Daniel’s

Weeks

An

Interpretation

of part of the Prophecy of

Daniel:

 

By Joseph Mede, late Fellow

of Christ’s College in Cambridge.

 

London,

Printed by M.F. for John Clark, and are to be

sold at his shop under S. Peter’s Church

in Cornhill. 1643

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Daniel’s

Weeks

The Weeks of Daniel are a divine chronology of the time which the Sanctuary, with the Legal Service, should continue, when it should be restored after the Captivity of Babylon. During which time, also the City of Jerusalem itself should be re-inhabited, and the walls thereof rebuilt, and some sixty-two weeks after that began to be, should Messiah the Redeemer be anointed, yea, and cut off and rejected of his own: For which, when the whole seventy weeks (the time allotted) should expire, their Sanctuary and City should again be razed, and their Common-wealth utterly dissolved.

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Verse 24 Chapter 9

Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the Most Holy.

Seventy weeks are determined or allotted: That is, the Holy City shall again be restored, and seventy weeks of years are allotted and limited for the continuance thereof, and thy people with it: and that for this end, that during the standing thereof, the Messiah, according to vision and prophecy, may come to expiate sin, and be anointed in his kingdom.

The word  here translated determined or allotted signifies properly to be cut or cut out, and so may seem to imply such a sense, as if the Angel had said to Daniel, “Howsoever your bondage and captivity under the Gentiles shall not altogether cease, until that succession of kingdoms, which I before

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showed thee, be quite finished: yet shall God for the accomplishing his promise concerning the Messiah, as it were cut out of that long term and certain limited time, during which, the Captivity of Judah and Jerusalem being interrupted, the Holy City and Common-wealth in some measure shall again be restored, and so continue till seventy weeks of years be finished.”

Here I distinguish the beginning of the Times of the Holy City from the beginning of Jerusalem: For the Holy City is so called of the Temple as the principal part; and therefore the time of the restitution thereof, to be reckoned from the time the Temple was built. But by Jerusalem is understood (as appears in the next verse) the external buildings and walls of the City, which were not restored, till some time after the Temple and Sanctuary was finished.

As for the impletetion, all are now agreed, that the beginning of these weeks is to be reckoned from some restoring, either of the Temple; and that in the second, third, or sixth year of the reign of some Darius; or of

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the City in the seventh or twentieth year of some Artaxerxes Kings of Persia. But it cannot be from Darius the first surnamed  Hystaspis; for then they would come out long before the birth of Christ. Nor from the first Artaxerxes surnamed Longimanus, for he was a hinderer of the work of the Temple, and forbad the building thereof, Ezra cap. verse 11 ad finem. Nor from the second Artaxerxes surnamed Mnemon:  for so they would far over-reach the destruction of Jerusalem. Therefore it remains that they be counted from Darius the second, surnamed Nothus; in the second year of whose reign the work of the Temple, after a long interruption, began to revive. Ezra 4:24, Haggai chapters 1 and 2, and Zachariah chapter 1 etc... and in the sixth year of his reign was finished, Ezra 6:15.

Secondly, these seventy weeks are the time allotted for the continuance of the Holy City, and therefore must they last, as long as it lasted, and the end with the end thereof: but this cannot be, unless we fix their Epocha in the beginning of Darius Nothus. Ergo.

Which in the event is most true. For from

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the third year of Darius Nothus, when the work of the Temple (by the incitement of Haggai and Zachary renewed the year before) was now confirmed by a new Edict from the King to be finished, unto the destruction of Jerusalem by Titus, are exactly 490 years, that is, seventy weeks of years fully complete.

In the Olympiadic system of years, (a system used by the ancients for whom year 1 is equivalent to our year 776 B.C.), Artaxerxes Longimanus died in the year 352 (424 B.C.). Xerxes reigned after him one year and died in the Olympiadic year 353 (423 B.C.).  Sogdianus followed Xerxes and reigned only seven months. This takes us to Darius Nothus who began to reign in the Olympiadic year 353 (423 B.C.). The third year of his (Darius Nothus) reign would then begin in the Olympiadic year 355 (421 B.C.).

In this third year of the King, and at the end of this Olympiadic year, in the beginning of August (as may be supposed) came

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forth the Edict of Darius, some ten months after Zerubbabel and Jeshua had begun to renew the work the year before, Haggai 1: 14, 15. And so much time (half thereof being winter) may well be allowed for their enemies, to hear of the work, to go see and do their best to hinder it, when they could not, to write and send unto the King, the searching of the Rolls, and obtaining a new Edict. And so, the edict being issued in the olympiadic year 356 (420 B.C.) and the destruction of Jerusalem by Titus being completed in the olympiadic year 846 (70 A.D.) gives us 490 years.

The account by years of Nabonassar ex Canone Ptolomai Astronomico, (The Greek astronomer Claudius Ptolemaeus used February 26, 747 B.C. as his year 1 for chronological calculations. This is when Nabonassar became King over Assyrian.) we have: The year of Nero’s death  was 815 by this calendar. The Desolation of Jerusalem occurred two years later in the year 817 Nabonassar.  The edict of Darius Nothus was given in 327 Nabonassar which also leaves us 490 years.

