Who is the “he” in Daniel 9:27?                                                                    By Jack Kettler                                       


“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 of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.” (Daniel 9:27)


Is this passage talking about Christ’s work establishing and ratifying the New Covenant or a future anti-Christ?


Historically, Daniel 9:27 was believed to be a prophecy about the New Covenant. In the present, primarily due to Dispensational theology, what was seen as the fulfillment of the glorious work of Christ, the understanding has not been reversed, making the prophecy into futuristic speculation about an anti-Christ. In this study, a classic commentary and a current source will provide the approach to the text in question to learn if it is about Christ and His establishment of the New Covenant. The futuristic approach to the text is prophetic speculation. If the text is indeed about Christ’s work in the First Century, turning the subject of the text into the work of an anti-Christ seems almost blasphemous.     


A bio about the classic commentator:


Matthew Poole was Born in York, England, in 1624 and educated at Emmanuel College in Cambridge. He became minister of St. Michael-le-Quernes, London, in 1648 and devoted himself to the Presbyterian cause.


C. H. Spurgeon said of Poole's commentary:


“If I must have only one commentary, and had read Matthew Henry as I have, I do not know but what I should choose Poole. He is a very prudent and judicious commentator... not so pithy and witty by far as Matthew Henry, but he is perhaps more accurate, less a commentator, and more an expositor.”


Poole is considered one of the great Puritans, and few names will stand so high as Poole's in the Biblical scholarship of Great Britain.


Matthew Poole's Commentary explains the Daniel text as follows:


He: this”


he is not Titus making truce with the Jews, which he did not, though he endeavoured to persuade them that he might spare them. I say then with Graser, Mede, and others, that this he is the Messiah, and the covenant he confirms is the new testament or covenant, called therefore the covenant of the people, Isaiah 42:6 49:8; and the Angel of the covenant, Malachi 3:1; and the Surety of the covenant, Hebrews 7:22; and the ancient rabbins called the Messias xrk a middle man, or middle man between two.


Quest. How did Christ confirm the covenant?

Answ. 1. By testimony,

(1.) Of angels, Luke 2:10 Mt 28;


(2.) John Baptist;

(3.) Of the wise men;

(4.) By the saints then living, Luke 1:2;

(5.) Moses and Elias, Matthew 17:3;

(6.) Pharisees, as Nicodemus, John 3:2;

(7.) The devils that confessed him.


2. By his preaching.

3. By signs and wonders.

4. By his holy life.

5. By his resurrection and ascension.

6. By his death and bloodshed.


Shall confirm the covenant; rybgh he shall corroborate it, as if it began before his coming to fail and be invalid.


With many; noting hereby the paucity of the Jewish church and nation, compared with the great increase and enlargement by believing Gentiles throughout all nations and ages of the world, Isaiah 11:9 49:6 53:11,12 54:2,3 Mr 16:15 Acts 13:46: q.d. With many Jews first and last, and with many more of the nations, yea, with the many whom the rabbins and Pharisees despise as the rabble, the common people, Isaiah 42:3 Matthew 21:31 John 7:48,49 1 Corinthians 1:26,27.


For one week; by a figure, take the greater part of the whole, he shall, though rejected by the chief and bulk of the Jewish nation, yet make the new testament prevail with many in that time, i.e. at the latter end of the seventy weeks.


The sacrifice and the oblation to cease; zebach and mincha, bloody and unbloody, to cease. i.e. all the Jewish rites, and Levitical ceremonious worship, i.e. by the burning of the temple before the city was taken, for they were only to offer sacrifice in the temple, nor had they wherewithal in the siege. Yet is there more in it than this, viz. that the Lord Jesus, by his death, and by the execution of his wrath, and abrogate and put an end to this laborious service, and made it to cease forever.


For the overspreading of abominations, he shall make it desolate; desolate for the wing, for the manifold and great abominations stretching, and our text hath it well overspreading. This abomination was the Roman army with their eagles, and with their superstitious rites in approaching to besiege and subdue any place; and this is executed by Christ upon them, Matthew 22:7, when he is called a King sending forth his armies, and destroying the murderers that destroyed him, and burning their city, and their coming is Christ’s coming, Malachi 3:1,2Jo 21:22 Jam 5:7; therefore it is said here,


he shall make it desolate. Even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate: here all this is made the effect of God’s decree, and therefore irrevocable. This word shomen notes that this people were bewitched, sottishly superstitious, wanderers, banished, the astonishment and scorn of the world; all which did justly and dreadfully befall them, and they verify it to this day.


