Speaking out for Truth has always been a hallmark of the Church. God gave man breath to live; man, in gratitude, should use that breath to magnify God. Peter instructed the Church to do exactly that when he wrote: “But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; (15) But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:” (1 Peter 3:14-15)
With a wise answer, the Church must be able to answer both the critic and the curious about the trustworthiness of the Bible. The Church is called to cast down imaginations (arguments) that come against the Truth. This type answer is part of the ministry of reconciliation since Truth is what sets men free! About this the Apostle Paul wrote: “(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds;) Casting down imaginations [arguments], and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ; And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.” (2 Corinthians 10:4-6)
As is true in all aspects of apologetics (defense or proof of Christianity), one must also have a ready answer to give to those who oppose Jesus’ prophetic Word. Prophecy is much more than just an opinion about the issues of the Last Days, for it actually is proof of both the identity and the authenticity of the true Messiah of God. About this Jesus said, “Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.” (John 5:39) He also said, “These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me.” (Luke 24:44) These words are the proof that the early church used as their evidence of Jesus being their one true Messiah. Some examples are: Philip said, “We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, did write, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph,” when telling Nathanael why he believed Jesus was the awaited Messiah. (See John 1:45); Paul “expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till evening,” when he witnessed about Jesus (See Acts 28:23); and statements such as “But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets,” were used by Paul to verify his epistle’s writings. (See Romans 3:21)
One key in determining the correct view of Bible prophecy is found in whether or not there is a one-week gap between the 69th and 70th week of Daniel 9:24-27. The timeframe of when this 70th week is to occur can be surmised by knowing when the six points found in Daniel 9:24 were to be fulfilled. If all of these six points are yet unfulfilled, as Dispensationalists claim, then there has to be a gap of time to allow them time to take place; but if these points have already taken place, as Fulfilled Eschatologists claim, then there would be no scriptural reason for a gap, which would mean Daniel’s 70th week is now a past event.
Even though both prophetic camps agree upon the importance of this verse, I noticed that Dispensationalists mostly stay clear of verse 24 of Daniel 9. This has been true in articles and videos that have been produced against the Preterists’ stance. Maybe the reason why they can’t talk about this is because (1) if they show these six points are now fulfilled they thereby nullify the reason for a gap between the 69th and 70th week, or (2) if they say that Jesus did not complete that which He came to do, all of which are found in these six points, then their ministries, like the critics of Christianity, would be saying that Jesus is a “failed messiah.” This last point may seem harsh, but if a person will study the anti-missionary writings of Jewish Rabbis who work to “unconvert” Jewish Christians, they will see that this is exactly the approach that they use.
To give you an example of this, I am including a study from a leading anti-missionary group called “Jews for Judaism.” (www.jewsforjudaism.org) Found in the “Reference Center” area of their website, under “How to Respond,” is an answer to the following question: “How can we be sure that Jesus’ promises to return are false prophecy?” The writer responded, “Jesus, it is claimed, prophesied that certain unspecified individuals would not die until they would see either ‘the Son of Man coming in his kingdom’ (Matthew 16:28), or ‘see the kingdom of God after it has come with power’ (Mark 9:1), or see the ‘kingdom of God’ (Luke 9:27).” He then specified how he accounted for such a finding by using the following biblical illustrations:
(2) The early Christian community was convinced of the imminent return of Jesus, as the Messiah, and the inauguration of the kingdom of God. It never happened (See Mark 9:1)
(3) Matthew’s Jesus makes an explicit statement as to his expectation of returning within the lifetime of many of his contemporaries, and before the apostles visited all the cities of Israel. (See Matthew 10:23, 10:5-7, 3:2)
From these points this anti-Jesus article concludes by surmising since Jesus did not come as “rapidly as promised,” and since the fulfillment of Matthew 10:23 did not occur “by the time of the last of the original band of the apostles died,” then Jesus’ promise remains “unfulfilled,” and because so, “Jesus is simply never returning.”
Judaism is not the only group to use the “soon coming” texts of Jesus and His apostles to prove Jesus was a failed messiah, foragnostics, atheists, and humanists also use them as reason for their denial of Jesus. One such case is found in the writings of atheist Bertrand Russell:
“I am concerned with Christ as He appears in the Gospels, taking the gospel narrative as it stands, and there one does find some things that do not seem to be very wise. For one thing, He certainly thought that His second coming would occur in clouds of glory before the death of all the people who were living at that time. There are a great many texts that prove that. He says, for instance, ‘Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of Man be come.’ Then He says, ‘There are some standing here which shall not taste death till the Son of Man comes into His kingdom’; and there are a lot of places where it is quite clear that He believed that His second coming would happen during the lifetime of many then living. That was the belief of His earlier followers, and it was the basis of a good deal of His moral teaching. In that respect, clearly He was not so wise as some other people have been, and He was certainly not superlatively wise.” (Why I am not a Christian, 1927, p.3)
It is little wonder why individuals and groups such as these continue using these texts in such a manner because advocates of the Futurist doctrine offer no biblical answers to satisfy such misinterpretations. This mostly occurs because these teachers themselves feel that either Jesus missed this prophesied coming, or that He or His apostles’ understanding of its timing was in error. Either of these brings into question the legitimacy of Jesus being the true biblically prophesied Messiah and consequently the legitimacy of the Christian faith as a whole.
