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Seventy Sevens

“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.” (Daniel 9:24)

The prophecy of Daniel’s 70 weeks is more relevant to us with each passing day. The prophecy has stopped at the 69th week at the cutting off of the Messiah. “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.” (Daniel 9:25) This was the time of Jesus’ crucifixion, the time line stopped, and we are now in the Church age. God’s chosen people had rejected their Messiah and His gospel message was given to the Gentile world. The Gospel Message was a mystery to the Jewish people and they did not understand it, and would not understand it, and to this day it is a mystery to them. They should have known as all Old Testament Prophecy points to Jesus as the Messiah. But we cannot harshly judge them, as for most of the Gentile world has rejected Him as the Savior of man as well. For the Christian it is the only truth that can be revealed in this world. “But we speak God’s wisdom in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God predestined before the ages to our glory.” (1 Corinthians 2:7)

It is the calling of all Christians to share the gospel to every ear that will hear in our prayer that they will receive it and place it in their heart that God can cause it to grow into a life giving knowledge of Jesus Christ and recognize Him as their Savior and Lord. Then they will understand the lawlessness of this world, then they will find justification through their faith in Christ, Sanctification in new spiritual birth by the power of the Holy Spirit, and follow their Master in faith to the yonder shore of the Promised Land. Then the truth is revealed that man is not an insignificant cog in a vast wheel but an object of our Creators love that He was willing to die to save. The mystery becomes a wonderful revelation of God’s Truth. “He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth.” (Ephesians 1:9-10)

In our verse this evening Daniel 9:24 we see six purposes that will be achieved at the end of the 70 weeks with the last week, the seventh week being the final great tribulation. These 6 purposes are in two sets of three. The first set deals with sin and its resolution. These are to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity. The second set are those things related to righteousness. To bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy place.” Mankind since the day of his fall in the Garden of Eden to this very day has tried to accomplish the impossible. God’s Son Jesus came to pay the wage of sin, death, and to give that gift of eternal life to man freely. Still the many will not accept it because it is foolishness to them. The Apostle Paul states it this way. “Where is the wise man? Where is the scribe? Where is the debater of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not come to know God, God was well-pleased through the foolishness of the message preached to save those who believe. For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom; but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.” (1 Corinthians 1:20-24)

Since the beginning man has rebelled against the truth of God’s Word. The further that man moves from the truth the greater folly of his own thinking. Perhaps it has always been this way and today we are more aware of it. But society has not only ignored the truth but now is prohibiting the truth from being spoken. Here in our own country we accept every false religion as a right of the professor but the Word of the One and true God is forbidden in the open society. Okay, I will tone that statement down. Do not the followers of Christ have the same right to worship as the followers of any other deity? In my discussions with people the truth is found in popular opinion rather that in the rock of God’s Word, which is unchangeable and will endure forever. If truth is changeable by opinion that how can it be truth? Our God is patient but He will not strive with man’s sin forever. “Then the LORD said, “My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh.” (Genesis 6:3) In spite of our wretched selves God loves us and wants us to come home to Him. “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9)

God is a Holy Righteous God and sin cannot be in His presence. The time is soon coming when He will “finish the transgression.” God has appointed a time when unrighteousness will end. In the Garden of Eden man was tempted by that serpent, Satan, the fallen angel of long ago. Satan hates God, he hates man, he hates you, and there is no love in him. Satan desires to rob God of every soul that he can and man is so willing to be under the bond of his control. It is not only that our time is short but Satan’s time is short as well, and he knows it. The spiritual war will intensify with each passing day until the transgression is finished. “And the devil who deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are also; and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.” (Revelation 20:10)

With Satan cast down to the place that has been prepared for him man will no longer be plagued by the one who accuses us day and night. Those who have accepted God’s free gift of salvation through His Son whose life paid the price for their sin will “make an end of sin.” The wage has been paid and our past sin has been sealed. “My transgression is sealed up in a bag, And You wrap up my iniquity.” (Job 14:17) The Evil One has been bound for eternity and the temptation no longer has power over our lives. It will be as before we knew the knowledge of good and evil. The debt of sin will be paid in full and we shall be free from the binding chains that had been placed upon us. “Otherwise, He would have needed to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now once at the consummation of the ages He has been manifested to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.” (Hebrews 9:26) The followers of Christ will now be fully sanctified by the power of the Holy Spirit and the outcome of past sinful behavior will be dealt with by God’s mercy and judgment. “But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.” (2 Corinthians 3:18)

Through Christ we have been reconciled to God, the price of our sin has been paid and the purpose of God has been completed. The relationship between God and man has been restored. “Namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.” (2 Corinthians 5:19) In the eyes of God the Father we stand before Him in the righteousness of His Son Jesus Christ. The sins of our past are not present for God remembers them no more. “They will not teach again, each man his neighbor and each man his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ for they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest of them,” declares the LORD, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and their sin I will remember no more.” (Jeremiah 31:34)

By our loving relationship with Jesus, who died for us that we might live now that the stain of sin has been removed and we are as we began, perfect righteous beings in the image of God. “But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption” (1 Corinthians 1:30) Jesus came into the world for the purpose of leading men back to God the Father. He lived a righteous life in the will of the Father and gave His righteousness by sacrificing Himself to pay our sin debt. No greater love has the world ever known that the innocent would bear the punishment of the guilty. “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Corinthians 5:21)

Now the prophecy has been sealed. God’s purpose has been completed, man’s relationship with Him has been fully restored. We do not have to look forward to that in our hope as our hope has become the present reality. “Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is.” (1 John 3:2)

Then all will be as it was created to be very good, the world once again will be in the perfection of God’s creation. The returning King of kings and Lord of Lords will be anointed and take His place in the Most Holy Place in the Sanctuary of His Temple. “But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels.” (Hebrews 12:22) (Revelation 21:10:27)

“We have now before us an outline of the whole prophecy. And, after considering the statement of results which are to follow God disciplinary dealings, we cannot but conclude that the close of the Seventy Sevens must coincide with the end of the present order of things and the beginning of the Coming or Millennial Age.” (Thomas Ice)

Thomas N Kirkpatrick

Durant Bible College, October 29, 2015

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