Daniel and the 70 Weeks
Messianic Prophecy has become a tangled bramble of, "He said, She said,"
tit-for-tat banter between Christians, Messianic and or Natsari Judaism and
Rabbinical Judaism. Both arguing and making statements and claims piled so high
and thick, like a well woven conspiracy theory, one wonders if finding the truth
is even possible at this point. Granted, both sides employing bias and even
deceptive scholarship in order to prove ones stance. Like with any "Messianic
Prophecy" one party claims it's messianic another claims it's historical or
eschatological and another says it's both. Who does one believe if any? It is
enough to make one want to walk away and not even attempt to navigate the
maelstrom of theological slurry.
Have you ever played the game Kerplunk? The game where you randomly jam sticks
into an upright cylindrical tube and rest a handful of marbles of the bed of
those randomly placed sticks? The objective is to strategically remove the
sticks one at a time and not allow any of the marbles to drop through the spaces
between the sticks. It is your hopes that your opponent will pull that one stick
that will cause all the marbles to come crashing to the bottom. Could this be
the lynch pin that will crumble the anti-missionary arguments? Could this be the
stick that causes all the anti-missionary marbles to come falling through the
THE BOOK OF DANIEL:
To begin one must authenticate the book of Daniel itself, for even this is one
of the first things to be thrown into question, not by Judaism, but by secular
The book of Daniel is said to have been written by the Prophet Daniel in 6th
Century B.C.E./B.C. Critics seem to reject this truth because of the detailed
prophecies regarding the history of Babylon, Medo-Persia, Greece and Rome
contained within the book. They feel, due to its pinpoint accuracy that it is
too good to be true and thus had to be written after the fact. Critics deny the
supernaturality of prophecy itself and thus throws into question virtually every
prophet and prophetic book of the Tanak and thus critics claim it was actually
written in 2nd century B.C.E. But consider this; manuscript fragments from the
Book of Daniel were found in Qumran, the hiding place near that of the Dead Sea
Scrolls, but not enough time would have been available for the book to reach the
Essene community at Qumran for it to be copied there. We must also consider the
fact that the Judaism at large accepts the Book of Daniel as part of the Tanak
bears witness to its authenticity. The Qumran documents and Yeshua's
confirmation that the Tanak is authentic validates the authenticity of The Book
of Daniel and confirms that Daniel did write his prophecies centuries before
they were fulfilled.
Second, we must look at the translation of Daniel and the so called
discrepancies between the Christian and Jewish rendering of the text as well as
the designation of chapters and verses.
The anti-missionaries will point to old and bias archaic English Christian
translations in order to attempt to prove their point that Gentiles and
Christians are ignorant and irresponsible with rendering the Hebrew correctly.
They also argue that Christian/Messianic/Gentile ignorance of Jewish custom,
literature and theology impedes them in coming to an accurate and correct
conclusion on a "Messianic Passage." Jewish culture and extra biblical
literature has little and many times nothing to do with the crux of a messianic
Prophecy itself. The bottom line is that regardless of the English translation
we must ultimately go back to the Hebrew on which all translations are based.
And who cares about the designation of chapter and verse, in the original
Hebrew, there were no chapter and verse designation and no punctuation and so
this is just a moot distractionary argument to pull one away from the meat,
point and truth of the matter. Such things as chapter and verse and punctuation
of the Biblical texts only came about in modern times in order to aid us, the
modern reader and it does not take away from the Hebrew itself.
HISTORICAL vs. MESSIANIC:
The first thing the anti-missionaries do is to deny Daniel 9 to be Messianic in
anyway but rather, historical. They claim the prophecy of Daniel 9 is about
Cyrus (Daniel 9:25) and Alexander Yannai (Daniel 9:26) followed by the
destruction of Jerusalem. The text if taken in unbiased context has nothing to
do with King Cyrus and who, exactly, is Alexander Yannai anyway and what does
this person have to do with Bible Prophecy? This person isn't even mentioned
anywhere in the Bible!