An account from Historic Premillennialist, George Eldon Ladd, of Fuller Theological Seminary, exemplifies how Jesus and His Apostles’ credibility is sacrificed when proving the Futurist position. While attempting to explain away the soon coming issues, Ladd bemoaned:
“These events are ‘soon’ to ‘take place’… These words have troubled the commentators. The simplest solution is to take the preterist view and to say that John, like the entire Christian community, thought that the coming of the Lord was near, when in fact they were wrong. Our Lord himself seems to share this error in perspective in the saying: “This generation will not pass away before all these things take place (Mark 13:30).” (A Commentary on the Revelation of John, Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans; p. 22)
Ladd’s summation can rightfully be seen as a direct attack against the inerrancy of Jesus and His apostles. Statements like his only add fuel to the already roaring fire critics have fanned against Christianity and the soundness of its Bible. In answer to Ladd’s statements, founder and chairman of Ligonier Ministries, Dr. R.C. Sproul replied:
“To be candid, I find this treatment of the question somewhat disturbing. Ladd grants that “the simplest solution” is the preterist view, but he believes this drives us to the conclusion that the entire early Christian community, including the Apostle John and our Lord Himself was wrong. Of course this is not the preterist view. The preterist argues, not only that the entire early church believed the Lord’s coming was near (at least with respect to his coming in judgment to Israel), but also that this belief proved to be true.” (The Last Days According to Jesus, p. 134)
True Christianity does not follow the vagary traditions of man but instead the veracious Word and Spirit of God. Think about where man’s ideas have led over the years. Critics burned Galileo at the stake because he taught the earth revolved around the sun. Was he heretical just because the clergy of his day taught differently than he? William Tyndale translated the Bible into the common language of his day. He died at the hands of a “church” who did not agree with his belief that God’s Word should be available to all men. Did this conflict make Tyndale wrong? What of Christopher Columbus? Was his belief in there being a new land in error since his critics taught against such an existence? What if he had cowered from his seaward exploration due to their opinions or superstitions? Similarly, are those who teach fulfilled eschatology wrong simply because there are men who say so? Are Christians to pronounce something as biblical Truth from evidence they gather from man’s word or from God’s Word? Those who stand for Jesus and His Bible surely would answer such a question with a resounding, “Yes” to God’s Word and “No” to man’s!
If Jesus failed to fulfill His predictions in the allotted time He and His apostles gave them, then the critics are correct. This cannot be true for we must remember that all the apostles and First Century Church expected Jesus would return within their lifetime quite simply because He told them He would. (See John 14:26, 16:13; Matthew 10:23; 16:27-28; 24:34) The Church can no longer remain silent to the critics’ accusations. Our silence only amplifies their statements that Jesus is a failed messiah. We must have solid, consistent, biblically supported answers that satisfy such arguments. This requires we teach the soon at hand language in the context in which it is written without adding to it any man-inspired traditions. Such a response is the critic’s Achilles’ heel, for biblically it proves God’s Word is true and thusly that Jesus is a triumphant Messiah! Jesus perfectly fulfilling all things written of Him was the early Church’s message to the doubting world of their time; this same evidence remains our greatest response to those censorious of God’s Word today.
THE SIX POINTS OF DANIEL 9:24
(NOTE: The included bolds, UPPERCASES, and [bracketed words] in this study are added for emphasis.)
One of the greatest testimonies of Jesus and His Bible’s inerrancy is found in Jesus’ fulfillment of Daniel’s 70th Week. While under inspiration of the Spirit of God, Daniel prophesied six points would be fulfilled during 70 weeks (490 years). This means once these conditions were completed then we would know this 70 Week prophecy is fulfilled. Here are those points:
(24) Seventy weeks [490 years] are determined upon thy people [Jews] and upon thy holy city, [Jerusalem] [to accomplish six things]  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.
The timeframe for this is 70 weeks of years, or 490 years. Notice “490” (seventy times seven) is the same number of times Jesus told Peter he should forgive those who sinned against him (See Matthew 18:21-22). No wonder Jesus used this number; it was the exact amount of time God said He would forgive before bringing His judgment.
Daniel 9:26 states, “After threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off.” This passage confirms these six points could not be fulfilled during the first 69 weeks, but instead would occur sometime during the 70th week. This special designation is the reason why the 70th week was specially set aside from the other 69 weeks in Daniel’s prophecy. This timeframe is explained as “seven weeks” (forty-nine years), “threescore and two weeks” (four hundred and thirty-four years), and “one week” (seven years), which equals 490 years or 70 weeks of years (See Daniel 9:25-27). In the midst of the last week, the Messiah is to be cut off. This is what happened; Jesus was crucified 3½ years into His ministry. This cutting off of the Messiah made way for all six points in Daniel 9:24 to be completely fulfilled.
The key question is: are these six points of Daniel 9:24 are already fulfilled, or are they yet to be fulfilled sometime in the future? The only trusted source to answer this question is the Bible itself. From its pages we find all six of these points were already fulfilled in detail by Jesus Christ. We will now look to see where the scriptures confirm these were fulfilled in every detail and in the time frame they were predicted.
1. TO FINISH THE TRANSGRESSION
The Old Testament repeatedly deals with Israel’s transgression of the Law of God. Their past transgressions are what Daniel was praying about when the angel revealed that there would be 490 more years until the people of Israel would commit their greatest transgression—the killing of their Messiah. This great sin would finish the transgressions of Israel and make their city [Jerusalem] and their sanctuary [Temple] desolate. Jesus confirmed this coming destruction in Matthew 23, where He forewarned the Jews of His day that destruction would come against those who rebelled against His New Covenant.
Deuteronomy 28:1, 14-15
(1) And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the LORD thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: [See Deuteronomy 28:2-13 for blessings]
(14) And thou shalt not go aside from any of the words which I command thee this day, to the right hand, or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them.
(15) But it shall come to pass, if thou wilt not hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe to do all his commandments and his statutes which I command thee this day; that all these curses shall come upon thee, and overtake thee: [See remainder of Deuteronomy 28 for curses]
(29) Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
(30) And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.
(31) Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.
(32) Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers. [This is the same as “finish the transgression.” They did this by killing Jesus and His messengers.]
(33) Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?
(34) Wherefore, behold, I send unto you prophets, and wise men, and scribes: and some of them ye shall kill and crucify; and some of them shall ye scourge in your synagogues, and persecute them from city to city:
(35) That upon you may come all the righteous blood shed upon the earth, from the blood of righteous Abel unto the blood of Zacharias son of Barachias, whom ye slew between the temple and the altar.
(36) Verily I say unto you, All these things shall come upon this generation.
(37) O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!
(38) Behold, your house is left unto you desolate.
Notice that Jesus said, “All these things shall come upon THIS generation.” This shows He was referring to the generation He was speaking to at that time. He confirmed this again in Matthew 24:34.
(34) Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
The Apostle Peter told the Jews in Acts 2 that they were guilty of killing their Messiah, and that they should save themselves from THAT UNTOWARD (stained or blemished) generation.
(36) Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.
(37) Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?
(38) Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
(39) For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.
(40) And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from this untoward generation.
The Apostle Paul also said this coming wrath would be upon the Jews of his generation.
1 Thessalonians 2:14-16
(14) For ye, brethren, became followers of the churches of God which in Judaea are in Christ Jesus: for ye also have suffered like things of your own countrymen, even as they have of the Jews:
(15) Who both killed the Lord Jesus, and their own prophets, and have persecuted us; and they please not God, and are contrary to all men:
(16) Forbidding us to speak to the Gentiles that they might be saved, to fill up their sins alway: for the wrath is come upon them to the uttermost.
