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weeks,' however, are 'quadratic sabbath-periods,' each consisting of 7×7=49 years; there are thus 49 × 70=3430 years from B.C. 605 to the Advent of Christ (the first and second advents being not distinguished). This result, it is added, is recommended by the fact that, as there were 3595 years from the Creation to Jehoiakim's fourth year, the entire duration of the world would be not appreciably in excess of 7000 years.
(3) Kranichfeld (1868)1: terminus a quo, c. 592 (Jer. xxix.) or 588 (destruction of Jerusalem). The 7 weeks end in 539 (the year of Daniel's vision). The anointed one, the prince' is Cyrus. The 62 weeks begin in 539, and end with the death of Christ (the 'anointed one' of v. 26). Certainly, in point of fact the 62 weeks end with B.C. 105, vv. 266, 27 referring to the time of Maccabees: there is thus a lacuna of 135 years (from B.C. 105 to A. D. 30), which Daniel, in accordance with the laws of 'perspective' prophecy, did not see.
(4) Von Orelli (1882): terminus a quo, B.C. 588: end of 7 weeks, B.C. 536; end of 62 weeks, A. D. 29 (the death of Christ, to whom the 'anointed one' in both v. 25 and v. 26 refers); 434 years from 536 is indeed only c. B.C. 100, but the 'weeks' are typical weeks, and are not to be taken as mere mathematical quantities. The 'redactor' of the Book of Daniel (who lived in the age of Antiochus Epiphanes) identified the last week' with his own time; and it seems to be Orelli's opinion that he modified the terms of vv. 26, 27 so as to introduce into them allusions to the events of B.C. 171-164.
(5) Nägelsbach (1858): terminus a quo, B.C. 536; end of 7 weeks, the dedication of the walls of Nehemiah (Neh. xii.), B. C. 434-2; end of 62 weeks thence, the birth of Christ; the last week, from birth of Christ to destruction of Jerusalem, A.D. 70. 1, 'week,' upon this theory may denote any 'heptad,' not one of 7 years only, but also one of any multiple of 7; in the first 7 weeks, it is of about 14 years; in the last week, of about 70 years.
(6) Kliefoth (1868), and Keil (1869): terminus a quo, the edict of Cyrus, B.C. 537; the weeks are to be understood symbolically, not of chronologically definite periods of time. The seven weeks extend from 537 to the advent of Christ; the 62 weeks from Christ to the appearance of Antichrist; during this time Jerusalem (in a spiritual sense, i.e. the Church) is built; the last week is the period of the great apostasy, ending with the second Coming of Christ. The words, 'an anointed one shall be cut off,' refer to the ruin of Christ's kingdom upon earth in the days of Antichrist (the 'prince that shall come'); v. 27 (the 70th week) relates throughout to the high-handed dealings of Antichrist; v. 24 to his final overthrow.
(7) Julius Africanus, the chronographer (c. 200 A.D.), ap. Jerome, l.c.: terminus a quo, the 20th year of Artaxerxes (B.C. 445); end of 70 weeks (reckoned as 490 lunar years of 354 days = (nearly) 475 solar years), death of Christ. This view has been revived recently, in a slightly modified form, by Dr Robert Anderson3, according to whom the 'year' 1 Das Buch Daniel erklärt, 1868. 2 O.T. Prophecy, Engl. tr. (1885), p. 434 f. The Coming Prince, ed. 5 (1895), p. 123 ff.
of Daniel was the ancient luni-solar year of 360 days; reckoning, then, 483 years (=69 'weeks'), of 360 days each, from 1 Nisan B.C. 445, the date of the edict of Artaxerxes, Dr Anderson arrives at the 10th of Nisan, in the 18th year of Tiberius Caesar, the day on which our Lord made His public entry into Jerusalem (Luke xix. 37 ff.). Upon this theory, however, even supposing the objections against B.C. 445 as the terminus a quo (see above) to be waived, the 70th week remains unexplained; for the 7 years following the Crucifixion are marked by no events tallying with the description given in v. 27.
It is impossible to regard any of these interpretations as satisfactory, or, in fact, as being anything else than a resort of desperation. Even of the interpretation adopted in this Commentary, it must be owned that, like the rival traditional interpretation, it is not free from objection. When, however, it is asked, which of these two interpretations labours under the most serious objection, it can hardly be denied that it is the traditional one. As has been shewn (p. 144 ff.), there are points of crucial significance, at which the supposed fulfilment does not tally at all with the terms of the prediction. On the other hand, a chronological error, which would be in principle inconsistent with a prediction given by direct supernatural revelation, is not a conclusive objection to an interpretation in which (ex hyp.) the prediction does not extend to the figures here in question, but is limited to the announcement of the approaching fall of Antiochus (v. 266, 27), and of the advent of the ideal age of righteousness which is then to commence (v. 24). The general parallelism of vv. 266, 27,-especially the suspension of the Temple services for 'half of the week,'-with other passages of the book where the persecutions of Antiochus are alluded to (as vii. 25, viii. II, 13, xi. 31, xii. 7, 11), and the fact that elsewhere in c. vii.-xii. Antiochus is the prominent figure, and his age is that in which the prophecies culminate, are arguments which support the modern interpretation. The prophecy does not, upon this interpretation, cease to be a Messianic one: it promises an ideal end of the sin and trouble under which the people of God are at present suffering; and is thus Messianic in the broader sense of Is. iv. 3 f., and the other passages quoted in the note on 'everlasting righteousness' in v. 24. See further the Introduction, pp. lxxxvi f., lxxxix.
