The Bible says, "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." Daniel 9:27.

Have you ever heard of the "seven-year period of great tribulation"? The whole idea is rooted in two words of the above sentence! The two words are "one week." Supposedly, that period of "one week" applies to the final seven-year period of great tribulation at the end of time. Right now, all over planet Earth, in books, in magazines, in videos, on the radio, in seminaries, on the Internet, and at Bible prophecy conferences, Christians are talking about events that they firmly believe will occur during a final seven years of tribulation.

According to the popular interpretation of Daniel 9:27, the "he" refers to a future Antichrist who will eventually make a covenant, or peace treaty, with the Jews during the final seven years of tribulation. In the "midst" of this tribulation, this Antichrist will cause "the sacrifice … to cease." In order for the sacrifices to cease, they must have been restarted. Therefore, according to countless modern interpreters, there must be a rebuilt third Jewish temple on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem.

A popular Christian magazine called Endtime reflects this current view: "Three and one-half years after the confirming of the covenant [by the Antichrist] the Jews’ Third Temple must be completed and sacrifice and oblation be in progress. We know this because Daniel 9:27 states that in the middle of the seven years the Antichrist will cause the sacrifice and the oblation to stop." Much of the Christian world is now locked in a fierce debate about whether Jesus will return for His church before the 7 years (the pre-tribulation view), in the midst of the 7 years (the mid-tribulation view), or at the end of the 7 years (the post-tribulation view). Yet by far the most explosive question, which few seem to be asking, should be "Is and end-time ‘seven-year period of great tribulation’ really the correct interpretation of Daniel 9:27 in the first place?"

Historically, Protestant scholars have not applied Daniel 9:27 to a future period of tribulation at all! Neither have they applied the "he" to the Antichrist! Rather, they applied it to Jesus Christ. Notice what the world-famous Bible commentary written by Matthew Henry says about Daniel 9:27: "By offering himself a sacrifice once and for all he [Jesus] shall put an end to all the Levitical sacrifices." Another famous Bible commentary, written by Adam Clarke, says that during the "term of seven years," Jesus would "confirm or ratify the new covenant with mankind." Finally, another well-respected old commentary declares: "He shall confirm the covenant—Christ. The confirmation of the covenant is assigned to Him."

The following 10 points provide logical and convincing evidence that the "one week" spoken of in Daniel 9:27 does not apply to any future seven-year period of tribulation at all. Rather, this great prophetic period has already been definitely fulfilled in the past!

1) The entire prophecy of Daniel 9:24-27 covers a period of "seventy weeks." This period applies to one complete, sequential block of time. This prophecy would start during the Persian period and would end during the time of the Messiah.

2) Logic requires that the 70th week follow immediately after the 69th week. If it does not, then it cannot properly be called the 70th week!

3) It is illogical to insert a 2,000-year gap between the 69th and the 70th week. No hint of this gap is found in the prophecy itself. There is no gap between the first 7 weeks and the following 62 weeks. Why insert one between the 69th and the 70th week?

4) Daniel 9:27 says nothing about a seven-year period of tribulation, or about any Antichrist.

5) The focus of this prophecy is the Messiah, not the Antichrist. Modern interpreters have applied "the people of the prince" who would come to "destroy the city and the sanctuary" (verse 26) to the Antichrist. Yet the text does not say this. In the past, that sentence has been applied to the Romans, who under Prince Titus did "destroy the city and the sanctuary" in A.D. 70.

6) "He shall confirm the covenant." Jesus Christ came "to confirm the promises made unto the fathers." Romans 15:8. Nowhere in the Bible is Antichrist ever said to make or confirm a covenant with anyone! The word "covenant" always applies to the Messiah, never to the Antichrist!

7) "He shall confirm the covenant with many." Jesus said, "This is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many." Matthew 26:28. Jesus used the same words, because He knew that He was fulfilling Daniel 9:27!

8) "In the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease." The 70th week was from A.D. 27 to 34. After three and a half years of ministry, Christ died in A.D. 31, "in the midst [middle] of the week." At the moment of His death, "the veil of the temple was rent [torn] in twain from the top to the bottom." Matthew 27:51. This act of God signified that all animal sacrifices had at that moment ceased to be of value. The Great Sacrifice had been offered!

9) "For the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate." Jesus plainly applied this "abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet" (Matthew 24:15) to the time when His followers were to flee from Jerusalem before the destruction of the second temple in A.D. 70. Jesus told His 12 disciples, "When ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies [the Roman armies led by Prince Titus], then know that its desolation is near." Luke 21:20, emphasis added. Those disciples did "see" those very events. Christ’s very last words to the Pharisees from inside the second temple were, "Behold, your house is left unto you desolate." Matthew 23:38. Thus Daniel’s prophecy about Jerusalem becoming "desolate" was exactly fulfilled in A.D. 70! Jesus understood this perfectly.

10) Gabriel said that the 70-week prophecy specifically applied to the Jewish people (Daniel 9:24). From A.D. 27 to A.D. 34, the disciples went only "to the lost sheep of the house of Israel." Matthew 10:6. At the end of the 70 weeks, in the year A.D. 34, Stephen was stoned by the Jewish Sanhedrin (Acts chapter 7). Then the gospel began to go to the Gentiles. In Acts chapter 9, Saul became Paul, "the apostle of the Gentiles." Romans 11:13. Then in Acts chapter 10, God gave Peter a vision revealing that it was now time to preach the gospel to the Gentiles (Acts 10:1-28). Read also Acts 13:46.

The explosive evidence is overwhelming! Point by point, the events of the 70th week have already been fulfilled in the past! The following eight words found in Daniel 9:27: "confirm...covenant...many...midst...sacrifice...cease... abominations...desolate": all find a perfect fulfillment in Jesus Christ and in early Christian history.

One reason why the Jewish nation as a whole failed to receive its Messiah was because its leaders and scholars failed to correctly interpret the 70-week prophecy. They failed to see Jesus Christ as the Messiah who died in the midst of the 70th week. The same thing is happening today! Amazingly, sincere Christian scholars are now misinterpreting the very same prophecy.

The entire "seven-year period of great tribulation" theory is a grand illusion. It may go down in history as the biggest evangelical misinterpretation of the 20th century! It can be compared to a big, fat hot air balloon. Inside, there is no substance, only air. As soon as Daniel 9:27 is understood correctly and the pin of truth is inserted, the balloon will pop. The fact is that no text in the Bible teaches any "seven-year period of great tribulation." If you look for it, you will end up like Ponce de Leon, who tirelessly searched for the famous fountain of youth but never found it.

Email: pastorgary2009@gmail.com