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Not withstanding all this, I had rather begin the Accompt from the sixth year of Darius, in the month Adar, when the Temple was quite finished (for then it first began to continue, and not till then) although the destruction of Jerusalem will then fall out three and a half sooner, namely, when the last week is but half run out. And what if it does? The Angel, as I conceive, tells us so much in the last verse, when he says, That in the midst of a week the Sacrifice and Oblation should cease, and the City be made desolate. But how will the prophecy be made good, if the seventieth week be not complete? I answer, it should be observed (though it useth not to be) that the Angel reckons not by single years, but by weeks. If he had said, there should be 490 years to the Excidium of Jerusalem, then indeed to make good the prediction, the

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City and Sanctuary must have been destroyed the last year. But when he says, there shall be seventy weeks allotted for the continuance of the Holy City, it is enough if it be made desolate in the seventieth week: For if those who reckon by years, when the year designed answers the event, will not stand upon the completeness of months and days; nor those who reckon anything by days, upon the completeness of hours and minutes: no more in the Angel’s reckoning here by weeks, if so the number of the weeks be complete, are the parts of a week to be exacted.

An. Olymp. 845 Mens. 6. August.

The time of the destruction of Jerusalem, as before —

An. Olymp. 359. Mens. 12. Feb or Adar.

If the third of Darius began about May or June, Anno Olymp. 355. then the sixth year of his reign begins in May or June, An. 358. But the latter part thereof in February or Adar, when the Temple was finished.

Distantia  Anni 486  Mens. 6.

That is just 69 weeks and a half.

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The Accompt by years of Nabonassar.

An. 817  Nabonass.  M. 6.

The time of the Destruction of Jerusalem, as before—

An. 331  Nabonass. M. 12.

If the third year of Darius Nothus, were for the first and greatest part concurrent with An. 327. Nab. as is afore shewed; then his sixth year (in like manner for the first and greatest part) must concur with An. 330. But the head of the Nabonassarean year, being then about the 5th of December the latter end of this sixth year in Adar or Feb will fall in An. 331  Nabonass. M. 12.

Distantia  Anni 486  Menses 6.

Verse 25

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.

From the going out of the commandment I take not the Epocha to be that of the whole seventy weeks, but a second root of another,

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and lesser period of time comprehended in them; whose beginning was to be after the seventy were begun, and the end before they should be ended. The root of this second computation is described to be a time when two things should be done: A commandment should go forth both to cause to return and also to build, not the Temple (for that should be done before) nor some few houses only, but the whole area or street and walls of Jerusalem, which should then be re-edified, though in a straight of times; that is, it should be such a time, when a commission to cause the people to return and re-inhabit, should be seconded with another, to build the wall of Jerusalem, and the Plot within the wall. For by  here, I understand properly that circuit bounding out the limits of the City, whereon the wall was built, and anciently used to be marked with a plough earing a furrow round about. By , which implies a broad place, I understand the area, or plot of ground within, whereon the houses were to be builded. From such an Epocha, and a commission

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thus characterized as ye have heard, must this second computation be reckoned.

        Unto Messiah the Prince, that is, unto , Luke 23:2, Mark 15:32, or , as the Angel styles him, Luke 2:11. There is no exposition, no interpretation of any passage in this prophecy could seem so harsh, but I would be content to admit it, rather than yield that by MESSIAH the PRINCE here named, should be meant any other than Christ our Lord and Redeemer. For I am persuaded that the Church of Israel in the Gospel (and from them the Apostles took it) had no other place of Scripture, whence they did or could ascribe the name of Christ and Messiah unto him they looked for, but only this of Daniel. For there is no other prophecy in all the Old Testament besides this, where that name is directly given him, but only by way of type.

        Shall be sevens of weeks even sixty-two weeks. The numeral word  I have here translated distributively, understanding by      Hebdomadae septenae, that is, many seven

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weeks, or as our English handsomely expresses, sevens of weeks: the sense to be as if the Angel had said, As the whole time limited for the continuance of the Holy City from the first beginning to the last ending, consists of many sevens of weeks, viz. seventy weeks: So from this after Epocha here mentioned unto MESSIAH, should be likewise sevens of weeks, (plures septenniorium hebdomads) even sixty-two weeks of years. For as in seventy are ten sevens of weeks; so in sixty-two are nine times seven wanting one, and that little want makes no matter, there being eight whole sevens besides in that number, and you shall see in that which follows, examples of the like. The Hebrews want those numbers which the grammarians call distributive or divisive, Terni, quaterni, quini, seni, septeni, &c. which they most what supply by repetition, as    septem septem, but not always, as may appear 2 Samuel 18:4. And all the people came out  ad centum & millia. i. centeni & milleni, by hundreds and by thousands. 1 Kings 18: 4 “Obadiah hid the Prophets of the Lord   quin quaginta

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viros in spelunca, id est, quinquagenos, by fifty in a cave Genesis 6: 19 Of all flesh thou shalt bring into the Ark   duo, i. bina, twos; and therefore afterward Genesis 7: 9 it is doubled     two and two: yet of clean beasts whereof he was to take seven, there is an odd one. To these I add Ezra 1: 9 &c. “This is the number of the vessels (to wit, of the House of the Lord which Cyrus by the hand of Mithredath numbered unto Sheshbazzar Prince of Judah) thirty Chargers of gold, a thousand Chargers of silver, twenty-nine knives: thirty basins of gold: silver basins of a second sort, four hundred and ten, and other vessels (not mille, a thousand, but millena (Tremel. per millia) thousands, to wit, almost three thousand wanting but one hundred. Otherwise if we translate it as a cardinal number (a thousand) the sum will far exceed the parts. For it follows in the next words, “All the vessels of gold and silver were 5400.” But unless the last number be taken divisive, the particulars make but 2499. Nor do I see how this difficulty would otherwise be solved.

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        Now whether these examples be sufficient to make probable the translation which I have given, I will not affirm; let others judge. I propound it to the consideration of the learned, who can do it, without whose approbation I shall not satisfy myself. Yet this much I am sure of; that if this   which we are want to translate seven weeks, could be well bestowed, the cheifest difficulty were taken from this prophecy. For the threescore and two weeks alone counted from the Epocha here named, so well befits the distance from thence to Christ, that the event seems to argue, that they should be there fixed, and not reckoned from any other beginning.