(See also: Matthew 3:7-10, 12:34, 16:4, 17:17, 23:33; Mark 8:38)
2. TO MAKE AN END OF SIN
During Moses’ first Passover, the same sacrificial lamb that brought judgments against God’s enemies also brought protection to God’s covenant people. It was very similar here as well except this time the sacrifice came in the form of a man named Jesus, and His sacrifice was not temporary, but forever brought redemption for mankind’s sin.
Albert Barnes’ Notes on the Bible
And to make an end of sins – Margin, “TO SEAL UP.” The difference here in the text and the margin arises from a difference in the readings in the Hebrew. The common reading in the text is chathem – from chatham – “to seal, to seal up.” But the Hebrew marginal reading is a different word – hathem, from tamam – “to complete, to perfect, to finish.” The “pointing” in the text in the word chatem is not the proper pointing of that word, which would have been chetom, but the Masoretes, as is not unfrequently the case, gave to the word in the text the pointing of another word which they placed in the margin. The marginal reading is found in fifty-five manuscripts (Lengerke), but the weight of authority is decidedly in favor of the common reading in the Hebrew text – “to seal,” and not to “finish,” as it is in our translation.
The marginal reading, “to finish,” was doubtless substituted by some transcribers, or rather “suggested” by the Masoretes, because it seemed to convey a better signification to say that “sin would be finished,” than to say that it would be “sealed.” The Vulgate has followed the reading in the margin – et finem accipiat peccatum; Theodotion has followed the other reading, sphragisaihamartias. Luther also has it, “to seal.” Coverdale, “that sin may have an end.” THE TRUE RENDERING IS, DOUBTLESS, “TO SEAL SIN;” AND THE IDEA IS THAT OF REMOVING IT FROM SIGHT; TO REMOVE IT FROM VIEW. ‘The expression is taken,’ says Lengerke, “from the custom of sealing up those things which one lays aside and conceals.” Thus in Job 9:7, “And sealeth up the stars;” that is, he so shuts them up in the heavens as to prevent their shining – so as to hide them from the view. They are concealed, hidden, made close – as the contents of a letter or package are sealed, indicating that no one is to examine them.
See the note at that passage. So also in Job 37:7, referring to winter, it is said, “He sealeth up the hand of every man, that all men may know his work.” That is, in the winter, when the snow is on the ground, when the streams are frozen, the labors of the farmer must cease. The hands can no more be used in ordinary toil. Every man is prevented from going abroad to his accustomed labor, and is, as it were, “sealed up” in his dwelling. Compare Jer. 32:11, Jer. 32:14; Isa. 29:11; Son. 4:12. THE IDEA IN THE PASSAGE BEFORE US IS, THAT THE SINS OF OUR NATURE WILL, AS IT WERE, BE SEALED UP, OR CLOSED, OR HIDDEN, SO THAT THEY WILL NOT BE SEEN, OR WILL NOT DEVELOP THEMSELVES; THAT IS, “THEY WILL BE INERT, INEFFICIENT, POWERLESS.” —Prof. Stuart. The language is applicable to anything that would hide them from view, or remove them from sight—as a book whose writing is so sealed that we cannot read it; a tomb that is so closed that we cannot enter it and see its contents; a package that is so sealed that we do not know what is within it; a room that is so shut up that we may not enter it, and see what is within.
It is not to be supposed that Daniel would see clearly how this was to be done; but we, who have now a full revelation of the method by which God can remove sin, can understand the method in which this is accomplished by the blood of the atonement, to wit, that “BY” THAT ATONEMENT SIN IS NOW FORGIVEN, OR IS TREATED AS IF IT WERE HIDDEN FROM THE VIEW, AND A SEAL, WHICH MAY NOT BE BROKEN, PLACED ON WHAT COVERS IT. The language thus used, as we are now able to interpret it, is strikingly applicable to the work of the Redeemer, and to the method by which God removes sin. In not a few manuscripts and editions the word rendered “sins” is in the singular number. The amount of authority is in favor of the common reading—sins—though the sense is not materially varied. The work would have reference to “sin,” and the effect would be to seal it, and hide it from the view.
(20) But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife; for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
(21) And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
(26) Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.
(10) Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.
(11) This is the stone which was set at naught of you builders, which is become the head of the corner.
(12) Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
(8) But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
(9) Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
(26) For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself.
(11) But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building;
(12) Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.
(13) For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:
(14) How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
(9) Then said he, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first, that he may establish the second.
(10) By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
(11) And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins:
(12) But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;
(13) From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool.
(14) For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
(14) Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
1 Peter 3:18
(18) For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
(5) And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
How anyone could ignore these, or any of the other scriptures that clearly show Jesus’ sacrifice was God’s perfect and final sacrifice for man’s sins, is beyond me, but Dispensationalists must, otherwise they couldn’t create their needed gap. I would rather believe what the Bible says about the work of the cross and the sufficiency of Jesus’ blood, than to believe what some man’s study notes say the blood of bulls and goats will do during an “endtime” covenant of which the Bible speaks nothing.
3. TO MAKE RECONCILIATION FOR INIQUITY
Some scholars feel this word “reconciliation” should have been “atonement” instead. That really doesn’t matter since they both mean “to bring into agreement or harmony; make compatible or consistent.” Since the fall of Adam, mankind has been born into this world with a nature to sin. Such sin makes man a natural-born enemy with his Creator. To change this status and to regain a close relationship with their Creator, mankind needed an atonement that could reconcile their nature back with God’s. The blood of Jesus was that atoning sacrifice that brought mankind that opportunity, for His sacrifice brought to man a new nature that was not born after their natural father Adam, but rather one born after their heavenly Father Jesus!
Notice in these verses how “atonement” and “reconciliation” are spoken of as taking place at Calvary, and was now made available to all through the gospel message.
(8) But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
(9) Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him.
(10) For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.
(11) And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
Colossians 1:20, 21
(20) And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.
(21) And you, that were sometime alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now hath he reconciled
2 Corinthians 5:17-20
(17) Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
(18) And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation;
(19) To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation.
(20) Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.
(17) Wherefore in all things it behooved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.
In his notable commentary, Adam Clarke indicates that Jesus fulfilled the requirements for biblical “atonement” and “reconciliation.”
