The 70th Week of Daniel
The People of the Prince
Elder Joe Holder
of the Incarnation from God's perspective. Jesus helps us with that mental
leap in several of the parables. For example, consider the dynamic of the
parable in which the distant king at first sends one servant after another to
his servants, but each in turn is rejected. Eventually he thinks, "I will send
my own son to them. They will respect him because they respect me." Instead of
respecting the Son, the Jewish people of the first century did precisely what
Jesus described in the parable, they killed Him.
In the parable the servants' motive was greed. Kill the son, and the
estate would belong to them. Did Jesus state that motive without good reason? I
suggest that it was the actual motive of the leaders of Judaism in their
determination to have Jesus crucified.
Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath
is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.
As we see in our study this week, there is no basis in Scripture,
especially in a supposed unfulfilled prophecy, to consider that Daniel's
seventieth week was somehow delayed or postponed. It followed sequentially and
in chronological integrity after the sixty-ninth.
Fulfilled prophecy is a powerful basis on which to affirm our faith, as
well as to affirm the supernatural origin and the supernatural preservation of
Scripture. Most contemporary Christians of our day offer at least a degree of
lip service to the idea of supernatural origin for Scripture, but sadly many of
them have compromised with advocates of "higher criticism" in their rejection of
the Bible's supernatural preservation. Of what value is a book that is
supernatural in origin if its unique message is not fully preserved?
And in Gabriel's prophetic revelation to Daniel in the seventy weeks of
years prophecy we find not only detailed revelations of future events, but we
also see an equally specific revelation of the time at which those events would
When measuring anything, be it pounds, distance, time, or other matters,
the integrity of the measurement depends on the integrity of the tool by which
measurement is made. If you were to measure your waste in preparation to buy a
new belt, how effective would your measurement be if you saw thirty six inches
on the tape measure, but you cut the tape at thirty inches, inserted a piece of
elastic into the breach, and then went to the clothing store where you bought a
thirty inch belt? Would the belt fit your waste? Of course not. For those who
divide Gabriel's seventy weeks by cutting off the seventieth week from the first
sixty-nine, the consequences are exactly > the same. They destroy the integrity
of the prophecy, sacrificing the accuracy of God's prophetic miracle for their
preconceived and recently framed beliefs. From the perspective of historical
theological belief, ca 1830 is recent. Modern dispensationalism did not exist as
it is taught and believed today prior to that date.
Thank God for the integrity of His Word and for the integrity of His
supernatural prophetic revelations.
People of the Prince
Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the
commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince
shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built
again, and the wall, even in troublous times. And after threescore and two weeks
shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that
shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall
be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. And he
shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week
he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the
overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the
consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate. (Daniel
And the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and
the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of
the war desolations are determined. If we accept the integrity of Gabriel's
timeline, Jesus began His public ministry at the beginning of the seventieth
"week" of years in the prophecy. If we also accept the consistent depiction
throughout Daniel that the four world empires were the four that dominated the
Mediterranean world from Daniel's time till Jesus' coming; Babylon, Medo-Persia,
Greece, and Rome, we understand that Jesus made His appearance during the Roman
era, the fourth and final of the four
empires described in Daniel's writings.
This brings us to something of a challenge regarding the prophecy
regarding ".the people of the prince that shall come.." In the
spring of 70 A. D., after several years of escalating hostilities, the Roman
occupying army engaged in a major offensive against the rebellious Jewish people
in Judea. The offensive reached a crucial point as the Roman army approached and
besieged Jerusalem, the capital city. This siege lasted till August of that
year. The problem-this event did not occur within the sequential seventy weeks
of years era-may be resolved by the simple observation that Gabriel's prophecy
does not list this event as one of the six events included in that time frame.
It occurred as a corollary to those events and the Jews' rejection of Jesus, but
it was not part of the seventy week work outlined in Daniel 9:24.
Initially Vespasian commanded the Roman army in Judah, but during this offensive
against the Jews Vespasian learned of major changes in Rome, changes that opened
the door to his becoming the new Caesar, so he left his son Titus in charge of
the occupying army and returned to Rome.
was successful in gaining the position of Caesar. Caesar in Latin is equivalent
to kurios in Greek (translated "Lord" in the New Testament), and it is
equivalent to Kaiser in German. Effectively the position is that of ruler over
the country. Thus Titus, the Roman general who commanded the siege of Jerusalem,
was in effect a "prince," the son of the king. I find it amazing, a true witness
to God's supernatural guiding of the writing of Scripture, that Gabriel would
reveal these details to Daniel some time prior to five hundred B. C. Almost six
hundred years before Vespasian rushed off to Rome, leaving his son Titus in
charge of the Roman army in Judea, Gabriel revealed the matter to Daniel. The
military commander who directed the flooding destruction of the city of
Jerusalem was not merely an accomplished general; he was in fact a "prince."