You see, the anti-missionary tactic is to claim that what Christian and
Messianics call, "Messianic Prophecy" has nothing to do with Messiah.
Anti-missionaries hedge their bets that the people they are speaking with have
little to no knowledge on Hebraic Hermeneutics and thus play on this ignorance
in order to make their arguments appear legitimate and true. You see there are
four levels of Hebraic Interpretation displayed by the Hebraic acronym "PaRDeS"
meaning "paradise" in Hebrew:
• Pashat: The plain or literal level of interpretation.
• Remez: The text is hinting or alluding to something else.
• Drash: The practical applicable level of a passage.
• Sod: The spiritual or mystical level of interpretation.
They claim their arguments to true by only focusing on the pashat and Drash
level of a Messianic Prophecy and leaving out the Remez and Sod level of
interpretation and using it only when it suits their arguments. It is one of the
biggest double standards they play when dealing with Messianic Prophecy.
Again the anti-missionary will gladly site Rabbinic literature when it seems to
fit their argument and in order to give it a little more clout, but again,
banking on the ignorance of the people, leave out such arguments that will cast
doubt on their argumentative conclusions.
The Talmud itself warns about this kind of bias and deceptive activity:
"May the curse of heaven fall upon those who calculate the date of the advent of
the Messiah, and thus create political and social unrest among the people. -
And due to the fact after Messiah Yeshua's coming, the events surrounding him
lined up with Yeshua being Messiah so well, that for fear others would conclude
that this Yeshua is indeed Messiah, if you read a commentary of the same
Talmudic passage, they forbad calculating Daniel 9 and other time oriented
Messianic Passages all together!
"Rabbis after the time of Christ have pronounced a curse on anyone who would
attempt to calculate the dates of this chapter." (Talmud Sanhedrin 97b, Soncino
ed., p. 659.)
This would mean that what was said in Talmud Sanhedrin 97b implies that the
rabbis did indeed recognize that Daniel chapter nine predicted the time of
Yeshua's death, and were so concerned that this might cause Jewish people to
recognize that He was the Messiah that they pronounced a curse on those who
calculated the dates revealed in Daniel 9. Why? Because there is no other
Messianic prophecy that so perfectly foretells the coming of Messiah and the
year of His baptism and crucifixion. Non-Messianic Jews would realize they had
missed the first coming of the Messiah if they understood this prophecy, but
they avoid it believing this passage is cursed. The one passage proving they
missed the Messiah and they won't read it! So we can see the beginnings of the
anti-missionary conspiracies! I have always said that one must look into the
Rabbinic literature and Scriptural commentaries before the coming of Yeshua in
order to see the truth of these Messianic Prophecies. Because it was after
Yeshua's death, resurrection and ascension that they began to re-interpret what
we know today as the Messianic Prophecies to make it seem they are not messianic
Rabbi Maimonides, also known as the Rambam, the preeminent medieval Jewish
philosopher and one of the greatest Torah scholars of the Middle Ages, said
this about Daniel 9:24-27 – "Daniel has made known to us the knowledge of the
end times. However, since they are secret, the wise rabbis have barred the
calculation of the days of Messiah's coming so that the untutored populace will
not be led astray when they see that the End Times have already come but there
is no sign of the Messiah" (Igeret Teiman, Chapter 3 p.24.)
So the Rambam, one of the most revered Jewish commentators believed that Daniel
accurately predict in advance events related to the "end times," including the
date of the coming of the Messiah! He concludes that this is a Messianic
Prophecy and said nothing about it having to do with Cyrus or some other figure.
The Book of Daniel was written during the Babylonian Exile of the House of
Judah, or the Southern Kingdom, consisting of the Tribes of Judah and Levi, on
account of their sins and disobedience to the Torah and its covenants between
Israel and G-d Himself.
