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The 2300 Day Prophecy and the Sanctuary

Discussion in 'New Adventist / Bible Study' started by reddogs, Jul 19, 2014.

  1. reddogs

    reddogs Contributor Supporter

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    The eighth chapter of Daniel is a prophecy that gives the prophetic history of the world from the rise of the Persian Empire till the final destruction of all earthly kingdoms by the God of Heaven. The succession of earthly empires was presented to the prophet under the symbols of a ram, a goat, and a little horn that became exceeding great. And when these had been shown to him, he was told by the angel Gabriel that the ram represented the kingdom of Media and Persia; and that the goat was the kingdom of Greece; and the horn which became exceeding great, though not called by name, was identified by several decisive facts, among which are these: That it should be the great destroyer of the people of God, and that it should put to death the Prince of princes. These facts show that the Roman power is intended.

    In connection with these symbols which represent the great empires that have since arisen, the prophet learned the duration of his vision. For he heard Gabriel ask Michael, "How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot? And Michael, who answered the question to Daniel, said: "Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed." Verses 13,14.

    Now, it is plain that the period of twenty-three hundred days cannot be understood to mean so many literal days; for this would not make quite seven years, and would cover only a very small part of the duration of one of the three great empires of this vision. But we should remember that in this vision the great empires of the world are represented by symbols, and thus are given on a scale which brings them distinctly before the eye of the observer. It is necessary that the time should be given on a scale that corresponds with this in order not to involve an absurdity. For the Persian, Grecian, and Roman Empires have in all continued between 2000 and 3000 years. Now when these empires were represented by beasts, if the time that the empires were to continue was given without a corresponding abatement, then we should have these beasts living a thousand years apiece! This would be absurd. But it would not be absurd to represent them as living and acting that number of days.

    The days must therefore represent longer periods of time. If we compare spiritual things with spiritual, we shall find the key to the interpretation of these days. For the different inspired writers were all led by the same Spirit of truth. They were like so many workmen engaged in building a temple. If we can find the rule which governed one of them, we shall find that same rule governing all the rest in like circumstances. Now God gave this rule to Ezekiel in the interpretation of the symbols of his own vision: "I have appointed thee each day for a year." Eze.4:6. We shall find in Gabriel's explanation of this vision of Daniel given in the ninth chapter, that the days in Daniel's prophecy are so many years.

    This period of two thousand and three hundred days was certainly given for the benefit of the people of God. But it cannot benefit them unless they are able to understand it. We have indeed ascertained that it must be two thousand and three hundred years. But if we do not know when this period commences, we shall be none the wiser for having the period given in Daniel's prophecy. But there is a certain great event to take place when this period expires, and God designed to give his people knowledge of the time. The event is called the cleansing of the sanctuary and everyone should examine the Bible to learn what it teaches respecting the sanctuary and its cleansing.

    But the date of this period is not given in the eighth chapter of Daniel. In that chapter, however, the commandment is given by Michael thus: "Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision." Verse 16. And yet, in verse 27, he tells us that he "was astonished at the vision, but none understood it." The angel in explaining to him this vision set before him the destruction of the mighty and the holy people, and the cruel death of the Son of God. The prophet could bear no more, for he "fainted, and was sick certain days;" so Gabriel reserved the remainder of the explanation till another time.

    But in the ninth chapter we find Daniel earnestly seeking God with reference to his sanctuary. Verses 3,17. He seems to have connected his own vision of the sanctuary with that of Jeremiah respecting the desolation of the temple of Jerusalem. Verse 2. His mind was upon the subject of time. He knew that the seventy years of Jeremiah's prophecy were just expiring, and he was intently studying that period, doubtless in connection with the period which Michael told him marked the cleansing of the sanctuary. It was necessary that he should now be made to understand the reckoning of the great period revealed to him in his vision of the eighth chapter.

    And so while he was engaged in importunate prayer for the people of God and for his sanctuary, the angel Gabriel touches him, saying, "I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding. Verse 22. And calling attention to the vision which he had been commanded to explain to him, he says: "Therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision." Verse 23, compared with chapter 8:16.

