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March 26, 2012

Daniel 9:20-27

  1. And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of my God;

  2. 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.

  3. And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding.

  4. At the beginning of thy supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to show thee; for thou art greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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 Third Heaven


As Daniel prayed, the angel Gabriel suddenly appeared before him, offering comfort and understanding to Daniel’s troubled heart. Gabriel’s purpose was to bring an end to Daniel’s inner confusion by imparting to him a new revelation from God. The angel began his conversation by saying something you and I should want to hear more than any other phrase in our language: “For thou art greatly loved.” Daniel was concluding his prayer when he was surprised by joyous words from God. To have a greater appreciation of this scenario, consider this: Gabriel had been in the third heaven (2 Corinthians 12:2-3). That’s billions of light years away-farther than our minds can grasp-and yet Gabriel now stands before Daniel, arriving in a flash-in nanoseconds.


Here’s just how far Gabriel flew to arrive at Daniel’s side. We’re told that our astronauts would have to travel for forty thousand years at terrific speeds to get to the first star. But that would be just the first leg of their inter-galactic journey if they traveled onward to the third heaven-God’s throne. There are billions, trillions, quadrillions, and quintillions of stars beyond that as we go higher and higher.


To confound us yet furthest scientists have now discovered a new quasar that is some eighty-two trillion billion miles out in space. And it becomes even more mind-boggling. We know that light travels at a rate of 186,000 miles per second, so when a scientist talks about a “light year,” that’s the speed light travels at that velocity for twelve consecutive months, or a distance of six trillion miles.


Now stay with me. You and I could travel thirteen and one-half billion light years and still not arrive at the third heaven-God’s throne. It’s incomprehensible. Just as Gabriel moved from the dimension of the third heaven to Daniel’s side in an instant, so will we be able to move, at the speed of light, in our glorified bodies as we sweep through space-identical to the speed angels traverse the heavenlies.


The Significance of the Seventy Weeks


In this new revelation delivered by Gabriel, Daniel learned, sadly, that God would continue to punish Israel for at least seventy more sevens of years beyond the end of the Babylonian captivity-a number that gives us, as noted earlier, the only Old Testament prophecy that speaks of the precise hour of Messiah’s first coming. It’s fascinating that it was to be Gabriel who, several centuries later, would also deliver the good news of Messiah’s conception and birth to a young virgin by the name of Mary (Luke 1:26-3 8).


We now come to one the most important prophecies in all of Scripture-a prediction to be applied exclusively to Israel and to the holy city of Jerusalem. First, let’s look at the meaning of the phrase, “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people.” The amount of actual time covered by this prophecy is 490 years-literally, seventy sevens. The question from scholars has always been, Are these 490 “units” of time years, days, months, or weeks? The math only works if these units are seen as “years.” So for this prophecy to be fulfilled, Messiah would have to arrive-for the first time- before the 490 “units” would end. Remember that the 490 years began in 445 B.C.


Now this question: What was the purpose of the 70 weeks of chastisement? The Jews had a Sabbath day which they were to honor by law. They had the freedom to work for six days, and then rest on the Sabbath, just as God had patterned His work of creation. He created the world in six days (Genesis 1:31), and rested on the seventh day (Genesis 2:2).


However, the Jews not only had sabbatical days on the seventh day of the week, but they also celebrated sabbatical years. According to Leviticus 25:1-7 they were to let their land lie fallow-unused, unplanted-every seventh year. But in their greed they said in their hearts something to the effect, “This is not a very good deal for us. We’re going to lose money, so let’s not listen to God. We’ll go ahead and plow and plant and harvest on the seventh year, regardless of what God or the law tells us to do.”


Because of their spiritual treachery, the Jewish people paid dearly for their 490 years of disobedience. God chastened the Jews by sending them into cruel bondage for the equivalent of seventy sabbatical years-a total of 490 years- according to the 360-day Jewish calendar.


Jeremiah predicted this judgment of seventy years falling on the Jews in Jeremiah 25:9-11 when he wrote:


Behold, I will send and take all the families of the north, saith the LORD, and Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant, and will bring them against this land, and against the inhabitants thereof, and against all these nations round about, and will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, and an hissing, and perpetual desolations. Moreover I will take from them the voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the sound of the millstones, and the light of the candle. And this whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment; and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years.