II Chron. 36:20-21 And them that had escaped from the sword carried he away to
Babylon; where they were servants to him and his sons until the reign of the
kingdom of Persia: To fulfil the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah,
until the land had enjoyed her sabbaths: for as long as she lay desolate she
kept sabbath, to fulfil threescore and ten years.
GAVRIEL'S MESSAGE TO DANIEL:
Daniel saw the Medo-Persian Empire defeating the Babylonian Empire as a sign
(based on Jer. 25:11-12) that the 70 year slavery of his people has finally come
to an end.
Dan. 9:1-2 In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the
Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans; In the first year of
his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word
of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years
in the desolations of Jerusalem.
Jer. 25:11-12 And this whole land shall be a desolation, and an astonishment;
and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. And it shall
come to pass, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king
of Babylon, and that nation, saith the LORD, for their iniquity, and the land of
the Chaldeans, and will make it perpetual desolations.
Seeing this so clear and plain Daniel (9:3-19) prays and fasts, supplicating for
the forgiveness and restoration of the nation of Judah and in order to determine
what G-d would have His People do next. To be clear this has nothing to do with
Gentiles or them replacing Israel in the form of the "New Testament Church."
DAYS vs YEARS:
One must recall that prior to this Daniel had a vision in 8:14-16, 27, where the
angel Gavriel came to him describing a "2300 day" which is in fact a 2300 year
period of time.
Num. 14:34 After the number of the days in which ye searched the land, even
forty days, each day for a year, shall ye bear your iniquities, even forty
years, and ye shall know my breach of promise.
Psa. 90:4 For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday when it is
past, and as a watch in the night.
Ezk. 4:6b I have appointed thee each day for a year.
II Pet 3:8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day [is]
with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
However, due to the intense nature of this visitation Daniel collapsed and was
unable to hear the entire interpretation of the vision at the time. We find that
the rest of the message relayed to him by the angel Gavriel was given in the
vision we read about in Daniel 9.
Dan. 8:14-16, 27; 9:20-27 And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three
hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed. And it came to pass, when I,
even I Daniel, had seen the vision, and sought for the meaning, then, behold,
there stood before me as the appearance of a man. And I heard a man's voice
between the banks of Ulai, which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to
understand the vision… And I Daniel fainted, and was sick certain days;
afterward I rose up, and did the king's business; and I was astonished at the
vision, but none understood it… And whiles I was speaking, and praying, and
confessing my sin and the sin of my people Israel, and presenting my
supplication before the LORD my God for the holy mountain of my God; Yea, whiles
I was speaking in prayer, even the man Gabriel, whom I had seen in the vision at
the beginning, being caused to fly swiftly, touched me about the time of the
evening oblation. And he informed me, and talked with me, and said, O Daniel, I
am now come forth to give thee skill and understanding. At the beginning of thy
supplications the commandment came forth, and I am come to shew thee; for thou
art greatly beloved: therefore understand the matter, and consider the vision.
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. 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. 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. 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
DANIEL'S MESSIANIC PHROPHECY:
And so we come to the meat of this Messianic Prophecy:
In Daniel 9:24 the word "determined" comes from the Hebrew word, "chathak,"
which literally means, "to cut off or to mark out". The angel Gavriel is telling
Daniel that 70 weeks (literally 490 days) had been cut off or marked out for the
people of Israel from the 2300 day (2300 years) prophecy in Daniel 8:14. The
majority of Gentile English translations of the Bible have translated the phrase
to read in Daniel 9:24 as, "seventy weeks." But this is not entirely accurate.
In Judaism we know the Hebrew word for "weeks" on account of the observance of
the "Feast of Weeks," known in the Hebrew as "Shavuot." However, the word that
appears in the Hebrew text of Daniel as "shavuim," meaning "sevens." The word
refers to a "seven" of anything, and the context determines the content of the
seven. It appears that Daniel had been thinking in terms of years, specifically
the 70 years of exile. He likely thought that the captivity would end after 70
years and that the kingdom would be established after 70 years. Notice though
that Gavriel was making a play upon words here in the Hebrew, that it was not
"70 years," but "70 sevens of years," a total of 490 years (70 times seven).
