Daniel 8: The 2300 Day Prophecy

To begin to understand the 2300 day prophecy in Daniel 8 we first have to define what the 'daily' in Daniel 8 represents as the 'daily' is the key to unlocking the cleansing of the sanctuary and the 2300 day prophecy.
 
The 'daily' has been discussed at length by SDA theologians, but the current theology reflects the identification and theology given by Miller well over 150 years ago. The identification of the 'daily' has changed over the decades, but for some reason all advancement in theological interpretation has ceased and the theology has reverted back to Miller's original identification of the 'daily' as paganism. But was Miller right?
 
 
The Daily
 
"The identification of the "daily" as paganism originated with William Miller. Seeking the meaning of the term as he found it in Daniel, he searched, with the aid of a concordance, in the King James Version of the Bible for other occurrences of the English word "daily". He described his search thus: "I read on and could find no other case in which it was found, but in Daniel.  I then took those words which stood in connection with it, 'take away.'  He shall take away the daily, 'from the time the daily shall taken away,' &c. I read on, and thought I should find no light on the text; finally I came to 2 Thess. ii. 7, 8.  'For the mystery of iniquity doth already work, only he who now letteth, will let, until he be taken out of the way, and then shall that wicked be revealed,' &c. And when I had come to that text, O how clear and glorious the truth appeared.  There it is! that is 'the daily!'  Well, now, what does Paul mean by 'he who now letteth,' or hindereth?  By 'the man of sin,' and 'the wicked,' Popery is meant.  Well, what is it which hinders Popery from being revealed?  Why, it is Paganism: well, then, 'the daily' must mean Paganism" (William Miller, quoted in Apollos Hale, Second Advent Manual, p. 66)." 
{Quoted from "Daily", Origin of the "Old" view, The SDA Encyclopedia}

It is immediately clear that Miller's deductions are derived from his own conclusions and that he has tried to match a Hebrew word with the New Testament Greek scriptures. In reference to the word ‘daily,’ Miller says, “I read on and could find no other case in which it was found, but in Daniel." Miller says that he used a concordance but he must not have been aware that the Hebrew word tamiyd most of the time is transliterated as ‘continually’ or ‘continual’ in the Old Testament.
 
When searching for the word ‘daily’ there are actually two occasions where the exact same Hebrew word translated as ‘daily’ is used, in Numbers 4:16, “the daily meat offering,” and in Numbers 29:6, “the daily burnt offering.” I could stop there and say that the exact same word that Daniel uses is associated with the daily sacrificial system. But the same word Daniel uses is in fact written 105 times in the KJV Old Testament in several forms.
 
 
Tamiyd
 
The first use of the Hebrew word tamiyd is in Exodus.
 
Exodus 25:30 “And thou shalt set upon the table shew bread before me always.”
 
This seems to be the general theme of the word tamiyd throughout the Bible, it is something done on a continual basis before the Lord.
 
In total there are 62 uses of the Hebrew word tamiyd which has been transliterated as ‘continually’ where 43 involve doing something done continually before the Lord; be it sacrifices or some to do with the serving the Lord on a continual basis.
 
Ezekiel was a contemporary of Daniel and this is how he uses the word tamiyd.
 
Ezekiel 46:14-15 “And thou shalt prepare a meat offering for it every morning, the sixth part of an ephah, and the third part of an hin of oil, to temper with the fine flour; a meat offering continually by a perpetual ordinance unto the LORD. Thus shall they prepare the lamb, and the meat offering, and the oil, every morning for a continual burnt offering.”
 
It appears then that when the Lord is involved in some way either by the sacrificial system, or by being worshiped the Israelites used the word tamiyd when the continual thing is not associated with the Lord or a king they use another Hebrew word.
 
The second most popular use of the Hebrew word tamiyd is the word ‘continual’ which is used 27 times in the Old Testament of which a staggering 23 the word tamiyd is associated directly with burnt offerings.
 