Adam Clarke’s Commentary on the Bible
To make reconciliation (ulechapper, “to make atonement or expiation”) for iniquity; which he did by the once offering up of himself.
(14) Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;
In the next comments, Earl L Henn (1934-1997) offers a great explanation as to what Paul meant by “handwriting of ordinances.” The following are Henn’s words:
“In their struggle to find a New Testament scripture that supports their misconception that God’s law is ‘done away,’ antinomians point to Colossians 2:14 to ‘prove’ that Christ nailed the law of God to the cross. Proponents of such a teaching say that the ‘handwriting of requirements [ordinances, KJV]’ refers to the law ‘that was against us.’ They further claim that Christ ‘took it out of the way’ or abolished the law.
The phrase ‘handwriting of requirements’ is translated from the Greek phrase cheirographon tois dogmasin. Cheirographon means anything written by hand, but can more specifically apply to a legal document, bond, or note of debt. Dogmasin refers to decrees, laws, or ordinances, and in this context means a body of beliefs or practices that have become the guidelines governing a person’s conduct or way of life.
What Paul is saying is that, BY HIS DEATH, CHRIST HAS JUSTIFIED US—BROUGHT US INTO ALIGNMENT WITH HIS LAW—AND WIPED OUT THE NOTE OF GUILT OR DEBT THAT WE OWED AS A RESULT OF OUR SINS. Before repentance, our lives had been governed by the standards and values of this present, evil world—the ‘decrees, laws and ordinance’ of the society in which we lived. AFTER REPENTANCE AND ACCEPTANCE OF CHRIST, WE EMBARK ON A NEW WAY OF LIFE AND LIVE BY GOD’S STANDARDS AND VALUES. CONSEQUENTLY, GOD WIPES OUT THE DEBT WE ACQUIRED AS A RESULT OF OUR SINS AND IMPUTES RIGHTEOUSNESS TO US.
Also notice that the phrase ‘handwriting of requirements’ restates the phrase immediately before it. ‘Having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us’ parallels ‘having forgiven you all trespasses.’ Thus, Paul could not be referring to the law itself but rather to the record of our transgression of that law—sin!
The last sentence in verse 14 reads: ‘And He has taken it out of the way…’ In this sentence, the word ‘it‘ is a singular pronoun and refers back to the singular word ‘handwriting.’ ‘Requirements’ could not be its antecedent because ‘requirements’ is plural. So, some kind of handwriting—a note, a record, or a citation—was affixed to the cross.
Historically, only two objects were nailed to the stake of crucifixion: 1) the condemned person and 2) an inscription naming the crimes for which he was being punished. Thus, when Jesus was crucified, only His body and Pilate’s inscription (‘This is Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews’; see Matthew 27:37; Mark 15:26; Luke 23:38; John 19:19) were nailed to the cross. Normally, the inscription would be more accusative, saying something like, ‘This is Jesus of Nazareth, who rebelled against Caesar.’ Pilate’s complimentary inscription replaced the customary note or record of guilt—the ‘handwriting of requirements’ that would have been found nailed to the crosses of the two malefactors crucified with Him.
Just before He died, when the Father forsook Him (Matthew 27:46), our sins were symbolically nailed to the cross in His body. ‘Who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed’ (I Peter 2:24). At the time of His crucifixion, Jesus Christ became sin for us. ‘For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him’ (II Corinthians 5:21). Our note of debt that we owed God as a result of our sins is what was ‘taken out of the way’ and ‘nailed . . to the cross.”
It is easy to see this point is not referring to a coming 7-year tribulation where the breaking of a covenant by some antichrist causes animal sacrifices to cease; but is instead referring to Jesus Christ’s death on Calvary, which satisfied man’s payment for sin and offered him a way to walk in close fellowship with his God. Jesus’ sacrifice stopped animal sacrifices from being acceptable to God, since there is now no scriptural reason for them to ever occur again. Jesus’ sacrifice also occurred 3½ years into His ministry, which fits perfectly the description of the cutting off in the midst of Daniel’s final 70th week (See Daniel 9:27).
4. TO BRING IN EVERLASTING RIGHTEOUSNESS
Webster’s 1828 Dictionary defines righteousness as:
“Purity of heart and rectitude of life; conformity of heart and life to the divine law. Righteousness, as used in Scripture and theology, in which it is chiefly used, is nearly equivalent to holiness, comprehending holy principles and affections of heart, and conformity of life to the divine law. It includes all we call justice, honesty and virtue, with holy affections; in short, it is true religion.”
Without being led by the Spirit of Christ, no one would be able to live up to this definition. Webster’s also described righteousness as, “The active and passive obedience of Christ, by which the law of God is fulfilled. Daniel 9.” Even Noah Webster connected the work of Christ to Daniel 9, because he also recognized that Jesus was the one who ushered in everlasting righteousness for mankind, and thereby fulfilled this 4th point. These next scriptures help to show why this is true:
(21) But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets;
(22) Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference:
(23) For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
(24) Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus:
(25) Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
(26) To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.
(13) For the promise, that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Abraham, or to his seed, through the law, but through the righteousness of faith.
Romans 5:17, 18
(17) For if by one man’s offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.)
(18) Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.
Romans 9:30, 31
(30) What shall we say then? That the Gentiles, which followed not after righteousness, have attained to righteousness, even the righteousness which is of faith.
(31) But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness.
The Bible shows the righteousness of God never could come through the Law, so this 4th point could not be referring to a future time of Law-keeping. Jesus said, “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33) He referred to righteousness as being available now. Paul “amen’d” that when he said, “For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” (Romans 14:17) This was Paul’s way of saying God’s righteousness does not come through man’s religion of works, but through man’s faith in Jesus’ work.
5. TO SEAL UP THE VISION AND THE PROPHECY
This prophecy seems to carry more than one meaning. One interpretation says it fulfills and completes the prophecy concerning Jesus’ coming during the time of the 490 years, and was not totally completed until the conclusion of the 70th week. Another interpretation suggests the word translated “seal” deals with the blindness that is put on Israel because of their rebellion. This blindness made them unable to see the prophecy fulfillment happening around them. Regardless which of these may be the better interpretation, they both end with judgment coming against Israel coming because of her rejection of the New Covenant. (See Isaiah 6:10-12, 28:9-12, 28:15-18, 29:1-3, 29:6, 29:10-14; Matthew 13:14-15; John 12:39-41)
Either of these interpretations ends with the same result, which is that they were both fulfilled during the timeframe of the 70th week, and during the time of Jesus’ ministry. Both of these also show that generation’s rejection of Jesus’ New Covenant culminated with the destruction of Jerusalem, before that generation ended in 70 AD.