Daniel 9:24 gives us 6 specific purposes for these "70 weeks" or 490 years:
1. To finish the Transgression: meaning, to finish the exile brought about by
Israel's transgression or rebellion against the Torah.
2. To make an end to sin: meaning, to stop sinning, which by definition is the
breaking of the Torah (I John 3:4) and to start keeping or obeying Torah once
3. To make reconciliation for iniquity: Meaning, to make a covering or atonement
for iniquity, which is "Torahlessness."
4. To bring everlasting righteousness: To bring an age of righteous living by
5. To seal up the vision and prophecy: To bring a fulfillment to the
prophecy/vision he had by the coming of Messiah.
6. To anoint the Most Holy: This has a double meaning. a.) That the Most Holy
One would be anointed; Yeshua Messiah. For Yeshua is the embodiment, a physical
manifestation of the spirituality of the Temple Itself. He was anointed when He
was baptized by John (Luke 3:22-23; 4:18) and b.) To be more accurate according
to the Hebrew, one can say to anoint the Most Holy Place; that being the Temple
in Jerusalem which Messiah Yeshua anointed with His Presence by setting foot in
the Temple. Yeshua was the physical embodiment of the Shekinah that anointed the
Dan. 9:24-27 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.
25Know 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.
26And 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.
THE CALENDAR PROBLEM:
I know there are those who break down these calculations to the day and even the
hour from the Hebraic calendar and convert it to the equivalent on the secular
calendar and plug in a multitude of passages to map out Yeshua's ministry almost
day by day. I am not that foolhardy or presumptuous to do so, because I have
seen several who have tried to do this and each one came out with a different
calculations and interpretation. This is what gives ammunition and so-called
validity to the anti-missionaries and their arguments. They point out how we can
never agree on anything, especially important Messianic Prophecy. Such details
as spoken of in the above does not matter here, what does matter is the big
calculations given in our text.
Daniel 9:25 speaks of "seven weeks and threescore and two weeks (62 weeks)." 62
+ 7 = 69 or 69 x 7 = 483. It is believed by some scholars that in the time of
Daniel most of the known ancient calendars calculated a year as 360 days
(Hebrew, Mayan, Egyptian, Babylonian and many others). Some scholars believe
that an astronomical event such as perhaps a close passing of Mars, a meteor or
comet striking the earth, lengthened the time the earth takes to rotate time
around the sun to the current 365.25 days per year. Some scholars also believe
that there was a prophetic calendar the Jews used consisting of 360 days.
Another reason some scholars say that we should apply a 360 day calendar to
Daniel's prophecy is because of various Bible references that allude to a fixed
30-day month view of time. For example, in Genesis 7:24, it says that the flood
lasted 150 days. And, in Genesis 7:11, it says the flood began in the 17th day
of the second month. And in Genesis 8:4, it says that the flood subsided on the
17th day of the seventh month, when the ark came to rest on the mountains of
Ararat. So, these passages present us a 5-month period of time that is described
as being 150 days in length. And that of course is five 30-day months. If we
take the 360 days prophetic calendar and break up the 483 years into days we get
173,880 days. The angel Gavriel was telling Daniel that 173,880 days after the
command is given to "restore and rebuild Jerusalem" the Messiah would come.
