus. But Jeremiah was not will like because he was telling them, if you don't repent, if you don't change, then judgment is going to come. And that is exactly what happens.

So that is exactly what happened. All right. So you ready to dive into verse 20? Yes, sir. All right.

Do it. Daniel, chapter nine. I'll read verses 20 and 21. It says in the text now, while I was speaking, praying and confessing my sin and the sin of my people, Israel, and presenting my supplication before the Lord, my God for the holy mountain of my God. Yes, while I was speaking in prayer, the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, reach me about the time of the evening offering.

So, all right, Doc, unpack that for us. Well, first of all, what we have here is, again. One of the reasons why I love Daniel, not only the prophecy, but Daniel is an individual whose character was, I mean, there's nobody else or very few people like him in the Bible from a character standpoint. And we're actually going to see that here in a moment as we continue to read how Gabriel addressed Daniel. But just when you think about how Daniel, the faith that he had in terms of how he was able to read the Word of God and believe it without question explicitly. But in addition to that, Daniel had a character, a level of character and integrity that is really unparalleled in Scripture, in my opinion. Because Daniel was actually a chief government official in two empires.

And think about that. He became a chief government official, I think, second in the land as far as authority under King Nebuchadnezzar. And then he became a chief official under the Persian Empire under Cyrus. And just to think about the character of the man, and you remember in the story, one of the things that goes really unspoken about the story of the three, of the Daniel and the lion's den, rather, is that the reason why he was thrown in the lion's den because the other officials or the other governors of the land that had been appointed was jealous that this Hebrew was appointed over them. So they tried to devise a plot in order to trap Daniel, but the plot backfired.

And the thing was amazing because they came right out and said they could not find anything against Daniel because he had such an impeccable character, so they had to make up something. And that led him to be in the lion's den, but it still backfired because God delivered Daniel out of the lion's den, and that just added to his credibility. But that being said, if you notice the prayer that Daniel prayed up until verse 20, Daniel, this man of such impeccable character, was praying repentance even though he really was not guilty of anything that he was praying about.

Think about that. In other words, he did not have just a mentality in which he was just blaming or just professing for the people, but he was actually including himself in that prayer. And that just kind of shows you the type of selflessness. That's kind of the word that I wanted to point out about Daniel. The level of selflessness, the level of faith, the level of conviction that he had is a lesson that we can all learn from the prayer that Daniel made. And then of course, as you read, Gabriel appears to him, which I think is another significant point. And this is interesting because Gabriel is only one of three archangels who are mentioned in Scripture by name. One is Gabriel, the other is Michael.

And of course, the third one was Satan, the only three that was mentioned by name. And every time Gabriel is mentioned, Gabriel was mentioned in Scripture four times, and he appeared to three individuals, Daniel, and then he appeared to Zachariah, and he also appeared to Mary. And each time it has something to do with an announcement for the Messiah or a future king or future Messiah. So many believe that that was Gabriel's charge to be an announcer or to be the spokesman or the one who was the announcing angel to announce the coming Messiah, because that's what we see him each time that he appears in Scripture. He's announcing the coming, or he announced that John the Baptist, he announced the Messiah also. And then here in Daniel 9, he's announcing the future of Israel all the way to the coming of the second coming of Christ. And that's what we're going to see as we go on to unpack Daniel's 70 weeks once we get to chapters 24 through 27.

Yeah. And Daniel had been visited by Gabriel before concerning other visions. In Daniel chapter 8, verse 15, Gabriel had appeared to him in speaking to him. And as you said, that really just speaks to the character of Daniel, because one of the things we may not think about, but it's highly likely that Daniel was made a eunuch when he went into Nebuchadnezzar's kingdom. And what would happen is the kings would oftentimes when they took captives, they would bring the men in and they wanted them to be servants in the castle, the kingdom.

They would castrate them so that they couldn't have sexual relations with the women that were there. And imagine, you know, you think about how bitter you could easily become having something like that done to you, how you can so easily become angry at God and think about this is not right, this is not fair. And yet here Daniel is from the time of being a teenager and likely having been made a eunuch to here he is now almost 90 years old. And the Bible never speaks anything negative of Daniel, that he still kept that loyalty and dedication to God.

