Question: Can you explain the Gap Theory?
Thank you and God Bless You
Name: Brandon T. Ward
Answer: Antonio, thank you for the question.
To my knowledge, there are two theories known as, “The Gap Theory”. This Bible Q&A addresses the one in the book of Daniel. Concerning “The Gap Theory” of Genesis, I refer the reader to our study “The World That Was, The First Earth Age“.
The gap theory of Daniel is a Biblical belief that there is an unknown gap of time between the crucifixion of Jesus Christ (Daniel 9:26) and the end of this age of flesh which marks the return of Christ. We know this theory is true from the following scripture.
24 “Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.”
These are the words of Gabriel the angel. He has clearly stated at the end of these seventy weeks there would be no more sin and everlasting righteousness. Look at our world today. Sin reigns supreme and finding righteousness is becoming harder by the day. Under no circumstances has this scripture been fulfilled. We should note, it would not be possible for this to be a literal 70 weeks as that is just over a year and would never align with what we will read of from the Word.
25 “Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times.”
Notice, the portions underlined and bold are in groups to make the timing of those events clear. So from “the commandment to restore and to build Jerusalem” there were to be “seven weeks“. This commandment by men to “restore and build Jerusalem” was issued around 454 B.C.. We should note these seventy weeks we are told of are weeks of years (70 weeks multiplied by 7 days in a week equals 490 weeks of years that are to be determined).
So we are going to take the year 454 B.C. and subtract 49 years from it which brings us to the year 405 B.C. (the 7 weeks multiplied by 7 days to a week equals 49 weeks of years). Jerusalem was now restored and this point in time starts the “threescore and two weeks” (the 62 weeks multiplied by 7 days in a week equals 434 weeks of years) which is equal to 434 years of time that would need to transpire from the previous allotted time of 49 years.
What happens now?
Please turn your Bible with me to,
26 “And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined.”
At the end of this “threescore and two weeks,” which is 434 years Christ was to be placed on this earth and crucified for us. This crucifixion was the cutting off we just read of which occurred around the year 29-33 A.D.. This now concludes the first 69 weeks (of years) or 483 years (49 years in addition to the 434 years). We now enter the gap in time or gap theory you are asking about.
We can be certain this last week of years is still future to us due to what Gabriel told us in verse 24, “to make an end of sins and to bring in everlasting righteousness“.
This has not happened yet so we currently live during this gap phase of this prophecy. The final seven years are in front of us and they belong to Satan who will claim to be Christ before the world. This is the time known as the Tribulation. I would like to note Christ shortened this time for us in Matthew 24:22.
Let us go one more verse.
27 “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.”
This is the final week we still await. The “he” spoken of in this verse is Satan who causes the daily sacrifice to cease. Satan will claim to be God, claiming to be the Passover Lamb and Communion will no longer be taken by most Christians as they will believe Satan is the Messiah.
Please ensure you read Appendix 91 in The Companion Bible. This contains a wealth of detailed information on this subject.