Did you hear of prophet Daniel, king Herod, and the date of Christmas? When was Jesus born?
The prophet Daniel had a vision of the Angel Gabriel, who told him that the Messiah would appear after sixty-nine weeks (Daniel 9:20 and 25). Sixty-nine weeks is a Jewish way of saying sixty-nine sevens (69* 7), or 483 years. The 483 years began “from the going forth of the word to restore and build Jerusalem to the coming of an anointed one.” (Daniel 9:25).
The “going forth of the word to restore and build Jerusalem” occurred when King Artaxerxes issued the proclamation to restore and rebuild Jerusalem in 453 B.C. Now if you do the math, 453 B.C. minus 483 years is A.D. 30, the same year that Jesus began his public ministry. Jesus started his ministry when he was 30 years old. This implies that he was born around 1 A.D. or 1 B.C.
The holy Angel Gabriel said that seven years shall follow after A.D. 30. During this time, “the Messiah shall be cut off, but not for himself” (Dan 9:26). The Messiah shall die not for Himself, but for others. Saint Gabriel explains that this will happen at after “half the week” (Daniel 9:27) or three and a half years after A.D. 30. Three and a half years after A.D. 30 brings A.D. 33— the year of Jesus’s death on the cross. The final three and a half years end in A.D. 36, the time of the vision of Saint Peter in the ninth chapter of Acts, and the conversion of Saint Paul.
Now let’s go to Herod the not-so-great-and-gentle.
Josephus, a famous Jewish historian, says that king Herod the Great (his title in the modern world) died in 4 B.C., and this is the date that historians use to say Jesus was not born in 1 B.C. and that thereby we cannot know when he was born.
There are two problems with this date, the first is that the dates Josephus gives in his writings contradicts historical facts by more than a hundred times. The second is that Josephus gives more than one date for Herod’s death. The Jewish historian said that Herod died in 4 B.C., and in A.D. 7 or 8. In fact, he gives the A.D. 7 or 8 date twice, while 4 B.C. once.
This means that THE piece (because there is no other) of evidence used against the 1 B.C. date of Jesus’s birth is simply not to be trusted.
So when did Herod died? He died after a well-observed lunar eclipse, and we know by modern astronomical models that a lunar eclipse happened at Jerusalem on December 29, in 1 B.C. This would mean that Herod likely died some months in A.D. 2. Well come to think of it, the date depends on the Jewish uses of « some months. »