Of the two most popular usages of the Hebrew word tamiyd on 66 out of a possible 87 times the word is associated with the sacrificial system or something done on a continual basis in front of the Lord. Because of these verses in the Old Testament the Hebrew word tamiyd (pronounced taw-meed) in the book of Daniel must be associated with the daily sacrificial system which the Israelites practiced on a continual basis in the courtyard outside the temple in Jerusalem.
 
The NKJV adds the word sacrifice, making the verse in Daniel 8 read, “the daily sacrifice,” when a better transliteration could have been, “the continual sacrifices” or “the continual offerings.” To conclude that the word tamiyd is then associated with paganism or represents pagan symbols is pure fabrication and it is not based on the Old Testament Hebrew meaning which Daniel was acquainted with.

Ellen White had "no clear light on the subject" and told the Millerites that they should study the matter further. Ellen did, however, agree with the time period being 2300 years and not literal days and later that the heavenly sanctuary did exist. But Ellen never defined what the daily was telling the Millerites that it wasn't a test and they should concentrate on other things like the spreading of the three angels messages.4

 
When read in context with what Daniel was actually praying for, there is no other logical outcome. The "daily" is refering to the literal daily sacrifices of the Jews.  After Daniel received the 2300 day vision he was sick for days and this is what he prayed for.
 
Daniel 9:16-17 “O Lord, according to all Your righteousness, I pray, let Your anger and Your fury be turned away from Your city Jerusalem, Your holy mountain; because for our sins, and for the iniquities of our fathers, Jerusalem and Your people are a reproach to all those around us. Now therefore, our God, hear the prayer of Your servant, and his supplications, and for the Lord’s sake cause Your face to shine on Your sanctuary, which is desolate.”
 
At the time Jerusalem and the temple sanctuary were desolate after being destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar c.586 BC.  After receiving the vision Daniel must have realised that the vision refered to the desolation of Jerusalem again in the future, but he still didn't understand the vision.






 






















​​Daniel 9:18-19 “O my God, incline Your ear and hear; open Your eyes and see our desolations, and the city which is called by Your name; for we do not present our supplication before You because of our righteous deeds, but because of Your great mercies. O Lord, hear! O Lord, forgive! O Lord, listen and act! Do not delay for Your own sake, my God, for Your city and Your people are called by Your name.”
  
Daniel's fears are realised when Gabriel comes to make Daniel understand the 2300 vision.
 
 
Gabriel's Understanding
 
Daniel 9:24 "Seventy weeks are determined for your people and for your holy city, To finish transgression, to make and end of sins, to make reconciliation for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy, and to anoint the Most Holy.”
 
Gabriel starts by telling Daniel that his people and his city only have seventy prophetic weeks to finish transgression, to make an end of sins, to reconcile for their iniquities, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy, and to anoint the Most Holy.
  
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.”
 
Daniel is told in this verse that the city of Jerusalem would be rebuilt after the command goes out to restore it. SDA theologians tend to overlook this understanding tending to concentrate more on the Messiah part of the prophecy. The prophecy even predicts that there would be "troublesome times" in the rebuilding of Jerusalem which there was, recorded in Ezra.
 
Ezra 4:4 "Then the people of the land tried to discourage the people of Judah. They troubled them in building, and hired counselors against them to frustrate their purpose all the days of Cyrus king of Persia, even until the reign of Darius king of Persia."
  
 
Jerusalem to be Destroyed Again
 
Daniel 9:26 “And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; and the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end of it shall be with a flood, and till the end of the war desolations are determined."
 
As a result of this verse Daniel would have now known that the Messiah would come 69 weeks (483 years) after the command goes out to restore Jerusalem. Daniel is then told that the people of the prince who was to come, a prince of the Romans, would destroy the city and the sanctuary a second time. With this information Daniel would have realized that Jerusalem would be restored to its former glory and then destroyed again by a prince of another empire which was yet to come. This means that the sanctuary to be cleansed after the 2300 day vision has ended must be Jerusalem. 
 
Gabriel’s understanding is clear and concise when you have the right interpretation of the 'daily' sacrifice.
 
The following verses are the beginning of chapter 10, but they belong to the previous Messiah chapter. The Messiah prophecy was given to Daniel to make him understand the 2300 Day Prophecy.
 
Daniel 10:1-3 "In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a message was revealed to Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar. The message was true, but the appointed time was long; and he understood the message, and had understanding of the vision. In those days I, Daniel, was mourning three full weeks. I ate no pleasant food, no meat or wine came into my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled."
 
As a result of Gabriel's understanding Daniel now understands the 2300 day vision. "The message was true, but the appointed time was long; and he understood the message, and had understanding of the vision." As a result of his understanding that; Jerusalem would be rebuilt, then destroyed by a prince of the people who were to come (Rome), Daniel was mourning for three full weeks.
 
  
Ellen White
 
9. Ellen G. White on the "Daily."
Many years later Mrs. White's 1850 statement-after its setting, and the specific errors at which it was aimed, were forgotten-was cited (from EW 74, 75) in controversy as an endorsement of the prevalent Millerite identification of the "daily," namely, as paganism. When questioned, however, on the meaning of the "daily," Mrs. White "usually said that she has no clear light on the subject, and that our brethren would have to study the matter for themselves" (W. C. White letter to J. E. White, June 1, 1910, in White Archives, Ellen G. White Estate, Inc.). According to A. G. Daniells' report of an interview with her concerning the "daily," she made it clear that her 1850 statement was not intended to settle the identity of the "daily," which she did not profess to know, but to state that the Millerites had the right view of the "daily" as to that period of time [the 2300 days]; that she had written with reference to the errors current at that time, especially the attempts to revise the dating of the 2300 days (statement of A. G. Daniells, Sept. 25, 1931, in White Archives). Time was the point at issue-as it had been between the Millerites and their opposers who made the "daily" the literal Jewish sacrifices-not the identity of the "daily."
{The Daily, Christian Resource Centre Bermuda, http://www.crcbermuda.com, 2015}
 
“Though the majority of Adventists abandoned their former reckoning of the prophetic periods, and consequently denied the correctness of the movement based thereon, a few were unwilling to renounce points of faith and experience that were sustained by the Scriptures and by the special witness of the Spirit of God. They believed that they had adopted sound principles of interpretation in their study of the Scriptures, and that it was their duty to hold fast the truths already gained, and to still pursue the same course of Biblical research. With earnest prayer they reviewed their position, and studied the Scriptures to discover their mistake. As they could see no error in their explanation of the prophetic periods, they were led to examine more closely the subject of the sanctuary.”
{The Story of Redemption, Chapter 53, The Sanctuary, Ellen G. White Estate, Inc.}
 
Ellen says that the Millerites believed they had adopted sound principles of interpretation. They may well have believed that, but as proven by his identification of the “daily” Miller himself was no theologian. But repeatedly in Adventism documentation we see multiple statements saying that “the word sacrifice was added by man.” Even to this day SDA's are repeating the same message as if it is holy scripture itself and what is worse they don't even realise that they are totally wrong. Hasn't everyone got access to a concordance thesedays? The word sacrifice was added because when you view other occurances of the word tamiyd there can be no other conclusion.
 
Any interpretation of scripture must be kept in context and be verified by other scriptures. Miller’s mistake was looking for spiritual answers in line with the New Testament when he should have been studying the books prior to Daniel, not after him. The information supplied by Ellen White should have led the Millerites to further study and to consider other possibilities, but they were convinced that there calculations were correct and stubbornly they concluded that the error lay in their identification of the sanctuary. This was their mistake and as a consequence it has affected the entire SDA theology regarding Daniel chapter 8, chapter 12 and some of the Revelation.
 