Additional Note on the Expression 'The abomination of desolation? The following expressions occur in Daniel :
I. viii. 13 DDV vạn; LXX. Theod. ʼn åμaprla èpnuwσews.
2. ix. 27 Dpvp D'Yapy; LXX. Theod. ẞôéxvyμa тŵv épnμwσewv.
3. xi. 31 Opvp rapwo; LXX. ßdéλvyμa èpnμwσews (so 1 Macc. i. 54, of the heathen altar built by Antiochus on the altar of burntoffering), Theod. βδέλυγμα ἠφανισμένον.
4. xii. 11 Drapy; LXX. tò ßdéλvyμa тîs èpnμwσews (so Matth. xxiv. 15, Mk xiii. 141), Theod. ẞdéλvyμa èpημwσews.
1 In the parallel in St Luke (xxi. 20) the expression is paraphrased ('when ye see Jerusalem encompassed with armies, then know that her desolation is at hand').
The explanation of these expressions is difficult. Neither D nor Du can really mean 'desolation.' D might mean either desolating or appalling: DD (also ix. 27 end) would naturally mean either desolated or appalled (see on viii. 23), but neither of these renderings suits the subst. with which it is joined; it is, however, possible that, by an irregularity of form, of which there are a few examples (see ibid.), it might have an active force, desolating or appalling: but the absence of the art. before D in (1) and (3) is anomalous (Ges.Kautzsch, § 126 %); and in (2) the plur. D'Yip (if this word is rightly connected with D) is impossible, though the correction Do would here be an easy one. On the whole, the supposition that the ptcp. in each case means appalling, horror-causing, is the one that is least free from difficulty,-the word used being chosen possibly (as explained on xi. 31) for the sake of its assonance with DD 'heaven.'
As regards the two passages in the N.T., three things may be observed. (1) In St Mark_the best MSS. and editions (as Tisch., Westcott and Hort, and so R.V.) have the masc. Eσтηкóтα (hence R. V. 'standing where he ought not'), and omit the words 'spoken of by Daniel the prophet' (which have been introduced from the parallel text of St Matthew, where they are contained in all MSS.). (2) The interpretation of the expressions in the N.T. is uncertain: the context, however, shews that it must refer to something-or rather (Mk.) to ⚫ some one-standing in the Temple, as is generally supposed, not long before its destruction by Titus (in which case the statue of a Roman emperor might, for instance, be intended1), though others suppose the reference to be to an expected future Antichrist (cf. 2 Thes. ii. 4)2. (3) As regards the bearing of our Lord's use of the expression upon the interpretation of it in the Book of Daniel, it is to be observed that in St Mark's Gospel, which has the presumption of presenting the 'synoptic tradition' in a more primitive and original form than the other Gospels, there is no reference to Daniel at all; hence, especially in view of the fondness of St Matthew for O.T. references, it becomes probable that even in the first Gospel the words, 'spoken of by Daniel the prophet,' are not part of our Lord's discourse, but are a comment added by the Evangelist. If this conclusion be accepted, it will follow that our Lord pronounces no judgement on the sense in which the expression is to be interpreted in Daniel: it is the expression alone which He borrows: His use of it by no means necessarily implies that He intends to denote by it the same object which it denotes in Daniel; and His authority cannot therefore be invoked against the interpretation of the expression, as used in Daniel, which has been adopted above.
1 See for this and other cognate views the art. ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION in Hastings' Dict. of the Bible. A further discussion of the subject does not belong here. 2 See ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION, and ANTICHRIST ($ 4), in the Encyclopadia Biblica; and cf. MAN OF SIN in Hastings' Dict. (§ iv.).
10 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a thing was revealed unto Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar ; and the thing was true, but the time appointed was long: and he understood the thing, and had understanding of the vision. In those days I Daniel was mourning three
CHAP. X.-XII. HISTORY OF THE SELEucidae and PTOLEMIES. REIGN OF ANTIOCHUS EPIPHANES, AND HIS TREATMENT of THE JEWS. ADVENT OF THE KINGDOM of God.
These three chapters form a whole, describing a vision of Daniel in the third year of Cyrus, by the Hiddekel (the Tigris), and (ch. xi., xii.) the revelations respecting the future which Daniel received in it from an angel. Daniel had fasted for 21 days, when he fell into a state of trance or vision, in which he saw a shining being standing before him, who told him that he had been sent in answer to his prayers, but that he had been prevented from reaching him before by the opposition of the prince' (i.e. the guardian-angel) of Persia; with the help of Michael, the prince,' or guardian-angel, of the Jews, he had at length been able to start on his mission, and he was now here in order to give Daniel a revelation concerning the future (x. 1-19). After a few introductory words (x. 20-xi. 1), the revelation follows in xi. 2-xii. (there should be no break either at x. 21 or at xi. 45), a solemn concluding statement respecting the duration of the coming period of trial being given in the concluding dialogue, xii. 5—13.