And it's just it's really amazing. And that is why, you know, he's there praying for the sins of the people. And this angel responds to him and Gabriel comes flying swiftly and touches him about the time of the evening ablation, which is the evening sacrifice. So as we move on to verse 22 and 23, it says, and he informed me and talked with me and said, Oh, Daniel, I have now come forth to give you skill to understand. At the beginning of your supplication, the command went out and I have come to tell you for you are greatly beloved. Therefore, consider the matter and understand the vision. That's exactly what you were talking about, that the character of Daniel, this angel, here's a heavenly host coming to Daniel to tell him he is greatly beloved.

Can you imagine what that must feel like? That was that that every time I read that, I just like jumps out at me because that's actually not the first only time that is said. I also mentioned that I believe in Chapter 10 from not mistaken. Again, to Daniel, that he that how how he is viewed in heaven.

But nevertheless, it is that statement right there. I don't I don't recall other than what God said that David is a man after my own heart. I don't recall another individual that was given that level of accolades from heaven or what I would like to refer to as a heavenly accolade that you are greatly beloved or you are the NIV says you are greatly and highly esteemed. That means you are highly esteemed in heaven because he was sent as a messenger from heaven. Daniel, think about that.

That is incredible to think about. And here he's an old man, like you say, in his early 90s. And and and that means that he had in order to get that game, that type of accolade, he had to have been, you know, that character that that that that interest in an intestine intestinal fortitude to stand for God no matter what had to been a part of his fiber, a part of who he was as a person from the time he was a teenager. Because if you remember the incident when he was first taken into captivity, when he was selected amongst the Jews, amongst amongst the the young men to train in King Nebuchadnezzar's court, and they tried to get them to eat food that was not kosher. And Daniel refused.

He said, Daniel, the Bible says in Daniel Chapter one, that Daniel purposed in his heart that he was not going to defile himself. Think about that. And so here it is, like almost 70 years later, and he is still have maintained that life of integrity over his entire life.

And he has maintained it under circumstances that most of us living today wouldn't it would be difficult to even comprehend. So, again, that gives you something about that teaches us lessons about character, you know, about our about our how we are viewed in the public eye, because remember, he was beloved in heaven. Think about this.

He was beloved in heaven, but he was hated by his rivals here on Earth. Yep. Yep. Think about that. That speaks a lot about Daniel and his character. Yeah, that's something to chew on, because look at today in our society, people oftentimes more times than not, they do the reverse. They carry themselves about so that they are loved by the people on Earth.

But I'm not going to use the word to say hated by heaven, but they're definitely not in good graces of the heavenly host because they're not being obedient to God. And as you said, we should be trying to follow the life of Daniel because it it really speaks to his integrity. You know, Gabriel comes and he's giving him instruction. And yeah, he says, well, Daniel, you're so highly thought of due to your great faith in man.

This is just really amazing. And so he's going to go on to proceed to decode a message and give a vision to Daniel of what's to come. So we're going to pause there for this week. This is the lead up.

This is the build up. So next week, we're going to really get into the meat of this prophecy, beginning with verse 24, because there that's where we'll see the unpacking of just great things that are to come concerning prophecies that have already been fulfilled and and things that are still yet to come in the future. So so, Doc, you ready to come back next week for some more? Yes, sir, I can't wait. All right. All right. I'll be on pins and needles.

Yeah. And folks, we encourage you to to to study this and don't just read it one time, you know, go through it over and over. And we want to encourage you as you listen to this episode and the rest of the series and still pick up your Bible, follow along with us and then go back to it and take notes. And we just believe that God will truly bless you if you've never read or studied this great prophecy of the seventy seven weeks of Daniel. So, all right, Doc, well, we're going to pause for this week, but looking forward to having you back next week as we continue. I mean, God bless. Can't wait.

All right. And to our audience, please come back and join us as we continue to discern the times by viewing life through the lens of the Bible. Until then, remember to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. Bless God's great nation of Israel to the only wise God be glory through Jesus Christ forever.

Amen. Thank you for tuning in to Discerning the Times. Please come back and join us next week as we continue to encourage you to view current events through the lens of the Bible. Until next time, remember to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. Bless God's great nation of Israel and seek first the kingdom of God. Discerning the Times is presented by blessings to Israel.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-10-22 23:39:10 / 2023-10-22 23:50:00 / 11

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