    Then he gives to Daniel the key to the reckoning of his time period. "Seventy weeks," says he, "are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city," etc. Verse 24. The word determined does not express the full sense of the Hebrew word used by the angel. The word spoken by the angel was "cut off." The translators, not seeing the propriety of such a word in this place, for they did not note the fact that the ninth chapter is the key to the eighth, and so thought nothing of the long period in that chapter, could not understand how the seventy weeks could be said to be cut off, and so they departed from the literal meaning, and said that seventy weeks, were "determined," that is appointed, upon they people and thy city. But with the prophet, the case was different. The angel had bidden him "consider the vision." And nothing was more natural when told that seventy weeks were cut off than that he should recur to the long period revealed to him without a date in that vision.

    This shorter period being cut off from that long period gives us the key to the reckoning of that period from which it is cut off. When we ascertain the date of the seventy weeks, we have also ascertained the point from which the twenty-three hundred days are to be reckoned. And this date the angel next gives us.
     
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  2. reddogs

    reddogs Contributor Supporter

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    Know therefore," said Gabriel, "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." Verse 25. The commandment for the restoration of Jerusalem, which city then lay in ruins, is the event which marks the commencement of this period. Cyrus gave the Jews permission to return and build the temple, but did not say anything respecting the city itself. Ezra 1. This decree Darius renewed when the Jews were hindered by their enemies, and he provided means for the expense of finishing the temple., Ezra 6. But Artaxerxes added to the work of Cyrus and Darius the full restoration of the city to its ancient privileges, and the re-establishment of the law of God as the law of the city; and he authorized the rebuilding of its walls. Ezra.7:11-26; 9:9. The commandment is the prophetic commandment of the God of Heaven (Isa.44:26-28; 45:13), and was carried into effect by Cyrus, Darius, and Artaxerxes, whose successive action is recognized as the legal establishment of that commandment by the authority of the Persian Empire. Ezra 6:14.

    The decree of Artaxerxes, which marks the going forth of the commandment, was in the year B.C. 457 (see margin of Ezra 7), a date which has been established by the infallible testimony of many eclipses. Sixty-nine weeks, or 483 prophetic days, extend from this date to the Messiah, that is, to Christ. This period was fulfilled in exactly 483 years, which proves that we have made no mistake in reckoning Daniel's days as years, nor in fixing their date at B.C. 457.

    It was in the fall of A.D. 27, just 483 full years from the going forth of the commandment in B.C. 457, that our Lord began his ministry. And this was the announcement which he made: "THE TIME IS FULFILLED." Mark 1:15. He did in these words refer to the sixty-nine weeks which marked the commencement of his ministry, and he announced the fulfillment of that period. For the period extends not simply to the birth of the Saviour, but to his annointing, which took place at his baptism, the word Messiah signifying the anointed one. See John 1:41; Acts 10:40,41; Luke 3:21,22; 4:14:21.

    The sixty-nine weeks did, therefore end with the beginning of our Lord's ministry in the fall of A.D. 27. One week of the seventy remained in which the covenant was to be confirmed with many. Verse 27. In the midst of this week, the sacrifice and oblation were to cease. This must signify that he should take these away by becoming himself the great sacrifice for sin which these typified. Heb.10:1-13; Col.2:14-17. And so it was that our Lord preached during three years and a half, until the spring of A.D. 31, when he was crucified for the sins of men. This date, Dr. Hales, one of the moist distinguished of chronologists, establishes by conclusive evidence. See his "Analysis of Chronology," second edition, vol. 1. pp. 94-100. There remained of the period which was specially assigned to the Jews three and a half prophetic days to complete the seventy weeks. The termination of this period in A.D. 31 marked the close of the exclusive work for the Jews, and the commencement of the work for the Gentiles in the conversion of Saul, who was at once commissioned to them. Acts 26:15-17. Here ended the seventy weeks which were cut off from the 2300 days. When these 490 days were finished, there remained 1810 days before the time should come for the cleansing of the sanctuary. As the 490 ended in the fall of A.D. 34, the remaining 1810 days ended in the fall of 1844.
     
