Yet shall he confirm the covenant with many for one week. He kept it, notwithstanding his death, till the rejection of the Jews, and calling of Cornelius and the Gentiles in the seventh year after his passion.
And in half a week he shall cause the sacrifice and oblation to cease; that is, by the war of the Romans upon the Jews: which war, after some commotions, began in the 13th year of Nero, A.D. 67, in the spring, when Vespasian with an army invaded them; and ended in the second year of Vespasian, A.D. 70, in autumn, Sept. 7, when Titus took the city, having burnt the Temple 27 days before: so that it lasted three years and an half.
And upon a wing of abominations he shall cause desolation, even until the consummation, and that which is determined be poured upon the desolate.
The Prophets, in representing kingdoms by Beasts and Birds, put their wings stretched out over any country for their armies sent out to invade and rule over that country. Hence a wing of abominations is an army of false Gods: for an abomination is often put in scripture for a false God; as where Chemosh is called the abomination of Moab, and Molech the abomination of Ammon. The meaning therefore is, that the people of a Prince to come shall destroy the sanctuary, and abolish the daily worship of the true God, and overspread the land with an army of false gods; and by setting up their dominion and worship, cause desolation to the Jews, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled. For Christ tells us, that the abomination of desolation spoken of by Daniel was to be set up in the times of the Roman Empire, Matthew 24:15.
Thus have we in this short Prophecy, a prediction of all the main periods relating to the coming of the Messiah; the time of his birth, that of his death, that of the rejection of the Jews, the duration of the Jewish war whereby he caused the city and sanctuary to be destroyed, and the time of his second coming: and so the interpretation here given is more full and complete and adequate to the design, than if we should restrain it to his first coming only, as Interpreters usually do. We avoid also the doing violence to the language of Daniel, by taking the seven weeks and sixty two weeks for one number. Had that been Daniel’s meaning, he would have said sixty and nine weeks, and not seven weeks and sixty two weeks, a way of numbering used by no nation. In our way the years are Jewish Luni-solar years,f6 ought to be; and the seventy weeks of years are Jewish weeks ending with sabbatical years, which is very remarkable. For they end either with the year of the birth of Christ, two years before the vulgar account, or with the year of his death, or with the seventh year after it: all which are sabbatical years. Others either count by Lunar years, or by weeks not Judaic: and, which is worst, they ground their interpretations on erroneous Chronology, excepting the opinion of Funccius about the seventy weeks, which is the same with ours. For they place Ezra and Nehemiah in the reign of Artaxerxes Mnemon, and the building of the Temple in the reign of Darius Nothus, and date the weeks of Daniel from those two reigns.