 
The Abomination of Desolation
 
To understand the 2300 day prophecy we have to understand what the trangression was.  The "transgression of desolation," in Daniel 8, caused the "abomination of desolation," in Daniel 12.  The "abomination of desolation," mentioned in Matthew 24:15-16, when compared with Luke 21:20-21, is identified as an army standing outside Jerusalem by the recorded words of Jesus Himself.
 
Matthew 24:15-16 "Therefore when you see the ‘abomination of desolation,’ spoken of by Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (whoever reads, let him understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains."
 
Luke 21:20-21 "But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then know that its desolation is near. Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those who are in the midst of her depart, and let not those who are in the country enter her."
 
Eusebius’s Church History (3.5.3) recounts that the Jewish followers of Jesus heeded his warning and fled to Pella for safety before Jerusalem’s destruction.5
 
This means that starting date for Daniel 8 and the ‘abomination of desolation’ in Daniel 12 must be after Christ resurrected.
 
 
The Daily Sacrifices
 
Daniel 8:11-12 "He even exalted himself as high as the Prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifices were taken away, and the place of His sanctuary was cast down. Because of transgression an army was given over to the horn to oppose the daily sacrifices, and he cast truth down to the ground. He did all this and prospered."​
 
The Caesars even exalted themselves as high as the Son of God, and by them the daily sacrifices were physically taken away and the place of God's sanctuary, Jerusalem, was physically cast down. Because of the Israelite's numerous past transgressions an army was given to the Romans, by God, to oppose the daily sacrifices. The Romans cast the truth of God, which Jesus and His apostles preached, down to the ground. The Romans actually did all this in recorded history and they prospered.
 
Because of the Israelites past transgressions an army was given over to the Romans to oppose the daily sacrifices of the Jews. The Romans garrisoned in Jerusalem actually stopped the daily sacrifices of the Jews which led to the Jewish revolt in 66 AD. Prince Titus then gathered an army and as prophesied they physically destroyed God's sanctuary, the temple, and they cast the place of God's sanctuary, Jerusalem, down to the ground.
 
Josephus tells us that one of the causes of the war was that the Romans opposed the daily sacrifices of the Jews because they had stopped sacrificing animals for Rome and its emperor. So an army was eventually sent to Jerusalem and it arrived in the autumn of 66 AD. After the initial conflict with Rome there was a civil war in Jerusalem for about three and a half years. In the end Rome sent a massive force lead by Prince Titus, he arrived at Jerusalem in April 70 AD. The ‘abomination of desolation,’ stood outside the walls of Jerusalem as prophesied. They eventually broke down the wall and over a period of months they killed the majority of those who had participated in the Jewish revolt. A section of the army massacred all the temple priests and the temple guards and inadvertently set fire to the temple.2  The spilling of the priest’s blood defiled the sanctuary.
 
God's sanctuary was destroyed in September 70 AD and Jerusalem was a completely desolate as prophesied by Daniel. Josephus recorded that some one million Jews were killed in the revolt, c.66 - 73 AD.
3 Daniel was told that, ".... the place of His sanctuary was cast down. ...."  The place of God's sanctuary was Jerusalem and therefore the start date for the ‘cleansing of the sanctuary,’ is when Rome destroyed Jerusalem in 70 AD.
  
In his book "Unfolding Daniel’s Prophecies" Roy Allan Anderson writes, “The time period in this vision is very specific, but at this point the precise time for the beginning was not indicated.”
 
This seems to be the view of many SDA preachers/theologians still even though Gabriel makes it quite clear that the little horn (Rome) would cast down the place of God’s sanctuary, Jerusalem.
 
 
The Cleansing of the Sanctuary
 
Daniel 8:11-12 "He even exalted himself as high as the Prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifices were taken away, and the place of His sanctuary was cast down. Because of transgression an army was given over to the horn to oppose the daily sacrifices, and he cast truth down to the ground. He did all this and prospered."
 
The start date for this prophecy is when the daily sacrifice was taken away and the place of His sanctuary was cast down. I am amazed to this day that some Adventists seem to be blind to this truth.
 