More than either of these first two explanations though is the fact that ALL SCRIPTURE LEADS TO ONE SUBJECT—JESUS. He is the One who said, “Search the Scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me.” (John 5:39) Paul similarly agreed with this when he said, “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.” (Galatians 3:24)
We see, from Genesis to Revelation, that the Bible speaks about one master plan of which Jesus was the focus. He was first mentioned in Genesis 3:15 when God said, “And I will put enmity between thee [satan] and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.” This is, of course, the first promise recorded in our Bibles of Jesus coming as the savior for mankind. This promise was made at the time of Adam’s fall, and was given as an assurance from God that mankind would someday receive from Him a restoration. This promise was carried throughout the Bible and is now fulfilled as stated twice by the Apostle Peter.
(18) But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled.
(19) Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;
(20) And he shall send Jesus Christ, which before was preached unto you:
(21) Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things, which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began.
(22) For Moses truly saidunto the fathers, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear in all things whatsoever he shall say unto you.
(23) And it shall come to pass, that every soul, which will not hear that prophet, shall be destroyed from among the people.
(24) Yea, and all the prophets from Samuel and those that follow after, as many as have spoken, have likewise foretold of these days.
(25) Ye are the children of the prophets, and of the covenant which God made with our fathers, saying unto Abraham, And in thy seed shall all the kindreds of the earth be blessed.
(26) Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.
1 Peter 1:9-11
(9) Receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls.
(10) Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that should come unto you:
(11) Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow.
(See also Romans 1:1-2, 3:21, 16:25-26)
Jesus was God’s plan from the foundation of the world (Revelation 13:8)
- Angels announced His coming (Matthew 1:20-25; Luke 1:26-38)
- A virgin brought Him into this world (Luke 1:26-35)
- Shepherds were called to His birth (Luke 2:8-17)
- Magi came to pay Him homage (Matthew 2:1-12)
- Simeon and Anna desired to see His arrival (Luke 2:22-38)
- John the Baptist prepared His way (Matthew 3; Mark 1:1-11; Luke 3:1-23; John 1:19-34)
- The cross became His plan for the redemption of mankind (Matthew 27:35-38; Mark 15:25-28; Luke 23:33-38; John 19:18-24; Revelation 13:8)
- An empty tomb was His assurance of His reigning power in heaven and in earth (Matthew 28:5-6; Mark 16:4-6; Luke 24:1-6; John 20:6-17)
- The outpouring of His Holy Ghost on Pentecost was the reuniting of His Spirit with man’s (Acts 1:4-8, 2:1-40; Ezekiel 36:27; John 14:17; Romans 8:9)
- And on and on are these evidences found throughout the scriptures, which show Jesus’ arrival here on earth was the beginning of the fulfilling of all six points in Daniel 9:24; the sealing up of the vision (plan) and of the prophecy (how the plan would come) was Him fulfilling the promises made first in the Garden of Eden, of which He said He would destroy the works of the sin nature in man and thereby reunite man to the relationship he once had with his Creator.
Remember, this passage in Daniel uses the singular tense of “vision” and “prophecy,” not the plural. This shows these words are referring to a certain happening, not to several different ones. This allows the prophecies about the coming judgment of Jerusalem to be excluded from this reference, and thereby allows the flow of all of Daniel 9:24’s points to stay consistently focused on God’s master plan—Jesus.
This promise of Jesus’ coming to fulfill all the promises of reconciliation for mankind is found in the statement that the heavenly voice pronounced at the Mount of Transfiguration. One well-known Dispensational teacher used this happening as an explanation why in Matthew 16:28, Jesus said, “Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.” This coming, he said, happened just a few days later at the Mount of Transfiguration. There are more than a few problems with such a stance:
- Jesus would have seemed foolish to have prophesied such a thing. Imagine a man standing in a congregation and proclaiming, “Thus saith the Lord; there are some here that will not die in the next few days.” Most would have said, “Yeah, anyone here could have safely said the same thing…so big deal!” For Jesus this becomes even sillier when you realize the Bible records no tragedy or unusual incident occurring that caused any of them to die before this Mountain experience took place.
- Biblically speaking, such a position is completely inconsistent with the other clear “soon coming” statements found elsewhere in the Bible. When Jesus said “soon,” for Him to remain honest, He must have meant “soon,” and not some thousands of years later.
- Such a position makes light of Jesus saying that some hearing His words then would not die until they saw Him coming into His Kingdom. Such a statement is filled with references to death and glory. For it to be simply the Mount of Transfiguration would only include the three, Peter, James, and John, and would leave out all the other apostles, disciples, and mankind from witnessing when and how such an ushering occurred.
The truth is the Bible tells us why the Mount of Transfiguration took place. It was so Peter, James, and John could better understand that Jesus was the redeemer promised from the Law, the Psalms, and the Prophets, and so that they could later testify about this to increase man’s faith in Jesus. (See Matthew 17:9) As the voice of God spoke at this meeting, it confirmed that Jesus was the One who was to fulfill all the biblical prophecies regarding the Messiah. The following is what Matthew recorded:
(15) While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.
To the Jewish mind these words meant something more than just a heavenly exchange between God and man, for found within this proclamation are three snippets of scripture that reference the three divisions of the Old Testament—the Law, the Prophets, and the Psalms. As the voice of God spoke at this meeting, the apostles were literally looking at Elijah (who represented the prophets), Moses (who represented the Law), and Jesus (who was the heir to the throne of the Psalmist King David). These three made up the biblical requirement of three witnesses to establish a truth of God. (See Deuteronomy 19:15; Matthew 18:16; 2 Corinthians 13:1)
The first of these is when this voice said, “My Son.” This statement was referring to a Messianic prophecy found in the Psalms and was applied to Jesus in Acts.
(7) I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
(33) God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.
Similarly, “Well pleased,” was referencing Jesus as He is described by the Prophets and was applied to Jesus in Matthew.
(1) Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth [well pleased]; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles.
(18) Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall show judgment to the Gentiles.
The command to “Listen to Him,” was spoken by the Law giver, Moses. In Acts, Luke wrote that this command is to be applied to Jesus Christ.