This, the last vision contained in the Book, is also the most circumstantial; both the history of the Diadochi, and also the events of Antiochus Epiphanes' own reign, being described in much greater detail than had been given before (xi. 2—45), and the felicity to begin afterwards being more distinctly outlined (xii. 1-3).
(1) x. 1−xi. 1.
with the shining angel.
Introductory. Daniel's vision, and his colloquy
1. king of Persia] A title, not borne by the Persian kings while the Persian empire still lasted, though often given to them after it had passed away, as a mark of distinction from the Greek rulers who then followed1.
a thing] or, a word: cf. ix. 23b, and (Aram.) iv. 33.
and the word (is) true, and a great warfare] The revelation is true (cf. viii. 26), and relates besides to a period of severe hardship and trial. 'Warfare' has the same figurative sense which it has in Is. xl. 2; Job vii. 1, xiv. 14 (A. V. in Job, as here, appointed time, following the interpretation of Kimchi ; R. V. rightly warfare, figuratively of the hardships of life).
and he understood &c.] and he gave heed unto the word.
2. was mourning] or, continued mourning. The motive of Daniel's mourning is not stated; but it may be inferred from v. 12 (cf. ix. 3) to
1 See the writer's Introduction, p. 511 f., with p. 512, n. 3 (ed. 6, p. 545, with p. 546, n. *).
full weeks. I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh 3 nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled. And in the four and twentieth day of the first month, as I was by the side of the great river, which is Hiddekel; then I lift up mine eyes, 5 and looked, and behold, a certain man clothed in linen,
have been grief for his people's sin (cf. Ezr. x. 6), and anxiety about its future (cf. Neh. i. 4).
three full weeks] three weeks long. Lit. three weeks, days-a pleonastic idiom, which occurs elsewhere (e.g. Gen. xli. 1; Deut. xxi. 13; 2 Sam. xiii. 23). Full' emphasizes the expression unduly. 3. pleasant bread] lit. bread of desirablenesses (ix. 23). Daniel did not fast absolutely; he only abstained from 'pleasant' food. Flesh and wine would, in the East, not be indulged in except at a festivity, or on other special occasions (e.g. Gen. xxvii. 25, 1 Sam. xxv. 11 [where LXX. followed by many moderns, has wine for water]; Is. xxii. 13).
neither did I anoint myself at all] The practice of anointing the body with oil or other unguents was common among the Jews, as ainong other ancient nations: it soothed and refreshed the skin, and was a protection against heat. It was customary after washing, especially in anticipation of a visit, a feast, &c. (Ruth iii. 3); and so to be anointed was a mark of contentment and joy (Is. lxi. 3, Eccl. ix. 8; cf. Matth. vi. 17), while, conversely, during mourning it was usual not to anoint oneself (2 Sam. xiv. 2; cf. xii. 20).
three whole weeks] The same expression which in v. 2 is rendered full weeks.
4. the first month] Abib (Ex. xxiii. 15), or (as it was called by the later Jews) Nisan (Neh. ii. 1),—the month in which the Passover (on the 14th day) and feast of Unleavened Cakes (15th-21st) were kept (Ex. xii. 1-13, 14-20). These sacred seasons thus fell within the period of Daniel's fast.
the great river] elsewhere the Euphrates (Gen. xv. 18; Josh. i. 4) : here, of the Hiddekel (Gen. ii. 14), i.e. the Tigris (Ass. Idiglat or Idiklat) cf. the Syr. form Deklath. (Tigris is probably a Persian modification of the same name, suggested by the Old Pers. tighri, arrow cf. [tighra, pointed, sharp], on account of the swiftness of its stream: see Delitzsch, Paradies, p. 170 ff., who cites Strabo, xi. 14, 8, διὰ τὴν ὀξύτητα, ἀφ ̓ οὗ καὶ τοὔνομα, Μήδων τίγριν καλούντων τὸ τόξευμα.) 5-9. The dazzling being seen by Daniel in his vision, and the effects of the spectacle upon him. For a vision following a fast, cf. Apoc. of Baruch v. 7, ix. 2, vii. 5, x. 5, 6, xxi. 1, xliii. 3, xlvii. 2; 2 Esdr. v. 13, 20, vi. 31, 35, ix. 24, 26, xii. 51: also Acts x. 10. 5. lift up mine eyes] in the vision: cf. viii. 3.
and saw] Daniel (v. 4) was on the side of the river; and it appears from xii. 6, 7, that the figure which he beheld was directly above the river itself, and consequently (x. 16) 'in front of' him. The description
1 See Ges.-Kautzsch, § 131 d.