” Seventy weeks are decreed for your people and your holy city: to finish the transgression, to put an end to sin, and to atone for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal both vision and prophet, and to anoint a most holy place.” (Daniel 9:24, NRSV).
Tomorrow evening at sunset begins the most solemn day of the Hebrew calendar, Yom Kippur. The Day of Atonement is a Sabbath, where no work is done and the streets of Jerusalem are empty. Even non-religious individuals observe this day. It is so holy that many schools in the United States with a high Jewish population will be closed on Wednesday. Although there is no temple to observe this special day with animal sacrifices, many Jewish men and women have been repenting and asking God for forgiveness since Rosh Hashanah (Feast of Trumpets.) God, in his mercy, covers the sins of the Jewish nation for another year.
For a true believer in Jesus, our sins were atoned during the preparation day of Passover. When Jesus was crucified, all sins: past, present and future were paid for. However, because the Jewish nation rejected Jesus as their king, God sent a hardening over part of Israel (Jewish people) until the times of Gentiles are fulfilled. (cf: Romans 11:25 and Luke 21:24). God accounted for this in His master plan of salvation and therefore instituted the Day of Atonement as a holy day for Israel to observe. (Leviticus 16). So, when will Yom Kippur be fulfilled? Daniel 9:24 holds the key.
70 weeks of years ( 70, 7 year periods) were decreed for Daniel, his people (Judah and Israel) and Jerusalem. We know that the sins of Judah will be put to an end and the iniquity of the Hebrew people will be atoned for. (Ezekiel 36:25-38). The only way atonement can be made is when one accepts Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. Will Israel do this? This is what Zechariah 13:1 tells us: “On that day a fountain shall be opened for the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity.”
The prophets are in agreement that there will be a day where the sins of Israel will be atoned for. This fulfillment will happen on Yom Kippur. Then the remnant of the 12 tribes will be gathered to Jesus and He will cleanse them before they enter the Millennium. (Zechariah 8:23). Ezekiel 45:18-25 shows the Feast Days Israel will observe in the Millennium. They are Passover (days of Unleavened Bread), Pentecost (Spring Harvest) and Sukkot (Fall Harvest). Yom Kippur is not necessary anymore after Israel turns to Jesus.
What does that mean for us? Well, if we know that the Day of Atonement ends the 70th week, then we can know that the final 7 year period will end in late September or early October. (That is when Yom Kippur is observed). We can count back 2520 days to determine that the beginning of the 70th week will commence sometime during the end of October. God has given us clues in His Word so that his magi can figure out future events. Will you be prepared? EJ