By Frank M. Keele
I’m going to suppose that many of you are aware of the historic peace treaty between Israel and the UAE (United Arab Emirates) that is currently generating headlines around the world. Interestingly, when I Googled “peace in the middle east”, I came across a link, “End-Time Prophecy: Will There Be Peace in the Middle East”.
As you may be aware, there are lots of folks, Christians mostly as we might suppose, who are wondering if this peace treaty marks the fulfillment of Bible prophecy. Well, it just so happens that the intent of today’s post is not only to answer that question but to go on and to expound further as to what the actual meaning of the text is, via the perspective of the restored gospel.
To understand where we are going with this post, we need to have at least a basic understanding of what Daniel chapter 9 is all about. We quote from chapter 9 of The Bridegroom Cometh:
“In Daniel chapter nine we learn that as Daniel was petitioning the Lord in behalf of his people and “the holy mountain of my God” or Jerusalem, Gabriel appeared to him and prophesied. We go to Daniel 9:24-27.
24 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.
25 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.
26 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.
27 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.
In verse 24 we are told, “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city”. In short, these seventy weeks or 70 times 7 years are divided into two portions. The first being 69 weeks (483 years) and the second being but one week or 7 years.
Note that both portions have bearing “upon the holy city” or Jerusalem and so have to do with the Lord’s two appearances to the Jews.
We note that the first 69 weeks span from “the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem”(see Nehemiah 2:1-8) “unto the Messiah” or to the ministering of the Lord among the Jews in the meridian of time when he would “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” and finally “shall Messiah be cut off”.
In verse 27 we read “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”. Confirm what covenant for seven years, and with whom?
Well, the covenant that the Bridegroom would return and dwell with his saints and gather Israel prior to His appearance to the Jews as their Messiah, that covenant!
We also note that “in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease”.. And what is this disruption “in the midst of the week” (the 3 1/2 year mark) all about? That would be none other than Gog with his army of 200 million who shall lay siege against Jerusalem for 42 months leading up to the coming of the Messiah to the Jews.
The prophecy of the “seventy weeks” not only proves the word of God to have been accurate in predicting the coming of Christ in the meridian of time but also confirms that the passage of time between the Lord’s first two last days appearances will indeed be seven years!” (End of quote)
OK, so it is hoped that you now have a basic understanding of Daniel chapter 9. There are many good commentaries on this chapter via the web or YouTube. That is, they are good until they get to verse 27, and that’s where most of them go wrong. For the most part, they interpret the antecedent of “he” to be the anti-Christ, although no such entity is never mentioned in the text.
However, I’m not saying they are wrong as a putdown, it’s just that they, not having the benefits of additional scripture or the teachings of Joesph Smith and other prophets of the restoration, have no knowledge about the upcoming meeting at Adam Ondi Ahman, the establishment of the New Jerusalem here in America and the gathering of Israel that must precede the Lord’s coming as the Jewish Messiah.
The following video by Dr. Al Garza takes us back to the original text and gives us clarity as to whom the word “he” in verse 27 actually is…
In the April 2020 issue of the Ensign magazine President Russell M. Nelson said:
“The Lord will return to the land that He made holy by His mission there in mortality. In triumph, He will come again to Jerusalem. In royal robes of red to symbolize His blood, which oozed from every pore, He shall return to the Holy City”
And so we conclude from this quote, that in President Nelson’s view, the Lord’s appearance at Jerusalem is the second coming. Also, in the video at the first of this post, he said, “we have a lot to do before the Lord will come again, He wants Israel to be gathered and the world to be made ready for His second coming”.
So what does it mean for the Lord to “confirm the covenant with many for one week” or seven years? Well, in it’s the most basic form it means two things…
- He will appear to and “confirm the covenant” with those who have entered into covenant via baptism and other ordinances, those who are instrumental in performing the needed work of preparation for His return.
- He will also “confirm the covenant” made with scattered Israel, those who are not members at the time of His appearance as the Bridegroom but are gathered shortly thereafter. We read from 1 Nephi 14, a chapter referenced by President Nelson in general conference:
17 And when the day cometh that the wrath of God is poured out upon the mother of harlots, which is the great and abominable church of all the earth, whose founder is the devil, then, at that day, the work of the Father shall commence, in preparing the way for the fulfilling of his covenants, which he hath made to his people who are of the house of Israel.
At the very center of “the fulfilling of his covenants, which he hath made to his people who are of the house of Israel” is their gathering, and as President Nelson said above, “before the Lord will come again, He wants Israel to be gathered and the world to be made ready for His second coming”.
So in summary, the “he” mentioned in Daniel 9:27 is not some evil king or the anti-Christ as so many of our friends believe, but it is none other than the Messiah Himself and it is a stunning revelation as to what the last seven years leading to Christ’s appearance to the Jews as their Messiah will look like.
Additionally, we have a very good description as to what this seven years will look like so far as the righteous are concerned, we go to section 45:
66 And it shall be called the New Jerusalem, a land of peace, a city of refuge, a place of safety for the saints of the Most High God;
67 And the glory of the Lord shall be there, and the terror of the Lord also shall be there, insomuch that the wicked will not come unto it, and it shall be called Zion.
68 And it shall come to pass among the wicked, that every man that will not take his sword against his neighbor must needs flee unto Zion for safety.
69 And there shall be gathered unto it out of every nation under heaven; and it shall be the only people that shall not be at war one with another.
70 And it shall be said among the wicked: Let us not go up to battle against Zion, for the inhabitants of Zion are terrible; wherefore we cannot stand.
71 And it shall come to pass that the righteous shall be gathered out from among all nations, and shall come to Zion, singing with songs of everlasting joy…
74 For when the Lord shall appear he shall be terrible unto them, that fear may seize upon them, and they shall stand afar off and tremble.
75 And all nations shall be afraid because of the terror of the Lord, and the power of his might. Even so. Amen.
The above passage fits nicely with President Nelson”s recent statement, where he said “Dear friends, the road ahead may be bumpy, but our destination is serene and secure. So, fasten your seatbelt, hang on through the bumps, and do what’s right. Your reward will be eternal.”