The 1335 Days

Opinions presented here are intended to stimulate objective thinking but do not necessarily represent the views of the editors.

L. R. VAN DOLSON, Assistant Professor of Religion, Pacific Union College

A few days ago as I was studying the question of the chronology of Luke 3 I learned of the possibility of A.D. 26 for the baptism of Jesus. One problem in this date was its correlation with the 70-week prophecy of Dan­iel. This would necessitate a 458 B.C. date for the beginning of the 2300 days, would place the baptism of Christ in the fall of 26 and the death of Christ in the spring of 30, and the conclusion of the 2300 years in 1843. For the first three dates there were fairly good evidences, and the conclusion of the 2300 day-year prophecy in 1843 would harmonize with the generally ac­cepted dating of the 1335 years of Daniel 12:12, which is 508-1843. The major con­tradiction to this system is the clear state­ment in The Great Controversy, page 399, which unequivocally states, "Reckoning from the autumn of 457, the 2300 years terminate in the autumn of 1844." Since I accept The Great Controversy as divinely inspired, this reference led me to give up any consideration of the 458-26-1843 system, and I then faced the problem of why the 1335 day prophecy seeks to identify the two prophecies with the same event. Every­thing I have read on the 1335-year prophecy seems to identify the two prophecies with the same event. Did God make a one-year mistake? Of course not. What, then, is the explanation of the one-year discrepancy between the two?

I began to restudy the 1260-year proph­ecy to see if there could be any way of reshuffling the dates of the prophecies of Daniel 12 so that the period indicated in Daniel 12:12 would end in 1844. I came to the same conclusion as that expressed by C. Mervyn Maxwell in his Master of Arts thesis entitled "An Examination of the Beginning and Ending of the 1260 Days of Prophecy with Special Attention Given to A.D. 538 and 1798." In the abstract of this thesis, as published in The Seminarian of July-September, 1952, he states: "The coincidence between this reinterpretation of the prophecy with the undisputed events of history leads inevitably to the conclusion that, in spite of the spurious nature of some of the arguments used to establish 538-1798, nevertheless these dates stand apparently acceptable. Indeed they are the only ones adequate to satisfy the requirements of the prophecy." This date for the conclusion of the 1260 years is also clearly supported in The Great Controversy, page 356, which reads: "This period ended in 1798."

Daniel 12 refers to the close of the 1260-year prophecy as marking the "time of the end," which would then begin in 1798. There follows in verses 11 and 12 the in­troduction of two more time periods: "And from the time that the daily sacrifice shall be taken away, and the abomination that maketh desolate set up, there shall be a thousand two hundred and ninety days. Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days."

The common dates assigned to these prophetic time periods by Adventist interpreters through correlating the 1290-day period with the ending of the 1260-day period is 508-1798 for the 1290 years and 508-1843 for the 1335-year period. There is one substitute system that makes some sense for the 1335-year period. That is a 496-1831 scheme of dating that would be­gin with the date of the conversion of Clovis, leader of the Franks in 496, which gave the church a strong political ally and an effective sword for more than 12 cen­turies (The SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 4, pp. 836, 837). The 1335 years would then terminate with the beginning of William Miller's preaching of the 2300-year proph­ecy. However, the 1290-year prophecy does not fit into this scheme.

Therefore, staying with the usual system of dating from 508-1843, which seemed to be the only acceptable application, I began to investigate the possibility of reapplying the interpretation of the event that oc­curred in 1843. This proved to be a very fruitful field of study.

The major prophecies of the Bible seem to be closely related to the Jewish festivals whose antitypes meet their fulfillment at specific points of time. This can be illustrated as follows:

(See PDF for Table)

The Feast of Trumpets, the feast of the first day of the seventh month, is omitted from this line-up. Why? Should it not, too, have an antitypical fulfillment at a specific point in history? If so, when?

My conclusion is that it does, and that the only time prophecy which identifies this fulfillment as to point of time is the 1335 day-year prophecy of Daniel 12:12. In 1843, type meets antitype, and the Feast of Trumpets, which announced the coming of the two final feasts of the Jewish festival year, takes its rightful place with the other feasts, which have definite fulfillments in point of time as well as in event.

Commenting on the Feast of Trumpets in his book The Cross and Its Shadow, S. N. Haskell states: "It is quite evident that, like the Passover, the Feast of Trum­pets was both commemorative and typical. It came ten days before the day of atone­ment, the type of the great investigative judgment which opened in 1844, at the end of the long prophetic period of the twenty-three hundred years of Dan. 8:14. In the type the trumpets were blown throughout Israel, warning all of the near approach of the solemn day of atonement. In the antitype we should expect some world-wide message to be given in trumpet tones, an­nouncing the time near when the great an­titypical day of atonement, the investiga­tive judgment, would convene in the heav­ens. Beginning with the years 1833-34 and extending down to 1844, such a message was given to the world in trumpet tones, announcing, 'The hour of His judgment is come.' "—Page 204.

If we accept the ten days separating the Feast of Trumpets from the Day of Atone­ment as symbolic, as Elder Haskell does, we will have to revise his dating from 1843­1844 to 1833-1843 in line with the prophecy of the 1335 days. The antitypical Day of Atonement in 1844 thus following the pe­riod of the blowing of the trumpets.

The only information given pertinent to the prophecy of the 1335 days in Daniel 12:12 is "Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh" to this time. The SDA Bible Commentary makes the following application: "The time periods of vs. 7, 11, 12 reach down to the 'time of the end' referred to in vs. 4, 9. 'Happy' (see on Matt. 5:3), says the angel, is the person who witnesses the dramatic events of the closing scenes of earth's history.. . . If the 1290 and the 1335 days begin at the same time, the latter pe­riod reaches to the year 1843, a significant date in relationship to the great advent awakening in America, generally known as the Millerite movement."—The SDA Bible Commentary, vol. 4, p. 881.

The year 1843, then, becomes significant in the line-up of prophetic dates as that year which especially marks the climax of the antitypical Feast of Trumpets and the Feast of Trumpets joins the ranks of the other great festival days that had their ful­fillment not only in event, but in time

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L. R. VAN DOLSON, Assistant Professor of Religion, Pacific Union College

December 1963

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