Top-Ten Prophecies Fulfilled By Jesus
Lesson 1 of 10: Daniel predicts the year when Messiah will die
This week I will provide begin a series of 10 lessons over ten weeks explaining the top-ten prophecies fulfilled by Jesus. (A lesson outline for the next ten weeks is provided below). There are actually hundreds of prophecies fulfilled by Jesus. This link lists them: http://www.accordingtothescriptures.org/prophecy/353prophecies.html. However, we will focus on just the top-ten, which I thought were the most dramatic. Watch this short video and hear evangelical Old Testament scholar Dr. Walter C. Kaiser, Jr., explain why the book of Daniel predicts Jesus’ death 600 years before it happened.
Here are the main points made in the video:
Daniel the prophet wrote around 607 BC, the year he and others were carted into Babylonian captivity. Daniel writes in Daniel 9:1-3 “1 In the first year of Darius son of Xerxes (a Mede by descent), who was made ruler over the Babylonian kingdom— 2 in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the Scriptures, according to the word of the Lord given to Jeremiah the prophet, that the desolation of Jerusalem would last seventy years. 3 So I turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and in sackcloth and ashes. “
Daniel was reading Jeremiah (Jeremiah wrote in around 629 BC). Jeremiah 25:12 states, “But when the seventy years are fulfilled, I will punish the king of Babylon and his nation, the land of the Babylonians, for their guilt,” declares the Lord, “and will make it desolate forever.
Daniel must have wondered whether they go home after 70 years in 536 BC. God answers Daniel through the angel Gabriel, who says in Daniel 9:24-26:
24 “Seventy ‘sevens’ are decreed for your people and your holy city to finish transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for wickedness, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the Most Holy Place. 25 “Know and understand this: From the time the word goes out to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One, the ruler, comes, there will be seven ‘sevens,’ and sixty-two ‘sevens.’ It will be rebuilt with streets and a trench, but in times of trouble. 26 After the sixty-two ‘sevens,’ the Anointed One will be put to death and will have nothing. The people of the ruler who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end will come like a flood: War will continue until the end, and desolations have been decreed.
Sixty-nine Sevens is 483 years (69 x 7 = 483 years) from the decree to restore Jerusalem until the time in which Messiah is cut off and the temple and city are destroyed. This places it within the corridor of 30 to 33 AD, the time of Jesus’ crucifixion. Here is how that is computed.
According to the website aboutbibleprophecy.com, the 483 years in the Daniel passage were lunar years that contain 360 days per year (12- 30 day lunar cycles). 483 x 360 = 173880 days. To convert these into solar years, we need to divide by 365.25 days per year (the .25 is needed for the extra day included during leap year every 4 years). 173,880/365.25 = 476 Solar years.
When was Daniel’s “69 weeks of years” supposed to begin? The prophecy in Daniel 9:24-26 begins with a decree to rebuild Jerusalem. Many scholars believe this decree was issued from Artaxerxes I of Persia to Nehemiah in 444 BC (recorded in Nehemiah 2:1-8). According to Christian scholar J.D. Wilson the date of 444 B.C. is based on the following:
- ‘In the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes’ (Nehemiah 2:1).
- Artaxerxes’ accession was in 465 B.C.
- There is no day-of-month specified, so according to the Jewish custom the date is understood as the first day of the month, which would be Nisan 1, 444 BC.
- March 5, 444 B.C. is our corresponding calendar date.
444. B.C to 33 A.D. would be 476 years. 33 A.D. is the year many scholars believer Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey and was crucified during Passover.
Daniel 9:26 also says, “The people of the ruler who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary.“ The city of Jerusalem was sacked and the temple was destroyed in 70AD by the Roman army, led by the future Emperor Titus, confirming the prophecy.
Top-Ten Prophecies Fulfilled by Jesus
- The exact year in history in which Messiah Jesus will be crucified
- Jesus will be born in Bethlehem
- Jesus will be betrayed by 30 pieces of silver
- Jesus’ hands and feet will be pierced
- Jesus will be identified with sinners
- Jesus will pay for our sins
- None of Jesus’ will be bones broken
- Jesus will be buried in rich man’s tomb
- Jesus’ garments will be divided
- Jesus’ body will not decay