Kevin Drake (20 Dec 2011)
"Jacob's Trouble and the 70th Week: 20 years or 21 years...Or Both?"

The Time of Jacob’s Trouble and the 70th Week

20 years or 21 years…

Or both?


Genesis 31:41 (Jacob speaking to Laban)-“Thus have I been twenty years in thy house; I served thee fourteen years for thy two daughters, and six years for thy cattle”.


The purpose of this article is to show that the 20 years of time stated by Jacob (above) concerning how long he had been with Laban is scripturally correct. Yet also showing that the 21 years stated by the Lord (“seven years”, “yet seven other years”, and “yet seven other years”) found in Genesis chapter 29 is correct as well.


Both 20 and 21 are correct and this article will show you how and why!


Genesis 29:18-“And Jacob loved Rachel; and said, I will serve thee seven years for Rachel thy younger daughter. [19] And Laban said, It is better that I give her to thee, than that I should give her to another man: abide with me. [20] And Jacob served seven years for Rachel; and they seemed unto him but a few days, for the love he had to her. [21] And Jacob said unto Laban, Give me my wife, for my days are fulfilled, that I may go in unto her.
[22] And Laban gathered together all the men of the place, and made a feast. [23] And it came to pass in the evening, that he took Leah his daughter, and brought her to him; and he went in unto her. [24] And Laban gave unto his daughter Leah Zilpah his maid for an handmaid. [25] And it came to pass, that in the morning, behold, it was Leah: and he said to Laban, What is this thou hast done unto me? did not I serve with thee for Rachel? wherefore then hast thou beguiled me? [26] And Laban said, It must not be so done in our country, to give the younger before the firstborn. [27] Fulfil her week, and we will give thee this also for the service which thou shalt serve with me yet seven other years. [28] And Jacob did so, and fulfilled her week: and he gave him Rachel his daughter to wife also.
[29] And Laban gave to Rachel his daughter Bilhah his handmaid to be her maid. [30] And he went in also unto Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served with him yet seven other years


The 21 years (7-7-7) of Jacob's Trouble (that is associated to the times of the Gentiles and its completion from where Jacob is receiving their trouble) AND the 20 years of labor (of the 21 in the completed Sabbatical cycles) from when the Sabbatical cycles began (by the time of Jacob’s trouble) to when they (Israel) will receive their REST are both correct!


They (the 20 and 21 years) are two separate and distinct measurements of “time”, yet they must reconcile with each other and scripture!


In the modern day fulfillment of the prophetic type, the time of Jacob’s trouble runs a full and complete 21 years from Rosh 1993 to just before Rosh 2014. However, the Sabbatical cycle associated to the start of the time of Jacob’s trouble began at Rosh 1994 and this Sabbatical time runs 20 years to Rosh 2014 when they will receive their rest at the Second Coming of Christ.


The 21 years of the “time of Jacob’s trouble”, especially that of the final third “week” (Rosh 2007 to Rosh 2014) are NOT synonymous with that of the Sabbatical cycles, namely that of the 70th Week of Daniel (Rosh 2008 to Rosh 2015)!


The "time of Jacob's trouble" is also a reference of Gentile timing as it involves the Gentiles who bring the distress to Israel. Therefore it can be seen as referring to the times of the Gentiles. And this "time" and the accountable measuring of it must be fulfilled according to scripture.


Luke 21: 24 –“And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled”. 

But the Gentiles are not subject to the Biblical prophetic counting of time that is God-given to Israel; that being the Sabbatical cycles. This reference of time is inherently Jewish; hence we read in Daniel 9 that 70 “weeks” (Sabbatical cycles) are DETERMINED upon “thy people” and “thy holy city”! It is inherent to the Jews and their city of Jerusalem, not to the whole world at large which incorporates the Gentiles.

In the account in Genesis, Jacob (Israel) will be in labor/ distress in the world for 20 years of the Sabbatical time that is inherent to them alone, even though it is PART of the time of Jacob’s trouble/ time of the Gentiles! Both will serve out this time of 21 years, but the 70th week is cut short to that of only 6 years for then the total of Sabbatical time labored for before their REST of 20 years!

BOTH 20 and 21 years ARE CORRECT!


So the labor of 14 years for “thy daughters” and 6 years for “thy cattle” (adding up to 20) is contained within the Sabbatical cycle of 21 years that has been cut short by one full year to equal/end both at 2014, the beginning of the Sabbath year of rest that Christ’s return and Kingdom brings! For the Lord returns just before the beginning of the Sabbath year (Rosh 2014 begins the Sabbath year) to save Israel/Jacob OUT of their time of trouble (Jeremiah 30:7).


This reconciles any disparity concerning the number of 20 years stated by Jacob versus the number of 21 years recorded by God in the Genesis account!