This decree to rebuild was given in Ezra 7 and Nehemiah 1 and 2, it was also
given at different times and by different pagan kings (Cyrus in Ezra 1:1-4,
Darius in Ezra 6:8-12 and Artaxerxes in Ezra 7:11-26) but I believe this is
specifically dealing with Artaxerxes in Ezra 7:11-26 in the 7th year of his
reign. Daniel's 70 weeks prophecy pointed to a decree to restore and rebuild
Jerusalem as the starting date for the 70 weeks. Information provided by Ezra
indicates that this prophecy was fulfilled by the decree of Artaxerxes which
authorized Ezra to restore and rebuild Jerusalem by allowing him to establish a
judicial system based on the Law of the Lord in Jerusalem and throughout the
Trans-Euphrates province. The decree also allowed for the rebuilding of the
city. Nehemiah makes it clear that in computing the years of the reign of
Artaxerxes he was using a fall-to-fall calendar making it possible for us to
identify the seventh year of the king Artaxerxes the 1st as 457 B.C.E./B.C.
Daniel 9:25 states that from the decree to rebuild Jerusalem and thus the Temple
until the Messiah, which can only be speaking of Yeshua, is 7 weeks and
threescore and two weeks, Three score is 60 + 2 = 62 weeks. So this is 7 + 62 =
69 weeks from the decree to rebuild Jerusalem until the first coming of Messiah.
Daniel 9:26 speaks of what lay at the end of this "69 week" period, that the
Messiah would come and be "cut off," Hebraically meaning killed. Messiah was
killed but not because of anything He had done criminally, but on behalf of the
people as an atoning, substitutionary sacrifice to atone for (as Dan. 9:24
states) the "iniquity," the Torah breaking of the people.
Next in the verse we have the phrase that indicates that the Temple that was
rebuilt will once again be destroyed. This occurred by the Romans in 70
C.E./A.D. who "flooded" Jerusalem and destroyed it and the Temple.
The following is a chronological summary of Daniel 9:24-26
1. There would be a decree to rebuild Jerusalem.
2. Jerusalem and the Temple would be rebuilt.
3. Then an Anointed One (messiah) would be "cut off" or shall we say, "rejected"
4. Then Jerusalem and the Temple would be destroyed again.
The following is a summary of how Daniel 9:24-26 was fulfilled.
1. After the Medo-Persians had conquered the Babylonian Empire which included
the land of Israel. Persian King Artaxerxes gave permission to the Jews to
rebuild Jerusalem, which was still in ruins after having been destroyed earlier
by the Babylonians.
2. The Jews rebuilt the city of Jerusalem and the Temple.
3. Then, in about 33 C.E./A.D., Yeshua entered Jerusalem as the Messiah who had
been promised by Prophets. However, many people rejected Yeshua as the Messiah
and He was crucified by the Romans.
4. About 40 years after Yeshua was crucified, the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and
the Temple and the Temple has not been rebuilt since then.
Here is a quote that to me, "seals the deal" regardless of what your method of
calculation of these weeks are:
"In Nehemiah 2:1 we see the decree to rebuild, issued in the 20th year of King
Artaxerxes, (about 445 B.C.) Messiah comes 483 years after the decree to rebuild
is issued [Calculated by adding 7 weeks (49 years) + 62 weeks (434 years)] this
arrives at about the time of Yeshua's triumphant entry in Jerusalem. Messiah
comes 434 years after rebuilding, or 483 years after decree is first issued
giving permission to rebuild -- hence 483 years (7 weeks + 62 weeks). Working
form earlier permissions to rebuild (Cyrus' earlier decree) arrives at about the
birth of Yeshua, instead of near the end of His earthly life. Either way it's
calculated, only Yeshua could be Moshiach -- no one else fits into Daniel's
timeframe." -- http://www.lightofmashiach.org/daniel9_26.html
Finally, Dan. 9:27
27And 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 last verse brings much trouble and confusion to folks due to the sometimes
Anti-Semitic, but definite Anti-Torah, Pro-Pre-Tribulation Eschatological slant
the majority of Christianity puts upon it.