  3. reddogs

    reddogs Contributor Supporter

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    During the time of the Great Awakening and the Second Great Awakening caused by the printing of Bibles for the common man, many were studying the prophecies found in scripture and William Miller and others preach what they were finding, and the evidence was brought out with great clearness that the 2300 days would end in 1844. William Miller believed that the sanctuary to be cleansed is our earth. He found no testimony in the Bible that the earth is the sanctuary, but he did find that the earth is to be purified, by fire (2Pet.3:7-13), and so he inferred that this was the sanctuary which Michael said should be cleansed at the end of the 2300 days. He therefore concluded that this period was given to mark the time of Christ's coming. And as it was sufficiently evident from the several great lines of prophecy in Daniel and Revelation, and from the signs of the times, that the advent of Christ was at the doors, the time was preached in connection with the signs with very great solemnity and power.

    But though it could be clearly shown that the 2300 days actually ended in 1844, the Advent people were doomed to a great disappointment. The ending of the 2300 days was not the time appointed of God for the coming of Christ, nor for the burning of the earth. But the great Advent disappointment made it necessary that two important questions should be carefully studied.

    1. What is the sanctuary of the Bible?

    2. What is meant by the cleansing of the sanctuary?

    The fact that the cleansing of the sanctuary is an event located in prophecy in the very conclusion of one of Daniel's great prophetic chains, shows that it is an event of deep interest to mankind. And as we live at a time when the 2300 days are in the past, we are most deeply concerned to understand the nature of the work called the cleansing of the sanctuary.

    The Bible is full of the subject of the sanctuary, and we shall find it a theme of intense interest if we give it careful study. The Bible doctrine of the sanctuary is this: That the sanctuary is the place where the High Priest stands to offer blood before God for the sins of those who come to God through him. The central subject in the sanctuary is the ark which contains the law of God that man has broken. The cover of this ark was called the mercy-seat, because mercy came to those who had broken the law beneath it, when the high priest sprinkled the blood of sin-offering upon it, provided they accompanied his work by repentance and faith. Last of all was the work of cleansing the sanctuary when the high priest by blood removed the sins of the people from the sanctuary into which they had been borne by the ministration of the priests before God.
     
  4. reddogs

    reddogs Contributor Supporter

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    Now lets look at the testimony of the Bible respecting the sanctuary.

    1. There are two covenants; the first, or old covenant, extends from the time of Moses to the death of Christ; the second, or new covenant, begins at the death of Christ and extends forward to the consummation. Gal.4:24-26; Heb.8:7-13; Luke 22:20.

    2. The first covenant had a sanctuary, which was the tabernacle erected by Moses. Heb.9:1-7.

    3. The new covenant has a sanctuary which is the temple of God in Heaven, into which our High Priest entered when he ascended up on high. Heb.8:1-5.

    4. When Moses erected the tabernacle, he was commanded by God to make it according to the pattern which he showed to him; and this pattern must have been a representation of the temple of God in Heaven; for the earthly sanctuary is declared to be a pattern of the heavenly. Ex.25:9,40; Heb.8:5; 9:23.

    5. The earthly sanctuary consisted of two holy places; the first of which contained the table of shew-bread, the candlestick with seven lamps, and the golden altar of incense; and the second contained the ark of God's testament with the tables on which the ten commandments were written by the finger of God, and over which was the mercy-seat with the cherubim of glory overshadowing it. Ex.40:18-28; Heb.9:1-5.

    6. The temple of God in Heaven is not only spoken of as the original from which the earthly sanctuary was copied (Heb.9:23,24; 1Chron.28:11,12,19), but it is also spoken of as consisting of holy places, in the plural. See Heb.8:2; 9:8,12,24; 10:19, in each of which verses the original is holy places, in the plural, and they are so rendered in various translations.