The original “seven years”, “yet seven other years” and “yet seven other years” are not only that of the “time of Jacob’s trouble”, but also that of the "times of the Gentiles"; the beginning of Jacob's trouble at Rosh of 1993, the start of a Sabbatical year! 


The Gentiles are in no way governed by "Sabbatical time", as the determined timing for the Jews would begin with the next year (at Rosh 1994) for 14 years taking you to Rosh 2008 and six years (of the last 7) to 2014!


And it is the time of Jacob's Trouble/ time of the Gentiles/ Laban/ Jacob which defines WHEN the Sabbatical and DETERMINED (Daniel 9:24) time to the Jewish people will begin and WHEN their 20 years of labor are to end!


Notice in the account also that Jacob does NOT say 7 years and 7 years and six, but simply “fourteen” and “six” for the 20.


The recognition of a Sabbatical year is not present! Just as the Jews know of the Sabbatical years and cycles, but NEVER recognized them enough to keep them!


But in the accounting of the times of the Gentiles/ Jacob's Trouble, the Sabbatical years are defined with the Sabbatical year of rest before the last 6 years of labor!


It is the “time of Jacob’s trouble” which defines WHEN the proper Sabbatical cycles are to finally begin after the 69th was completed!


People/ the Jews have been waiting 2000 years (approximately) for when this last Sabbatical cycle/ the 70th Week was to begin. And it seems that it is not the Jews who are the ones to recognize it but the Gentiles!


It is quite amazing how the Lord has orchestrated time and events. Time in that the 21 years of Jacob's trouble will end with the completion also of the 20 years labor DURING that time for them to then enter the Lord's REST. It is His rest and it shall be a Sabbath unto the Lord. And to then complete the 21 Sabbatical years with the last year of the 70th Week, of which is shortened by the one year (time determined to the Jews and Jerusalem) to make the 20 years possible (and also the 21 years of the times of the Gentiles being fulfilled). This is simply amazing!


Mark 13:20-“And except that the Lord HAD shortened those days, no flesh should be saved: but for the elect's sake, whom he hath chosen, he HATH shortened the days”.


The Lord “hath” (ALREADY, PREDETERMINED, PAST TENSE), the shortening of the days of the time of “great tribulation” so that some flesh will be left alive when He returns!


If 70 weeks are needed for the following (see below) and they are Sabbatical cycles ending with the Sabbatical/Shmita year, then you must still be IN the 70th Week for their fulfillment!
Daniel 9:24-“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 (STILL FUTURE), and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy (STILL YET FUTURE)”. 
This cannot be fulfilled if Christ is to return AFTER the Sabbatical year (the 7th year which begins at Rosh 2014). Why? Because the 70th Week of Daniel is completed on the day BEFORE Rosh Hashanah of 2015! Time must be left for Christ to accomplish the still future events of Daniel 9:24.

Recapping: if the Lord allowed the days of “great tribulation” to run all the way to the end of the 70th Week in 2015, no flesh would be left alive. Nor could the still yet future events of Daniel 9:24 be fulfilled if the days were not shortened by Christ’s return to begin the Sabbath year at Rosh 2014.


Please see the article entitled “The Shortening of the Days” at for details on the shortening of these days.


Jacob and his family go rest at a place called Succoth after his trouble is over in the Genesis account. And “Succoth” is another word for Tabernacles!


This is pointing back again to the feast of Tabernacles and the overlapping times of the Gentiles/time of Jacob’s trouble and the 70th Week of Daniel in the Gospel of John chapter 7. With the Lord's coming first (just as portrayed in Jacob's account) being the last “week” (the third week) of the time of Jacob’s trouble/ times of the Gentiles. Not the 70th Week, because this first day of the feast is a SABBATH! And NO Sabbatical cycle, hence not even Daniel's 70th Week can begin as such. And then starting (the next day/ year) the 70th Sabbatical week, in which Jesus comes in the “midst of” that week!


This is what Phil Rogers and Sherry Vance have been trying to get across to many since 2006! And it is because of the Advocacy of Christ as our High Priest that He cannot come for the resurrection/rapture until the “accuser of the brethren” (Satan) is no longer able to accuse before the throne of God! This can only be occurring at the mid-point of the 70th Week.


But the account of Tabernacles (in John 7) begins with a Sabbath and it says that Jesus came the first time “as it were in secret ABOUT the midstof the feast (7 day feast beginning on a Sabbath day)! Now the only way that these two weeks can reconcile (be fulfilled together without scriptural contradiction) is that the 2 weeks portrayed in John 7 are overlapping, one after the other!


