Saturday, April 22, 2017

② “The Abomination that Desolates” - the prophecy Jesus alluded to.

Dear in Christ,

This is the second article in the series “The Abomination that Desolates”. It would be great if you have read the first article before reading this one.

As we learn from the acts of Antiochus Epiphanes: "the abomination that desolates" has to do with unworthy people doing unworthy things within the sanctum sanctorum ("the holy place") of the temple at Jerusalem. We have also seen that there was a specific prophecy regarding the restoration of the sanctuary and its sacrifices and the fulfillment thereof.

“The Abomination that Desolates” that Jesus intended.


The fact that Jesus said His audience that they would see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place, makes it abundantly clear that He didn't allude to the events that occurred during the Maccabean period. He spoke of something that had to happen in their future, so that they would see it.

Daniel's prophecy regarding the Abomination that Desolates involves cessation of sacrifices. There has not been any sacrifices for the last 1950± years, and hence the prophesied event is not in our future. (There are those who daydream about the temple in Ezekiel's vision being built and animal sacrifices being reinstated. Unfortunately, such people call themselves Christians.)

Jesus alluded to Dan 9:27 and 12:11, both related to His period.

Dan 9:27 And 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, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.
This prophecy has to do with the time Messiah (Christ) had to appear - Dan 9:26.
Dan 12:11 And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days.
This had to take place when the power of the holy people (Israel) was scattered, which took place in 70 AD - Dan 12:7.
Unlike the prophecy regarding the abominations committed by Antiochus Epiphanes, we don't see a promise for the restoration of the sanctuary and reinstatement of the sacrifices thereof. Whereas there were Maccabees brothers to resist and defeat Antiochus and restore the sanctuary, the prophecy in Dan 12 makes it clear that it had to happen when the power of Israel is completely shattered. Dan 9:27 goes a step further and says that “he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate”. In other words, it's destruction upon destruction or complete destruction.

Roman Army was not the abomination that desolates.


There is a popular misconception that the Roman army was the abomination that Jesus meant. This thought has its origins in the fact that the parallel passage to Mat 24:15 (and Mar 13:14) in the gospel of Luke mention armies:
Luk 21:20 And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.
Does the passage say that the armies are the abomination that desolates? NO! All that it says is that when Jesus' audience (or the common man on the street) sees the armies, they have to realize that the desolation of the city is at hand.

There are those who claim that gentiles were an abomination to Jews. If the view were correct, someone has to explain how a synagogue built by a gentile could be acceptable to Jews - Luk 7:5.

While Mat 24:15 and Mar 13:14 instruct the disciples of Christ to flee to mountains while they see the abomination that desolates stand in the holy place, Luk 21:20, 21, asks them to do the same while they see Jerusalem surrounded by armies.
Mat 24:15 When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
Mat 24:16 Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:

Luk 21:20 And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.
Luk 21:21 Then let them which are in Judaea flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.
In other words, the abomination that desolates that stands in the holy place is not the same as the army that surrounds the city. Scholars have opined that those who were within the city during the years of the turmoil would have seen the abomination that desolates standing in the holy place, whereas, those who were without the city would have realized that something is taking place within the city by seeing the armies that surrounded it. The armies were a sign to those who were without.

In Christ,
Tomsan Kattackal