    The word sanctuary in the Bible, except in the few cases where it is used figuratively, refers always to the place where the high priest ministers before God for the sins of the people. It was first the tabernacle erected by Moses; then it was the temple built by Solomon, which was a more glorious structure than the tabernacle, but with the same two holy places; and when the typical sacrifices ended in the death of Christ, who is the true sin-offering, the earthly sanctuary, or holy places, ceased to be the center of God's worship, and Christ entered the temple in Heaven as a great High Priest.

    The ministration in the earthly sanctuary could not actually take away sins; for it had only the blood of bulls and goats to offer. Heb.10:4. It was ordained for the purpose of instructing men with reference to the work of Christ, and of encouraging them to look forward to his work. It is a shadow or representation of the service of Christ in the sanctuary of God in Heaven. Heb.8:5; 10:1; Col.2:17. It took one year to complete the round of service in the earthly sanctuary, at the end of which the cleansing of the sanctuary took place. The round of service was repeated each year, even as a shadow is renewed each day. But the ministration of Christ which casts this shadow fills out each part of the work once for all, and is not repeated. We shall therefore find the study of the service in the earthly sanctuary full of instruction as to the work of Christ in the sanctuary above.
     
  5. reddogs

    reddogs Contributor Supporter

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    The ministration in the first apartment occupied the entire year, with the exception of one day, which was devoted to work in the second apartment, or most holy place, to close up the work which had been wrought in the first apartment. The work in the first apartment was on this wise: When a man repented of his sin, he brought a sin-offering to the priest to the door of the sanctuary. Then he confessed his sin to the priest and put his hand upon the head of his offering to indicate the transfer of the guilt from himself to his offering. Then, the victim was slain because of that guilt thus transferred to it, and the blood, representing the life of the victim, was taken by the priest and carried into the sanctuary, and sprinkled there before God. This act was the offering of the life of an innocent victim in the place of the life of him who had broken the law of God, and it was the transference of that man's guilt from himself to the sanctuary of God. See Lev.4 and the parallel scriptures. This was the most important feature of the work in the first apartment, and by it the guilt of the penitents was transferred from themselves to the tabernacle.
     
  6. reddogs

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    On the tenth day of the seventh month, which was called the day of atonement, the ministration was transferred to the second apartment, or most holy place. Lev.16. By God's direction, the high priest on this day caused two goats to be brought to the door of the sanctuary. On these he was to cast lots. One was for the Lord, the other was for Azazel. The he slew the goat upon which the Lord's lot fell, and took his blood to present it before God as a sin-offering in the most holy place, sprinkling it upon the mercy-seat. He did this for two purposes: 1. To make atonement for the people. 2. To cleanse the sanctuary by removing from it the sins of the people of God. Lev.16:15-19.

    The sanctuary being cleansed, the high priest comes out of the building, and having caused the other goat to be brought which was for Azazel, he lays both his hands upon his head, and confesses over him all the transgressions of the children of Israel in all their sins. These he puts upon the head of the goat and sends him away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness. And it is said that "the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited." Verses 20-22.

    The work of the high priest on this great day of atonement was for the purpose of completing the work which had been partially accomplished in the first apartment. By the work in that apartment, the sins had been transferred to the sanctuary through the blood of sin-offering. By the work in the second apartment, the sanctuary is cleansed and the sins of the people of God blotted out. Such was the work in the earthly sanctuary, and such was the cleansing of the sanctuary as set forth in the example and shadow of heavenly things.

    The earthly sanctuary was only made as the pattern of the sanctuary in Heaven. Heb.8 and 9. Itself and its services pertained only to the first covenant. Heb.9:1. With the introduction of the new covenant came the real sanctuary of God, the tabernacle which the Lord pitched, and not man. Heb.8:1,2. While the first tabernacle stood, it signified that the way into the holy places of the heavenly temple was not opened. Heb.9:8. But when our Lord ascended on high, he became a great High Priest, and by his own blood he entered the temple of God. Verses 11,12. The order of his ministration is clearly indicated by the service in the two apartments of the earthly sanctuary. Heb.8:5; 9:8-12; 10:1. And we are able to trace the ministration of Christ in these two apartments of the temple above in the New Testament.
     
