[b-hebrew] Yom in Biblical and Rabbinic Texts

Harold R. Holmyard III hholmyard at ont.com
Thu Oct 27 16:59:14 EDT 2005


Dear James,

>Exactly! But when we ask a hebrew, what will they immediately think
>these 'sevens' are?

HH: I think they would assume years. There are 
years counted by sevens elsewhere in Scripture, 
so it did not seem that unique to me:

Gen. 29:27 Finish this daughter's bridal week; 
then we will give you the younger one also, in 
return for another seven years of work."

HH: This is literally, "Finish this seven, and we 
will give . . . ." The word "seven" is the same 
word used in Dan 9:24-27, where many important 
historical events probably would not be thought 
to occur in a matter of days. Also, when Daniel 
began his prayer, he was concerned about the 
seventy years of judgment that were ending:

Dan. 9:2 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.
Dan. 9:3 So I turned to the Lord God and pleaded 
with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and 
in sackcloth and ashes.

HH: The angel who answered his prayer spoke about seventy "sevens":

Dan. 9:21 while I was still in prayer, Gabriel, 
the man I had seen in the earlier vision, came to 
me in swift flight about the time of the evening 
sacrifice.
Dan. 9:22 He instructed me and said to me, 
"Daniel, I have now come to give you insight and 
understanding.
Dan. 9:23 As soon as you began to pray, an answer 
was given, which I have come to tell you, for you 
are highly esteemed. Therefore, consider the 
message and understand the vision:
Dan. 9:24 ¶  "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.

HH: Since the seventy years of past judgment seem 
to be the take-off point for this prophecy about 
the future, the seventy "sevens" probably also 
refer to years, and Daniel would probably have 
realized that. The angel was giving information 
that seemed to carry to the end of the age (v. 
24).

					Yours,
					Harold Holmyard





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