They that will curiously search further into the seventy weeks and other numbers in Daniel, and have leisure and skill, let them read Graserus, L’Empereur, Wasmuth, Mede, Willet, Wichmannus, Sanctius, Rainoldus, Pererius, Derorlon, Broughton, Liveleius, Helvicns, Calovius, Geierus. &c. Read also Joseph Med. p. 861, &c., and Bail. p. 180, &c. This scripture shows the coming of the Messiah so clearly, his sufferings, and the wrath of God so severely upon the Jews for it, that it thoroughly confutes their unbelief; and fully confirms our faith in Jesus Christ.” (1)


Geneva Study Bible


“And he {a} 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 {b} cease, {c} and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.


(a) By the preaching of the Gospel he affirmed his promise, first to the Jews and after, to the Gentiles.

(b) Christ accomplished this by his death and resurrection.

(c) Meaning that Jerusalem and the sanctuary would be utterly destroyed because of their rebellion against God, and their idolatry: or as some read, that the plague will be so great, that they will all be astonished at them.”


Gary DeMar provides insight on how to understand the text:


“The beginning point would be indicated by the commandment to restore Jerusalem (v. 25), an event that was accomplished, a century after Daniel, in the reign of the Persian, Artaxerxes I (465–424 B.C.), under Nehemiah (444 B.C.). But there had been an earlier attempt, in the same reign, to restore the city’s walls, which had been thwarted by the Samaritans (Ezra 4:11–12, 23). This attempt seems to have been made under Ezra (458 B.C.; cf. 9:9), on the basis of the extended powers granted him in Artaxerxes’ decree (7:18, 25, even though nothing explicit is said about restoring Jerusalem). Daniel then went on to predict that from this commandment, to the Messiah, would be ―seven weeks, and three score and two weeks‖ (9:25), or 69 weeks of years, equaling 483 years. From 458 B.C. this brings one to A.D. 26, the very time which many would accept for the descent of the Holy Spirit upon Jesus Christ and the commencement of His incarnate ministry.” (2)


DeMar continues:


“Verses 26 and 27 then describe how, in the midst of the final week (that is, of the last seven-year period, and therefore in the spring of A.D. 30), He would bring to an end the Old Testament economy by His death. There could hardly have been a more miraculously accurate prediction than was this! The 490 years then conclude with the three and a half years that remained, during which period the testament was to be confirmed to Israel (cf. Acts 2:38). It terminated in A.D. 33, which is the probable date for the conversion of Paul. At this point the Jews, by their stoning of Stephen, in effect cut themselves off from the eternal blessings of inheritance under the newer testament (cf. Rev. 12:6, 14); and shortly thereafter, within that generation, the Romans destroyed Jerusalem, A.D. 70.” (3)


Jeffrey S. Krause from his thesis at Liberty University School of Religion of the Bible, A Historical Survey of the Daniel’s “Seventy Weeks” and its Complete Fulfillment within the Generation of Christ: 


Daniel 9:24-27 Exegesis:


“Having noted the identity of the ―anointed one, the prince‖ already in verse 25, it is now necessary to demonstrate the identity of the ―prince‖ of verse 26. In Dan. 9:24-27, ―the Prince‖ is said to bring in everlasting righteousness‖ and to ―atone for iniquity. Here, the ―anointed one‖ (the Prince) will be ―cut off‖ (v. 26), and the people of the ―Prince‖ will destroy the city and bring an ―end to sacrifices.‖ The ―end to sacrifices‖ follows the ―firm Covenant‖ made with the many for one week. This account, then future, is undoubtedly speaking of the life and ministry of the ―anointed Prince‖ Jesus Christ. First, contextually, there is no warrant to assume that ―the people of the prince to come‖ is the ―Anti-Christ. There is nothing in the text that allows the insertion of an unqualified individual. Rather, the Lord Jesus is referred to as the ―Prince‖ (dygn hgoumenou) and the ―Messiah‖ or ―anointed one‖ (xyXm - cristou) both individually (v. 26) and in connection with one another (v. 25). As it has been demonstrated, verse 25 connects these two titles ―anointed one, the Prince‖ with verse 26 referencing the individual titles of

