The seventy weeks in Daniel nine is a point of controversy. It is generally agreed that the weeks represent years and so we are talking of 70 weeks of years or 70×7=490 years. After that accusations of sophistry, conspiracy and blasphemy start flying. I am a dispensationalist and the dispensationalist interpretation makes sense to me.
From the time when Israel cried out until the time of the Messiah’s death (cutting off) would be 483 years. From the cutting off to the final week is a time undetermined. The resumption is one year of weeks, which is seven years. So in the end an apocalyptic period of seven years is in view. This timeline has been popularized by Left Behind, but it is not the only view on this passage.
The NIV Application commentary says that these prophetic numbers only really make sense to God and should not be pressed to hard; http://www.daniels70weeks.com/ gives another perspective. The thrust of the passage and the book as a whole can get lost in the debate. The overall theme is, “God is in control”. If that is obscured and we beat each other up and malign each other over the 70 weeks issue, it is a terrible testimony to our petty divisions.
25 “Know and understand this: From the time the word goes out to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One,[f] the ruler, comes, there will be seven ‘sevens,’ and sixty-two ‘sevens.’ It will be rebuilt with streets and a trench, but in times of trouble. 26 After the sixty-two ‘sevens,’ the Anointed One will be put to death and will have nothing.[g] The people of the ruler who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end will come like a flood: War will continue until the end, and desolations have been decreed. 27 He will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven.’[h] In the middle of the ‘seven’[i] he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And at the temple[j] he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.
- What events happen before the Anointed One comes?
- What does the Anointed One achieve?
- What is set up in the temple?
- Do you believe the last part of this prophecy is future or past?
- What difference does it make?