Tom Tanner (29 Feb 2012)
"The interpretation of Daniel 9:25 (part 2)"

Hello John and Doves,

the part one letter was here... and the follow-ups are here... [thanks Marilyn!!] and here... [thanks Lauren!!].

It seems we are all nearly on the same page now. I believe we should know the time; the wise men knew the time of His first coming. He would do no less for us.

I also wish to give credit to Ray Schultz for his article on Isaac Newton's correct interpretation of Daniel's 70 weeks. 
This one by Ray on Five Doves back in 2009 will really get you to thinking... [broken link?]

Ray Schulz (30 Nov 2009)
"What did Isaac Newton believe about Daniel 9:24-27?"

To the Five Doves,

What Did Isaac Newton Believe About Daniel 9:24-27?

Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727), the renowned English physicist, mathematician, astronomer, and theologian is probably most remembered for his work in universal gravitation and the three laws of motion. He was also profoundly interested in understanding Bible prophecy, particularly Daniel's prophecies. Consider Daniel 9:25,

Daniel 9:25. 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.

In Daniel a week represents 7 years. The 7 weeks and 62 weeks are traditionally added together to get 69 weeks. This is one week short of the full 70-week decree of Daniel 9:24, so it has long been assumed that the leftover week will be the tribulation. Yes, the doctrine of a 7-year tribulation hangs by a thread on this assumption! There is no other verse in the Bible to support the notion of a 7-year tribulation.

Isaac Newton understood Daniel 9:25-26 in very a different way. Newton took it upon himself to re-translate the original Hebrew, and he adamantly held to the position that the 7 weeks and 62 weeks should not be added together. Quoting Newton,

"We avoid also the doing violence to the language of Daniel, by taking the seven weeks and sixty two weeks for one number. Had that been Daniel's meaning, he would have said sixty and nine weeks, and not seven weeks and sixty two weeks, a way of numbring used by no nation."

Instead, Newton saw the 62 weeks to be the time leading up to the Advent of Christ, and the 7 weeks to be the time leading up to the second coming of Christ. In other words, he was convinced that this verse prophecies both the first and second coming of Christ. Notice that the time leading up to the second coming of Christ, the tribulation, becomes 49 years instead of the customary 7!

In another twist, Newton viewed the six objectives of God's decree listed in Daniel 9:24 as having been completely accomplished by Jesus Christ on the cross, which conflicts with the customary interpretation that assumes at least some of these objectives will remain unfinished until the end times:

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, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.

Newton's interpretation of Daniel 9:27 also contains some fascinating surprises for us, and his understanding once again runs counter to the customary interpretation:

Daniel 9:27. And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.

He saw Daniel 9:27 as a prophecy of events that had all been fulfilled in the first century AD, in the days following the Crucifixion up to the Roman destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD. Newton believed all three instances of the word "he" in Daniel 9:27 refer to Jesus Christ, not to a coming Roman prince. The "covenant" Christ confirmed was the Old Covenant, the Law of Moses. That is, Christ did not set aside the Old Covenant until one week (7 years) after the Crucifixion, presumably to allow time for the Jews to respond to their Messiah. The event that terminated this week, according to Newton, was the conversion of Cornelius, the first Gentile to receive Jesus Christ (Acts 10:1-45). Newton's interpretation of Daniel 9:27 has nothing whatsoever to do with confirming a peace treaty, a Roman Antichrist or a 7-year tribulation. It only concerns events that happened between the Crucifixion and the 70 AD destruction of Jerusalem.

I have attempted to keep this posting as brief as possible, which meant that several supporting details have simply been left out. I recommend two links that contain more complete accounts of this topic:

Isaac Newton, Observations upon the Prophecies of Daniel, and the Apocalypse of St. John, Part I, Chapter X: Of the Prophecy of the Seventy Weeks, London, 1733: The Newton Project - University of Sussex, East Sussex...

Ray Schulz, Whatever Happened To The 7-year Tribulation?

Ray Schulz

Look Up! Ministries

ps. Ray, If you are still out there, Thanks you and God bless
pps. Marilyn and Lauren, Thank you too and may God richly bless you