The Gap Theory

22 Nov
Gap Theory - 1

from Google Images

In Daniel’s 70 Weeks Prophecy, he prophesied that 70 weeks of years were determined for the Jews. That is, a block of 490 years was set apart for the fulfillment of all things that concerned the Jews (Daniel 9:24). During this period of time, they would also rebuild the Temple and the walls of Jerusalem, and the Messiah would come. He would be killed, and the Temple would once again be destroyed, and all this would be done within this block of time (Daniel 9:25-27). Many, if not most, Christians today believe there is a gap of “X” number of years either between the 69th and 70th weeks of years or between the 69th and ½ week of years and the final 3 ½ years of the 70th week in Daniel’s prophecy. So, what can we say about these things? Was the gap a part of God’s original plan, or did he insert it later, and, if he did insert it later, why did he? Did Jesus know about the gap (cf. Mark 13:32)?

If there is a gap, and God inserted it into the 70 Weeks Prophecy later, why would he do that? Certainly God didn’t have a better idea in mind. He is perfect in all his ways (Deuteronomy 32:4; Ecclesiastes 3:14). Some believe that the Kingdom was postponed due to the Jews’ rejection of Jesus as their Messiah, but, if there really is a gap, God knew about the Jews’ rejection of Jesus, for it is foretold by Daniel in the 70 Weeks Prophecy at Daniel 9:26—Messiah is cut off in the midst of the week. Therefore, if there is a gap, not only did God know about the need of a gap but it should have been part of the Daniel’s prophecy from the beginning. Yet, we don’t read of such a gap!

Mark tells us in the very beginning of his record that Jesus came into Galilee, declaring that the time was fulfilled and the Kingdom of God was at hand (Mark 1:15). If Jesus knew what he was talking about, then the 70 Weeks Prophecy was nearing its fulfillment. The “end of all things” was “at hand.”[1] So, if the Kingdom of God couldn’t arrive until the fulfillment of Daniel’s 70 Weeks Prophecy, did Jesus know about the gap? Jesus also predicted his coming was near, because he said he would come in the Kingdom and in power within the lifetimes of some of his listeners (cf. Mark 9:1), so although it could be argued that Jesus had several decades in mind (i.e. only some listeners would survive), that still would be near, but how could one possibly consider the futurist’s view of nearly 2000 years to be near? Yet, nearly two millennia have passed, and a lot of folks are still waiting. So, did Jesus know about the gap or not?

If he didn’t know about the gap, he could have established the Kingdom of God too early. Isn’t that true? After all, if he thought the end of the 70 Weeks Prophecy was approaching, and, since he came into the world in order to fulfill all the promises God made to the Jews through the fathers (Romans 15:8), then it is possible that Jesus could have established the Kingdom of God too early, if a gap was really a part of God’s original plan, but the gap wasn’t revealed to Jesus.

Therefore, we have what appears to be a dilemma. If Jesus didn’t know about the gap, his prediction that the Kingdom would come in power in the first century AD (Mark 9:1) lends itself to the possibility that Jesus could have goofed and established the Kingdom of God too early. On the other hand, if Jesus knew about the gap, why would he give us a false prophecy that he would establish the Kingdom of God in power within the first century AD (Mark 9:1; Matthew 16:27-28)? These things, as they pertain to a gap, simply don’t appear to fit together like they should in God’s word.

It seems to me, that a gap of nearly 2000 years and counting stretches the believability of scripture beyond its intended meaning. Jesus said the word of God cannot be broken (John 10:35). That is, it cannot be made to contradict itself. The fact that Jesus predicted his coming in the Kingdom of his Father, in power and glory, within the expected lifetimes of his listeners (Mark 9:1; Matthew 26:64) tells us there couldn’t possibly be a great gap in Daniel’s prophecy. Isn’t it high time that Jesus’ disciples man-up in the name of sola scriptura and admit error.


[1] The Greek word is  eggizo (G1448) “to draw or come near to, to approach” , according to Thayer’s Greek Lexicon

Comments Off on The Gap Theory

Posted by on November 22, 2017 in Eschatology, Prophecy


Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: