Tamid in Daniel – a beter explanation
door Ingrid A. Wijngaarde
2017, Oct 15, updated 2018, June 2
The Bible book Daniel is only to be understood if the Sanctuary doctrine is understood. Because many Seventh Day Adventists don’t get any education anymore in the sanctuary message, at least insufficient, - in other churches even less, to them Daniel remains a closed book. The sanctuary message is absolutely the foundation of the SDA theology. Literally every doctrine we hold on to and every belief of the SDA Church finds its basis in the sanctuary doctrine, that Jesus is High Priest in the Heavenly Sanctuary. When explaining the crucial versus in Daniel 8:1-14; 23-26 the sanctuary must be assumed to be understood. The sanctuary is the immediate context of all the prophetic chapters in the book Daniel (2,7-12) and especially of Daniel 8:8-14, and also of the New Testament books Romans, Hebrews and Revelation.
Every controversy that arises and ever arose over the SDA prophetic interpretation of the books Daniel and Revelation, finds its roots in misunderstandings of the sanctuary in Israel. In the explanation about the tamîd in Daniel, hereunder, it is assumed that the reader understands the significance of the sanctuary of Israel.
Tamid – daily sacrifice (KJV)
What does Daniel mean with what is translated in our bibles as daily sacrifice(s)? There are few English translations that translates with ‘the daily’ of ‘the continually’); e.thmid (the tamîd) in Hebrew (there are many interlinear transliterations of the Hebrew text; I used that of Interlinear Scripture Analyzer). For starters, there is not written ‘sacrifice’ in the original. I crossed out this word in Daniel in my Bible years ago. In this study, I will tell you why…
Five times we find e.thmid in Daniel and every time it informs us what the little horn power does (8:11,12,13; 11:31 and 12:11). Thmid in Daniel is never ever used as an adjective, but always as a noun, easy to see by the article e..
The common SDA explanation is that in Daniel it’s an adjective used “substantively” i.e. as a noun, or adjectival noun, and that a noun is not implied, but that the reader has to add to the sentence (Cf. Don F. Neufeld, Seventh-day Adventist Encyclopedia, Revised Edition (Hagerstown, MD: Review and Herald, 1976), 367-370).
I am not a theologian, but I don’t agree with this explanation, because it totally neglects the sanctuary context of Daniel 8, while it is so obvious there.
Nowhere in the Old Testament we find in any reference to the sanctuary, thmid is used as an adjective attached to a (morning or evening) sacrifice – the noun one has to think attached to it according to Neufeld and the majority of Bible translators. Morning and evening sacrifice is called oluth l.bqr u.lorb and sacrifices for special days are called olth ium.
Sacrifices that were brought daily , or always on set times, or day by day, (for instance morning and evening sacrifices), the word thmid is always attached to the word l.ium or olth. Olth or Oluth means sacrifice, going up before the Lord (see Ezra 3:3-5).
But in the Old Testament there are only six kinds of ‘continually’ without reference to ‘sacrifice’ – in relation to the sanctuary:
(1) The shewbread (Ex 25:30: Lev 24:8; Num 4:7,16).
(2) The light of the six-armed candlestick (Ex 27:20,21; Ex 30:8; Lev 6:13; 24:2-4).
(3) The incense on the golden altar (Ex 30:7).
(4) And the attributes on the coat of the High Priest: breast plate and the engraved plate on his forehead (Ex 28:29,30,38).
(5) The cloud above the tabernacle (Num 9:16).
(6) In Deut 11:12 we find a tamîd not in reference to the sanctuary, where God promises that He would consider the land ‘continually’; or in Psalms 25:15, where the Psalmist says that he will keep his eyes focussed on the Lord for ever, continually; or in Psalms 51:3, where David confesses that he will always remember his sin, continually without end; or in Psalms 105:4, where the Psalmist advices us to seek God's strenght evermore, always, conyinually.
Do you know that we find this meaning even in the new Testament in the Greek word pantothe - always, without end (see examples in Luke 18:1 and 1 Corinthians 1:4 and most significant, Jesus in His High Priestly role in Hebrews 7:25).