anointed one‖ (crisma) and ―people of the Prince to come‖ (hgoumenw tw ercomenw). These accounts are describing the same individual in the person of the Messiah Himself. Again, in the LXX, verse 25 reads ―cristou hgoumenou‖ with verse 26 rendering the same Messiah the Prince in individual fashion; ―crisma kai krima ouk estin en autw kai thn polin kai to agion diafqerei sun tw hgoumenw tw ercomenw...Meaning, there is exegetically no warrant to alter the identity of the latter prince from that of the first. The ESV rendering of verses 25-26 proclaims;”

Know therefore and understand that from the going out of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one, a prince, there shall be seven weeks. Then for sixty-two weeks it shall be built again with squares and moat, but in a troubled time.26 And after the sixty-two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and shall have nothing. And the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. Its end shall come with a flood, and to the end there shall be war. Desolations are decreed.17


“Noting thee afore mentioned text, the first instance of the ―anointed one, a prince‖ as noted, is undoubtedly speaking of the Lord Jesus Christ. However, those in the Dispensational community wish to assert the latter citation of ―the prince‖ as future Anti-Christ. But the question must be asked, what is the contextual warrant for such an insertion? Where does this previously unmentioned, unqualified character come from on a contextual and exegetical basis? Separated by only one verse and 29 words in the ESV, the ―anointed one‖ Jesus Christ is again mentioned in verse 26. Likewise, only one verse and forty-four words later, the ―prince, who was previously recognized as the Messiah in verse 25, is again mentioned. It was the Messiah, the Prince who did in fact establish a ―firm Covenant‖ (v. 27) with the many in Matthew 26:26-28;”

Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to the disciples, and said, "Take, eat; this is my body." And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, "Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. (Emphasis Added)18


“Point in fact, even the Greek wording is identical between the LXX and the N.A. 27, with the former reading; ―kai dunamwsei diaqhkhn pollois‖ (And he shall strengthen covenant with the many – Dan. 9:27, LXX) and the latter rendered as ―διαθκης τπερπολλν(the new covenant, the one for many – Matt. 26:28, N.A. 27).19 This is a perfect correspondence that points to the verse 26 ―Prince‖ as the Lord Jesus Christ Himself (the one who will make Covenant). Hence, fulfillment is seen within the Biblical witness where the Lord Jesus, via His then pending sacrifice, made Covenant with the many who will believe or rather, the elect of God.”


Next, Daniel 9:26 declares that the ―cristou‖ would be cut off; the very message that the four Gospels relay to the reader. Jesus was point in fact, cut off in the middle of the final week, with the duration of His ministry lasting three and one half years. This cutting off was His crucifixion by the nation that rejected Him, the people of Israel; "Shall I crucify your King?" The chief priests answered, "We have no king but Caesar."16 So he delivered him over to them to be crucified.20


“The ―end of sacrifices‖ was symbolized in Matt. 27:51 with the tearing of the Temple curtain; ―And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split. However, it was not until the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70, when Herod’s Temple was destroyed, an act that ended the sacrificial system, that this prophecy was fully consummated (within the very generation of Jesus’ prediction); as prophesied by the Lord Jesus in Matt. 23:38-24:34 and in particular, Matt:24:1-2;”

Jesus left the temple and was going away, when his disciples came to point out to him the buildings of the temple. But he answered them, “You see all these, do you not? Truly, I say to you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down.”


“This is the very same Temple21 that Jesus exited after pronouncing the ―Seven Woes upon Israel and proclaiming;”


Therefore I send you prophets and wise men and scribes, some of whom you will kill and crucify, and some you will flog in your synagogues and persecute from town to town, so that on you may come all the righteous blood shed on earth, from the blood of innocent Abel to the blood of Zechariah the son of Barachiah, whom you murdered between the sanctuary and the altar.

Truly, I say to you, all these things will come upon this generation. “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not! See, your house is left to you desolate. For I tell you, you will not see me again, until you say, 'Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.' (Emphases Added) 22


“Hence, clarity is found in the disciple’s question; "Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the close of the age?" Meaning, when will be the end of the Jewish age or economy.”


