Kevin Heckle (13 Aug 2011)
"Paul Wilson-RE: 360 Day Prophetic Year Question"

Paul Wilson-RE: 360 Day Prophetic Year Question
It would seem to me that if the 360 day ‘prophetic year’ were a Biblical standard, it would have predicted some historical events recorded in the Bible.  Certainly, the correlation with two descriptions, as recorded in Revelation 12, equates 1260 days to a ‘time, times and a half’.  Therefore a ‘time’ would be 360 days if a time is intended to refer to the year. 
I believe the term ‘prophetic year’ was coined by Sir Robert Anderson as he calculated the 69 weeks of Daniel, the decree to rebuild Jerusalem and the Temple until the Messiah, to be 483 ‘prophetic years’ based on 360 day years.  He claimed the decree occurred in 445 BC and then 69 x 7 x 360 days later, Jesus had his triumphal entry into Jerusalem just days before the Crucifixion which Anderson claimed occurred in 32 AD.  His calculations and dating have been found by many scholars to be in error for various reasons.  However, the 360 day ‘prophetic year’ stuck in the Christian vernacular.  The erroneous accounting of Daniel’s prophecy has been repeated as gospel for so long that it is often cited in pulpits as an artifact of our faith.  While Sir Anderson may have been proven incorrect dating both the decree and the Crucifixion (based on the 360 day year) his method recognizing the ‘weeks’ of Daniel equated to ‘sevens’ of years was brilliantly inspired and I believe absolutely correct.  The 360 day year though was in error, an effort trying to make the prophecy fit the history. 
The 360 day year was an ancient and crude method of reckoning of the movement of the sun.  Some speculate that the year length before the Deluge was 360 days and became 365.24 days after.  There is no Biblical basis for this assertion and there would absolutely be no way to prove it scientifically. The simplest explanation for the ancients reckoning a 360 days year was their method of measurement.  If you hold your finger at arm length to the sky, it is approximately 1 degree in width.  The sun will appear to move against the background stars (early in the morning) 1 degree per day (360 / 365.2421896=.985647 degrees).  The more obvious method of calculating dates by the ancients was the lunar cycle.  The average between the solar year and the lunar year (354.367 days) is very nearly 360 at 359.8046 days.  The difference between the duration from ‘morning star’ rising to rising (583.9202 days) and the orbital period of the morning star (Venus) 224.695 days is also close to 360 (359.22 days).  The 360 day year by the ancients though, has roots in the Sumerian mathematical system.  The sexagesimal (base 60) system was among the first mathematical systems devised some 3000 years before Christ.  Our clock of 60 seconds = 1 minute, 60 minutes = 1 hour has its origins in that ancient Sumerian system as well as the 360 degrees of a circle. 
Some have attributed the 360 day year to the Babylonians of Daniel’s time.  However, the Babylonians were using the lunar-solar calendar over a thousand years before Daniel’s time.  The cuneiform Venus Tablet of King Ammisaduga (tablet 63) dates to the 17th century BC (he was the 4th ruler after Hammurabi).  It is possibly older as some posit that Hammurabi and Abraham were contemporaries. The observed cycles of Venus are recorded on the tablet over a 21 year period using the lunar calendar months (Nisan, Kislimu, Tishri, etc.)  The calendar they used even had intercalary months (leap months) every 3rd year or so, just like the Modern Hebrew (Metonic) calendar.  I personally entered the data recorded on that tablet onto a spreadsheet.  I painstakingly entered every event based on the observations and then averaged the duration between events.  The orbital period of Earth and Venus are almost exactly the same today as they were 3700 years ago as the average heliacal risings based on those ancient observations were 583.92 days apart. Mathematically then, the Earth orbital period at the time was 365.24 days and Venus was 224.7 days, just as it is now.  While they occasionally inserted intercalary days to reconcile the solar year, the average 3-year period with the leap month every third year was 364 days!  354+354+384 average is 364.
The 364 Day Prophetic Year and The Book of Enoch
I’ve made the case here before that if there is such a thing as a prophetic year, it’s a 364 day year.  The system of Daniel’s ‘weeks’ prophecy based on the interpretation of ‘heptad’, has the meaning of seven.  364 days is 52 equal seven day weeks, Sabbath to Sabbath.  360 days is not divisible by 7 (sabbath to sabbath).  During the Second Temple Period, the 364 day year calendar was in use by the priesthood.  From the First Decree of Artaxerxes in 457 BC until 25 AD (when Jesus was about 30) there are 69 heptads of 364 day years!  Daniel’s prophecy states that from the decree to restore until the Messiah (anointed) would be 69 weeks of years!  Jesus was baptized around his 30th birthday, the Spirit of God descended upon Him like a dove (anointing) and God said this is my Son in whom I am well pleased!!! The 69 weeks of years was fulfilled exactly 483 years of 364 days per year!!!
 Jude 1:14 quotes a prophecy from the Book of Enoch, giving that book real validity.  Some of the phraseology Jesus used is reflected in the Book of Enoch.  Interestingly, the Book of Genesis records that Enoch lived 365 years, which is the observed length of the year.  However, the Book of Enoch records that an angel told Enoch the year was 364 days long!  While some may discount a 364 day year (because the actual length is 365.24 days), a calendar using the 364, inserting an extra week every 7th year, could well be more accurate over the long term than the Gregorian calendar we use.  In a 364 day system, the date would also fall on the same day of the week each year.  While this may be a little technical, the length of a sidereal day is less than the full 24 hours.  As Earth progresses through its orbit, the time it takes any particular point on our rotating planet to point at the same background star from day to day is 23.93447 hours.  Probably more accurately, sidereal time follows the Vernal Equinox which precesses at about 1 degree every 71.6 years.  Multiplied by 365 days the sidereal day length yields a total of 8736.082 hours.  Dividing this 8736.082 hour value by the complete 24 hour day yields a total 364.0034 days.   So maybe the angel who spoke to Enoch understood celestial mechanics pretty well.
I hope I gave you some background on the 360 day, as well as the 364 day alternative 'prophetic year'.
Kevin Heckle