In total we find tamîd 104 times through the Old Testament, but only ten times in relation to the Holy (of the sanctuary), and always without giving reference to a oblation (1-3), and in each of those ten times it refers to parts of the work of salvation, taking place in the typical sanctuary service in the Holy, and not at the altar of burnt offerings in the courtyard. The texts for (2) and (3) suggest an ongoing service rendered by the highpriest during the whole day - his duty was to keep the lamps burning 'continually' at full strength and the insence going up 'continually' at full strength (see Lev 24:4). The reading of the text 'from evening to morning' even suggests a 24h service! And surely not limited to the time of morning and evening sacrifice! In KJV Ex 30:8 is incorrectly translated with "when Aaron lights the lamps". Obviously the lamps were supposed never to go out, so 'trims' or 'attends' (taking care of) would be a better translation. In Numbers 4:7 it is stressed that the shewbread is always, 'continually' on the table. What a beautiful symbol for the 24/7 service we may expect from our heavenly High Priest (see next paragraph, "Tamid- Rigtheousness by faith").
Tamid – righteousness by faith?
Many Seventh-day Adventists say that tamid is righteousness by faith. But what is righteousness by faith in the context of the sanctuary? The reasoning is, that the evening and morning sacrifice in the tabernacle symbolize the continual daily prayer that the believer sends up to God - the application of which in our daily life is the morning and evening prayer, in which we dedicate ourselves respectively for the coming day to God and wherein we conclude the day with a prayer of thanksgiving and dedicate ourselves for the night. That is the reasoning and there is nothing wrong with that.
But what does this mean in the context of the service of the sanctuary that was casted down by the little horn and trampled underfoot? In the context of the sanctuary it means, that since the ascension, we have a Mediator and High Priesthood in the heavenly sanctuary, who "receives" and mixes our prayers with His righteousness - on which we hope - and for our benefit to His Father " presents as a good sacrifice, our reasonable worship service "(Romans 12:1).
In the context of the sanctuary tamid does not pertain to morning and evening sacrifices, but to the continual (tamid) prayers of Christ in His role as High Priest on our behalf. We must not forget that the earthly sanctuary is but a pattern of the perfect example of the sanctuary in heaven and not the other way around! The type on earth had its limitations - every sacrifice represented Christ's sacrifice, but the reality is much greater. Christ is in reality sacrifice and priest for forgiveness, mediator and high priest for atonement - at the same time - one Who does not die and Whose service does not pass to another (Hebrews 5:6; 7:11-17, 24-28), but Who continually (tamid) serves in the entire heavenly sanctuary and since 1844, also in the department of reconciliation - the Holy of Holiest, while doing the service of forgiveness in the Holy, because He is not bound by an annual cycle, such as the mortal earthly high priests.
Thàt is what we may believe - that righteousness is provided by Christ through His heavenly ministries of forgiveness and reconciliation.
Forgiveness and reconciliation - two separate services
In the earthly typology, forgiveness was possible through confession and the slaughter of the sacrifice on the altar of burnt offering in the courtyard - outside the city, outside the sanctuary (on earth). The blood was then brought in by the priest into the first section of the sanctuary, smeared on the horns of the golden altar of incense, which stood on the right side of the throne of God (the ark of the covenant - Hebrews 8:1,2). No blood of the morning and evening sacrifice was brought into the sanctuary. It was an offering of fire that burned symbolically continually in the courtyard (other sacrifices that were made during the day were burned on the remains of the morning sacrifice, and in that sense the morning sacrifice was continually burning). This was the daily service.
On the Day of Atonement (DoA), a special sacrifice was made - for atonement. On that day no sin offerings were slaughtered, because on earth the two services could not be represented at the same time, because of human limitations. Ten days prior to DoA the people had ample opportunity to sanctify themselves by self-investigation and to have their sins to be forgiven. At DoA, the accumulated sin-blood was removed from the Holy Place, presented to God in the Holy of Holiest as sufficient satisfaction for those who are being saved. Then the sins were symbolically placed on the head of the one who had caused it in the beginning - Satan (Azazel’s goat - the scape goat), as a symbol that God has determined a time that the work of reconciliation will be completed and sin, his instigator and what sin had worked out, death, will be exterminated once and for all. This was the annual service.
