it was the first year of the reign of darius the mede the son of ahasuerus who became king of the babylonians.
during the first year of his reign i daniel learned from reading the word of the Lord as revealed to jeremiah the prophet that jerusalem must lie desolate for seventy years.
so i turned to the Lord God and pleaded with Him in prayer and fasting .
i also wore rough burlap and sprinkled myself with ashes.
i prayed to the Lord my God and confessed O Lord you are a great and awesome God.
you always fulfill your covenant and keep your promises of unfailing love to those who love you and obey your commands but we have sinned and done wrong.
we have rebelled against you and scorned your commands and regulations.
we have refused to listen to your servants the prophets who spoke on your authority to our kings and princes and ancestors and to all the people of the land.
Lord you are in the right but as you see our faces are covered with shame.
this is true of all of us including the people of judah and jerusalem and all israel scattered near and far wherever you have driven us because of our disloyalty to you .
O Lord we and our kings princes and ancestors are covered with shame because we have sinned against you but the Lord our God is merciful and forgiving even though we have rebelled against HIm .
we have not obeyed the Lord our God for we have not followed the instructions He gave us through HIs servants the prophets.
all israel has disobeyed your instructions and turned away refusing to listen to your voice so now the solemn curses and judgments written in the law of moses the servant of God have been poured down on us because of our sin.
you have kept your word and done to us and our rulers exactly as you warned.
never has there been such a disaster as happened in jerusalem .
every curse written against us in the law of moses has come true yet we have refused to seek mercy from the Lord our God by turning from our sins and recognizing HIs truth .
therefore the Lord has brought upon us the disaster He prepared.
the Lord our God was right to do all these things for we did not obey HIm.
O Lord our God you brought lasting honor to your name by rescuing your people from egypt in a great display of power but we have sinned and are full of wickedness .
in view of all your faithful mercies Lord please turn your furious anger away from your city jerusalem your holy mountain .
all the neighboring nations mock jerusalem and your people because of our sins and the sins of our ancestors.
O our God hear your servants prayer.
listen as i plead.
for your own sake Lord smile again on your desolate sanctuary.
O my God lean down and listen to me .
open your eyes and see our despair.
see how your city the city that bears your name lies in ruins.
we make this plea not because we deserve help but because of your mercy.
O Lord hear O Lord forgive O Lord listen and act.
for your own sake do not delay, O my God for your city and your people bear your name.
i went on praying and confessing my sin and the sin of my people pleading with the Lord my God for jerusalem His holy mountain.
as i was praying gabriel whom i had seen in the early vision came swiftly to me at the time of the evening sacrifice.
he explained to me ” daniel i have come here to give you insight and understanding.
the moment you began praying a command was given and now i am here to tell you what it was for you are very precious to God.
listen carefully so that you can understand the meaning of your vision.
a period of seventy sets of seven has been decreed for your people and your holy city to finish their rebellion to put an end to their sin to atone for their guilt to bring in everlasting righteousness to confirm the prophetic vision and to anoint the most holy place.
now listen and understand.
seven sets of seven plus sixty two sets of seven will pass from the time the command is given to rebuild jerusalem until a new ruler the anointed one comes.
jerusalem will be rebuilt with streets and strong defenses despite the perilous times.
after this period of sixty two sets of seven the anointed one will be killed appearing to have accomplished nothing and a ruler will arise whose armies will destroy the city and the temple .
the end will come with a flood and war and its miseries are decreed from that time to the very end.
the ruler will make a treaty with the people for a period of one set of seven but after half this time he will put an end to the sacrifices and offerings and as a climax to all his terrible deeds he will set up a sacrilegious object that causes desecration until the fate decreed for this defiler is finally poured out on him.
you can imagine the shock of daniel when he heard the news that his beloved country was going to be emptied out of people and practically turned into a wasteland.
there are times in our lives when it is necessary to deprive ourselves of the comfort and strength given us by food and drink in order to draw closer to God.
often we have rebellious attitudes and think we can run our own lives without Gods help but thats when we get into trouble because we always need HIs help or else we are headed for certain disaster.
its interesting how daniel talks about himself in the third person referring to the prophecies that have taken place in the past, those that have come about because he and his male and female contemporaries allowed themselves to be used as vessels for God.
there is no accusation in daniels tone he is simply stating the bare faced facts that Gods people faced disciplinary actions cos they refused to listen to the warnings of the prophets who told them that unless they stopped worshipping demons they would lose their kingdoms and be carried off into exile.
it is because of their unwillingness to listen to good instruction or more precisely rehoboams stubborn reproachful attitude that caused them to be weakened by division in the first place.
we can learn a lesson from this to be careful not to let the enemy come in between us and our beloved fellow members of the family of God.
daniel is very conscious of the fact that there are consequences to our sinful actions .
our sins build a wall between us and God separating us from HIm.
they are like a current that pulls us away from HIs comforting arms.
daniel is using hyperbolic language when he talks about all israel sinning but it is possible that he too sinned in his heart. he may have eyed off one of the servant girls in the palace. at any rate even if he had the most pure and puritan soul he was doing something called identificational repentance. sometimes God calls us to stand in the gap for others and apologize on behalf of those who share our gender our musical preferences our culture our age group or our religious background and apologize for the way we have treated those who are different from us.