        Moreover that    should be a general expression of what in the sixty-two weeks is after more particularly determined, may seem probable for these reasons. 1. Because the Angel ascribes no proper event unto them; but having presently named the sixty-two weeks, makes no farther reckoning of those other, but follows and dwells upon these only, as though the other were implied and contained

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in them. 2. Those who count them for forty-nine years, and continue the sixty-two weeks from the end of them to make up sixty-nine weeks in all, can give no sufficient reason why they should be thus separated and divided asunder. For that which the followers of Funccius, (who reckoned from Artaxerxes Longiman.) assign to be done in seven weeks of years (to wit, that during all that time Jerusalem with the rest of the cities of Judah were building and repairing) is grounded neither upon scripture, nor other story, but pure and mere conjecture. Scaliger finds (Nehemiah 13: 6) that Nehemiah returned again to Artaxerxes his court, in the 32nd year of his reign, and thence supposeth that the building of the City, about which he was sent, was finished but the year before, and that to be the determination of those seven weeks; there being then forty-nine years expired from the time the seventy began at the building of the Temple under Darius Nothus. But to make this good, he is fain to raise the Epocha of the seventy so high in the reign of Darius, that they end before the destruction of Jerusalem.

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Besides, he seems not to be aware, that these seven weeks are by the text to be counted from a time, when a commission came out to cause to return and to build Jerusalem, and not from the time of building the Temple. Nor does it follow, Nehemiah stayed so long there, therefore the City was till then in building: Nay, what if the text rightly construed, imports not that Nehemiah in the 32nd year of Artaxerxes returned to the court; but rather that obtaining new leave of the King, he came then to Jerusalem the second time, whence he had been long absent? For the particle  chapter 13 verse 6 seems not to be taken rationally for Quia but discretively for  id est, [Sed, But] as Ezra 4:3, 2 Samuel 16:18, Genesis 4:8, and so that text of Nehemiah to be read after this sense, And in all this time (saith he) I was not there; But in the 32nd year of Artaxerxes, &c. I came to the King, that is, into his presence, to ask new leave; which after a little waiting he obtained. Nor is it very credible, that the time he first set the King, chapter 2 verse 6, should be twelve years.

 

If therefore    be granted to be a

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general expression of what the sixty-two week more particularly determine, the way whereby it may be translated to such a sense is as I have before represented: yet is it not the only one; I can add two ways more: as first this,  seven useth, we know, to be taken indefinitely for plurimi, multoties, &c. Thus   would without any anomaly or novelty at all, signify indefinitely many weeks if it might seem probable, that in a passage of reckoning by definite numbers, some numeral word may be taken indefinitely. The sense would be all one with that I have followed. viz. As the whole time limited for the continuance of the Holy City consisted of many weeks, even seventy weeks: So also this lesser period contained therein, from the Epocha mentioned unto MESSIAH, shall be a time of many weeks, even sixty-two weeks. Another way, were it not somewhat harsh, might be this. The Hebrew Nouns of Cardinal numbers do sometimes substantivare, signifying their numbers in abstracto, like those Greek numerals, Monas, Dyas, Trias, Tetras, Hebdomas. So

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Genesis 7: 10, 8:12, we have  Exodus 34:29 , Genesis 17:12   Joshua 14:2 . If they be substantives in statu constructo, were they not, or may they not be so in absoluto? In Daniel 3: 29   in absoluto, seems to be a substantive having an adjective joined with it, , which we translate one seven times. If this therefore may be admitted,    in our text of Daniel will sound per Ellipsin conjunctiois Hebdomades Hebddomas, Weeks and a week, the sense being all one with the former, saving that one week is implied as singular from the rest, whish may be that which the Angel afterward mentions verse 27. If it were pointed   , as by consonant it might be, there would be no great question but it might be tranlated weeks and a week.

 

        But if    , must need import some limiter time of 49 years; I would rather choose to count the sixty-two weeks from the

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same Epocha with them under Artaxerxes Mnemon, then from the end of them, and yet leave as probable a conjecture to be made of what was done in them, as those who follow Funccius from the other Artaxerxes, do use to give.

 

        I have sometimes considered, whether, if it be translated seven weeks, those seven weeks might not be applied as rotundus monerus to those fifty and two days, Nehemiah 6:15, where it is said, “So the wall was finished in the 25th day of the month of Elul in fifty two days;” somewhat more indeed then seven weeks, yet short of seven and a half and so not regarded in accompt by weeks. If this could be, then the reason of the Angel’s division of weeks into seven and sixty-two would be because of divers kinds of weeks understood; the first of days, whereing the Wall of Jerusalem should be finished: the second of years, from thence unto the Messiah. If it seems impossible or unlikely that the Wall of the City should be repaired in so short a time, and therefore those words, (according to Junius) to be meant of setting up the doors and bars only: I could say first, that

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the Wall was not new builded from the foundations, but repaired upon the old ruins. Secondly, the speedy dispatch thereof was taken for a wonder, even by the Jew’s enemies, who thereupon (saith the text) “perceived it was the hand of their God:” So that, were there no worse scruple than this, it were easily answered; nor would examples be wanting to parallel with it, such as might make it seem at least possible. As that strange and speedy building of the walls of Athens by Themistocles, after that Xerxes had demolished them, reported by Diodor. Sic. lib. 11. Yea, to come more near to the thing in question, Josephus lib. 6. c. 13. De Bell. Jud. tells us, that Titus, dividing the work amongst his army, begirt Jerusalem in three days space, wih a wall of thiry-nine furlongs, and thirteen bulwarks to hinder the Jews’ excursions from within, and all relief from without. What the materials were, I know not, but he says it was a thing beyond all belief, and might have seemed to be a work of some months. But leaving this digression, let

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us see the computation and impletion of our sixty-two weeks.

