Sermon:  But Wait, There is More…


Summary:  God gives a much larger perspective and insight to our place in his detailed plan in order to encourage us to keep looking toward the future he has planned on not get stuck in the past or present.  Knowing that there are many stages in God’s plan with the last stage making everything right should encourage us to keep loving God and our neighbor, serving in his name with a sense of expectation.


Text:  Dan 9:20-27


Scripture Reading:  Eph 3:14-20



1.      Someone, referring to that scripture reading, concluded, “God is going to give you more than what you asked for.”

a.      That a good thing or bad thing?

b.      If it is God, it is always a good thing

2.      Text today – Second scene of Daniel’s prayer

a.      Daniel read in the scriptures, 70 years will pass, they will return

b.      Daniel has been praying for mercy and forgiveness

c.      God answers his prayer, and gives Daniel more than he asked for

3.      (Dan 9:20-27) Gabriel came to give Daniel insight

a.      Yet, this is one of the most difficult parts of Daniel

b.      Conflicting interpretations abound, trying to set dates

c.      With so many conflicting interpretations, missing something?

d.      I am convinced it is difficult ONLY if we do not take into account the figurative nature of apocalyptic prophecy

4.      Daniel given insight because he is loved

a.      It is preserved in Bible for you too – because you also are loved

b.      Several timeless insights from this text:


I.     God has a detailed plan

A.   Repeatedly, God has made it clear that there is a step by step plan

B.   Three times, he uses the word “decree”

1.    God has decreed a plan for his people

2.    What made Daniel think of it was the prophecy from Jeremiah:

a.    God’s people would go into captivity in Babylon

b.    They would be there 70 years

c.    They would return

d.    God’s decree is about to be fulfilled, and they will return

3.    God does not do things on a haphazard whim

a.    (1 Cor 14:33) God is not a God of disorder, but of peace

b.    We can see this in what little we can understand of the blueprint of creation

i.      Everything little detail is balance and designed perfectly for life

ii.     There are an endless number of variables that contribute to cosmic balance

4.    God has a plan, and he has left nothing to chance

C.   ILL:  Gordon Macdonald illustrates this with a story from his time running track

1.    “My coach invited me to his home for dinner one night. After the meal, he pulled out a notebook displaying my name on the front cover. He immediately turned to the back page, which bore the heading "June 1957"—three and a half years away.      "Gordon," he said. "These are the races I'm going to schedule you to run almost four years from now. Here are the times you will achieve."    I looked at those times. Impossible! They were light years away from where I was at that moment as a runner.     Then Coach began turning back the pages of that book, page by page, showing the 42 months he had scheduled for workouts. These were the graduated, accelerated plans for my increasing skill on the track as the months and years would go by. He had a sense of direction and development when it came to my athletic growth.”

2.    God has an even more detailed and longer plan than this

a.    Began in Genesis

b.    Each stage is carefully planned

c.    Purpose is to move us closer to the idea, make us better

d.    Every stage is planned and has a purpose to move us closer to the ideal

D.   Our response?

1.    Read and understand God’s plan – What is purposes and goals are

2.    Give thanks for God’s wisdom in making his plan

3.    Live your life according to his plan…


II.   The plan is bigger than now and me

A.   The plan is more grand, magnificent, and beautiful than you can imagine

B.   God’s vision was much, much larger than what Daniel was thinking

1.    Daniel thinking – 70 years, and time is fulfilled

2.    God’s thinking – Much more to come: “Seventy Sevens” are decreed

a.    Many Bible say “Seventy Weeks,” interpreting seven to be weeks

i.      This leads to confusion, endless date setting, no one agrees

a)    Some say each week refers to a year.  Based on what?

b)    Years don’t really match up real well with historical events

ii.     Text does not say weeks, or years – just “seventy sevens”

b.    If these are apocalyptic numbers, multiples of sevens, then we are talking about the perfect completion of many stages of God’s plan

c.    What God is saying – It is nowhere near over yet

3.    Notice what God says will happen in the future

a.    There will be a word to go and restore Jerusalem & Jerusalem will be built completely

i.      God stirred up the heart of Cyrus to allow Jews to return

ii.     Under the leadership of Zerubbabel, then later Ezra, and Nehemiah, everything was put back in order, from the temple to the city walls

iii.    But that is not all…

b.    An anointed one, a prince will come, but he will be cut off

i.      Anointed in Hebrew is “Mashiach” or “Messiah”

ii.     Daniel only got a glimpse of Messiah to come

iii.    We know there was much more to come, we have the story

iv.   But there was more…

c.    There will be another prince who comes

i.      He and his people will destroy the city and sanctuary!

ii.     Yet again, the temple and city would be destroyed!

iii.    This would put an end to sacrifice and offering

iv.   We understand in hindsight to be talking about Rome under Vespasian and Titus

d.    A desolator (one who makes desolate) will come and bring an abomination, but he will be put to an end

i.      Only the priests allowed in the temple

ii.     When Romans sacked Jerusalem, they entered the temple and stripped it, destroyed it

iii.    Jesus refers to this - Matthew 24:15-17 15 “So when you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), 16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let the one who is on the housetop not go down to take what is in his house,

a)    When you see them coming, run!!!