The die was now cast. Israel would be punished during those seventy weeks (490 years)-a punishment that would be administered because of the following reasons (Daniel 9:24):

  1. To finish the transgression.” As we’ve already noted, the Jews did not allow the land to rest for seventy sabbaticals-a 490 year period. Now when Messiah comes, He restores them to their land permanently. They were removed from the land as the transgression required, but now He returns to settle the debt, and provides for His people permanent restoration. Zechariah 13:1 says, “In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.”

  2. To make an end of sins.” The corporate sins of the nation of Israel will come to an end at the second coming of Jesus Christ. The Jews, as all other people, have sinned, and their transgressions would be paid for by the blood of Jesus shed at Calvary. Because this provision has been made, Messiah comes to announce that the sin that brought all the judgment upon them has been removed (Hebrews 10:17).

  3. To make reconciliation for iniquity.” During this seventy-week period, God has made redemption available through the sacrificial death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Zechariah 12:10 says, “And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn.”

  4. And to bring in everlasting righteousness.” This speaks of the return of Christ at the end of the 490 years. At this time He establishes His kingdom, returning as King of Kings and Lord of Lords. Finally, the world becomes a wonderful place, described in joyful terms in Isaiah 35:8: “And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it shall be for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein.” This is what Revelation 21:27 speaks of when it refers to this holy city that hovers above the earth. It is a place of righteousness. Nothing can enter that defiles or makes the celestial city unholy. The message here is this: We cannot-and will not- have a perfect world until Jesus comes and binds Satan for a thousand years.

  5. To seal up the vision and prophecy.” Daniel was instructed to seal the vision until the time of the end. Now-as you read these words-we are approaching that time, and for that reason we’re able to explain it, unseal it, and see its depth with Spirit-led understanding. I trust you are catching a glimpse of just how close we are to that great day. Until now- for centuries, actually-we have struggled to see through a darkened glass, but now the truth of Daniel’s vision is becoming clearer by the day. We are not at the final time yet, but we are getting very close. Then, once Messiah returns, prophecy will be forever finished because there will be nothing left to predict. The Son of Man-the radiant Lord Jesus Christ-will be in our midst, and all prophecy will be sealed permanently.

  6. To anoint the most Holy.” This is a reference to Ezekiel chapters 4 1-46, where the prophet talks about the anointing of the Holy of Holies in the “millennial” temple. When the Lord Jesus returns, Yahweh the Father says, “I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion” (Psalm 2:6). Just as God’s priests in the Old Testament and His servants in the New Testament were anointed for holy service, so Jesus Christ the Prince-the King of Kings- will be anointed for the centuries to come.

At this point I’m going to quote a verse that is the greatest prophecy ever recorded, proving that God alone could have written this book. Why? Because we now come to the exact day that is prophesied in these texts. Verse 25 reads, “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.”


Let’s review the significance of this verse in the context of Nehemiah 2:1-8 where we learn that some of the Jews who had visited their homeland were disturbed because their nation was in such disarray. That’s why they requested that the city of Jerusalem-including the wall-be rebuilt. With that background, let’s consider Nehemiah 2:1 to investigate the chronology of dates mentioned. “And it came to pass in the month Nisan, in the twentieth year of Artaxerxes the king. . . .”


The Encyclopedia Britannica says this king came to power in 465 B.C. But now it’s Artaxerxes’ twentieth year of rule, which takes us down to 445 B.C. Here’s the arithmetic: 465 minus 20 = 445 B.C. This is the month Nisan, but no date is given. That is not, however, an issue because Jewish custom tells us that whenever there is no date we are to assume it is always the first day. This means it is the first day of Nisan, 445 B.C. Translated into our modern calendar, that’s March 14, 445 B.C. That is the beginning point of the rebuilding of the wall and city of Jerusalem-a task that had to be completed in “seven weeks” or, literally, forty-nine years. And it happened right on schedule.



FROM THE HEART OF DR. REXELLA VAN IMPE

Give Me Your Hand


In my daily Bible reading, I’ve been noticing how much is mentioned about the hands of our Lord. Again and again the Gospels relate how He reached out to people in their need and hurt and sorrow. And when He touched them, they were never the same again.


His hands healed the sick


After He began His earthly ministry, great multitudes thronged about Him wherever He went. Those who were sick, blind, and lame — even those marked for death with the curse of leprosy — came to Him seeking to be healed and made whole.


When the hands of Jesus touched them, pain and suffering ceased, diseases and infirmities were cured, and lives shattered and ruined by sickness were restored.


His hands fed the multitude


It was the hands of Jesus that fed the multitudes who followed Him out into the desert place to hear His words. When evening came, Christ’s disciples urged Him to send the people away. But Jesus saw their hunger and weariness and, in compassion, desired to minister to them.