The Computation and impletion of the

sixty-two weeks

From the seventh year of Artaxerxes Mnemon, when Ezra had commission to cause to return and carry with him, as many of the Jews as would to Jerusalem, Ezra 7:7, 13. And from the twentieth year of the same Artaxerxes, when Nehemiah obtained leave to build Jerusalem the City of his fathers Sepulchres, Nehemiah 2. From both these commisions, though thirteen years distant the one from the other, are by divine disposition unto MESIAH the PRINCE sixty-two weeks, from the first of Solar, from the latter, of Lunar years. For sixty-two weeks, or 434 Lunar years, are less than so many solar, as much as is between the seventh, and twentieth of Atraxerxes: which admirable concordance I cannot impute to chance; but ascribe to

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divine providence, so ordering it of purpose, that these two Epochas and Commisions, To cause to return, and, To build Jerusalem, might be as one and the same. And as the Lunar year is contained within the Solar, and by it ordered and directed; so is the period here from Nehemiah’s commision to build the city, contained and reduced to that from Ezra’s commission to cause the people to return.

 

        In the last of these weeks according to prediction was Christ our Lord annointed. In the begining whereof exactly, between the first and second passover after his baptism, (when his Harbinger John had now finished his message, and was cast in prison, a time precisely and purposely noted in the evangelical story) he first began to preach in Galilee the Gospel of the Kingdom, ordained his Apostles, and proclaimed himself to be the MESSIAH. “After John was put in prison, saith Mark 1:14, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, and saying, The time is fulfilled, (i. the

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last week of the sixty-two weeks is come) and the kingdom of God is at hand.”  From “that time (saith Matthew 4:17) Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand.” This was that day whereof Christ himself said at Nazareth, that that scripture was fulfilled: The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the Gospel to the poor, &c. and to preach the acceptable year of the Lord, Luke 4. This the time and place whence St. Peter reckoned the begining of Christ’s prophecy in his sermon to Cornelius: That word, (saith he), which was published throughout all Judea, and began from Galilee after the Baptism which John preached, &c. Act 10:37.

 

        In the third year of this week (two years and a half after he began his prophecy, and three years and a half after his baptism) being made our Priest, he offered himself upon the Cross a sacrifice for sin, was dead, buried, and rose again: Then ascended up into heaven to be installed, and to sit at the right hand of God from thenceforth to reign until he hath put all

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his enemies under his feet. But you will say, This was all performed four years before the 434 years (which is sixty-two weeks of years) were expired: I answer as before: The Angel reckons not by single years, but by weeks, the last whereof should be Messiah’s week, as we have shown it to have been. If the Angel had said, There shall be 434 years unto Messiah, then to make good the prediction Messiah must have been anointed the last year. But when he says, There shall be sixty-two weeks unto Messiah; it is sufficient he was anointed the last week. But how this week will at length be complete, we shall see in the next verse. But first let us demonstrate our computation.

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Ezra’s Commission

An. Olymp. 372 finiente.

Darius Nothus died (saith Diodor. lib. 13.) in the same year, but a little while after the Composition of the Peloponesian war, (which was in May) Olymp. 93.4. that is Olymp. 372.

Ergo,

Anno Olymp. 373.

The first of Artaxerxes begins about August, and concurs with Anno Olymp. 373.

Anno Olymp. 379.

The seventh of Artaxerxes with Olymp. 379.

 

N.B. If Artaxerxes had begun before August, the number or date of his reign must have altered either in or between the first and fifth month, but they are both of one year, Ezra 7. as also the first and the ninth, Nehemiah chapters 1 and 2.

 

Christ’s Prophecy.

Christ our Lord was Baptized Ano Olypiadico 805. ineunte, about the Feast of Expiations, in the seventh month Tishri, six months after John began to baptize, and in that year

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natural and political, which began in the 15th of Tiberius towards ending, but was the 16th when he was baptized. For John, I suppose, began to preach and baptize in the first month of Nisan, (when the Summer was before him, and not when the Winter was to enter) in the 15th year of Tiberius which ended August following. Now John’s imprisonment was a year after the baptism of Christ, namely, between the first and second Passover after it, as is clear and evident by the evangellical story, John 2: 23, 3: 22 and chapter 4. The begining therefore of Christ’s prophecy, which began at the imprisonment of John, Mark 1:14 was Olympiad. 806 about the end (I suppose) of the same month Tishri, or September.

 

The begining of Christ’s Prophecy: An. Olymp. 806 Month 7.

The time of Ezra’s Commision:  An. Olymp. 379 Month 7.

Differentia   An  472 M.O. 61 week complete.

        From hence month 7 begins the last week: wherefore the Passion of Christ, at the Passover, month firmly fixed by chronological

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characters in the 19th of Tiberius, Anno Olymp. 808 Æræ Christian 33 (that is agreeable to the received Tradition but three and a half years after his baptism) will fall to be in the third year of the week; which is wholy to be complete, Ann. Æræ Christian 37 when when the 813th Anno. Olymp. shall be begun and current in September.

Verse 26.

And after the threescore and two weeks shall MESSIAH be cut off, and [they] none of his: Wherefore the Prince’s people to come shall destroy the City, and the Sanctuary, and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of War desolations are determined.

