Daniel 9 Contemporary English Version (CEV)
Daniel Prays for the People
9 1-2 Daniel wrote:
Some years later, Darius the Mede,[a] who was the son of Xerxes,[b] had become king of Babylonia. And during his first year as king, I found out from studying the writings of the prophets that the Lord had said to Jeremiah, “Jerusalem will lie in ruins for seventy years.”[c] 3-4 Then, to show my sorrow, I went without eating and dressed in sackcloth[d] and sat in ashes. I confessed my sins and earnestly prayed to the Lord my God:
Our Lord, you are a great and fearsome God, and you faithfully keep your agreement with those who love and obey you. 5 But we have sinned terribly by rebelling against you and rejecting your laws and teachings. 6 We have ignored the message your servants the prophets spoke to our kings, our leaders, our ancestors, and everyone else.
7 Everything you do is right, our Lord. But still we suffer public disgrace because we have been unfaithful and have sinned against you. This includes all of us, both far and near—the people of Judah, Jerusalem, and Israel, as well as those you dragged away to foreign lands, 8 and even our kings, our officials, and our ancestors. 9 Lord God, you are merciful and forgiving, even though we have rebelled against you 10 and rejected your teachings that came to us from your servants the prophets.
11 Everyone in Israel has stubbornly refused to obey your laws, and so those curses written by your servant Moses have fallen upon us. 12 You warned us and our leaders that Jerusalem would suffer the worst disaster in human history, and you did exactly as you had threatened. 13 We have not escaped any of the terrible curses written by Moses, and yet we have refused to beg you for mercy and to remind ourselves of how faithful you have always been. 14 And when you finally punished us with this horrible disaster, that was also the right thing to do, because we deserved it so much.
15 Our Lord God, with your own mighty arm you rescued us from Egypt and made yourself famous to this very day, but we have sinned terribly. 16 In the past, you treated us with such kindness, that we now beg you to stop being so terribly angry with Jerusalem. After all, it is your chosen city built on your holy mountain, even though it has suffered public disgrace because of our sins and those of our ancestors.
17 I am your servant, Lord God, and I beg you to answer my prayers and bring honor to yourself by having pity on your temple that lies in ruins. 18 Please show mercy to your chosen city, not because we deserve it, but because of your great kindness. 19 Forgive us! Hurry and do something, not only for your city and your chosen people, but to bring honor to yourself.
The Seventy Weeks
20 I was still confessing my sins and those of all Israel to the Lord my God, and I was praying for the good of his holy mountain,[e] 21 when Gabriel suddenly came flying in at the time of the evening sacrifice. This was the same Gabriel I had seen in my vision, 22 and he explained:
Daniel, I am here to help you understand the vision. 23 God thinks highly of you, and at the very moment you started praying, I was sent to give you the answer. 24 God has decided that for seventy weeks,[f] your people and your holy city must suffer as the price of their sins. Then evil will disappear, and justice will rule forever; the visions and words of the prophets will come true, and a most holy place will be dedicated.[g]
25 You need to realize that from the command to rebuild Jerusalem until the coming of the Chosen Leader,[h] it will be seven weeks and another sixty-two weeks.[i] Streets will be built in Jerusalem, and a trench will be dug around the city for protection, but these will be difficult times.[j] 26 At the end of the sixty-two weeks,[k] the Chosen Leader[l] will be killed and left with nothing.[m]
A foreign ruler and his army will sweep down like a mighty flood, leaving both the city and the temple in ruins, and war and destruction will continue until the end, just as God has decided. 27 For one week[n] this foreigner[o] will make a firm agreement with many people, and halfway through this week,[p] he will end all sacrifices and offerings. Then the “Horrible Thing” that causes destruction will be put there. And it will stay there until the time God has decided to destroy this one who destroys.
Daniel 9 New International Version (NIV)
9 In the first year of Darius son of Xerxes[a] (a Mede by descent), who was made ruler over the Babylonian[b] kingdom— 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. 3 So I turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and in sackcloth and ashes.
4 I prayed to the Lord my God and confessed:
“Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps his covenant of love with those who love him and keep his commandments, 5 we have sinned and done wrong. We have been wicked and have rebelled; we have turned away from your commands and laws. 6 We have not listened to your servants the prophets, who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes and our ancestors, and to all the people of the land.
7 “Lord, you are righteous, but this day we are covered with shame—the people of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem and all Israel, both near and far, in all the countries where you have scattered us because of our unfaithfulness to you. 8 We and our kings, our princes and our ancestors are covered with shame, Lord, because we have sinned against you. 9 The Lord our God is merciful and forgiving, even though we have rebelled against him; 10 we have not obeyed the Lord our God or kept the laws he gave us through his servants the prophets. 11 All Israel has transgressed your law and turned away, refusing to obey you.
“Therefore the curses and sworn judgments written in the Law of Moses, the servant of God, have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against you. 12 You have fulfilled the words spoken against us and against our rulers by bringing on us great disaster. Under the whole heaven nothing has ever been done like what has been done to Jerusalem. 13 Just as it is written in the Law of Moses, all this disaster has come on us, yet we have not sought the favor of the Lord our God by turning from our sins and giving attention to your truth. 14 The Lord did not hesitate to bring the disaster on us, for the Lord our God is righteous in everything he does; yet we have not obeyed him.
15 “Now, Lord our God, who brought your people out of Egypt with a mighty hand and who made for yourself a name that endures to this day, we have sinned, we have done wrong. 16 Lord, in keeping with all your righteous acts, turn away your anger and your wrath from Jerusalem, your city, your holy hill. Our sins and the iniquities of our ancestors have made Jerusalem and your people an object of scorn to all those around us.
17 “Now, our God, hear the prayers and petitions of your servant. For your sake, Lord, look with favor on your desolate sanctuary. 18 Give ear, our God, and hear; open your eyes and see the desolation of the city that bears your Name. We do not make requests of you because we are righteous, but because of your great mercy. 19 Lord, listen! Lord, forgive! Lord, hear and act! For your sake, my God, do not delay, because your city and your people bear your Name.”
The Seventy “Sevens”
20 While I was speaking and praying, confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel and making my request to the Lord my God for his holy hill— 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. 22 He instructed me and said to me, “Daniel, I have now come to give you insight and understanding. 23 As soon as you began to pray, a word went out, which I have come to tell you, for you are highly esteemed. Therefore, consider the word and understand the vision:
24 “Seventy ‘sevens’[c] are decreed for your people and your holy city to finish[d] 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 Place.[e]
25 “Know and understand this: From the time the word goes out to restore and rebuild Jerusalem until the Anointed One,[f] the ruler, comes, there will be seven ‘sevens,’ and sixty-two ‘sevens.’ It will be rebuilt with streets and a trench, but in times of trouble. 26 After the sixty-two ‘sevens,’ the Anointed One will be put to death and will have nothing.[g] The people of the ruler who will come will destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end will come like a flood: War will continue until the end, and desolations have been decreed. 27 He will confirm a covenant with many for one ‘seven.’[h] In the middle of the ‘seven’[i] he will put an end to sacrifice and offering. And at the temple[j] he will set up an abomination that causes desolation, until the end that is decreed is poured out on him.[k]”[l]