  7. reddogs

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    So when John looked into the temple of God in Heaven, he saw the Father sitting upon the throne, and before the throne were seven lamps burning. Rev.4. In this place also he saw the Son of God. Rev.5. Before the throne also stood the golden altar of incense. Rev.8:3. These things do clearly mark the first apartment of the heavenly sanctuary, and show that this was the place where our Lord began his ministration as our High Priest.

    But there is a time when his ministration is to be within the second apartment. This is marked in John's statement of the events under the seventh trumpet: "And the temple of God was opened in Heaven, and there was seen in his temple the ark of his testament." Rev.11:19. The ark marks the second apartment as the seven lamps and the golden altar of incense mark the first. The second apartment is therefore opened under the seventh angel, and the days (or years) at the beginning of his voice constitute the period in which the mystery of God or work of the gospel for fallen man is finished. Rev.10:7; Eph.3:4-6. It is certain therefore, that as there was a time each year devoted to the finishing up of the round of service in "the example and shadow of heavenly things" so is there such a period in the conclusion of Christ's ministration, when once for all our High Priest finishes his work of priesthood; and as this work in the former dispensation took place in the second apartment, so also under the new covenant does this work find its accomplishment within the second vail by the ark of the ten commandments. The work in the second apartment of the earthly sanctuary does not therefore represent the work of the whole gospel dispensation, but only of that part of it devoted to the finishing of the mystery of God.

    The work within the second apartment was for the cleansing of the sanctuary, and this was performed by the high priest with blood, and when it was accomplished the sins of the people were blotted out. It was, therefore, an event of the greatest importance to the people of God. The heavenly sanctuary is to be cleansed, and for the same reason that the earthly sanctuary was cleansed. So Paul testifies in Heb.9:23. The same word which Paul uses to express the purification in this text is used in the Septuagint version of Daniel 8:14, for cleansing. The prophecy of Daniel shows us that the sanctuary of God is cleansed in the last days of the new covenant dispensation. The sanctuary of the new covenant is in Heaven. Heb.8:1,2. This heavenly sanctuary is to be cleansed; for Paul affirms it. Heb.9:23. The time marked for its cleansing is that fixed by John for the opening of the temple in Heaven and for the finishing of the mystery of God. Rev.11:19; 10:7. The cleansing of the sanctuary is the removal from it of the sins of the people of God that had been borne into it by the High Priest, and their blotting out from the record that stands against the saints, preparatory to their being placed upon the head of the scape-goat, or Azazel.
     
  8. reddogs

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    Now the scape-goat, or Azazel. as many Bible scholars have shown, can be no other than Satan. For the being that receives the sins of the righteous after the High Priest has finished his work in the sanctuary, can be no other than Satan, the author of sin. The word Azazel was understood by the ancient people of God to mean Satan. When, therefore, the goat was sent into a land not inhabited, it represents the fact that Satan at the conclusion of Christ's work as priest shall be cast into the bottomless pit. Rev.20.

    The treading under foot of the sanctuary is not performed by literally trampling it in the dust. It is trodden under foot in the same manner that men are represented as treading under foot the Son of God who ministers in that sanctuary. Heb.10:29.

    But does Daniel's vision really take in the heavenly sanctuary? We know that the earthly sanctuary as understood by him was the temple of God. Dan.9:17,26. His view was in exact harmony with that of Paul in Heb.9:1-5. And ought we not to understand that the entire 2300 days belong to the temple in old Jerusalem? Such is the view taken by some, and yet it is not at all in harmony with the statement of Gabriel. The entire period of 2300 days does not belong to old Jerusalem; for Gabriel said, "Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people, and upon thy holy city."

    The books are examined before the deliverance of the saints. Dan.12:1. The opening of the books is described in Dan.7:9,10. The book of life shows who have ever set out in the service of God. Luke 10:20; Phil.4:3. The book of God's remembrance shows the record of their faithfulness in his cause, and whether they have made clean work in overcoming. Mal.3:16. Other books contain the record of men's evil deeds. Rev.20:12,13.