        And after the threescore and two weeks shall, &c. That is, when the Threescore and two weeks aforesaid shall expire, and be fully complete, (for so the word [after] supposes they must be) MESSIAH shall be cut off, not only from the living, by the death he should suffer upon the cross (for that was a little before) but from being any longer the

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Ming and Priest of that People, they refusing him to be theirs, and he casting off them from being His, which is the meaning of the words following , And they none of his: For  is to be understood, that so the conjunction Vau may couple similia tempora, , And they shall be none of His. And for the verb  , that it signifies not only a cutting off from life, but also from reigning as a King, or from being a Priest; See for the first I Kings 2: 4, 9:5, II Chronicles 7: 16, Jeremiah 33:17  “There shall not be cut off to David a man to sit upon the throne of the House of Israel:” All which have reference to II Samuel 7: 16. For the second, cutting off from the priesthood, I Samuel 2:33 to Eli, “And the man of thine whom I shall not cut off from mine altar” Jeremiah 33: 18 “Neither of the Priests, the Levites    shall a man be cut off before me, to offer burnt offering, &c. and to do Sacrifice continually.”

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The Computation and Impletion.

        From the seventh year of Artaxerxes Mnemon, at the time of the commission granted to Ezra, (Anno Olympiadico 379 as is already shown) unto the fourth year after Christ’s Ascension (Anno Olymp. 813 Æræ Christianæ Dionyfiacæ 37.) are 62 weeks of years, or 434 years fully complete and expired. The next year after, was Christ divorced and cut off from the Jews, and they  cast off from being his people; which may appear thus:

Anno Æræ Chiristian. 33.

Christ suffered upon the cross, rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven. The Holy Ghost descended at Pentecost, 300 converted, more added; the Apostles forbidden, but cease not to preach Jesus Christ. So this year ends about September.

Anno Æræ Chiristian. 34.

The number of Disciples much increased: Deacons chosen, and Steven one of them, Acts 6: 1,2,3,&c.

 

*I begin and end these years in Tishri, or September. that so they may agree with that time of the commission granted to Ezra, which I before supposed to have been about that month.

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Anno Æræ Chiristian. 35.

Steven doth great wonders and miracles. The word of God, and the number of Disciples inceaseth so, that a great company of the Priests were obedient unto the Faith. The Elders and people rage, and about the end of the year was Steven martyred, Acts 6: 7-11, 7:1 ad finem.

Anno Æræ Chiristian. 36.

Great persecution against the Church at Jerusalem. Saul makes havok, Acts 8, whereupon the Disciples were scattered through the regions of Judea and Samaria, everywhere preaching the Gospel, ver. 4, 5. Of whose success the Apostles being informed, send Peter and John to Samaria, to lay hands on the new converts, ver. 14. which done, and by the way preaching the Gospel in the villages of Samaria, they return again to Jerusalem. ibid.

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Anno Æræ Chiristian. 37.

Those which were scattered upon the persecution of Steven,, proceed further, and travelled as far as Poenicia, Cyprus and Antioch (having by the way preached the Gospel to the Jews at Damascus, how came they there else?) Chapter 11. Which Saul hearing of, gets letters thither, to bring those he should find there of that way unto Jerusalem. But in his journey himself was miraculously converted and baptized, &c. Peter in the mean time was gone again from Jerusalem by Lydda unto Jopa, where he remained all this year at the house of Simon the Tanner.

        The next year after (Anno Æræ Chiristian. 38. Anno Olympiadico 813) according as was foretold, That after threescore and two weeks were ended, MESSIAH should be cut off, and they none of his) when Christ had now one whole week of years tendered himself unto his own people, and they not only refused

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him, but first by crucifying the Lord himself, and after that by persecuting his messengers sent unto them, had made themselves unwothy of everlasting life: Peter was taught by vision, that the Gospel of the Kingdom should be preached unto the Gentiles, and accordingly sent to preach it to Cornelius a centurion of the Italian Band, Acts 10. And here begins the Epocha of the rejection of Israel, and the calling of the Gentiles, which St. Paul speaks so much of Romans 11.

        True it is, the cutting off of Christ by death was before the last week was complete; but the cutting him off from being King and Priest of the Jews was not until after it was ended. Or if this cutting off here mentioned may not be extended to any other cutting off then by Death; yet the other part of the copulative sense,  [And they shall be none of His] was not fulfilled until the whole week was ended.

        Wherefore the PRINCE’S to come, &c.  , Populus MESSIÆ venturus, i. futurus. The People that should be the people of Messiah the Prince, when Israel was

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rejected; so the Hebrews call seculum futurum, ; whence Mark 10: 13, Luke 18: 30,  Ephesians 2:7   According to which notion, Apoc. 1:4  Vid. Psalm 71:18, Isaiah 27:6, 44:7,   Vulgat. ventura & quæ futura sunt. Thus I construe the Text, and understand by Populus principis futurus, the people of the Roman Empire, where Christ was to principally have his Church and Kingdom, whilst Israel should be rejected. Cornelius therefore the first Gentile converted was a Roman Centurion. St. Paul, who is called the Apostle of the Gentiles, went not beyond the bounds of the Empire. This was that  whereof Christ said, Matthew 24 That before the Destruction of Jerusalem, the Gospel should be preached , as Augustus is said Luke 2: 1 to have taxed, , according as the Romans themselves used to call it Imperium Orbis Terrarum, &c. Antichrist, who was to sit in the Temple or Church of Christ, sits in the midst of this Empire: whence it appears, that the Church, which Christ should have, after (whilst) Israel disclaimed

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him, should chiefly be in it. This People therefore, which was in Israel’s stead to be the People of Messiah the Prince, should destroy the City and Sanctuary with such a Destruction as should like a flood overwhelm the whole Nation, and as an irresistable torrent, break down and wash all away before it. All which we know they did.

