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69 Weeks to the Day

The date of the Persian edict (decree) to restore and build Jerusalem is established as the 1st of Nisan 445 B.C. This is the starting point for the seventy weeks.

"From the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks and threescore and two weeks." An era therefore of sixty-nine "weeks" or 483 prophetic years reckoned from the 14th March, 445 B.C., should close with some event to satisfy the words, "unto the Messiah the Prince."(1)

The entry of Jesus into the Jerusalem was to proclaim His Messiahship and receive His doom.

The date of this entry can be ascertained. In accordance with the Jewish custom, the Lord went up to Jerusalem upon the 8th Nisan, "six days before the Passover." But as the 14th, on which the Paschal Supper was eaten, fell that year upon a Thursday, the 8th was the preceding Friday. He must have spent the Sabbath, there-fore, at Bethany; and on the evening of the 9th, after the Sabbath had ended, the Supper took place in Martha's house. Upon the following day, the 10th of Nissan, He entered Jerusalem as recorded in the Gospels.(1)

The Julian date of that 10th of Nissan was Sunday the 6th of April, 32 A.D.. What was the length of the period intervening between the issuing of the decree to rebuild Jerusalem and the public advent of "Messiah the Prince,"-between March 14th 445 B.C., and April 6th 32 A.D.? THE INTERVAL CONTAINED EXACTLY AND TO THE VERY DAY 173,880 DAYS OR SEVEN TIMES SIXTY-NINE PROPHETIC YEARS OF 360 DAYS, the first sixty-nine weeks of Gabriel's prophecy.(1)

This is how the figures are arrived at.

The 1st of Nisan in the twentieth year of Artaxerxes (the edict to rebuild Jerusalem) was March 14th, 445 B.C.

The 10th of Nisan in Passion Week (Christ's entry into Jerusalem) was April 6th 32 A.D..

The intervening period was 476 years and 24 days (the days being reckoned inclusively, as required by the language of the prophecy, and in accordance with the Jewish practice).(1)

69 Week Table
Amount Of Time
Time In Number Of Days
476 (Years) X 365 Days =
173,740 Days
Add March 14th to April 6th, both inclusive =
24 Days
Add for Leap Years
116 Days
Total Number of Days
173,880 Days
69 Weeks of Prophetic years of 360 Days or 69 X 7 X 360 =
173,880 Days

This shows us that the sixty-nine weeks began with the decree to rebuild Jerusalem and terminated at the Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem on the Sunday of the week of the Lord's death. The corrected reading of Luke 19:42, spoken as our Lord came into Jerusalem on that day is most significant: "If thou also hadst known, even on this day, the things which belong to thy peace; but now they are hid from thine eyes!"(2)

A Second Opinion:

More recently Dr. Harold Hoehner used modern astronomical charts and computers to confirm the work of Sir Robert Anderson. However, he used a different starting date than Anderson. That's because he knew that Medo-Persian kings didn't include the year of their accession to the throne to reckon the length of their reigns. That meant Artaxerxes wasn't considered king until 464  B. C. , and thus rather than using 445  B. C. as the year of Artaxerxes's second decree (as Anderson did) , Hoehner used 444  B. C. (twenty years after Artaxerxes was first recognized as king--Neh. 2:1). It also meant that the first of Nisan fell on March 30 (according to the new moons of 444  B. C. )  rather than March 5. 

Using the same adjustments as Anderson, Hoehner multiplied 476 (the number of years between the second decree of Artaxerxes and the presentation of the Messiah in Jerusalem)  by 365. 24219879 (the decimal equivalent of 365 days, five hours, forty-eight minutes, and forty-four seconds--which accounts for the 1/128 difference between calendar and solar days observed by Anderson)  and obtained a product of 173,855. 28662404 days (173,855 days, six hours, fifty-two minutes, and forty-four seconds). That's twenty-five days longer than the 173,880 that ought to exist from the time of the decree to the time of the Messiah's appearance. But Hoehner was able to adjust that amount by the difference between the starting dates of Anderson (March 5)  and himself (March 30) --a period of exactly twenty-five days! Thus regardless of the starting date used, both Anderson and Hoehner were able to show the precision with which God predicted and fulfilled the presentation of Jesus Christ as Messiah and Ruler.(3)


In calculating years from B.C. to A.D., one must always be omitted. (From B.C.1 to A.D.1 is one year not two years). B.C. 1 is calculated as B.C. 0 by astronomers. Therefore what is commonly referred to as 445 B.C. is referred to as 444 B.C. by astronomers.(1)

Other links of interest include:


1). The Coming Prince by Sir Robert Anderson p.128.

2). Things to Come. A Study in Biblical Eschatology by J. Dwight Pentecost p.246 in reference to Robert Anderson, the Coming Prince pp. 121-123.

3). John MacArthur.

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