    As the object of this final work in the sanctuary is to determine who are worthy of everlasting life, no cases will come before this tribunal except those who have had their names entered in the book of life. All others are left out of this investigation as having never become partakers in Christ's atoning work. The investigation will determine who have overcome their sins; and these will have their sins blotted from the record, and their names retained in the book of life. It will also determine who have not overcome; and these will have their names blotted from the book of life. Rev.3:5, and their sins will be retained in the record, to be visited with retribution in the resurrection to damnation.

    The righteous need a high priest until their sins are blotted out. They cannot be blotted out till the Judgment; for God has decreed to bring every work into judgment whether good or evil. Eccl.12:13,14; 3:17. He certainly cannot bring any record into judgment, after he has blotted it out. The blotting out is therefore the last act of our High Priest, and is done when the Father has accounted each person worthy of this; which will only be when the High Priest has shown from the record in the book of God's remembrance that he has actually overcome. The blotting out of sins (Acts 3:19) is therefore the great work which brings our Lord's priesthood to a conclusion. As this is an individual work, it evidently begins with the first generation of the righteous, and so comes down to the last, that is, to those who are alive at the coming of Christ. It is the time of the dead that they should be judged. Rev.11:18,19. The first angel gives notice to the inhabitants of the earth that the hour of God's judgment has come. Rev.14:6,7. The living are still on probation when this solemn announcement is made to mankind.

    The proclamation of the third angel, which is made while Christ is closing up his work in the sanctuary, is designed to prepare the living for the decision of the Judgment. When the cases of the living are reached, probation closes up forever. The decree goes forth from the throne of God, "He that is unjust, let him be unjust still; ... and he that is holy, let him be holy still." Rev.22:11. The sins of the overcomers being blotted out, and the sanctuary cleansed, the Son of God is no longer needed as a great High Priest. He therefore ceases from the office forever and becomes a king for the deliverance and glorification of his people, and for the destruction of all transgressors. Dan.7:13,14. Satan, the author of sin, receives its dreadful burden when the work in the sanctuary is closed, and will bear it with him to the lake of fire.( this is excerpted from John Nevins Andrews study on this prophecy)
     
  9. reddogs

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    So when we look at the principle of the 2300 prophetic days or as it applies, years, the time frame for the vindication is given by the phrase 'until 2300 evenings-mornings.'The phrase 'evenings-mornings' is used in Genesis 1 to designate each day of Creation week. In the sanctuary services certain activities were referred to as taking place evening and morning, that is, every day (Ex. 27:20, 21; Lev. 24:2, 3). The 2300 evenings-mornings are a period of 2300 prophetic days, which, according to the year-day principle, represent 2300 years.

    The beginning of this prophetic period is suggested in Daniel 8:13, which may be translated as follows: 'Until when [will] the vision, the daily/continual, and the transgression causing horror, make both the sanctuary and the host a trampling?'This literal translation separates the noun ';vision' from 'daily.' Most versions translate 'the vision of the daily,' limiting the question to the period during which the little horn was active. But the Hebrew does not allow for this. The first noun is in the absolute state (it has an article and long vowels), which suggests that a comma should be placed after it. The term 'azôn is used in verses 1 and 2 to refer to the vision of the different animals. The question in verse 13 is about the time for the completion of the vision of verses 1,12: the emphasis is on the termination of the vision and what is to follow.

    Because the 2300 days/years begin during the activity of the ram, that is, from the time of the Medo-Persian empire (verse 20), the vision would run from then until the beginning of the cleansing of the heavenly sanctuary. A more specific date for the beginning of the 2300 years is provided by the connection between Daniel 8 and 9. There are clear terminological connections between the two. In 9:23 Gabriel tells the prophet, 'Understand the vision.'

    The term for 'vision' (mar eh) is the same one used in 8:26, 27 to refer to 'the vision of the evenings and the mornings,' the part of the hzôn (vision) of chapter 8 that had to do with the time period. Gabriel interpreted to Daniel the vision but did not explain the part concerning the 2300 years. At the end of chapter 8 Daniel stated that he did not understand the mar EH.