        And unto the end of War Desolations are determined That is, until the end of the fourth kingdom of the Gentiles, whose last period is that Time times and half a Time, whereof it is said Daniel 7: 21, 22, 25 “That Antichrist the eyed and mouthed Horn should make war with the Saints, and prevail against them, and they shall be given into his hand until a Time and Times and half a Time:” Until the end of this war the Jewish Desolations are determined. But of this more next.

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Verse 27

        Nevertheless he shall confirm a covenant with many one week: and in half a week, being * a desolation he shall cause the sacrifice and oblation to cease, and that being over a wing of abominations, and until the gfinal time, (even that which is determined) it shall continue upon the desolate.

        Here the Angel tells us what should be done in the last week, both of the first computation, and of the second, that is, the last of the seventy and the last of the 62. And of this first, as coming first in time.

        Nevertheless (saith he) he shall confirm a covenant with many one week. That is, thought the body of the Jewish Nation should be cast off, end be , none of the people of the MESSIAH, yet for one whole week he should offer himself unto them, and gather many of them into the covenant of the Gospel: and this week was the last week of the threescore and two weeks, which, as I shewed before, was wholy spent in preaching

* Or, making desolation, he &c.

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to those of the Circumcision. This therefore is, as it were, a prolepsis, lest Daiel might think that none of his people should enter into the covenant under Messiah. These Many therefore are the remnant whereof St. Paul speaks Roomans 11. “That though Israel were cast off, yet was there a remnant according to the election of grace;” and therefore he limits the hardness happened to Israel, by , as not being universal.

        And in half a week, being a desolator, he shall cause the sacrifice and offering to cease. A Desolator,  , a word which otherwise much troubleth the Translator; but being thus made a suppositum or Nominative case to the verb  , (which hath no other near it) it both much clears the sense, and retains its propriety of signification. Nor is the postposition of the Nominative case to the verb against the use of the tongue; nor the trajection here so great, but the Latin will admit the same order of the words, viz. Et abolebit sacrificium & munus, at que erit super alam abominationum Desolator: Or, Et abolebit sacrificium, & munus, qui erit super alam abominationum, Desolator.

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Howsoever the translation be, this week the Angel now speaks of, is the last of the seventy which should be but half run out, when the Temple and City should be destroyed, and the legal service made to cease. For if we reckon (as I think we should) the seventy weeks from the sixth of Darius Nothus (when the Temple was finished) the destruction thereof by Titus will fall out (as is shewed) in the midst of the last week, the whole half thereof, from the begining till then, having been spent in warlike preparations and exploits, which ended with the burning and desolation both of City and Sanctuary.

 

        Of those  who end the seventieth week completely with the destruction of Jerusalem, some seem so to understand this first part of the verse, as if the one week here mentioned were the last of the seventy, and the confirmation of the covenant to be therein, to respect only the first half thereof, wherein Christ made good his covenant of preservation to the believing Jews, namely, (as I would explain it) by sending Cestius Gallus President of Syria, in the middle or fourth

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year of the last week, about seven days to environ Jerusalem with an army, for to be that sign and watch word mentioned in the Gospel of the near approaching Desolation thereof, Luke 21: 20 that so those which were in Judea being warned, might flee into the mountains (of Arabia Petræa to Pella) and deliver themselves from those days of vengeance and wrath upon their people. And in the other half of the week which remained, he should cause the sacrifice and offering to cease by sending Vespasian with that second and fatal army which should bring those woeful and vengefull desolations upon them.

        As for the phrase of confirming a covenant (if the rest suited well) it would be no straining to interpret it, to be meant of preservation and exeption from a common calamity: For we have the like speech Genesis 6: 17, 18 where God having said to Noah, that he would destroy by the flood everything that breathed upon the earth; addeth, But with thee will I establish my covenant, and thou shalt come into the ark, thou and thy sons, and thy wife, and thy

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sons wives with thee, &c. Thus much of the week and half week: But for the Desolator who should cause the sacrifice and oblation to cease, whether and how it may be applied to Messiah himself, or otherwise construed, we shall better understand when the next is expounded.

        And that [being] over a wing of Abominations  I think literally rendered, as was the former. If any man would also have the order of the words precisely kept, and therefore , i. Desolator to keep his station here, as in the Henrew, he may render the words thus, He shall cause the sacrifice and oblation to cease, , And [commanding] over a wing of abominations [be] a desolator or make desolation; The sense is yet the same: Or thus, And over a wing of abominations [shall he be] who makes desolation: All of them requiring nothing else, but that so common ellipsis of the verb substantive, which in some expressions of this language is perpetual. Now for the construing and expounding this and the rest which remains of this verse, I have always in mine eye that part

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of the prophecy of our saviour in the Gospel, Matthew 24, Mark 13, where he so expressly refers to this of Daniel, with wn unwonted caveat not to pass it over slightly, Let him (saith he) that readeth, understand: which admonition, as it implies the special need we have of our saviour’s key to unlock it; so it may seem to intimate that neither the seventy before, nor the ordinary construction of their Rabbis then, had hit the meaning of this scripture. Wherefore St. Luke relates not here (as Matthew and Mark do) our Saviour’s words verbatum, but exegetically, of set purpose (so I am persuaded) expounding this place of Daniel, as will appear by that which follows.

