Questions From Readers

When was “the Holy of Holies” anointed, as foretold at Daniel 9:24?

Daniel 9:24-27 is a prophecy concerning the appearance of “Messiah the Leader”​—the Christ. The foretold anointing of “the Holy of Holies,” then, does not refer to the anointing of the Most Holy compartment of the temple in Jerusalem. Rather, the expression “Holy of Holies” refers to the heavenly sanctuary of God​—the heavenly Most Holy—​in the great spiritual temple of Jehovah. *​—Hebrews 8:1-5; 9:2-10, 23.

When did God’s spiritual temple begin to operate? Well, consider what took place when Jesus presented himself for baptism in 29 C.E. From that point on in his life, Jesus fulfilled the words of Psalm 40:6-8. The apostle Paul later indicated that Jesus had prayed to God: “Sacrifice and offering you did not want, but you prepared a body for me.” (Hebrews 10:5) Jesus knew that God “did not want” animal sacrifices to continue to be offered at Jerusalem’s temple. Instead, Jehovah had prepared a perfect human body for Jesus to offer as a sacrifice. Expressing his heartfelt desire, Jesus continued: “Look! I am come (in the roll of the book it is written about me) to do your will, O God.” (Hebrews 10:7) And what was Jehovah’s response? The Gospel of Matthew states: “After being baptized Jesus immediately came up from the water; and, look! the heavens were opened up, and he saw descending like a dove God’s spirit coming upon him. Look! Also, there was a voice from the heavens that said: ‘This is my Son, the beloved, whom I have approved.’”​—Matthew 3:16, 17.

Jehovah God’s acceptance of the presentation of Jesus’ body for sacrifice meant that an altar greater than the literal altar in Jerusalem’s temple had come into existence. This was an altar of God’s “will,” or arrangement for accepting Jesus’ human life as a sacrifice. (Hebrews 10:10) The anointing of Jesus with holy spirit meant that God had now brought forth his entire spiritual temple arrangement. * Hence, at the time of Jesus’ baptism, God’s heavenly abode was anointed, or set apart, as “the Holy of Holies” in the great spiritual temple arrangement.

[Footnotes]

^ par. 3 For a discussion of various features of God’s spiritual temple, see pages 14-19 of The Watchtower of July 1, 1996.

^ par. 5 This was alluded to on page 195 of the book Pay Attention to Daniel’s Prophecy!

[Picture on page 27]

“The Holy of Holies” was anointed when Jesus was baptized