Seventy weeks (Dan 9:24-9:24)

“‘Seventy weeks

Are decreed

For your people,

For your holy city,

To finish the transgression,

To put an end

To sin,

To atone

For iniquity,

To bring in

Everlasting righteousness,

To seal both vision,

As well as prophet,

To anoint

A most holy place.’”

Thus, we have the prophetic statement of Gabriel. The terminology here is weeks and not years. Jeremiah had used 70 years. 7 was generally a complete or perfect number. Therefore, the popular terminology developed about lucky 7. During these 70 weeks or 70 years, they would make up for all the transgressions of the people and the holy city. Does 70 weeks imply 70 years times a week of 7, or 490 years? This time would atone for their sins and their iniquities. This would then bring about an everlasting righteousness, sealing both the vision and the prophet. Thus, they could anoint this holy place at the end of this period.

Seventy years of desolation (Dan 9:2-9:2)

“In the first year

Of his reign,




In the books,

According to the word

Of Yahweh

To Jeremiah,

The prophet,

The number of years,

That must be fulfilled

For the devastation

Of Jerusalem,


Seventy years.”

This chronology would put this event at about 538 BCE, right near the beginning of the Persian or Mede rule. Daniel, using the first-person singular, seemed to be familiar with the prophet Jeremiah, chapters 25 and 29, although they were almost contemporaries. Thus, 70 years of desolation was coming to Jerusalem from 587-517 BCE.