The first week seen and portrayed in John's Gospel is that which starts with a Sabbath day (for 7 days)!  To be "about the midst" of this week means that it would have to be either the 3rd day/ year or the 5th day/ year!


But then the account also portrays the Sabbatical cycle (Daniel's 70th week) which cannot start on the Sabbath day, but the day after! In which Christ can only come for His bride for the resurrection/ rapture "in the midst of the week"!  The "midst of the week" would then be the 4th day of that week. And with both weeks in question and having to also be the same day of fulfillment, this can only be the 4th day/year of the 70th Week and the 5th day/year of the third week of the time of Jacob's trouble/ times of the Gentiles!


Go to the website and view the chart entitled “The Sabbatical Cycles and the 70th Week of Daniel and the Time of Jacob’s Trouble” to see this illustrated in chart form.


The significance in the story in the type of Jacob/ Israel is this…


In the first part it is given of the three 7’s of years (7-7-7) in the time of Jacob’s trouble in relation to the times of the Gentiles! But in the last part IT IS WHEN JACOB/ ISRAEL/ THE WOMAN IS FLEEING TO THE WILDERNESS!




I sincerely hope that many who previously had trouble reconciling the 20 years versus the 21 years can now see that both are correct, especially for the last 6 and 7 years of the time of Jacob’s trouble respectively. And that it is fully upheld in the prophetic type found in John's Gospel, in that Christ comes the second time (not in secret as the first) on the LAST day of the feast (the 7th day= 21st year)! 


And in the secondary type (secondary only because it starts a day/ year later) of Christ's coming in accordance to the Sabbatical cycle portrayed, Jesus comes in the 6th day/ year/ 20th of it to then bring them into His Rest/Sabbath/Kingdom! Which is the 8th day of Tabernacles and set apart from the feast days (but is still a time of a new beginning- the Millennial Kingdom) and the 7th day, the Sabbath of Rest of the Sabbatical cycle/ 70th Week of Daniel to also begin the Millennial Kingdom!


Matthew 24:32-“Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh: 33So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. 34Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled”.


Mark 13:26-“And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory. 27And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven. 28Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near: 29So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors. 30Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done”. 


Luke 21:27-“And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.

29And he spake to them a parable; Behold the fig tree, and all the trees; 30When they now shoot forth, ye see and know of your own selves that summer is now nigh at hand. 31So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is nigh at hand. 32Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass away, till all be fulfilled”. 


Now remember that the word or term "generation" can also denote TIME IN GENERAL (there are many scriptures for this concept).


But the context to the “fig tree” is that of the nation of Israel – very specific. Now in the 3 passages above, all are referring to “ALL THESE THINGS”...BUT is specific to the Second Coming AND the gathering of the elect! The gathering to where and for what purpose? To be gathered to Himself in Israel FINALLY IN BELIEF TO ENTER HIS REST/ Millennial Kingdom!


Now there is ONE great passage that addresses the “generation” as it pertains to the fig tree, NATION of Israel, the hardening of the heart in unbelief, and the consequences of doing so in not being able to enter His REST/ SABBATH REST!


Psalm 95
O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms. For the LORD is a great God, and a great King above all gods. In his hand are the deep places of the earth: the strength of the hills is his also. The sea is his, and he made it: and his hands formed the dry land. O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the LORD our maker. For he is our God; and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. To day if ye will hear his voice,
Harden not your heart, as in the provocation, and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness: When your fathers tempted me, proved me, and saw my work…
Forty years long was I grieved with this generation, and said, It is a people that do err in their heart, and they have not known my ways: Unto whom I sware in my wrath that they should not enter into my rest”.


From the fig tree (Israel reestablished-1948) putting forth leaves (1967) the generation (40 years) shall not pass until all is fulfilled! In other words, it will not pass on to a succeeding generation of another 40 years until “all these things” (including the Second Coming) occur!


Even though the time of Israel’s adulthood came in 1967 and the 40 years for the generation of the nation in unbelief comes to 2007 (at Rosh), what type of time would this still be? Sabbatical time or still part of the "times of the Gentiles"?


The times of the Gentiles of course! For the very day Jerusalem was captured and "control" of the city fell under the Jews, they gave back the Temple Mount to the control of the Arabs! And the holy city is still "trodden down of the Gentiles" even unto this day! 


But once Rosh 2007 (the completion of the generation) passed, it took them to the start of the last 7 years of the “times of the Gentiles”/ “time of Jacob's Trouble”, not to the Sabbatical cycle's start at Rosh of 2008!


And Jerusalem will continue to be “trodden down of the Gentiles” until the "times of the Gentiles/ Time of Jacob's trouble" is fulfilled 7 years from Rosh Hashanah 2007.

By the return of the King to begin His Sabbath REST on Rosh Hashanah 2014!



Kevin Drake