There are seven predictions within Gabriel’s prophecy.
These seven predictions have to do with Israel and the events
that will take place in its holy city, Jerusalem.
1. Seventy sevens are decreed for your people and your
2. To finish transgression
3. To put an
end to sin
4. To atone for wickedness
5. To bring
in everlasting righteousness
6. To seal up the vision
7. To anoint the most holy
The Church is not the focal point of this prophecy. To
spiritualize these prophecies concerning Israel’s future
by applying them to the Church is wrongly dividing the
Word of God.
Israel’s transgression is still transpiring; their sin
has not ended. Through His blood, Christ’s propitiating
sacrifice provided man with the redemption he needs in
order to be reconciled to God and to receive righteousness
from God (Romans 3:22-26). However, the nation of Israel
continues to be estranged from God. Everlasting
righteousness does not mark God’s people or their holy
city. The nation of Israel has not perceived the message
of this vision and prophecy. The ancient location of the
Most Holy Place on Mount Moriah is covered today by the
Muslim’s Dome of the Rock.
All seven predictions of this vision still belong to
the future. Each awaits fulfillment when Israel enters the
New Covenant (Deuteronomy 30:6-10; Isaiah 59:20-21;
Jeremiah 31:31-34; Ezekiel 36:24-38) prior to Christ’s
second coming (Zechariah 12:1-13:6).
How long is the decreed seventy sevens? The latter
Hebrew expression indicates a unit of sevens (days, weeks
or years), a “heptad,” just as we would use the word
“dozen” to designate a collection of twelve things.
Liberals attempt to make the seventy sevens either
seventy days or 490 days. Amillennialists symbolize the
seventy sevens as indefinite periods. The answer is to be
found in the Bible as the OT employs “sevens” for days,
years and weeks of years.
1. A week of days—from one sabbath to another (Exodus
2. A week of years—from one sabbatical year
to another (Leviticus 25:3-7).
3. A week of seven
times seven years, or forty-nine years—from one Jubilee to
another (Leviticus 25:8-18).
The Jews had been removed from the land in order that
it might rest for seventy years, since the sabbatical year
had been violated for 490 years, or exactly seventy
sevens. A week of years was just as familiar to the Jew as
the week of days.
For six years sow your fields, and for six years prune
your vineyards and gather their crops. But in the seventh
year the land is to have a sabbath of rest, a sabbath to
the LORD. Do not sow your fields or prune your vineyards
The seventy sevens cannot be understood as days or
weeks in light of the events predicted, such as the
persecution of God’s people at the hands of the Coming
Prince. The Jews would be under the protection of
Media-Persia for two hundred years.
Daniel 7:24-25 speaks of the same coming prince and the
same persecution, fixing the duration as “a time and times
and dividing of time” or “three and a half times.”
Revelation 13:4-7 refers to the same persecution, stating
the duration in the exact terms of Daniel 7:25. This
period is further defined in Revelation 12:6 as 1,260
days, and elsewhere as 3 1/2 years or 42 months
(Revelation 13:5). Therefore, the phrase must speak of
years, not days or weeks.
The prophetic year of Scripture is composed of 360
days, or twelve months of thirty days. The earliest
biblical history of the length of a month is recorded with
the Flood that began on the seventeenth day of the second
month (Genesis 7:11), and ended on the seventeenth day of
the seventh month (8:4). This period is stated in terms of
days as “one hundred and fifty days” (7:24; 8:3), which is
five months of thirty days.
Various calendars of the nations have used years of
different lengths, correcting the error by the addition of
days from time to time. Our own year of 365 days is not
exact, the shortage being a little less than one day in