(15) The LORD thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken; [Listen]
(37) This is that Moses, which said unto the children of Israel, A prophet shall the Lord your God raise up unto you of your brethren, like unto me; him shall ye hear.
Jesus is the Word made flesh. (John 1:1-14) He was the only One who fulfilled all that God promised concerning His salvation, and thereby sealed up the prophecy and the vision of His coming through His life, death, and resurrection. This is why Jesus’ last words on the cross were, “It is finished.” Strong’s Concordance says the word “finished” means, “To end, that is, complete, execute, conclude, discharge (a debt): – accomplish, make an end, expire, fill up, finish, go over, pay, perform.” (Strong’s G5055)
Darby’s translation of the Bible for this passage uses the word “consummated” in place of “finished.” According to Webster’s Dictionary the word “consummated” means, “Completed; perfected; ended.” These words are consistent with the view that Jesus sealed up, or made an end to, the visions and the prophecies foretold about His coming.
Once Jesus was nailed to the cross His master plan was put in an unstoppable motion. Jesus had already told His disciples that He would be crucified and then rise again on the third day. (Matthew 16:21; 17:23; 20:19; Mark 9:31, 10:34; Luke 9:22; 18:33) He also told them His resurrection would usher in a time that would reconnect (reconcile) man to God. When sin was introduced and accepted by Adam, he died spiritually, and the connection, or relationship, that he had previously enjoyed with God was severed. Jesus’ sacrifice changed all that since He became our substitutionary sacrifice by dying in our stead, and thereby made a way for us to live in fellowship again with God.
This fulfilled the promise in the Garden of Eden as well as the promise God made to Abraham. (Genesis 17:4, 5; Romans 4:17, 18) In this God said He was going to make that old man of faith a father of many nations. “Nations” is the Hebrew word “Goy.” Strong’s says this is a “foreign nation; hence a Gentile, heathen, nation, people.” (Strong’s H1471) As we see this promise come to pass in the New Testament, we see that it included Jews, Samaritans, and Gentiles. This is what Jesus’ sealing of the vision and the prophecy did; it allowed access to the Kingdom of God for both the Jews (Acts 2), Samaritans (Acts 8), and to the Gentiles (Acts 10). Jesus referred to these Goy in Matthew 28:19, for there He said to teach and baptize “all NATIONS” The word “nations” is “ethnos” which is similarly defined as, “A race (as of the same habit), that is, a tribe; specifically a foreign (non-Jewish) one (usually by implication pagan): – Gentile, heathen, nation, people.” (Strong’s G1484) Jesus was literally removing racism by saying this because, after the cross, all peoples were of the same race in God’s book, (Colossians 3:11) and all suffered the same problem of sin, (Romans 11:32) and all were given the same offer of grace for salvation through Jesus Christ. (Romans 1:16)
Jesus sealing up the vision and prophecy with His coming ushered in a new and living way and was the message of the Apostles.
(22) Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come:
(23) That Christ should suffer, and that he should be the first that should rise from the dead, andshould show light unto the people, [Jews] and to the Gentiles.
In 2 Corinthians 5:17 Paul said, “Therefore if any man be in Christ [the focus of the prophecy and the vision], he is a new creature [born again man]: old things are passed away [sinful Adamic nature]; behold, all things are become new [Christ’s spirit-led nature]. And in Galatians 6:15 Paul says, “For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision [Jew] availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision [Gentile], but a new creature.”
This is why the body of Christ—Jew, Samaritan, and Gentile—can be described as a “holy nation,” (1 Peter 2:9) because those born again truly are a set-aside dynamic new people. This defines the mystery of the ages, because God always intended making His true Israel both Jew and Gentile together, and never intended making it the exclusive institution like some have defined it. Concerning this see Ephesians 3:3-6:
(3) How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words,
(4) Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)
(5) Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
(6)That the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, and of the same body, andpartakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:
Colossians echoes this when it states…
(26) Even the mysterywhich hath been hid from ages and from generations, butnow is made manifest to his saints:
(27) To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory ofthis mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:
(28) Whom we preach, warning every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom; that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus:
(29) Whereunto I also labor, striving according to his working, which worketh in me mightily.
6. TO ANOINT THE MOST HOLY
Let’s first agree on the definition of “HOLY.” Webster’s 1828 Dictionary defines holy as:
“1. Properly, whole, entire or perfect, in a moral sense. Hence, pure in heart, temper or dispositions; free from sin and sinful affections. Applied to the Supreme Being, holy signifies perfectly pure, immaculate and complete in moral character; and man is more or less holy, as his heart is more or less sanctified, or purified from evil dispositions. We call a man holy, WHEN HIS HEART IS CONFORMED IN SOME DEGREE TO THE IMAGE OF GOD, AND HIS LIFE IS REGULATED BY THE DIVINE PRECEPTS. Hence, holy is used as nearly synonymous with good, pious, godly.
2. Hallowed; consecrated or set apart to a sacred use, or to the service or worship of God; a sense frequent in Scripture; as the holy sabbath; holy oil; holy vessels; a holy nation; the holy temple; a holy priesthood.”
From this we can see that HOLY simply means “set aside from the world and set aside to God.” This definition also makes it clear that “HOLY” also means “WHOLEY,” i.e. “WHOLE.” This is exactly what a person becomes when they totally consecrate their lives to God’s Will and Word—WHOLE! So by using this we can see that “MOST HOLY” means “THE MOST SET ASIDE WHOLE ONE THERE EVER WAS OR IS!” I must ask who else BUT JESUS could ever really MOST fit this definition?
The Bible tells us that Jesus is to be our example. An example signifies He was the One that we should pattern our life after to achieve; in this case, the goal of being the man God has called us ALL TO BE. I believe this means Jesus is THE IMAGE that God originally fashioned us all to be like. He is the real WHOLE man! If Jesus was not THE MOST “HOLY”, then we are striving for less than what God has asked by following His example. Peter doesn’t think Jesus is less. He said that He is THE EXAMPLE that we should seek.
1 Peter 1:13-16
(13) Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ;
(14) As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:
(15) But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
(16) Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.
As far as Jesus being the “THE MOST HOLY,” “THE MOST SET ASIDE,” or “THE MOST WHOLE” look what is said concerning His purpose and position.
(40) The disciple is not above his master: but every one that is perfect shall be as his master.
(14) And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.
(18) No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.
(16) For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
(18) He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.
1 John 4:9
(9) In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.