It immediately becomes clear that no reconciliation can take place without forgiveness. No crown without a cross - not for Christ, but not for us!
Now, back to our topic.
What the little horn does and what it does not
We SDA’s know very well that the little horn power in Daniel 8 stands for more than imperial Rome, a political power. That would only be the case in the versus 9 and 10.
From verse 11 onwards the little horn is a symbol of papal Rome, a religious power who acts directly to the service in the sanctuary. Is makes no sense to imply here an earthly sanctuary because that lost its meaning after the death of the cross and ceased to have any salvific implication.
In the versus 11 and 12 it is written what this religious power in all its arrogance has done: it installs a religious service ‘by reason of transgression’ that is that it demands worship and puts that in place of the authentic one in the real temple of God. See Hebrews 9:11-17.
Now, every SDA who really knows his sanctuary doctrine, will understand that tamîd – the continually’ can never relate to the old morning and evening sacrifices, because those sacrifices were brought on the altar in the courtyard and not in the Holy of the sanctuary. Every sacrifice on that altar was a type of Christ’s death on the cross, who suffered “outside the city” (city is another word for sanctuary), but the attack on God’s sanctuary in Daniel 8 occurs literally and symbolically after the Christ’s dying on the cross. Sacrifices on the altar of burnt offerings ceased to have any meaning – the sacrifice was completely made, once and for all.
Therefore it makes no sense, to imply that the little horn took away the morning and evening offerings, because by the time the little horn rose to power, those offerings had ceased to have any significance for 500 hundred years. But we adopt the translation error, made from an erroneous understanding of the shadow services in the earthly sanctuary, set on the wrong foot by the added word ‘sacrifice’, that is not there in the Hebrew text.
Every SDA knows that Christ ascended on high t the heavenly sanctuary to minister in the heavenly Holy as our High Priest and Mediator. The task of the earthly high priest in the Holy was caring for the shewbread, the lampstand and the altar of incense (Lev 24:1-8). And yes, that happened daily, but there was no relation with sacrifices in the courtyard.
Shewbread stood for the Word of God; Light for the Spirit of Christ; Incense for the prayers with which He pleads for us continually (thmid) before the Father (Heb 7:25).
Every SDA understands that analogous to the earthly ministry, in 1844 our High Priest also began His ministry in the Holiest of Holy. Because he is not human, He may walk in and out; the earthly high priest could only go in once a year. And therefor He can still plead for us continually, while we are already in the anti-typical Day of Atonement.
Worship by an army of rebels
Now, the worship by reason of transgression installed by papal Rome is: Tradition before the Word (1: bread); the Church is the standard for inspiration (2: light), and forgiveness takes place by mediation of earthly priests (3: incense), with the authority given by an earthly, sinful high priest as head (pope). With this the truth of the gospel of Christ was cast to the ground and trodden under foot; by crucifying Christ anew in every Holy Mass (mass as of massacre), the sacrifice of Christ was made redundant, but then also His ministry in the heavenly sanctuary. After all, pope and priest have direct control over salvation and can pray you straight into heaven and beatify you.
This metamorphosis of the sanctuary was so masterfully done that everyone got trapped in the lie and the text says that after that everything this power did was successful (Daniel 8:12), for its shrewdness is supernatural (Revelations 13:2 tells us that he gets his power, throne and strength from the devil himself).
How did the papacy took away the continual mediating ministry of Christ and casted His sanctuary to the ground (Dan 8:11)? By putting the mediation for humans in the hands of humans; priests in the confessional, through Mary, and by sacrificing Christ anew in every Mass, the papacy erased the heavenly mediation of Christ from the minds of the believers.