    In chapter 9 Gabriel came to assist Daniel in understanding the mar eh, the 'vision' of the time period. In both chapters the verb 'understand' is used (Dan. 8:23, 27; 9:22, 23) and both concern the sanctuary. In 9:24 the sanctuary is dedicated and its services begin, while in 8:14 the same sanctuary is cleansed. These relations connect the time prophecy of the 70 weeks to the 2300 years. The verb 'decreed' in 9:24 also means 'to cut off,' as is seen in Mishnaic Hebrew and in texts found in the city of Ugarit (1300 B.C.).

    The implication is that the 490 years were ';cut off' from the 2300 years. The 490 years began with the decree to rebuild Jerusalem made by Artaxerxes in 457 B.C.; that decree is also the starting point for the 2300 years. The end point of that period would fall in A.D. 1844. Then the sanctuary would be cleansed/vindicated. At this particular time within salvation history Christ would begin the second aspect of His mediatorial work in the heavenly sanctuary, as described in Hebrews 9:23

    Daniel sees a ram with two horns, one longer than the other. The ram charges west, north, and then south. The ram is powerful, none could stand against it. He does what he pleases and becomes great.[Dan. 8:1,4]

    Then a goat comes from the west, having a single large horn, crossing the earth without touching the ground. It strikes the ram, breaks its two horns, knocks it down, and tramples him. But at the height of his power, the goat's horn is broken and in its place, four horns grow toward the four winds of heaven.[Dan. 8:5-8]

    One of the horns is small but grows great, like the prince of host. It prospers in everything, throws stars down to the ground and tramples on them, stopping the daily sacrifice, destroying the sanctuary and throwing truth to the ground.[Dan. 8:9-12]

    Daniel is told how long it will take for the vision to be fulfilled '2,300 evenings and mornings' then the sanctuary will be reconsecrated (cleansed).[Dan. 8:13-14]

    Daniel 8:13-14 ...'Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot? And he said, unto two thousand and three hundred days, then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.'

    So "the sanctuary" is to be cleansed at the end of this 2300 day time period. We know that there is no longer an earthly sanctuary which was used by the Levitical priesthood, so this sanctuary must be the original sanctuary in heaven where Jesus dwells and mediates for us (which Hebrews 8 and 9 confirms).

    Now some try to claim that this prophecy relates to a literal 2300 days, and that it will happen in the last days. But this cannot be right. If you read the vision in Daniel 8, you will see that it talks about a ram, a goat and a little horn. And Gabriel actually confirms who these animals represent. They represent Medo-Persia and Greece. Which means the horn that comes after them is Rome (more specifically, Papal Rome).

    So what does this mean? Think about it. If the vision concerning the 2300 days includes Medo-Persia, Greece and Rome, then that time frame of "2300 days" MUST be able to span those nations. Would 2300 literal days span those nations? No, but 2300 YEARS would! And this also means the 2300 "days" have to start sometime during the reign of Medo-Persia, because that is the first kingdom in the vision (the ram).

    This also lines up with the fact that the 70 weeks prophecy of Daniel 9 is part of the 2300 day vision, because at the end of Daniel 8 it says that no one understood the 2300 day vision. Then in Daniel 9, Gabriel says he has come to give Daniel understanding about THE VISION. What vision? The only one that is not understood is the 2300 "days". Gabriel then goes on to explain the 70 weeks prophecy, which everyone agrees is not 70 literal weeks (490 days), but 490 years. So the 2300 prophetic "days" also have to be years

    Another reason why the 70 weeks prophecy has to be part of the 2300 "days" is that without the 70 weeks which Gabriel gives to help Daniel understand the 2300 "days", we would not have a starting point for the 2300 days, which would render that prophecy useless. But with the 70 weeks, we have a starting date.

    So we go to Daniel 8, which is where this 2300 day "vision" begins. Daniel 8:2 ...'And I saw in a vision'... So Daniel is now in a vision.

    (v3)...'Then I lifted up mine eyes, and saw, and, behold, there stood before the river a ram which had two horns.'