(21) And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.
(22) Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
(23) Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.
(30) And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favor with God.
(31) And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.
(32) He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:
(33) And he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.
(34) Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man?
(35) And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.
I could go on and on about this, but really this is just the ABC’s that most young Sunday school children learn in their classes. I hope my scriptures help make the foundational reasons why Jesus is THE MOST HOLY clearer to you.
Dispensationalists say the phrase “to anoint the most Holy” does not refer to the Lord Jesus Christ. They contend that the phrase is “kodesh kodashim,” which means “the most holy (place),” or “the holy of holies,” refers to a physical location in a physical building, which they say will be a rebuilt Jewish Temple. That could not be the case since there is not one scripture that says God will ever again have another physical Temple built, nor is there any that says He will ever again use its sacrificial system.
Moreover, God never really wanted a dwelling place built by hands, and He will never said He would return to one. Stephen supported this when before his martyrdom he said, “Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet, Heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest?” (Acts 7:48-49)
Jesus is the manifested “Holy of Holies.” The Bible says He is our “propitiation.” This means He is our “MERCY SEAT.” This is THE PLACE within the HOLY OF HOLIES, which God gave to man whereby he could come to make atonement for the sins of all mankind, and whereby he could supernaturally communicate with his heavenly Father.
“PROPTIATION,” defined by Strong’s: G2435 hilasterion hil-as-tay’-ree-on
Neuter of a derivative of G2433; an expiatory (place or thing), that is, (concretely) an atoning victim, or (specifically) the lid of the Ark (in the Temple): – mercyseat, propitiation.
(25) Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation [MERCY SEAT] through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
This shows Paul was saying Jesus is our “Mercy Seat.” Since the Mercy Seat was located within the Temple, and beyond the veil (which is said to now be Jesus’ flesh [Hebrews 10:20]—another reference to the Temple) of the Holy of Holies, we can see here another reference to Jesus being our MOST HOLY.
John said Jesus is our atonement…
1 John 2:2
(2) And he is the propitiation [atonement] for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
Paul said Jesus is our meeting place [Mercy Seat] through which we can talk with God…
1 Timothy 2:5
(5) For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
John said that Jesus was the Temple of the New Jerusalem (the Church)…
(22) And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it.
The term “Holy of Holies” is a rabbinic evasive synonym for “where the presence of God dwells.” Every good Apostolic should amen that understanding because “where the presence of God dwells” perfectly describes Jesus!!
Jesus WAS WHERE GOD WAS! The Holy of HOLIES is a double emphasis that says “GOD OF GODS.” or “LORD of LORDS.” To say that this was NOT JESUS misses everything that the Oneness preachers I know stand for.
Dispensationalists claim this “anoint the most holy” refers to a future Jewish Temple. But since there is not ONE SCRIPTURE that says there ever will be such a Temple we can deduce that this cannot be the case. Besides, Jesus said He was GREATER than the Temple.
(6) But I say unto you, That in this place is one greater than the temple.
(11) But Christ being come a high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building;
(19) Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,
(20) By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;
Daniel refers to something greater…
These truths show that this “anointing of the most holy” must be referring to something greater than a building…something greater like the most Holy—Jesus. He was the One who was called “Emmanuel,” which the Bible says is interpreted, “God with us.” (Matthew 1:23) Jesus’ coming allowed God’s presence to dwell—tabernacle—with man.
The anointing of significance that could fulfill this point from Daniel 9:24 happened at Jesus’ baptism. That anointing was the inauguration of Jesus’ ministry for it manifested Him as the Messiah of God and ushered in the beginning of Daniel’s 70th week. Jesus went from this anointing and began systematically fulfilling all the Messianic signs of Isaiah 61.
(29) The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world. [Make an end of sin]
(30) This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me.
(31) And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water. [Unto Messiah the prince. This started the final week of Daniel when Jesus began His ministry of the New Covenant]
(32) And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him. [Anoint the Most Holy]
(33) And I knew him not: but he that sent me to baptize with water, the same said unto me, Upon whom thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and remaining on him, the same is he which baptizeth with the Holy Ghost.
(34) And I saw, and bare record that this is the Son of God.
Adam Clarke’s Commentary on the Bible
And to anoint the Most Holy, kodesh kodashim, “the Holy of holies.” mashach, to anoint, (from which comes mashiach, the Messiah, the anointed one), signifies in general, to consecrate or appoint to some special office. Here it means the consecration or appointment of our blessed Lord, the Holy One of Israel, to be the Prophet, Priest, and King of mankind.
Isn’t it ironic that the apostle Peter, just like Dispensationalists of today, was at one time confused about God’s desire for a manmade physical dwelling place for His Spirit? Peter was the apostle that suggested building Moses, Elijah, and Jesus a physical dwelling place on the Mount of Transfiguration. (Mark 9:5) Later, after receiving the Spirit of Truth, Peter testified to the Jews (Acts 2) and to the Gentiles (Acts 10) that Jesus’ body was the true anointed dwelling place of God. (Colossians 2:9: “For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.”)
Peter also explained that John’s baptism of Jesus began the fulfillment of the six points of Daniel 9:24, and launched the beginning of the 70th week of Daniel. Peter did this when he told his listeners that Jesus would make them His earthly abode after they obeyed the New Covenant command to be born again!
Acts 2:32, 33
(32) This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.
(33) Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath shed forth this, which ye now see and hear.
Acts 10:37, 38
(37) That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached;
(38) How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.
A Dispensational teacher I spoke with on these six points of Daniel 9 said that nowhere in history is Jesus ever called the “Most Holy,” or the “Holy of Holies.” He said these terms were only used in conjunction with the room within the Temple that was set aside for the Ark of the Covenant. This man, though meaning well, is in error; I will include here a couple of examples why I say this:
The Early Church sung the fact that Jesus was the Most Holy in a song entitled “Phos Hilaron.” This song originates from an unknown author around the 3rd Century A.D. Its title is derived from its beginning words, “Phos Hilaron,” which is found in its original Greek form. As early as the late fourth century, this song was considered an ancient hymn, and was used as a standard opening piece in evening prayer services. Here are its lyrics translated into English:
Hail, gladdening Light, of his pure glory poured
Who is the immortal Father, heavenly, blest,
HOLIEST OF HOLIES, JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD.
Now we are come to the sun’s hour of rest,
The lights of evening round us shine,
We hymn the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit divine.
