Classic scene from the movie "Chariots of Fire".

1. "Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2. looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3. For consider Him who endured such hostility from sinners against Himself, lest you become weary and discouraged in your souls." - Heb. 12:1-3 NKJV

A devotional exhortation
by Dr. Gavin Finley  -

1. Introduction
2. Sir Robert
3. Nehemiah
and the Edict
of Artaxerxes
4. Biblical Time
5. Lunar Cycles
and the
Hebrew Calendar
6. 'Until Messiah
the Prince'
= 173,880 Days
7. The Gap
between the
69th and the
70th Week.
8. Lunar Cycles
measure out
the 69 Weeks
9. A Future
70th Week
10. A Word of
11. 32 A.D. was
the Year of
the Cross
12. Chart of
the 70th Week
13. Metonic
Cycles and the
70th Week

As we have seen, we serve the God of history. He is the Holy One of Israel and it is He who determines the times. According to His Word there is to be a final 7 year period of history. It is a period of God's determined dealings with His Judeo-Christian people. This is called the 70th week, (or seven), of Daniel. This epic period of history will bring this age to its appointed climax. Here are two charts of the 70th week of Daniel.
Chart 1 and Chart 2.

We might well ask ourselves what possible purpose could God have in this final 7 years? Has not His work on the cross been finished? There is nothing left to be done, right? Well this is the crucial question. Is the church called to witness the New Covenant?

It seems that God's covenant people do indeed have a period of holy history cut out for them. It is the time of their testimony. That 7 year period is the final wrap up of of the Times of the Gentiles, the 70 weeks of Daniel. The corporate testimony and witness of the saints is an essential element to holy history. This 'final witness' of the saints is a pre-requisite for the New Covenant to be executed.

The Church is having a hard time coming to this realization. Many western Christians still do not understand why this climactic history has to be. But the Chinese Christians and our Christian brothers and sisters in the persecuted church overseas understand it.

Here is the truth of the matter. Jesus Himself told us about these things in the Olivet Discourse. The record of the old and new testament saints shows a pattern and tells a consistent story. At the thresholds of history God always calls for a witness among His covenant people here on earth. We saw this in early church history. It will also be true in the history that unfolds as this age comes to its appointed climax. The church is not a passive observer in the covenant matters of the God of Israel. She is a bride, and not a concubine. She signs on the dotted line beneath the signature of the Bridegroom. She is at the center of the grand adventure and the divine romance that will unfold in those final seven years. Because the Bride of Christ/Messiah is called to witness the New Covenant even as a bride goes up to publicly sign the register at her marriage. She is thereby testifying of the total commitment she has for her Bridegroom. She makes this commitment before heaven and before the watching world. Like any other wedding ceremony it is a covenant unto death.

The would be Bride, the Church of today, especially in the rich and pampered countries is having a problem with this truth. Without the witness of the Bride the marriage cannot be consummated. This is why this awesome period of history must happen. As the courts of heaven are opened and the Ancient of Days is seated God's elect will bring in "final witness". - Dan.7:9-27 This is the real meaning and purpose of the 5th seal.

At the end of this period of witness our Messiah will return. He will come to judge the wicked, raise the righteous dead, deliver His Elect from Jerusalem and Bozrah, and glorify all His saints into new spiritual bodies. Then He will bring the Kingdom of God or Millennium of Messiah, to earth starting off by judging the nations as sheep and goats. - Mat.25:31-46 Thus will come the consummation of this age.

If we are the key witnesses to the eternal covenant and the major players going up onstage to confirm this victory already won by Christ on the cross then we need to ask ourselves this question. Why are we balking at this glorious opportunity? We would be wise to make ourselves aware of this final 7 year period and to prepare our hearts accordingly. Our Lord Jesus Christ has charged us with the Great Commission. He has promised to be with us right through to the very end of the age.. Therefore, let us with joy and enthusiasm embrace our destiny, drawing near to Him and ordering our steps accordingly.