    (v5)...'And as I was considering, behold, an he goat came from the west on the face of the whole earth, and touched not the ground: and the goat had a notable horn between his eyes.'

    Notice that these two animals are animals that were used in the Old Testament "sanctuary" service. This is another point which shows that the 2300 "days" (years) which deals with the sanctuary are connected to Medo-Persia and Greece, and cannnot be placed in the last days. So just to confirm that the identity of these two animals are without any doubt, let us read what Gabriel says.

    Daniel 8:20-21 ...'The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia. And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.'

    Then in verse 9 we have this little horn that comes out from one of the "four winds of heaven", which basically represents the four directions of the earth. Now what kingdom rose to power after Greece? Pagan Rome! Which later on became Papal Rome, with the Roman Catholic Church taking control. Now this little horn MUST be Papal Rome, because it is the same little horn power that is described in Daniel 7.

    Daniel 8:9-12 ...'And out of one of them came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great, toward the south, and toward the east, and toward the pleasant land. And it waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them. Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of the sanctuary was cast down. And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered.'

    Now lets look at the little horn more closely:

    Daniel 8:24-25.. And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand.

    This little horn has power, but not by his own power as we see in verse 24. The Papacy only had power because of the Roman Empire at first and under the 'holy Roman Empire, the other nations that supported it. Now the little horn goes and destroys the holy people, and history clearly shows the Papacy tired to destroy every true believer and had tens of millions of Christians persecuted and put to death.The little horn shall magnify himself in his heart as we see in verse 25. The Papal church, lead by the pope magnified itself in place of God on earth. We know the little horn took away the "daily" and cast the sanctuary to the ground from verse 11. The "daily" represents the daily ministration of Christ in the heavenly sanctuary and the Papacy cast that to the ground by replacing Christ's ministration for us with their own Roman Catholic ministration by the priests. Without doubt, this is the same antichrist little horn as in Daniel 7, which is the Papal Church of Rome.

    Now in verse 13, Daniel asks for what length of time will the vision be, and the answer is 2300 days (years), and then the heavenly sanctuary will be cleansed. Now at this point we do not have a starting date for this 2300 day prophecy. So we need to continue on into chapter 9, because at the end of Chapter 8, Daniel says that he became sick from the vision and could not understand it. But we will see the angel Gabriel come back in chapter 9 to reveal the all important starting point of the 2300 days (years).

    Daniel 9:21-23 ...'Yea, whiles I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the evening oblation. And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding. At the beginning of thy supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to shew thee; for thou art greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision.'

    So we know that whatever Gabriel is about to say, it is connected with the vision of the 2300 days (years) in chapter 8, because at the end of that vision Daniel says that it could not be understood, and there is no other vision that Daniel needs understanding about. So now Gabriel has come to give Daniel understanding.

    The 2300 day prophecy of Daniel 8 was understood and held by the Protestant churches during the Reformation. Le Roy Froom, writes "The Reformation ... was really born of a twofold discovery--first, the rediscovery of Christ and His salvation; and second, the discovery of the identity of Antichrist and his subversions....The reformers were unanimous in its acceptance. And it was this interpretation of prophecy that lent emphasis to their reformatory action. It led them to protest against Rome with extraordinary strength and undaunted courage.... This was the rallying point and the battle cry that made the Reformation unconquerable."

    Now to understand the 2300 "days" you need a starting date! There is no other starting date in Daniel for the 2300 day prophecy and as stated above, Gabriel had come to give Daniel understanding about the 2300 days (years) vision. So this 70 weeks prophecy HAS to be connected with the 2300 days. There is no doubt whatsoever that the decree to restore Jerusalem is the starting date. Now if you read the prophecy of the 70 weeks of Daniel , you will see that the starting date for this decree is 457 B.C.

    Daniel 9:24-27 ...'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. 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. And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. 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.'

    The Protestant Reformation saw and there is no doubt whatsoever that Daniel's 70 weeks and the 2300 days have the same starting date of 457 B.C. when Artaxerxes decreed that the rebuilding of Jerusalem could continue and be completed.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2017
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