Tthe end thereof shall be with a flood.." Do not discount the solemn words,
words that Daniel would have not missed at all. In fact those words, "the end
thereof," would likely be the cause for Daniel's broken heart and prolonged
grief. His beloved people not only would so provoke their God as to bring His
certain judgment against them, but they would also by that provocation end their
existence as a nation favored and protected by God.
Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes:
and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in
your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city: That upon you may come
all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel
unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple
and the altar. Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this
generation. O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest
them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children
together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would
not! Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. For I say unto you, Ye shall
not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name
of the Lord. (Matthew 23:34-39)
The religious leaders of the nation in Jesus' day self-righteously denied their
ancestors and said, ".If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not
have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets." (Matthew 23:30) Yet
Jesus warned them that their own rebellion against their God would be profoundly
greater than any of their ancestors. They would reject and seek the death of
their promised Messiah, God Incarnate. It was this precise fact that prompted
Jesus' words of severe judgment in the verses cited above. Upon first century
Judah would fall God's pent up judgment against all the stubborn and rebellious
people and their sins that went before. The sin of first century Jewish
religious leaders was far greater than any sin of their ancestors.
Again in this citation we see the incredible precision of inspired words in
How often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth
her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
The problem was not primary to the Jewish people of the first century, but to
their leaders. Notice Jesus' words; ".would I have gathered thy children
together.." Then notice the reason Jerusalem's children were not so gathered
under God's motherly protective care; ".ye would not!" The English Bible does
not contain many exclamation points, but we find one here, one that is well
placed, for Jesus' words in this passage cry out to these people. The "ye" who
would not permit Jerusalem's children to gather under their God's care were the
religious leaders of the nation.
There are indications, as mentioned, that Gabriel informed Daniel that his
beloved people would meet their end as God's favored people within the events of
the seventy weeks of years prophecy. What does Jesus say about the future of the
Jewish people in the passage cited above?
Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. For I say unto you, Ye shall not
see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of
I do not advocate or condone one human imposing senseless abuse or prejudice
against any other human being because of his/her race, gender, or culture; nor
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither
male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. (Galatians 3:28)
Therefore I offer the following thoughts with the careful precaution that they
are Jesus' words, based on His knowledge and righteous judgment against that
generation. They are not words that you or I are authorized to take upon
ourselves and impose upon contemporary Jews or any other people.
Many people reacted with joy when Jewish pilgrims from many countries
around the world united and gained a foothold in their old native land in 1947.
Many Christians celebrated the event, claiming it was the fulfillment of
Biblical prophecy and, trumpeted by the dispensational camp, heralded the
beginning of the end. To them, this event clearly indicated that the final
chapter of human history was closing in upon us.
Did the Jews' return to their historical land in 1947 fulfill Scripture? Listen
to Jesus' words. Let them echo in your mind long and
Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in
the name of the Lord.
Who came in the name of the Lord? Was it not Jesus Himself, God Incarnate?
Is that not the message that Jesus delivered to the religious leaders of the day
who were then plotting Jesus' death? I must ask the obvious question. Is there
any indication that the returning Jews to the "Holy Land" in 1947 were returning
to their God or to Jesus, their promised and long rejected Messiah? History
answers the question without any doubt. These people were seeking relief from
dreadful oppression and from the painfully recent memory of Hitler's ovens. I am
thankful that they found or forged out a piece of land to call their own.
However, I find nothing in the history leading up to 1947 or since that in any
way indicates that the Jewish people who returned had also decided to embrace
Jesus, He who came in the name of the Lord, as God Incarnate. And for that
simple reason I see no basis to claim that their return was the fulfillment of
any Bible prophecy. Noble as their plight was from a truly humanitarian point of
view, they did not embrace Jesus, and they did not fulfill a Biblical prophecy.
The whole paradigm of the dispensational school of thought that alleges that the
Second Coming cannot possibly occur until the Jews possess the whole of their
ancient land, or any other human accomplishment for that matter, has no support
from Scripture. The date of the Second Coming depends on God's timetable, not