Daniel 8:13 ".... How long will the vision be concerning the daily sacrifices and the transgression of desolation, the giving of both the sanctuary and the host to be trampled underfoot?"
 
The question relates to the previous verses; how long will the vision be concerning the daily sacrifices of the Jews and their transgression which would cause the desolation, the giving of both the temple area to be physically trampled underfoot and God to be symbolically trampled underfoot, which means rejected.  I am amazed again that Adventists also seem to be blind to this truth.
 
We know now that the daily sacrifice was physically taken away at this point in time and the situation has not changed to this day. The Jews cannot sacrifice animals daily on God's holy mountain because they don't have access to the Mount Moriah. This point on its own confirms the validity of this theology.
 
Daniel 8:14 "And he said to me, "For two thousand three hundred days, then the sanctuary shall be cleansed.""
 
The answer to the question is directly given to Daniel; 2300 days then Jerusalem would be cleansed.
 
“Respecting the 2300 days, introduced for the first time in verse 14, there are no data in this chapter from which to determine their commencement and close, or tell what portion of the world's history they cover.”
{Daniel and the Revelation, by Uriah Smith, chapter 8, Vision of the Ram, He Goat and Little Horn, page 182}
 
On the contrary the previous verses have exactly identified the point in history that the vision commenced.  The little horn [Rome] became exceedingly great and they took away the daily sacrifices of the Jews.  After which they cast down God’s sanctuary and they would cast both the truth and the host down to the ground until the ‘time of the end.’  Now you can’t get much more precise than that.
 
"trodden down," and "trampled underfoot," mean; to bring someone down by force, to stop or put an end to something, (Isaiah 63:2-6, 63:16-19).  The temple area has been literally trodden underfoot since its destruction in 70 AD.  The Romans trampled the Host underfoot by initially rejecting His Son and His disciples testimony, (Hebrews 10:29).  They also trampled the Host underfoot by the act of physically destroying His holy city.
 

The prophecy cannot mean literal days because; 
 
1. The sacrifices were stopped by the Roman garrison in 66 AD, only three and a half years later the sanctuary was destroyed.  Two thousand three hundred days convert to; six years, four months and twenty days.  
 
2. The Romans were still trampling the sanctuary area underfoot in 76-77 AD and they continue to reject the true word of God even to this day.  
 
3. Daniel was actually told by the Lord that the vision referred to the ‘time of the end,’ (Daniel 8:17).
 
In Bible prophecy a day usually equals a year on earth, (Numbers 14:34 and Ezekiel 4:5-6). Therefore the 2300 days can be converted to 2300 years.
 
The daily sacrifices were taken away by Rome c.66 AD and the place of God's sanctuary Jerusalem was destroyed by them c.70 AD.

 
 
70 + 2300 = 2370 AD
  
Thus the sanctuary, Mount Moriah, shall be cleansed c.2370 AD if we go by the current dating system of 365 days to a year. If we go by the Jewish 360 days for a year we get a different result c.2281 AD.
 
 
God cleansed the earth once with water in the time of Noah. He will do it again a second time, but this time with fire when He shows His face to the world. When the sanctuary is cleansed it will also be cleansed with fire and it will become the lake of fire, the second death, in Revelation.

For more information on Daniel's prophecy see;  Daniel 11 revolutionary New Theology .

 
References
1. Causes of the war against the Romans, http://www.josephus.org/causesOfWar.htm, 2015
2. First Jewish-Roman War, Wikipedia, 2015
3. Ibid
4. 2010 Ellen White Symposium: "Ellen White And The 'Daily' Conflict", www.memorymeaningfaith.org, 2010
5. Pella: A Window on Survival by Mark Wilson, www.biblicalarchaeology.org, 2015
 
Solomon's temple, destroyed by the Babylonian army c.586 BC, as described by Ezekiel, Corel Paint Shop Pro, by Brent Dawes, 2016.