If Hebrew 7:25 can be happening in a king's palace in Rome, by an earthly high priest, and on his authorithy, by his lower representatives, it is clear that Christ's mediation in heaven becomes unnecessary.
This is negating Christ, totally denouncing what Christ stands for because the Church took that role upon itself, replacing Christ by its blasphemous propositions. This is what antichrist means in its most complete definition.
By replacing the service of Christ in the heavenly sanctuary with the service of priests on earth, the little horn power has casted God's sanctuary to the earth, and trampled it under foot, and by doing so, defiled it.
The cleansing of the sanctuary that would take place after the 2300 evenings and mornings is thus the restoration of this biblical teaching in the thoughts of the believers, that Jesus alone is our only High Priest and Mediator in the heavenly sanctuary, where He serves on behalf of us, pleads continually (tamîd) for us. We do not need a common mediator.
Sanctuary cleansed 1
We know from history that imperial (political) Rome crucified the Prince of the Lord, Jesus, destroyed the literal temple in Jerusalem and thus caused the three "continual" high-priestly mediation ceremonies to cease, and heavily persecuted the saints - both Jews and Christians. But the essence of Daniel 8:11,12 is that papal Rome has gone a step further: it has taken over the task of Christ, and under penalty of death, forced 1260 (538-1798) to 1290 years (508-1798), depending on when you set the starting point of the exercise of its power, unquestionable obedience to its doctrines.
From history we know that on Christmas Day 508 AD Clovis, the king of the Franks, was baptized into the Catholic Church and this gained him the support of the Church to scourge the rebellious Vandals, Heruls and East Goths (Visigoths), who refused to recognize the power of Rome (search wikipeadia). These are the three horns in Daniel 7:8, which were "plucked out" by the Church in its struggle for religious supremacy in the Western Roman Empire (the current Europe). In 538 AD the power was consolidated and the last emperor of Rome - Justinian - officially gave his title of pontifex maximus (= large bridge builder, mediator between earth and heaven = high priest) to the Bishop of Rome, after he already had it passed by decree in 533 AD, determining that the bishop of Rome should be the only head of the Christian church.
Dark middle ages with terrible persecutions came: Daniel 7:25; 12:7; Revelation 11:3; 12:6,14 sketch time, times and half a time - 1260 years until 1798. The imprisonment of the pope in that year meant the end of the exercise of the oppressive power of the Church on the conscience of the faithful, and the reopening of God's Word for the serious Bible searcher. The believers started to "run back and forth" seriously and gained insights. The small booklet was opened and it was understood that the greatest time prophecy in the Bible was coming to an end (Revelation 10:6)! They took the little book (Daniel) from the hand of the heavenly agent and they ate it greedily as if it were honey. People continued to expect the second coming, but they did not fully understand the message. "Blessed are those who keep on expecting and reaching a thousand three hundred and thirty-five days" (Daniel 12:12, my translation). We know our SDA history: It was a bitter disappointment.
And so it took 1335 years (508-1843) before God’s Bible believing people understood what the truth of the sanctuary, which had been trampled under feet for 1260 years, meant: on October 23, 1844, the Advent people raised their eyes and saw the shining light of the heavenly sanctuary, where Christ pleads continually (tamîd) for us! In this way, the sanctuary was restored to its rightful place.
The angel says to John: "And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings." (Revelation 10:11). The SDA church was born. The proclamation of the everlasting gospel “to every nation, and kindred, and tongue, and people" (Revelation 14:7) became her "creed"; the proclamation of the three angels' messages and the casting of light on the heavenly sanctuary, where Christ pleads tamîd for us, became her mission.
Confirmation from BRI – Gerhard Pfandl
In 2013, when I started studying this subject, I had an extensive email correspondence with Gerhard Pfandl from the Bible Research Institute (BRI). I had it figured out for myself already, but God stopped me from working on it any further, although I had tried to finish it a few times. Today, the last bits of the last verses of the book Daniel fell into place for me.
Although Gerhard Pfandl claimed in 2013 that e.thmid in Daniel is used as an adjective (I cannot discover the noun in the Hebrew text), he said the following, which supports my explanation. He replied, “Your understanding of tamîd in the book of Daniel is basically correct.