20 John 19:15 ESV

21 i.e. Herod’s Temple

22 Matt. 23:34-39 ESV. It is evident from the Lord’s usage of the second person plural that these events were to happen to the people to whom He was speaking with; the Jews of that generation and era. It is that current generation that was to suffer the vengeance of the Lord and whose house was to be left desolate. The Lord Jesus capstones this truth by the words; ―…all these things will come upon this generation.


“Next, the text of Daniel 9:24 foretells of the ―prince‖ as being the one who is to; ―make reconciliation for iniquity and bring in everlasting righteousness…‖ And again, this is the very thing that happened due to the finished work of Christ Jesus on the cross; by His very act of being ―cut off. Paul tells the reader;


For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life‖ (Rom. 5:10 ESV). And again;


 ―All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation‖ (2 Cor. 5:18; c.f. 2 Cor. 5:20, Eph. 2:16, Col. 1:20, 22). Do any orthodox Christians doubt that Christ’s perfect sacrifice, obtained through faith, reconciles all iniquity committed? Justification being a legal decree by God in declaring the sinner ―right‖ or ―righteous, points back to the fulfillment of the Covenant of Works by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. What Adam did not do, Christ fulfilled and the sinner is saved by the active obedience of Christ Himself.23 Likewise, it is Christ’s vicarious suffering that enacts the ―passive‖ obedience unto the sinner; an act accomplished on the cross for the elect. In sum, it is Christ’s righteousness that covers the transgressions and iniquities of the elect. The New Testament saints look back to the finished work of Christ in both the active and passive sense. Likewise, Christ’s active and passive obedience are retroactive to the Old Testament saints, who found salvation in the then coming Messiah. Both of these factors ―make reconciliation‖ for all who will believe; an act predicted in (but not limited to) Daniel 9:24.24”


“Likewise, it is ―Messiah the Prince‖ that brought in ―everlasting righteousness. Isaiah 9:6-7 speaks specifically of the connection to the enthronement of Jesus Christ with the bringing in of everlasting righteousness;”


For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.25


23 ―Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man's disobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience

the many will be made righteous. ‖ (Rom. 5:18-19 ESV).

24 See Isaiah 53


“Meaning, it is Christ Himself who is the everlasting righteousness; it is not the state or current condition or climate of the world itself. It is His Kingdom that is in view in Daniel 9:24 and it is in this Kingdom where He, the Christ, will be seated on the throne of David. This is the very point that Peter makes in Acts chapter 2:23-36. Jesus is currently seated at the right hand of the Power in Heaven and is currently reigning as King and Lord. The government is currently upon Jesus’ shoulders via His ascension to the Ancient of Days (Daniel 7:13-14, c.f. Matt. 24:30), an event that happened within the final week of Daniel’s four hundred and ninety years! Thus, there is perfect correspondence with both the atoning sacrifice of Christ and His righteousness as the covenant head within His Kingdom. This correspondence transfers to the Daniel 9:24 text in perfect harmony. Thus, again the author’s thesis is confirmed via the Biblical witness. As previously stated, if there is sound Biblical evidence to show the congruent nature of the Seventy Weeks, then this understanding, based on the witness of the Bible itself is to be preferred. All the while noting that the 9:24-27 text shows no sign of a ―gap‖ within the text itself. Point in fact, Daniel parallels his prophecy with that of Jeremiah 25:11-13. The Daniel prophecy is a type of the exile condition that he himself was in and that Jeremiah predicted. But one must ask, was there a ―gap‖ or

parenthesis‖ within Daniel’s captivity? No there was not! Therefore, with Daniel’s prophecy being a type of Jeremiah’s, then the pattern of Jeremiah 25 would dictate the nature of Daniel’s prophecy itself. If there is no parenthesis in Jeremiah’s prophecy, then there was not to be a parenthesis within Daniel’s and the preteristic nature of the prediction is seen and the current argument is upheld.”