        Over a wing of abominations Thatis, an army of idolatrous Gentiles. Even the self same which St. Luke saith Chapter 21 Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles; who also expoundeth wings by armies, putting instead of those words of our saviour, “When ye shall see the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place” these, “When ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies; and in both it follows, then let them

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which be in Judea flee into the mountains. The word  wing is of the verb  (but once found in the Hebrew scripture) which signifies according to the Chaldee and Arabi, to gather together: besides, in the Arabic, circundare, to environ or compass about; both significations suit well to an army, and the latter, that which beleagers and begirts a city or fort besieged. Had St. Luke any reference to this, when he speaks of Jerusalem compassed with an army? The metaphor also of a wing leans most this way, whether we consider their figure and motion being stretched out, or their posture when birds of rapine sit couring over their prey. I will not say, the Roman eagle was here aimed at, though   is used, not only for Ala, a wing, but for Alatum & Volatile, a fowl or winged creature. It is sufficient that neither the nature nor name of a wing is strang or unaccustomed to an army. But how (will you say) will an army of abominations be made an army of Gentiles? I answer, The scripture in many places calleth Idols by the name of abominations, that

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is,  : So the Egyptian idols, Exodus 8: 26 &c. are called, the abomination of the Egyptians. Ezekiel 7:20. The Jews are said to have made the images of their abominations, , (Jeremiah 7:20 to have set up  ) that is, their idols in the house of the Lord. So II Kings 23 Ashtaroth is called , the abomination of the Sidonians, Cemosh  the abomination of the Moabites; but Malcom  , the abomination of the children of Ammon. Wherefore I Kings 11: 5,7   is by the seventy thrice translated   .

        This being a thing manifest, we are to observe further, that the scripture useth also to express and imply under the names of the gods, the nations themselves which worshipped them. The Lord threatened to “scatter Israel among the nations, and that there they should serve other gods day and night, gods, the works of men’s hands, wood and stone, and whch neither they nor their fathers had known: That is, they should serve them not religiously, but politically, in as much as they were to become slaves and vassals to idolatrous nations,

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even such idolaters, as neither they nor their fathers had ever heard of. Let it also be considered whether that of David, I Samuel 26: 19 be not to be expounded after the same Trope: “They have (saith he) driven me out this day from abiding in the inheritance of the Lord, saying, Go serve other Gods; i. they have driven me to serve a nation of another religion. Yea, Ezra 9: 14 fitly to our purpose, The strangers with whom the people of Israel had contracted affinity, are called expressly  , the people of abominations, which the Seventy render   the people of the lands, that is, the Gentiles. And where we read in the first verse, “The people of Israel, &c. have not seperated themselves from the people of the lands according to their abominations, &c. It is the same phrase with that of Moses, Cattle after their kind, creeping things after their kind: That is, the several kinds of cattle and of creeping things: so the people of the lands according to their abominations is, the several kinds of idolaters of the lands about them. And thus we have shewed, that  , the wing of abominations, is as much  ,

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an army of the people of abominations, that is, of Gentiles and worshippers of idols.

        But who is this Desolator, or Maker of Desolations, who should command over this Wing of Abominations, and bring these Gentiles against the Holy City? The words in the original stand indifferent to be applied either to be applied to the Roman General, or Messiah; but I could not render them so indifferently: For if I render them, And in half a week a desolator shall cause the sacrifice and offering to cease, and that (being) over a wing of abominations, or, Over a wing of abominations (shall he be) who makes desolate; This Desolater would then seem to be some other than Messiah, that is the Roman General: But render them as I do, And making desolation, or being a desolater, He shall cause the sacrifice and offering to cease, and [commanding] over a wing of abominations, be a desolator: either way of these, they will have reference to MESSIAH the Prince, who is the person meant in the words immediately before, [He

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shall confirm a covenant with many one week.] And this I most incline to, that so the person spoken of may be the same throughout, and a reason also appear of that additament, that this desolater should be over an army of abominations: For if a foreign General were only meant, what needed this addition? what other army could such a one lead, but Gentiles? But that Messiah himself should command over an army of idolater, this needed a special intimation.

        And surely the Roman Army, though an army of abominations, was in this service the Army of Messiah: So the parable aiming at this prophecy tells us Matthew 22: 7. When the King heard how spitefully they entreated his messengers who came to tell them, the Wedding whereunto they had been bidden, was ready: “He was wroth (saith the Text) and sent forth his armies and destroyed those murderers, and burnt up their city. Whence it is, that the coming of this desolating army of the Romans is called the coming of Christ, James 5. “Weep and howl ye rich men (he writeth to Jews) for the miseries that shall

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come upon you; for you have heaped up goods for the last days; That is, (according to Oecumenius) when the end of your State is a coming and the Romans shall spoil you of all: which is expressed in the eighth verse by Christ’s comming; “Be ye patient (saith he) until the coming of the Lord, (he speaks to the believing Jews whom the rest persecuted) and in the next, “Stablish your hearts for the coming of the Lord draweth nigh; He meaneth (saith Oecumenius) . So he takes that of John, “If I will that he stay till I come, that is (saith he)  , till the destruction of Jerusalem. And proves that this coming of Christ is  Excidium Hierosolymorum, by that of Malachi Chapter 3. “Behold, the Lord shall come, and who shall abide the day of his coming?” And thus would I understand that Hebrews 10:37. “For yet a little while and He that shall come will come, and will not tarry.” Messiah therefore himself seems to be that Desolator here meant, who should command over an army of abominations, when he came to destroy

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the City and Sanctuary.

        Thus it appears our Saviour’s citation in the Gospel is not of the very words of Daniel in this passage, but of the sense only summarily expressed; and that  , is to be expounded  ,  , The Abomination, or Abominable Army, over which he should be, who should make desolation. As for the Seventy, or whosoever else (for S. Hierome doubts) translated this book, if their translation here were originally as we now have it, and not translated thither out of our Saviour’s words in the Gospel, they seem to have accommodated the place, though of unlike construction and circumstance of sense, unto two other places, Chapter 11:31, Chapter 12:11 where some such kind of abomination is mentioned, and likewise the participles,  : But in all three of them, not well understanding what subject these participles included, they contented themselves only to express by  , or , a general relation of desolation in the abstract, which might be diversly interpretable,

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otherwise it is not possible by any alteration of the points to express their translation verbatum out of this place, unless   were in statu constructo, as it is not.

