This 70th week of Daniel 9 Bible study focuses on the prophecy of Zacharias about John the Baptist and Messiah coming to fulfill the covenant of mercy.
I’m always amazed when I study a passage that I’ve seen many times before, and the significance of it stands out as if I just read it for the first time.
After Zacharias wrote down that his son’s name is John, his tongue was loosed and he spake and praised Yah the Heavenly Father.
“And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost, and prophesied, saying,
Blessed be the Lord God of Israel; for he hath visited and redeemed his people,
And hath raised up an horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David;
As he spake by the mouth of his holy prophets, which have been since the world began:
That we should be saved from our enemies, and from the hand of all that hate us;
To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant;
The oath which he sware to our father Abraham,
That he would grant unto us, that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear,
In holiness and righteousness before him, all the days of our life.” Luke 1:67-75
Verses 72-73 mention the holy covenant of mercy that was given to Abraham and his descendants.
Now let’s connect it to the prophecy in Daniel 9.
Daniel understood that the 70 years of captivity in Babylon was coming to an end, so he was praying about what would happen to the Jewish people.
When you read Daniel 9, you see that Daniel is pleading with the Father because he knows that many of the Jews continued in their rebellion against the Father and were steeped in the idolatrous Babylonian Mystery religion.
Note what Daniel says in verse 4, “And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments.”
We see a match between Daniel’s prayer in pleading for the Father to keep the everlasting covenant of mercy, and the prayer of Zacharias which proclaims that the holy covenant of mercy will be fulfilled through John the Baptist and Messiah.
Recall when Abraham’s faith was being tested and he took his son up to sacrifice Him, Isaac asked “where is the lamb?” Abraham told him that the Father would provide the lamb.
When the Father saw Abraham’s faith, He provided a ram caught in the thicket for the sacrifice that day, but Abraham and Isaac both understood that one day the Spotless Lamb would be sent to ratify the everlasting covenant of mercy with His blood.
John the Baptist identified Messiah as the fulfillment of that promise to Abraham.
“The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” John 1:29
The ministry of John the Baptist and Messiah took place in the 70th week of Daniel 9.
Messiah ratified the everlasting covenant with His blood in the middle of the seven years of the 70th week of Daniel 9, as the Spotless Lamb.
Now let’s apply this to Daniel 9:27 which says, “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.”
The word “for” is added by the translators.
The passage is not declaring that it’s a seven-year covenant, but that the covenant would be confirmed in the seven years of the 70th week of Daniel 9.
And then it declares that it takes place in the midst, in the middle, of the seven years, as Messiah’s blood sacrifice caused the need for temple animal sacrifices to end, fulfilling “he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease.”
The word “confirm” tells us that the covenant already existed.
Many teachers say that the supposed futuristic one-man antichrist will “create” or “make” a covenant with Israel, indicating the beginning of a covenant.
But the Heavenly Father’s Word says “confirm” (also rendered “strengthen“), which tells us that the covenant was previously established.
Yah made a covenant with Abraham that He would provide a lamb for his sins, and for his descendants who believe by faith.
Scripture tells us that it is Messiah who confirmed the covenant.
Romans 15:8 tells us that Messiah was sent to confirm the promises made unto Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, etc.
“Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers.“
Galatians 3:13-18 tells us that the covenant was confirmed by the Heavenly Father in Messiah.
“Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Jesus Christ; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith. Brethren, I speak after the manner of men; Though it be but a man’s covenant, yet if it be confirmed, no man disannulleth, or addeth thereto. Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, which is Christ. And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect. For if the inheritance be of the law, it is no more of promise: but God gave it to Abraham by promise.”
Paul proclaims that it is Messiah who confirms the covenant promises.
Romans 15:8 says, “Now I say that Jesus Christ was a minister of the circumcision for the truth of God, to confirm the promises made unto the fathers.“
Galatians 3:17 says, “And this I say, that the law, which was four hundred and thirty years later, cannot annul the covenant that was confirmed before by God in Christ, that it should make the promise of no effect.”
Messiah confirmed the everlasting covenant with His blood sacrifice.
Hebrews 7:22 tells us, “By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better covenant.”
The word “surety” means “to pledge” as a “bondsman“. Messiah agreed to be the surety, the blood sacrifice, that confirms the covenant.
Hebrews 8:6 tells us, “But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much alsohe is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.”
By this we see confirmation that the ‘he’ in Daniel 9:27 is Messiah the Prince who was previously mentioned in Daniel 9:25 and 9:26.
He came to confirm the covenant of mercy that Daniel was pleading for the Father to remember in Daniel 9:4.
This is what Zacharias was pointing to when he declared that the covenant of mercy that was promised to the fathers of the faith, is fulfilled through John the Baptist and Messiah.