In Daniel where the word tamîd occurs five times (Dan 8:11-13; 11:31; 12:11) it appears always by itself with the article, but without the word ʿōlâ or any other word for sacrifice, i.e., the adjective tamîd is used substantively. … 2 Hence, in Daniel the word tamîd refers to the whole daily ministry of the Prince of the host (8:11) beginning in AD 31…
It is the ministry of Jesus in the heavenly sanctuary beginning in AD 31…. The ‘daily’ or ‘continual’ service in the Old Testament represented God’s continuing beneficent provision for man, and pointed forward symbolically to Christ’s ministry in the heavenly sanctuary which he began after his ascension (Heb 7:25)” (Seventh-day Adventist Bible Dictionary, s. v. “Daily”).”
Confirmation of BRI - Ángel Rodriguez
After some further research on the BRI website, I found further support for my explanation in an article by Ángel Rodriguez, 3 in which he very delicately remarks that in Daniel it is not stated that the little horn power destroys the Prince, but that it rises against Him (in other words, challenges Him). This is completely in line with how I understand the tamîd passages in Daniel.
“We notice that the little horn is not able to defeat or kill the Prince. It only removed the continual/tamîd from Him. It ascribed to itself that which was the exclusive work of the Prince in the heavenly sanctuary. This is the meaning of the phrase "and from him [the Prince] was taken the continual." …
The little horn removed the continual from the Prince by usurping His priestly work. By ascribing to itself the work of the Prince, the little horn makes the mediation of the Prince ineffective for those who support its political and religious aspirations. …
In Daniel 8:11, the little horn was to cast, or throw, in the sense of reject, abandon, or forsake, "the place" (Hebr) of the sanctuary down to earth (emphasis mine)... 4 …
A careful reading of Daniel 8:11 suggests that there is a close connection between the taking away of the continual and the act of throwing (away) the place of the sanctuary. The very purpose of the sanctuary is directly related to the work of the messianic Prince, that is to say, His work of mediation, intercession, and forgiveness of sins. By misappropriating the continual ministry of the Prince, the little horn in fact rejects the very foundation of the heavenly sanctuary as a center of mediation and forgiveness….
Another activity of the little horn is described in verse 12: 5 "And a host was given over the continual in transgression/rebellion (peshac)."… 6 What the text seems to be saying is that once the little horn misappropriated the continual, it immediately appointed a host or army over it to control or to minister it... 7
Daniel is informing us that the activity of the little horn against the continual and the heavenly sanctuary is in essence a manifestation of a spirit of rebellion against God. Its work can be defined through a single word—"rebellion" (Hebrew: peshac). Peshac is one of the strongest terms for sin in the Old Testament because it designates sin as an attack against God's sovereignty. The person "who commits a peshac does not simply rebel against Yahweh or raise himself up against Him, but he breaks with Him, takes that which is His away, robs, defrauds Him, lays his hands on that which belongs to Him." This understanding of the term peshac describes in a precise way the activity of the little horn.”
In this study I share what I have discovered, just by reading Scripture with my understanding of our SDA sanctuary message.
During all my 37 years of being a member in this Church, I was always told by church theologians and ministers, that e.thmid (hatamîd) in Daniel speaks about morning and evening sacrifices. And this is still the only interpretation, we as lay hear. Maybe scholars at our Bible Research Institute know, because of their in-depth Daniel and Revelation study project. Until now I haven’t had a chance to look into those reports. The results of that study project may not have descended to the level of the lay in the pews. So, what might be very obvious to our SDA scholars, is certainly not for the people, because the insights are not shared.
It is clear to me that adverbs and adjectives can be used as nouns - it is even so in my Dutch language - but I have good reasons to believe that tamîd is intended in Daniel to be a noun. Especially if we can agree that sacrifices are not meant - as the erroneous Bible translator’s insertion of the word 'sacrifice' wants to make the not all too experienced Bible student believe.