        And until the final time (even that which is determined) it shall continueupon the desolate” Here I have chosen to translate the verb   continue, as the Targum renders it, Jer. 7: 19 & 42: 18 and the Vulgar here perseverabit, as a metaphorical signification taken from a continued pouring of water. It is the Feminine Gender, and therefore to be rendered to a Feminine suppositum, which I take to be   Ala: This wing of abominations, that is metonymuce the Desolation wrought by it, or foreign possession brought in by it, should continue upon the desolate, until the final time which was determined should be accomplished. Or those Gentile people of the Roman Empire, by whom Jerusalem was destroyed, should continue their dominion and possession either of the place or desolate inhabitants once thereof, until that final time be accomplished. Whether this or that suits best; the

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meaning in St. Luke’s language is thus expressed, “The Jews shall be carried captive over all nations, and Jerusalem trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled: That is, (as was said before) until the Monarchies of the Gentiles should be finished. For these times of the Gentiles are that last period of the fourth kingdom prophecied of “a time times and half a time (Daniel 7).” at the end whereof the Angel swears unto Daniel Chapter 12: 7, “That God should accomplish to scatter the power of the holy people.” This is that fullness of the Gentiles, which being come, St. Paul tells us, “The Deliverer shall come out of Zion, and all Israel shall be saved.” And the Angel in the Apocalypse 10:6 renews the same oath to St. John, which he swear before to Daniel, “That when these times (N.B.) should end and be no longer, the mystery of God should be finished, as he had declared to his servants the prophets.” Amen.

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Appendix

        Although I think, that preciseness of days is not to be much stood upon, when the events and their times do in the whole answer to prediction: yet have I been so curious as to enquire, whether the desolation of City and Sanctuary (to be in the middle of the seventieth week) were fulfilled to a very day or not? And as I think, I have so found it, very near, if not altogether.

        For Anno Judaico 3344 Æræ mundi Scaligerianæ 3533. (the year the Temple was finished) Neomenia Tisri, according to the Jews’ calender, fell upon th 9th of September Calendarii Juliani, Feria 1. Cyclo Solis 12. Litera Dominic. G.

        Ergo Neomenia Adar was Febr. 4. Fer. 2. Cyclo Solis 13. Lit. Dominic. f. So the 3rd of Adar (the day whereupon the Temple was finished Ez. 6:15) will be on the 6th of February. From whence to the 8th of August, (whereon the Temple was fired, and two days after consumed) are exclusive 182 days, that is, half a year ad unguem.

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        But this calender year (according to the Judiacal Calender) was Annus Embolimeus, and so had two Adars; which of them the scripture meaneth is doubtful. But the Neomenia of the second Adar was March 5th Feria 4. So the 3rd day of this Adar was the 7th of March. From whence to the 8th of September (the day whereupon the City was fired) are exclusive 184 days, which is a day or two too much. But it is more than probable that the Jewish Calender was not in Darius his time so exact, nor the Moon’s motion so well known, but the New Moon might sometimes anticipate the begining of their months a day or two.

        Howsoever those who begin their reckoning from the 2nd year of Darius, as Scaliger doth, cannot from the 24th day of the 6th month (September 16th) (which the Prophet Haggai names {chapt. 1. v.ult.} for the day whereon the work began) show their complete seventy weeks so exactly terminated upon any event remarkable during the whole time of the war. For as for the destruction of Jerusalem itself, they come not near by whole years.

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Of the opinion of Funcius.

        Funcius his computation of the seventy weeks from the seventh of Artaxerxes Longimanus (whence to Christ’s Passion he finds just 490 years) hath three great and unavoidable inconvieniences.

        1. That it ends the 70 weeks (which by the text were allotted for the Holy City) long before the times of the Holy City were fulfilled.

        2. That this Artaxerxes might not be Artaxerxes the Hinderer of the building of the Temple, but that second Artaxerxes that gave commission to Ezra and Nehemiah, they are fain to bestow the names of Ahauerius and Artaxerxes mentioned Ezra 4 upon Cambyses and the counterfeit Tanioxarces or Smerdis (whom others call Sphendates) the Magus, without any ground in scripture or prophane history; nay, against probability. For if Ahazuerus be Cambyses (as by ored he should be) and Artaxerxes be Smerdis the Magus, how will that business in the days of Artaxerxes, Ezra 4: 7 befit the seven months reign of Smerdis? Or preposerously (as some will have it) Ahasuerus be

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that Smerdis, what needed the Holy Ghost so precisely to mention the begining of his reign, if he reigned but seven months in all? Secondly, neither Cambyses nor Smerdis can be Ahasuerus: For Ahasuerus, Esther 3: 7 (and why should we feign any other Ahasuerus of Persia than the scripture describeth, and so diligently distinguishes from Ahasuerus the Mede, as if there had been then no other? Esth 1:1) reigned atleast twelve years, whereas Cambyses reigned but seven years, and Smerdis but so many months.

        3. They cannot show how 69 weeks, or 62 weeks added to 7 weeks, (for they have no other way) are determined upon Messiah the Prince; since they outreach his nativity, and end seven years before his passion (which was in the 19) and therefore three years atleast before John’s Baptism, which was in the 15th of Tiberius. Wherefore neither begining nor ending, neither part nor whole of the sixtieth and ninth week can point us out any time of the manifestation of Messiah.

 

FINIS.