This last "week," making the "70 weeks" spoken of in Dan. 9:24 and 27 I believe
to represent Yeshua's life which He came and confirmed the covenant of Torah
(Matt. 5:17-20) with many, Jew and Gentile, and did not do away with it. Next we
have His death where He was cut off "midweek." This caused the "sacrifice and
oblation to cease" meaning in the Hebrew to "desist" or "repose," not
necessarily to completely stop all together as many Christians would claim. Also
notice it says, "sacrifice" and "oblation" in the singular leading one to
believe that it was referring to a specific sacrifice and not all of them. So
Yeshua's death did not put an end to the Levitical sacrificial system.
What is the purpose of the animal sacrifices anyway? Two predominant reasons:
• It was to be a physical object lesson that pointed to the coming Messiah and
what He would do. It acted as a credit card that covered, did not take away,
and rolled back the sin debt until someone, Messiah, could come along and pay
it. In the time of the Third Temple the sacrifices will be a reminder of the
Messiah who came and what He did (Is. 56, 66; Zech. 14:16-21). The sacrifices
before Yeshua came only pointed to the Messiah which was to come, and the
sacrifices after Yeshua, and that will take place in the Millennial Reign, point
back to Messiah's atoning work.
• It provided and will provide food, materials and income for the Priests and
their families (Leviticus 5-10).
So animal sacrifices after Yeshua's work on the cross is not a slap in the face
to what His redemptive work and as we pointed out prophecy states sacrifices
will resume again when the third Temple is rebuilt.
Let me be clear, salvation is a gift from G-D to all who will accept Yeshua the
Messiah, the Living Torah, confesses, repents, and turns away from their sins.
This is Faith Righteousness. This will result in becoming spiritually alive
and indwelt with the Ruach Ha Kodesh of G-D. This in turn will cause one to
desire to love, obey, and please G-D. One shows this by keeping the Written
Torah. This is Works Righteousness. In other words, one will walk in the
footsteps of Yeshua Moshieynu (our Messiah) by walking in the Torah. Salvation
comes by grace through faith alone. Salvation is not earned by Torah
observance. If we love Him we WILL keep His Commandments (Torah).
You see at Yeshua's death the earth shook the temple curtain was torn in two
which would temporarily put a halt to the sacrifice (singular) and oblation
(singular) (Matt. 27:50-54).
"John Wycliffe, Martin Luther, and Isaac Newton all connect the 70th week with
the Messiah. When Christ cried "It is finished," the priests were officiating in
the temple. It was the hour of the evening sacrifice, and as the Passover lamb
representing Christ was about to be slain, "the veil of the temple was rent in
twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake and the rocks rent"
(Matthew 27:51). " --
Though Dan. 9:27 is speaking of a specific sacrifice and oblation, ultimately we
can say the sacrifice and oblation have ceased due to the fact the Temple was
destroyed in 70 C.E./A.D. and has yet to be rebuilt. But again, this ceasing is
temporary, because we see that it will be rebuilt and the sacrifices will resume
according to Zechariah. So this prophecy has nothing to do with the antichrist
and what he is said to do to the 3rd Temple.
"And for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate" I feel is
speaking of the corruption the Temple during Yeshua's day which was controlled
by the Sadducees who in turn was controlled by the Romans; which during His life
Yeshua exposed. This made the Temple desolate as well as after His death, The
Presence of G-d left the Temple and after this according to the Talmud the
Temple doors could not remain shut, the west most flame of the Menorah would not
light and the scarlet cord ceased to turn white (Talmud Bavli, Yoma 39b). The
Temple would remain this way "until the consummation, and that determined shall
be poured upon the desolate," which I believe refers to the destruction of the
Temple in 70 C.E./A.D. which was the judgment upon those who made it become a
desolation in the first place.
So you see, this very time specific prophecy is indeed Messianic and can only be
referring to and fit one specific person in history, Yeshua the Messiah. This
Messianic Passage proves that The Messiah (Yeshua) came and went and the
Non-Believing Orthodox Jews of today missed Him because they refused to
calculate the timeline due to the Talmudic dictate; and when they do, they
purposely and knowingly misinterpret the passage in order to subdue and deceive