Are we nearly there yet?

Daniel 9.20-27

This note was originally published on Saturday 13 April 2019.

Seventy “sevens” are decreed for your people and your holy city ...


Today’s title are the five words every parent dreads to hear coming from the back of the car at the start of a long journey. What’s the longest journey you’ve ever been on?


Daniel 9.20-27


The cry of God’s people through the ages is, ‘How long, O Lord? How long until you return to be with your people and rule the world with justice?’

The good news given to Daniel is: the days of our exile are numbered (v 24). The end will come, it has already been decreed (v 26), it is settled.

However, as we’ve seen, God reveals and keeps hidden: exactly when is not for us to know. We are like the child in the back seat of the car, not knowing how long the journey will be, longing to arrive.

Is that impatience something you can identify with? Is there anything in your life that you wish God would hurry up and get on with?

Unfortunately, God doesn’t (normally) work to our timescale. The seventy ‘sevens’ (v 24) are more about completion and perfection than a specific time period – except to tell us it will be a long time.

Living faithfully in exile is not a short hop but a long haul. However, we can utterly trust God’s promise that one day the end will come.


In verse 23 Gabriel calls Daniel ‘highly esteemed’, or ‘greatly loved’. No matter how dark or long the walk through the valley, God is with us, because he loves us. Close your eyes, be still and know God is with you and loves you.