The Abomination of Desolation:


And after the sixty-two weeks, an anointed one shall be cut off and shall have nothing. And the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. Its end shall come with a flood, and to the end there shall be war. Desolations are decreed. And he shall make a strong covenant with many for one week, and for half of the week he shall put an end to sacrifice and offering. And on the wing of abominations shall come one who makes desolate, until the decreed end is poured out on the desolator. (Daniel 9:26-27 ESV)26

25 Isa. 9:6-7 ESV


“The prophetic announcement by the prophet Daniel as to the nature and end of Geo-political Israel is here predicted in verses 26-27 of chapter 9. Here the prophet foretells of the ―people of the prince and their utter destruction of the city and the Temple itself. As previously noted, there is no contextual or exegetical basis for separating the “prince” of verse 26 with that of verse 25. Noting the relationship between the princes of verses 25 and 26, it is justified to proclaim that this is an obvious reference to the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. The narrative of verse’s 26-27 fit within the character of events foretold by the Lord Jesus Himself during His earthly ministry;”

So when you see the abomination of desolation spoken of by the prophet Daniel, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let the one who is on the housetop not go down to take what is in his house, and let the one who is in the field not turn back to take his cloak. And alas for women who are pregnant and for those who are nursing infants in those days! Pray that your flight may not be in winter or on a Sabbath.27


“In the afore mentioned passage, the Lord Jesus references Daniel 9:26-27. Here it must first be noted that the Lord uses the second person plural ―you‖ in reference to His audience. This is consistent throughout the whole of Matthew 23-24 where the Lord first uses ―you‖ in reference to the audience of the Jews to whom He is condemning. Later in Matthew 24, the Lord uses the second person plural to describe the disciples in direct relation to the corresponding and pending events;”

Jesus left the temple and was going away, when his disciples came to point out to him the buildings of the temple. But he answered them, "You see all these, do you not? Truly, I say to you, there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down. As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, "Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the close of the age?" And Jesus answered them, See that no one leads you astray. (Emphasis Added)28


26 Dan. 9:26-27 ESV

27 Matt. 24:15-20 ESV

28 Matt. 24:1-4 ESV (4)


In closing:


That Christ fulfilled, Daniel 9:26-27 is nothing short of astonishing in light of the exact details of the prophecy. The Daniel 9 prophecy is the same as prophecies regarding the “Virgin Birth,” and Christ’s Crucifixion.      


A fulfilled prophecy that is as exact in its fulfillment demonstrates that the Bible is what it claims to be, the Word of God. No other religious book can claim and back it up with detailed precision as to the fulfillment.


Many Old Testament verses refer to the Messiah or His work, numbering into the hundreds. Moreover, Jesus fulfilled at least 300 prophecies from the Old Testament.


Are there prophecies in the Bible about the anti-Christ or the Devil? There are descriptive texts, but are there prophecies? Why would there be? The Scriptures point believers to Christ, not the anti-Christ. Although, Daniel 9:26-27 is difficult grammatically to understand. Nevertheless, to make this into a prophecy of a coming anti-Christ is fundamentally wrong in the context of the totality of Scripture.


In Matthew 5:17, Jesus said that he came to “fulfill the law and the prophets.” He came to fulfill the Scriptures, all of which testified of Himself. To interpret Daniel 9:27 as the anti-Christ is to reject Matthew 5:17. (Bolding and underlining emphasis mine)


“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)




1.      Matthew Poole's Commentary on the Holy Bible, Daniel, Vol. 2, (Peabody, Massachusetts, Hendrickson Publishers, 1985) p. 839.

2.      DeMar, Gary, Last Day's Madness: Obsession of the Modern Church, (Powder Springs, GA: American Vision, 1999) p. 327.

3.      DeMar, Gary, Last Day's Madness: Obsession of the Modern Church, (Powder Springs, GA: American Vision, 1999) p. 327.

4.      Jeffrey S. Krause, A Historical Survey of the Daniel’s “Seventy Weeks” and its Complete Fulfillment within the Generation of Christ, Liberty University School of Religion Bible 450-B07


Mr. Kettler has previously published articles in the Chalcedon Report and Contra Mundum. He and his wife Marea attend the Westminster, CO, RPCNA Church. Mr. Kettler is the author of books defending the Reformed Faith. Books can be ordered online at: https://www.amazon.com/Books-Jack-Kettler/s?rh=n%3A283155%2Cp_27%3AJack+Kettler