The Triumphal Entry: A Living Parable - Part II
why didn't Israel know the time that Messiah would come to them?
This is Part II, you can find Part I here.
The Day Of 'Messiah The Prince' Was Predicted By Daniel
When Jesus entered the eastern gate of Jerusalem riding on a donkey, He fulfilled many prophecies. One of the most amazing predictions foretold the time that Messiah (Christ) would present himself as Israel's king! This prophecy, written centuries before the Triumphal Entry, is recorded in Daniel 9:25.
“Know therefore and understand, That from the going forth of the command To restore and build Jerusalem Until Messiah the Prince, There shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks; The street shall be built again, and the wall, Even in troublesome times" (NKJV)
Wow! Daniel leaves Israel (and us) a timetable for the coming of "Messiah The Prince" (which literally means "The Anointed Ruler"). Daniel predicts that from the decree to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of the Messiah would be exactly 69 weeks of years, or 483 years! Think about this for a moment! Daniel actually predicts WHEN the Messiah would come and we are about to learn how accurate this prediction was. It is no wonder why Jesus said to the religious leaders of His day in Matthew 16:1-3 :
"You know how to discern the face of the sky, But you cannot discern the signs of the times"
The Pharisees did not unravel Daniel's prophecy (or many others for that matter), but we will. We just need to know how long a Biblical year is and when the clock started ticking to calculate "the day of Messiah".
How Many Days Are In A Biblical Year?
Many "scholars" have attempted to calculate the date we are searching for. Some make the mistake of using our 365 day calendar, but the Bible uses the lunar (360 day) calendar in prophecies throughout the scripture. See the excellent article below entitled, "The Biblical Year", to review the scriptures that identify the 360 day year.
Now we can calculate the number of days (483 x 360) until the Messiah will come, we just need to know WHEN the clock started ticking!
Fortunately, this work has been done for us. Around the turn of the century, Sir Robert Anderson (1841-1918), Head of Scotland Yard's Criminal Investigation Division, turned his investigative skills to the book of Daniel and published a book that details the timeline. The book, "The Coming Prince", is available on Amazon. This is one of the most scholarly and revered works on the subject and would be a great addition to any library. It is also available for Kindle. I have posted a video review of this book in the "More Links" area below this article.
When Did The Clock Start Ticking?
Modern archeology has confirmed that on March 14th, 445 BC, King Artexerxes I of Persia issued the commandment to rebuild Jerusalem (see Nehemiah 2:2-9). Bible prophecy uses 360 day (lunar) years, so, 483 years * 360 = 173,880 days. When we add 173,880 days to this date, we arrive at April 6, 32 A.D., the date of the Triumphal Entry. The image above this article illustrates Daniel's timeline.
Here is something to think about; there is no other historical figure appearing in history (other than Jesus) who even remotely fulfills the prophecies relating to the coming of Messiah!
The Price Of Not Considering God's Parables
Israel should have known when their Messiah was coming. They should have also known how He was coming. Why didn't they know? There are hundreds of prophecies about the Messiah in the Old Testament. Tragically, Israel repeated an old pattern of behaviour found in Psalms 78 (read it carefully). They did not carefully consider God's word or the wonders that God performed for them! As a result. They rebelled and faced disaster.
You Did Not Know The Time Of Your visitation
Jesus pronounced disaster on the Jews of His day because they did not recognize the time of their "visitation". How could the Jews of Jesus' day know that the time for Messiah had come? Psalms chapter 78 gives us the key; considering God's word, works and wonders has to be an intentional, serious and continuous endeavor! Jesus provided many "signs" that confirmed His Messiahship during His 3-year public ministry. By the time of the Triumphal Entry, Israel had no excuse for their ignorance. In Luke 19:41-44, Jesus weeps over Israel's blindness as he pronounces the coming destruction of Jerusalem.
And when he was come near, he beheld the city, and wept over it,
Saying, If thou hadst known, even thou, at least in this thy day, the things which belong unto thy peace! but now they are hid from thine eyes.
For the days shall come upon thee, that thine enemies shall cast a trench about thee, and compass thee round, and keep thee in on every side,
And shall lay thee even with the ground, and thy children within thee; and they shall not leave in thee one stone upon another; because thou knewest not the time of thy visitation. (NKJV)
Jesus rode into Jerusalem with much fanfare and shouts of "Hosana in the highest". Within days, the shouts had become, "Crucify him"! Thirty-eight years later, in 70 A.D., Jerusalem was over-thrown and their temple was utterly destroyed.
The blindness of Israel's religious leaders is also highlighted in Matthew 16:1-4. Jesus accuses Israel's leaders of not being able to "discern the signs of the times". The indictment was that God had already given them "signs" and they should have known that the time of Messiah had come!
The Purpose of God's Parables
Israel's blindness teaches us a lesson. God's parables (His word, works and wonders), have been given to us that we might KNOW His mysteries (Luke 8:9-10). When we invest in the discovery of these treasures, it has a supernatural impact on our heart and changes us for the better. If we ignore or treat God's parables lightly, blindness and unnecessary trouble will follow. This pattern is very clear throughout the scriptures and can be seen again in the day of The Triumphal Entry.
More Treasure From This Living Parable
There are more hidden truths to be uncovered in the Triumphal Entry. Reference videos and web links are provided in the "More Links" section below. You are also invited to participate in our community discussion of this article which is located in the Comments section below.