Book Reviews -- By: Anonymous

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 128:512 (Oct 1971)
Article: Book Reviews
Author: Anonymous

Book Reviews

Daniel: The Key to Prophetic Revelation. By John F. Walvoord. Chicago: Moody Press, 1971, 317 pp. $6.95.

The book of Daniel furnishes the Charybdis and Scylla of prophetic interpretation. Here on the rocks of revealed truth, unsound views founder and untenable systems of biblical interpretation suffer shipwreck. Dr. Walvoord, as an able and well-known expositor of the prophetic Word, skilfully steers a safe course through this great disclosure of the future. Employing the literal premillennial approach, the author unfolds the meaning of Daniel’s far reaching predictions with a fulness and satisfaction not possible to other views.

The author accomplishes this feat of exegetical proficiency not merely by presenting his own interpretation of Old Testament prophecy. He does this. But he does more than this. He interacts familiarly with the positions of other scholars of divergent views. As a result, he exposes with clear and unanswerable logic, the unsatisfactory nature of their conclusions, both in many significant generalities, as well as in a number of pivotally crucial details. An excellent example of this is the author’s treatment of the exegetical conundrum of the book—the vision of the Seventy Weeks (Dan 9:24–27).

In this difficult prophecy, the author demonstrates how deficient is (1) the liberal view that the seventieth week was fulfilled in the Maccabean persecutions of the second century B.C., (2) the Jewish view that it was fulfilled in Jerusalem’s destruction in A.D. 70, (3) the amillenarian view that it represents an indefinite period from Christ to the end, or (4) the view that it indicates seven literal years beginning with Christ’s public ministry and ending some three and a half years after His death.

The author shows that all these views have one common failure, which is the Achilles’ heel of their interpretation. None of them provides literal fulfillment of the prophecy. The first view, the Maccabean fulfillment is built on the assumption that Daniel is a forgery and prophecy is impossible. The second and third views by mysticalizing the details, explain away rather than explain the prediction. The fourth view literalizes the sixty nine and one half sevens, but has no fulfillment of the climax.

Dr. Walvoord’s conclusion is that the seventy weeks comprehend

the total history of Israel from the time of Nehemiah in 445 B.C. to the second advent of Christ. In the sixty-ninth seven, Messiah appears and is living at the conclusion of the period. The seventieth week is separated by a hiatus, during which Messiah is cut off (Christ is put to death...

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