Gods mercy is not obtainable for us unless we beg HIm for forgiveness.
this seems simple enough logic yet for some people it seems to escape their brains capacity to comprehend it.
when daniel says God prepared disaster it doesnt mean it was part of HIs plan to cause disaster rather it was a plan He put in place a course of events that were intended to be set in motion if HIs people were disobedient to HIm purely for the purpose of using those trials and tribulations to draw them closer to HIs heart.
we do not see bad things happening in our lives as something we can easily accept.
we must learn to teach ourselves not to complain when we are obviously suffering the consequences of our sins. we must learn to humble our hearts and get right with God and take our punishment like a man or a fully grown woman. we must see the rightness of Gods punishment. we dont have to enjoy it but we have no right to protest as if we dont deserve it. we do deserve it. what we dont deserve is freedom from the consequences of sin beyond the grave.
we do not always see ourselves as full of wickedness but it is true that we are in a state of disrepair unless we are willing to be repaired by the miracle working power of Jesus to cleanse our souls and make us whole again.
Gods anger is not like our anger. His anger is always righteous anger. His anger is always justifiable. we must be aware of the target of HIs anger. it is not us per se but the devil who we have allowed to lure us into traps of evil and control us and destroy our futures if we are not careful to avoid his snares in future.
because Jesus has shed HIs blood for us on the cross we are under a new covenant and we no longer have to feel guilty and burdened down by the sins of our ancestors. there is no such thing as generational curses. every curse was broken when Jesus hung on that cross. all we need concern ourselves about is the sins we commit in the present moment and those sins we have committed in the past which are currently unaccounted for.
the people of israel were mocked by the world cos they were called by God to stand out from the world and be a people who worshipped one God who made all living things. in the same way God calls all of us who have been adopted into HIs family to be bold in sharing our faith and to be careful in our choices so they reflect HIs heart and nature instead of that of a condemned criminal who sees no need for repentance.
it is only with Christ that we are able to outwit the blight of our circumstances.
we are the desolate sanctuaries that Christ has smiled upon bestowing favour upon us with the shedding of HIs blood to forgive our sins and heal all our diseases.
our despair never goes unnoticed by God.
jerusalem means complete awe of God . the israelis call it Yireh Shalem. this means to be so deeply in touch with God that you are constantly amazed by Him. ( taken from chabad.org)
what daniel means when he says that the people of God carry his name is precisely this- israel means God prevails so when they are speaking of their people the israelis can remind themselves that God is always able to prevail over terrible circumstances in their lives.
it must have been amazing for daniel to see the angel. he must have been filled with so much joy and delight. i would have jumped for joy if i was in his sandals. i would be dumbstruck by fear yet also perhaps be bubbling up to overflowing with an unexplainable love for God and a peaceful feeling and a feeling of gratitude that comes from knowing His presence is with me and He is always able to comfort me and i would feel like rejoicing cos i would know He had come through for me in my most desperate hour.
isnt it incredible to think that the second the words crying for help left daniels lips the angels were already listening to him and God was already sending them to him in order to offer assistance. wow what a God we serve. i love it when He responds to us instantaneously. of course sometimes He will test our patience but quite often He is known to deliver results instantly.
just as daniel was considered precious to God in the same way dear reader He delights in you . you are precious in His sight and if you dont know HIm already He wants to ignite a fire of passion in your heart for HIm.
we know the jews still have to repent of their sins en masse and turn back to the messiah as do plenty of us who identify as gentile or non jew/ goyim. therefore we can surmise from this text that considering the conditions of massive jewish revival which must take place before the coming of the anointed one this is not just talking of the first coming of Christ as happened when He came into a virgins womb but the second coming when He returns to claim HIs children and take us home to heaven.
the romans destroyed jerusalem and its temple in ad 70 , 70 years after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. an evil roman king cooked pork and set up an idol inside the the temple. this was considered to be a huge insult to the jews as it should be to all of us who hold to the teachings of the christian faith.
we know that the red heifer is no longer sacrificed in the temple whose ruins lie near the dome of the rock currently legally occupied by muslims against Gods will.
there is a view that this passage of the bible contains double speak. it doesnt just talk of a ruler in the past but of a future ruler who will come to make peace with jerusalem before declaring war on the jews and then meeting with his comeuppance thanks to the hands of God.
we know that all vile minded individuals who defile or blaspheme or mock the name of God and HIs chosen people will come to an untimely demise.
this should be a lesson to us to always treat God and HIs people with love and respect.
we know there have been many wars which have taken place since this chapter in daniels book of prophecy was written.
many people have tried to destroy the children of israel but they will never succeed in wiping them out entirely for God has promised to always preserve a remnant for them just as a lady in a temple lights candles for her departed relatives. there will always be a candle burning for israel. God will never snuff HIs people out until the time comes when He makes the heavens and the earth brand new again.
pray for the peace of jerusalem.
pray for the peace of your own souls.
seek Gods face with fear and trembling.
if you are hoping for a miracle dont go seeking one from false gods or occultic sources.
only the good Lord above the one true Elohim can help you out.
stay in love with HIm and blaze bright like a mighty forest fire for HIs kingdom ❤