Taking a few small loaves and fishes — barely enough for one small boy’s lunch — the Lord blessed the food. Then His hands began to break and divide the bread and fish into portions which He gave to His disciples to serve.


We’re told that 5,000 men were fed that day, not counting the women and children. And when everybody had eaten all they wanted, there were twelve baskets full of leftovers! The hands of Jesus not only provided enough…but plenty to spare.


His hands blessed the children


Loving children as I do, my heart is touched to read the biblical account of how the hands of Jesus blessed and comforted the little children. He specifically told His disciples not to prevent them from coming to Him. And in my mind’s eye, I can see the Lord sitting down and opening His arms to them. As they eagerly jostled about, perhaps He lifted a toddler into His lap, shook hands with an older lad, touched the cheek of a shy little girl. And as His gentle hands patted little shoulders and smoothed tousled hair, the Lord blessed these little ones. Somehow I think they probably never forgot that day when the hands of Jesus touched them.


The hands of the Master


No doubt the hands of Jesus were strong and powerful. Growing up around Joseph’s carpenter shop, He probably learned to hold and use various tools to shape and assemble wood into useful items. His hands knew how to work.


It was those strong hands that later would grasp a whip as an indignant Jesus drove the callous money changers out of the holy halls of the Temple. Those hands were instruments of righteousness and justice.


It was those hands that reached out to lift and save impetuous Peter who, after walking on the water toward Jesus, took his eyes off the Lord and began to sink.


There are so many other references to the hands of Jesus that we could talk about. But the single most important mention of Christ’s hands is when they were nailed to the cross.


A very dear, life-long friend gave me a beautiful wall plaque, which I have hanging in my kitchen. It says:


I asked Jesus, “How much do You love me?”

“This much,” He answered, and He stretched out His arms and died.

Greater love hath no man than this, said Jesus, that a man lay down his life for his friends
(John 15:13).


And who is Jesus’ friend? The deeply spiritual and very religious? The learned and respectable? The proud traditionalists?


No, our Lord said that He was called a friend of…sinners! (Luke 7:34).


The Apostle Paul reminds us that Christ died for the ungodly… in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:6,8).


It is strangely and beautifully significant that the first person to benefit from Christ’s sacrifice at Calvary was a thief on the cross next to His! Think of it — the first person to whom the Lord stretched out His nail-pierced hands was someone totally unworthy of His love.


Love-scarred hands


Some time ago my husband, Jack, and I were guests at a Christian fellowship dinner in another city. During the meal I got acquainted and talked with a dear little mother who sat next to me. After a while, with tears streaming down her cheeks, she leaned over and whispered the sad story of a wayward daughter who had run away from home, mounted up many debts, and fallen to the very depths of sin, even into a life of prostitution.


“I pray for her every day,” she said, “and every time I hear from her I beg her to come home. My husband doesn’t make a lot of money, so I got a job to help pay off the debts our daughter made. I’m doing everything I know how to do to help her. Please pray with me.”


When I reached out to take hold of this precious mother’s hands to comfort her, they were rough and calloused, scarred by long hours of hard work, week after month after year. Those hands were scarred by love…by a mother’s selfless sacrifice and desperate desire to reach and save her wayward daughter.


As I held those hands and prayed, I was reminded of Christ’s nail-scarred hands that also were pierced for that lost daughter…and for every lost sinner in the whole world. They were scarred for me…and for you!


Just as the hands of our Lord ministered to men and women, boys and girls, wherever He went during His time on earth, so we today can feel the touch of His hands in our daily lives. His power is still available to us today.


In our times of pain and suffering, He is still the Great Physician who lays His hands upon us and restores our bodies. Whether our healing comes through medication, the skill of a surgeon, or by the power of faith alone, we know that He is the source of all healing.


When we are hungry and experiencing a lack of supply — when we’re empty physically, emotionally, and spiritually — Christ’s hands will bless and multiply the smallest things we have to offer Him and make it sufficient to meet our need…with plenty to spare.


When we’ve tried and failed — when like Peter, we’re sinking into the depths of trials and tribulations, with no hope in sight — He will come to us, walking on the waters of our stormy sea. His hand will save us, lift us up, and lead us safely to the solid rock!


The challenge of Easter


I love Spring! There’s something special about seeing the sun light up winter’s gray skies, and nature stir the grass and trees into new life. Surely it is no coincidence that we celebrate Easter in the springtime.