Let us resolve to trace the outline of the final 7 years, and discern its meaning faithfully from the scriptures, even through the thick fog of gnostic religion which cloaks the truth. Then let us seek the face of our loving God and surrender to Him. Let us allow the Comforter to do His marvelous work within us to prepare us for our time of witness. And since this is a devotional website ministering to the hearts of the saints this article will attempt to do more than just report "the facts". So here is a word of encouragement and exhortation.

These final seven years will see the Apocalypse emerge into holy history. It will be an unveiling, a revealing, of both the 'mystery of iniquity', -2Thes.2:7-8 and the 'mystery of Godliness in Christ Jesus'. -1Tim.3:16 There will be a general apostasy in the established church. (2Thes.2:3) And there will be a magnificent and glorious end-time revival (Joel 2:28-32, Isa. 60 etc.) among the Elect whom God is calling out in His final "ekklesia" (called out congregation), even the Commonwealth of Israel. The saints will pass through the strait gate -Mat.7:13 And on a day of bitter disappointment and out along the Emmaus road, they will realize that Someone is walking with them.

As He breaks forth the Bread of Life they will remember.
They are in a serendipity at an unforeseen spiritual place.
It is a place of joy unspeakable and full of glory. -1Pet.1:8
They will "rise and shine, for their Light has come,
even in a time when darkness will cover the earth,
and thick darkness the peoples". -Isa.60
The Jewish nation of Judah will be saved at the end,
and Jerusalem delivered from the armies of Armageddon. -Zech.12:7-13:1
The elect company of God will "run with patient endurance
looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of their faith".
Pressing on towards the mark
for the prize of the high calling in Christ Jesus. -Phil 3:14,
They will bring their confirming witness before men and angels.
The whole of creation is earnestly waiting with deep longing
for the revealing of the sons of God. -Rom. 8:19
The saints will run the final leg of the race, completing the course
on behalf of all the cloud of witnesses who have gone before them, -Heb. 12:1
to join with all the saints to go out together in a blaze of glory,
even at the climax of the age. -1Thes.4:15-18
Our Messiah will return bringing judgement on His enemies. -Isa.63,
The stars and angelic rulerships will fall,
even in the 6th seal days of a darkened sun and a bloody moon. -Joel 2:28-32
And for the faithful penned up out at the sheepfolds of Bozrah,
The "Breaker" will come up before them,

leading His people out in a glorious deliverance.-Micah 2:12-13 (KJV only)
The Shepherd of Israel will search out and find every last one
of His lost and scattered sheep,
even on a dark and cloudy day. -Ezek. 34:12
He will bring them home, every one of them. -Ezek.34:13
And the ransomed of the Lord shall return
And come with singing unto Zion.
And everlasting joy shall be upon their heads.-Isa.35:10
Unspeakable wonders await the completed ekklesia/congregation of God.
They will see the vision splendid,
in the climactic latter day outpouring of the Holy Spirit, -Joel 2:28-32
in the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Like the grand finale of the classic fireworks festival
the future 70th week will come to an awesome and magnificent climax.
At the last day all the saints will be raised and raptured at the same time. -1Thes.4:15-18
They will be glorified and put on new spiritual bodies to meet the returning Messiah in the air.
He will return to the Mount of Olives and His holy city, Jerusalem
And there establish His glorious Millennial Kingdom
ruling upon the earth for 1,000 years,
He will judge the nations separating the sheep from the goats. -Mat.25:31-48
He will lead His sheep to green pasture beside still waters,
He will feed them, ruling over them in perfect righteousness.
The ecosystem, the creation, will be restored,
Back to it's former order and beauty. -Rom.8:22
And we shall be there!

Grace and shalom to all who love His appearing.

Click on the image below to go to the web-page explaining this chart.
It lays out a road-map for the saints as the enter the 70th Week
of Daniel and on a future Yom Teruah, or Feast of Trumpets
and come into the final 7 years of this age.

Back to Section 9:

On to Section 11

Some more devotional articles on apocalyptic Biblical themes for the inquiring Christian.