Shewbread, incense and light are - in the tabernacle typology - not meant to be shadows of the anti-typical cross of Christ - unlike all the other sacrifices that were brought on the brass altar in the courtyard.
To me, the insertion of the noun 'sacrifice' in our Bibles obscures the texts in Daniel - making the significance of what the little horn did very difficult to understand.
If we would take the text as it is (without insertions), not confusing Daniel's e.thmid with the other instances of thmid in the OT, it would be much easier to see what is meant in this most significant prophesy for our time.
To me tamîd in Daniel is not merely Christ ministry in the heavenly sanctuary, because the angel opens up a so much broader view to us – to all the three different aspects of the High Priestly ministry of Jesus after Gogotha – the exact anti-type of the Aaronic high priestly type on earth.
"The daily" is a somewhat clumsy translation of what the angel Gabriel meant by the whole of Christ's continual High Priestly e.htmid-ministry on our behalf, until He will declare "It's Done!" (Rev.16:17).
It is the continual ministration of Christ in the Holy, and from 1844 also in the Most Holy Place, that we might have forgiveness of past sins and to have moment by moment strength to not sin anymore.
Satan worked his best to teach the Christian world that they were to look to man, to get forgiveness from sins and to turn them into saints in heaven. And whatever it endeavored, it accomplished (Dan.8:12).
Understanding this is seeing how this apostate idolatry system, aka RCC, loathes Christ.
It casted His ministration to the ground and in its fit tramples on it - that's what one does when the hate is deep. Instead of this it suggests an escape route, inspired by Satan and his original lie “thou shald not surely die” by the ministration of his host by reason of rebellion (Dan.8:12).
There is no greater hater of Christ in the universe than Satan! The Bible informs us that Satan is the power behind the beast (Rev.13:2). This Christ-hating system, that begets its power from the dragon himself, is an antichrist. It robs us from Christ, the only means of salvation and power through His continual prayers for us to be reconciled with God again! It robs us from His Word, in order not to know the truth, and Spirit light, in order not to be convicted of sin by which we are urged to go to Christ.
Don’t we see why Daniel fainted? He knew his Bible, he knew the symbols of the sanctuary, and how sinners can be reconciled with God again. To get insight in the deep hatred of this little horn power towards his Lord, was beyond what the prophet could bear.
Daniel knew - o, if only our SDA people would know! and understood the anti-typical significance! In his agony Daniel cried out, “How long my, Lord!” He got word, “Until the next phase, Daniel. Until 1844. You will go to your rest, My dearly beloved, many will run to and fro, and in time, My people will understand.”
Through the RCC system Satan had designed that that day would never come. And through it he led billions to believe this antichrist doctrine ... until the day God's people lifted up their heads and looked up - that 23th of October 1844!
And now, Satan cannot deny the fact anymore that his days are numbered, and he is a roaring lion seeking to devour as many as he can, even the elect. Even now, after the amalgamation of October 31, 2018, the RCC admits that they are still the sole dispensers of grace, and it conned the Protestant World to believe that her unbiblical doctrines have changed. A good reader and listener will readily be able to understand that only the phrasing is different, more subtle and shrewd, but that in core it remains the same anti-biblical and anti-christ rebellion, that started with Lucifer in heaven (Rev.12:7).
My hope is that, if we understand that the word 'sacrifice' is inserted, and that Daniel 8 speaks of God’s continual grace through Christ's high priestly ministration in the heavenly sanctuary, we shall be brought to more action to humbly see and proclaim man's continual need of grace, that is being provided in abundance at the mercy seat of God (Hebrews 4:16).
- 2sacrifice is the noun inserted in most Bible translations, making tamîd the adjective used substantively. I say no. To me, in Daniel the word tamîd refers to the whole daily ministry of the Prince of the host, and it is intended to be understood as it reads, standing on its own, as a noun. [terug 2]
- 3You can find the article here. The quotes are from pp.5-7: https://adventistbiblicalresearch.org/sites/default/files/pdf/sanctanditscleansing.pdf [terug 3]