b)    This took place in 70 AD when General Titus besieged Jerusalem and destroyed it along with the temple

c)     Eusebius, ancient historian, wrote that Christians fled to Pella, escaped the siege from Titus (did what Jesus said)

iv.   The desolator will be put to an end.  Revelation gives vision of this

C.   ILL:  Remember when working on Airplanes

1.    Organization – Everyone specialized narrowly

a.    I worked on a test bench with mockups in the shop

b.    Only on certain systems – Two different Radar Warning Receivers

c.    Chaff and Flair dispensing systems

2.    New supervisors came it, and wanted to broaden our skills

a.    Rotated and spent time working on and becoming familiar with other systems

b.    Assigned phased inspections in the hanger – crawl around plan

3.    Reason: Felt it would be beneficial for us to understand the larger picture, so we don’t miss things

4.    This is what is happening with this insight – give larger picture

D.   God gives a larger view of his plan

1.    Daniel was thinking of the return to Jerusalem – but God’s plan is bigger

2.    God’s plan bigger than just me and farther than just now

3.    Don’t get stuck in the here and now

a.    If Daniel got stuck, he might have either gotten angry, bitter, and given in to being a Babylonian

b.    But God kept showing Daniel that there was more of God’s plan to come

c.    Daniel was not stuck in the past, or in the present, but was hoping for God’s future

4.    Things are not as they should be, but God’s plan is still working

a.    Don’t get stuck in the here and now.  It is temporary.

b.    God’s plan did not end with verse 27.  It continues…


III.  God will ultimately make everything right

A.   God gave Daniel a glimpse of this in the first part of the response

B.   Notice what God has decreed – 70 sevens to reveal… the Gospel

1.    To finish transgression, to put an end to sin, to atone for iniquity

a.    Here we have a glimpse of the cross

b.    In the Old Testament, sacrifices offered on regular basis

i.      Did not take away sin, otherwise would not need to offer continually

ii.     Heb 10:3 – In effect, day of atonement was a reminder of sins, but did not take it away

c.    Heb 9:28 – Unlike Old Testament, Christ offered himself once for all time – took away sins

d.    John 8:34-36 – If sin, you are a slave to sin, but if the Son make you free you will be free indeed

2.    To bring in everlasting righteousness

a.    Rom 3:10 – There is none righteous, not one.  Sin corrupts our nature

b.    (Rom 3:20-24 NET) 20 For no one is declared righteous before him[v] by the works of the law,[w] for through the law comes[x] the knowledge of sin. 21 But now[y] apart from the law the righteousness of God (although it is attested by the law and the prophets)[z] has been disclosed— 22 namely, the righteousness of God through the faithfulness of Jesus Christ[aa] for all who believe. For there is no distinction, 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. 24 But they are justified (declared righteous) freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus. 

3.    To seal both vision and prophet

a.    To put a seal on something was to validate it as authentic

b.    God’s plan communicated through visions and prophets came to pass

4.    To anoint a most holy

a.    This a little ambiguous.  Hebrew text literally, “Anoint most holy”

b.    Most holy what???

c.    Usually think of the sanctuary – place where God dwells

d.    What sanctuary has God anointed today?  US!

i.      1 Cor 3:16 - 16 Do you not know that you (plural) are God's temple and that God's Spirit dwells in you? 

ii.     This means we have been set apart, made holy to the Lord for his purposes

C.   ILL:  What about more detail?  People often read more into this that what is there

1.    In contrast - Notice Daniel’s response

a.    Daniel didn’t push for more details

b.    He was satisfied with what he got

c.    In fact, it was more than he asked for!

2.    For those unanswered questions, teacher at Harding referred us to Dt 29:29

a.    (Dt 29:29) 29 “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.

b.    There are secret things, but God has revealed to us what we need

c.    2 Pet 1:3 - His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence,

3.    God gives us a clear vision of one of the final sevens of his plan:

a.    (1 Thess 5:1-11) Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers,[a] you have no need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “There is peace and security,” then sudden destruction will come upon them as labor pains come upon a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you are not in darkness, brothers, for that day to surprise you like a thief. For you are all children[b] of light, children of the day. We are not of the night or of the darkness. So then let us not sleep, as others do, but let us keep awake and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, are drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and for a helmet the hope of salvation. For God has not destined us for wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us so that whether we are awake or asleep we might live with him. 11 Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

b.    We don’t know when

c.    We are ready, alert, sober, waiting at all time

4.    We wait with breastplate of faith and love, and helmet is HOPE of salvation

D.   Key word is HOPE - We are not stuck in the past of the present

1.    God has other sevens for the future

a.    The last seven – We are destined for salvation with him

b.    Encourage each other with this

2.    Remind each other of our hope

a.    Don’t get bogged down in the temporary hear and now

b.    Don’t be overcome with worry, frustration, anger, bitterness, despair

c.    Let hope propel you through the upcoming sevens until the final one

3.    The final seven – God will make everything right



1.      Are you ready for the final seven when he returns?  (inv)

2.      If you have obeyed – Remember – there is still more

a.      Don’t get stuck in bitterness, despair

b.      It will pass, and what is better/best is yet to come

3.      In the meantime – remember that you have a purpose to fulfill

a.      Love God, love your neighbor

b.      Involves serving and sharing in the name of Christ

c.      Involves sharing the Gospel