The Abomination of Desolation

 

 

The prophet Daniel prophesied an abomination of desolation:  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 [kanaph: uttermost] of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate (Dan 9:27). Josephus records the fulfillment of this prophecy by Antiochus Epiphanies in 167 B.C. when, after forbidding observation of Jewish law and circumcision, he erected an altar to Zeus upon the altar in the temple and sacrificed unclean swine upon it, but there is to be another fulfillment at the time of the end of which Jesus spoke as one of the things which would precede the gathering of His elect: When you therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (he who reads, let him understand:) then let them which are in Judaea flee into the mountains (Matt. 24:15-16, 24:17-31).

 

Dual fulfillment of prophecies is a Christian concept of a near-term fulfillment, which confirms that the one prophesying is a prophet (Deut 18:22), followed by the ultimate fulfillment of the prophecy in the distant future. The prophecy of Isaiah: Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel (Is 7:14), for example, had a near-term fulfillment in the child born as a sign to king Ahab (Is 8), and a distant future fulfillment in the birth of Jesus (Matt 1:23). Jews have a problem with this Christian concept, in general, but the dual fulfillment of Danielís prophecy presents a greater problem, for Daniel prophesies of  a worst possible abomination. Jews object that there cannot be two worst possible abominations. However there can be, for there is a difference in what was possible in the temple of the desecrated by Antiochus Epiphanies and what will be possible in the temple desecrated by the by the man of sin,  and that the Lord spoke of a future fulfillment confirms that there will be a future worst possible abomination. The first abomination, the near-term worst possible abomination at that time, was committed in the temple in which the Ark of the Covenant was not present. The presence of the ark in the temple of the future fulfillment will make a yet worse abomination possible. Over the Ark of the Covenant is Godís seat, the mercy seat: And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, of all things which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel (Ex 25:22). In the future fulfillment, the antichrist will sit in Godís seat, the mercy seat, showing himself as God: that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition; who opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped; so that he as God sits in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God (2 Thess 2:3-4).