Worthiest art thou at all times to be sung
With undefiled tongue,
Son of our God, giver of life alone:
Therefore in all the world thy glories, Lord, thy own.
Another evidence of Jesus’ correspondence with the “Holy of Holies” is found in the writings of Athanasius. (296-372 AD) He referenced Jesus as being the “Holy of Holies, and also said, “The kingdom of Jerusalem ceased at the same time, because kings were to be anointed among them ONLY UNTIL THE HOLY OF HOLIES HAD BEEN ANOINTED.” This and many other statements which agree perfectly with the six points of Daniel 9 being fulfilled now are found in Athanasius’ following words:
“So the Jews are indulging in fiction, and TRANSFERRING PRESENT TIME TO FUTURE. When did PROPHET AND VISION CEASE from Israel? Was it not WHEN CHRIST CAME, THE HOLY ONE OF HOLIES? It is, in fact, A SIGN AND NOTABLE PROOF OF THE COMING OF THE WORD THAT JERUSALEM NO LONGER STANDS, neither is prophet raised up nor vision revealed among them. And it is natural that it should be so, for when He that was signified had come, what need was there any longer of any to signify Him? And when the Truth had come, what further need was there of the shadow? On His account only they prophesied continually, until such time as Essential Righteousness has come, Who was made the Ransom for the sins of all. For the same reason JERUSALEM STOOD UNTIL THE SAME TIME, in order that there men might premeditate the types before the Truth was known. So, of course, once the HOLY ONE OF HOLIES HAD COME, BOTH VISION AND PROPHECY WERE SEALED. And THE KINGDOM OF JERUSALEM CEASED AT THE SAME TIME, because kings were to be anointed among them ONLY UNTIL THE HOLY OF HOLIES HAD BEEN ANOINTED. Moses also prophesies that THE KINGDOM OF THE JEWS SHALL STAND UNTIL HIS TIME, saying, “A ruler shall not fail from Judah nor a prince from his loins, until the things laid up for him shall come and the Expectation of the nations Himself.” And that is why the Savior Himself was always proclaiming “The law and the prophets prophesied until John.” So if there is still king or prophet or vision among the Jews, they do well to deny that Christ is come; but if there is neither king nor vision, and since that time all prophecy has been sealed and city and temple taken, how can they be so irreligious, how can they so flaunt the facts, as to deny Christ Who has brought it all about?.. What more is there for their Expected One to do when he comes? To call the heathen? But they are called already. To put an end to prophet and king and vision? But this too has already happened. To expose the Goddenyingness of idols? It is already exposed and condemned. OR TO DESTROY DEATH? IT IS ALREADY DESTROYED. WHAT THEN HAS NOT COME TO PASS THAT THE CHRIST MUST DO? What is there left out or unfulfilled that the Jews should disbelieve so light-heartedly? The plain fact is, as I say, that THERE IS NO LONGER ANY KING OR PROPHET NOR JERUSALEM NOR SACRIFICE NOR VISION AMONG THEM; YET THE WHOLE EARTH IS FILLED WITH THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOD, AND THE GENTILES, FORSAKING ATHEISM, ARE NOW TAKING REFUGE WITH THE GOD OF ABRAHAM THROUGH THE WORD, OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST.” (St. Athanasius, 295-373, Incarnation, Ch VI)
Jesus was the anointed Temple of God while He was here on earth. He came to usher in a New Covenant whereby He could dwell in the hearts of men. This brought the Kingdom of God to man and made the Church—Jew, Samaritan, and Gentile together in one body—His Temple of God in the earth.
Malachi prophesied of this event. He told of the one who was to “prepare the way” for the “coming Lord.” The Bible shows that John the Baptist was the one that this idiom described. (See Isaiah 40:3; Luke 1:76; Matthew 3:3) Also notice that Malachi calls the coming Lord “the messenger of the Covenant.” This confirms that the coming Messiah would be the One who would proclaim the covenant with His people, and thereby fulfill all the requirements of Daniel’s 70th Week.
If futurists will search the Bible without the aids of Dispensational study notes, they will soon discover they cannot find any mention of a gap for Daniel’s prophecy, and to my knowledge there wasn’t any references to this supposed gap even in study notes before the time of Dispensational Theology took root about 200 years ago. All these teachings about a pre, mid, post, or pre-wrath tribulation are based on a false teaching of a future seven-year tribulation, which was created by claiming the points of Daniel 9:24 are yet unfulfilled and are for a future time. By saying this, Daniel 9’s covenant of Jesus Christ has been changed into a covenant of antichrist. This was devised by satan so he could make the Church believe that there was still seven-years remaining of law-keeping, and that God’s eye was on the Natural Jew because of race, instead of on the Church (Jew and Gentile) because of grace.
Dispensationalism annuls the work of the cross and distorts the true identity of the Church by saying Jesus’ sacrifice is neither sufficient nor everlasting. The Fulfilled Eschatology view, on the other hand, supports both the cross and the Church, because it teaches Jesus’ sacrifice is the final sacrifice that will ever be made or needed for mankind. Scripture supports this latter view because it confirms that neither Jew nor Gentile will ever be set free from their sin without Jesus’ New Covenant plan of salvation. This same freedom also releases the Church from the entanglements of physical temples and animal sacrifices, so that they can focus on their own spiritual temples, which is God’s plan!
The Fulfilled Eschatology view is also a powerful testimony since it shows that only God could give such a detailed timeframe in advance, and then fulfill it at the exact prophesied time several hundred years later in every detail. This testifies, to both the believer and the unbeliever, of the validity of the Bible, and of the omniscience of the omnipotent God; for it loudly proclaims that Jesus truly is an “on time” God!
The conclusion of this matter is the Bible shows that the prophesied 490 years of Daniel 9:24-27 were all completed in order without a gap, because all 6 points of Daniel 9:24 have already been fulfilled in perfect detail by Jesus. This makes Daniel’s 70th week now history, and leaves all the Dispensational teachings about a future seven-year tribulation period and all the sensationalism found in the various theories given by Dispensational teachers concerning how it will be played out, without a biblical foundation. So from these 6 proofs of Daniel 9 we can clearly see that the dispensationalist’s gap is not truly between the 69th and the 70th week, as they have taught, but is instead found between their teachings and the teachings of the Bible. I pray the Church of Jesus Christ moves away from this schism and moves on to truth!
Copyright © 2004 TK Burk. All Rights Reserved.