Each Easter we are reminded that Christ died for us — but He rose again! Without Easter, we might be tempted to forget that it is through the outstretched arms and nail-pierced hands of Jesus that we have life eternal. Had it not been for His sacrifice on Calvary and His bodily resurrection, there would be no everlasting life.


As we look around us and see all of nature coming back to life anew, let us be reminded of Christ’s great love for us.


But let us also be challenged to reach out in His love into every man’s world with a helping hand. Let us emulate our Lord’s great example and use the resurrection power that flows through us to minister to the needs of those around us.


Never forget that for many people in the world, their first glimpse of Christ may be in you…the only hands that will touch them in love, that will comfort, lift, and bless them, may be your hands.


Reach out whenever you can, wherever you can, to whomever you can. However unlovely or unworthy the person you find may be, remember that Christ’s sacrifice is sufficient…and that He loves that individual just as much as He loves you.


Do not be afraid to stretch forth your hand to anybody. For you minister, not in your own strength and ability, but in His love. So when you reach out, it will not be just your hand that touches them, but the hand of God through you!


I love the beautiful gospel chorus that cries out


Oh, to be His hand extended,

Reaching out to the oppressed,

Let me touch Him, let me touch Jesus,

So that others may know and be blessed.


Look around you today and find someone who is hurting or needy, someone who is in trouble. Ask God to guide you to someone who needs Jesus.


When you find them, don’t hesitate or delay. Go to them with a smile filled with the light of His love and simply say…


“Give me your hand.”



CHANGED LIVES-one at a time

Dear Jack and Rexella,


I wanted to let you know how thankful I am for your show. Me and my mom and dad never miss an episode. We keep you both in our prayers and thank God for you and for your courage to speak the truth no matter the cost. I wish there were more people like you in the ministry. The world is heading for dark times and people need to hear the truth!


I am 21 years old and summer before last I had a diving accident that has left me a quadriplegic. The Lord has given me a great deal of healing and I am now able to take some steps on my parallel bars. God is so good to me!


I know many people who have an accident like mine can get bitter, but before my accident I was straying from the Lord and although I don’t believe God caused my accident I can see that He has brought good out of it. I have come home like the prodigal son. I have seen the error of my ways and now I am closer to God than I have ever been, and I am committed to growing even closer. I am so thankful that Jesus died for me and I have a life after this one to look forward to. A Life where I will be whole again. I can’t wait for the rapture and I like that you teach this biblical truth. Not to mention all the other things I have learned from watching your program.


Keep up the fantastic work!


Luke S.

 

Jack & Rexella,


Thank you for your ministry.  I watch your show every week.  What a blessing you have been for my growth in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  I gave my life to Christ 6 years ago and I don’t plan to look back ever again.  I can’t believe what I have missed out on all my life.  Praise the Lord for His mercy and grace.  I’m married with 4 kids and all are involved in our church (the Church of the Nazarene).


I’ve been so intrigued to continue learning about prophecy since I started watching your show years ago. It’s obvious we are living in the last days.


Thank you again for your commitment to the Lord.


Sincerely,

Jonathan T.



HIGHLIGHTED PRODUCT OFFERS

New World Order Rising / Dictator of the New World Order


Each amazing component of this special edition set, including New World Order Rising and Dictator of the New World Order is power packed with the clear picture and timeline of the latter days and gives you the answers to crucial questions such as:


  • Who are the seven major organizations dedicated to creating a “New World Order”?

  • “Europe is looking for a man so powerful that he will hold the allegiance of the people. Be he man or devil, we are ready to receive him” Who said that?

  • What shadowy power brokering groups champion the cause of a one world government?

  • What does the EU represent in Bible prophecy?

  • And much more!

Watch this astounding teaching today, and share it with your church, family, and friends.


 


The Final 7 Signs


Like a modern-day Day of Pentecost, 3,000 souls were added to the Kingdom in one day –


The day Dr. Jack Van Impe preached the amazing sermon The Final Seven Signs.


Recorded live at the international Jack Van Impe 60-Year Anniversary Soul-Winning Campaign event, this sermon has already made a tremendous impact for God’s Kingdom!


Now you can experience it for yourself – and share it with your non-Christian friends.


A panoramic prophetic journey through the astonishing signs of the times – demonstrating unequivocally that we are the generation Jesus was talking about in Luke 21:32 when He said “Verily I say unto you, this generation shall not pass away till all be fulfilled


Get the truths of this teaching into your heart, and you will have an amazing glimpse of your prophetic future!

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