When did the 2,300 days in Daniel 8:14 begin and end?

When did the 2,300 days in Daniel 8:14 commence and end?

What sanctuary was to be cleansed at the end of that period?

No doubt, all questions concerning what it has pleased God to reveal to us, have their importance, and so with these, but they gain a certain fictitious importance, whether the questioner knows it or not, owing to the use or rather misuse made of the above passage by the so-called Seventh-day Adventists, to build up their arbitrary and altogether unscriptural system of interpretation, which nullifies the atoning work of Christ in its present application to the believer, and justification by faith alone. The originator of the system was a certain W. Miller, who foretold the return of the Lord to the earth on a certain day in 1844. His followers in white garments were expecting the event on that day. When it failed to realise, Miller was himself rid of his idea and confessed his error, and the whole system would have collapsed had not one of Miller’s adepts, a certain Mrs. Ellen ‘White imagined a way of escape to account for the evident failure of Miller’s prophecy. A mistake had been made, she affirmed: the Lord had come, not to earth, however, but to the most holy place of the sanctuary in heaven to complete, (!) the work of atonement. He had till then (i.e., up to 1844) been “pleading in the first apartment” of the sanctuary on behalf of penitent believers, and thus securing their pardon and acceptance with the Father, yet their sins still remained upon the books of record. So that, according to this heory, the sins of believers, though pardoned, still remained upon the books of record, and are supposed to be constantly defiling the heavenly sanctuary. Could anyone imagine a more arbitrary, selfc9ntradictory, or unscriptural system? It rejects the efficacy of His blood to cleanse from all sin. It denies that God has not only forgiven, but has also blotted out His people’s sins from the book of His renembrance—”Their sins and their iniquities will I remember no møre.” The whole theory of “the sanctuary” being in heaven, and that ou Lord was up to 1844 in the “first apartment” of it, is pure imagination, In any case, “the veil was rent at the cross from the top to the bottom”, so that since then, the sanctuary could be no more divided into two apartments, that is, into Holy Place and Holy of Holies. Moreover,, Heb. 8. i and 9. a. tell us that the place of our Lord’s priestly work is where He is now and has been since His ascension—”on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens”; “in heaven itself now to appear in the presence of God for us.” That was true when “Hebrews” was written, and there is not a line to prove that any other entrance into any other part of the heavenly sanctuary was ever contemplated or took place, still less that such an event would occur in 1844. I believe the prophecy of Daniel does not deal directly with the church at all, but with God’s earthly people, Israel. The sanctuary that is spoken of in chap. 8. 13-14 is the literal sanctuary of the temple at Jerusalem, and “the 2,300 days” are, in fact, days, not years. This passage ought to be read with chap. 9. 27, where we see that the period in question is the last “week” or period of seven years, of the 70 weeks of years (lit. Heb., “seven of sevens”*), during which the covenant will be made between the Man of Sin, the last governmental head of the revived Roman Empire, who is called in Daniel 9:26 “the Prince that shall come”, and the last false King of Israel, the Antichrist. This covenant will be broken in the midst of the week (v. 27), that is after 3 years: the daily sacrifice will be taken away and the Sanctuary of the Temple will in some way be defiled (see Daniel 11:31) by what is called “the abomination of desolation”, or in more usual language, the image of the beast set up in it, “standing in the holy place” (Matthew 24:15). It is this vile image which will defile the sanctuary, and it will only be cleansed at the coming of the Lord at the end of the 2,300 days. Seven prophetic years is a period of 2,520 days, so that the time will be 220 days, or a little more than 7 months, short of this. This may be accounted for by God’s shortening of the days of persecution by the two Beasts for the elect’s sake, according to Matt. 24. 22. There are those who fancy that Seventh-day Adventism is a more or less harmless system taken up with perhaps strange views on the Coming of the Lord. It is a deadly heretical  system which denies the fundamentals of the faith, nullifies the atone-, ment, attributes a sinful nature to our Holy Lord, makes Satan the ultimate bearer of Christians’ sins, and insists on his final annihilation and that of all the wicked dead. W.H.

* This is not the same as the day-year theory that every day can be taken for a year, because
the siord for “week” ia period of “seven”, it may b days, weeks or years.