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|This is the New King James text of the passages.|
Daniel 10-12 Listen
Another vision (Daniel 10)
1 In the third year of Cyrus king of Persia a message was revealed to Daniel, whose name was called Belteshazzar. The message was true, but the appointed time was long; and he understood the message, and had understanding of the vision.
2 In those days I, Daniel, was mourning three full weeks.
3 I ate no pleasant food, no meat or wine came into my mouth, nor did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled.
4 ¶ Now on the twenty-fourth day of the first month, as I was by the side of the great river, that is, the Tigris,
5 I lifted my eyes and looked, and behold, a certain man clothed in linen, whose waist was girded with gold of Uphaz!
6 His body was like beryl, his face like the appearance of lightning, his eyes like torches of fire, his arms and feet like burnished bronze in color, and the sound of his words like the voice of a multitude.
7 ¶ And I, Daniel, alone saw the vision, for the men who were with me did not see the vision; but a great terror fell upon them, so that they fled to hide themselves.
8 Therefore I was left alone when I saw this great vision, and no strength remained in me; for my vigor was turned to frailty in me, and I retained no strength.
9 Yet I heard the sound of his words; and while I heard the sound of his words I was in a deep sleep on my face, with my face to the ground.
10 ¶ Suddenly, a hand touched me, which made me tremble on my knees and on the palms of my hands.
11 And he said to me, “O Daniel, man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak to you, and stand upright, for I have now been sent to you.” While he was speaking this word to me, I stood trembling.
12 ¶ Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words.
13 But the prince of the kingdom of Persia withstood me twenty-one days; and behold, Michael, one of the chief princes, came to help me, for I had been left alone there with the kings of Persia.
14 Now I have come to make you understand what will happen to your people in the latter days, for the vision refers to many days yet to come.”
15 ¶ When he had spoken such words to me, I turned my face toward the ground and became speechless.
16 And suddenly, one having the likeness of the sons of men touched my lips; then I opened my mouth and spoke, saying to him who stood before me, “My lord, because of the vision my sorrows have overwhelmed me, and I have retained no strength.
17 For how can this servant of my lord talk with you, my lord? As for me, no strength remains in me now, nor is any breath left in me.”
18 ¶ Then again, the one having the likeness of a man touched me and strengthened me.
19 And he said, “O man greatly beloved, fear not! Peace be to you; be strong, yes, be strong!” ¶ So when he spoke to me I was strengthened, and said, “Let my lord speak, for you have strengthened me.”
20 ¶ Then he said, “Do you know why I have come to you? And now I must return to fight with the prince of Persia; and when I have gone forth, indeed the prince of Greece will come.
21 But I will tell you what is noted in the Scripture of Truth. (No one upholds me against these, except Michael your prince.
This chapter sets us up for chapter 11. We are told in verse 1 that this vision comes to Daniel in "the third year of Cyrus king of Persia." Cyrus actually inherited the Persian throne in 559 B.C., but that event meant nothing to Daniel, since Daniel and his Jewish brethren were subjects of Babylon at that point in time. In 539 B.C. Persia overcame Babylon, and Daniel had a new boss. That is certainly the date from which Daniel is counting the reign of Cyrus in verse 1. That places this vision in 536 or 535 B.C. If Daniel was somewhere between 10 and 20 years old when he was taken from Jerusalem in 605 B.C., that would make Daniel 80 to 90 years old at this point in time. The exiles from Judah/Jerusalem began returning to their homeland in 535 B.C. Daniel sees a vision of continued conflict for God's people after the return of the exiles to Jerusalem. It so overwhelms him that he mourns for three weeks. In this chapter we see the working of demonic beings being referenced. In fact, we see in Ezra 4 (see notes) that the temple-rebuilding project back in Jerusalem was delayed by 20 years or so because of the opposition from the pagan folks there.
These supernatural beings mentioned here causing the interference must have been those that empowered those evil nations. Those nations will be the subject of chapter 11.
We actually see some detail regarding angels (good and bad) in this chapter that cannot be found elsewhere when Daniel sees a clear manifestation of an angel and describes his appearance to us (verse 5). We also learn from this passage the struggle that likely still takes place between good and fallen angels. It is obvious from this passage that angels are not omnipresent or omnipotent. Michael was delayed in coming to Daniel because of his struggles with another angel (verse 13). Therefore, from this passage it appears that fallen angels assist in guiding the affairs of nations that are enemies of God and God's people (Persia in verse 13 and Greece in verse 20). Michael, the archangel, is also mentioned in Jude 9 (see notes) and Revelation 12:7 (see notes).
What you must know to understand chapter 11
The prophecy contained in chapter 11 was future for Daniel, but historical for us. Alexander the Great conquered the world and died at the age of 33 in 323 B.C. While they tried to hold his empire together, it couldn't be done. By 311 B.C., his generals over specific regions split from the empire with each ruling over his own region - four of them.
These Greek regional commanders who became territorial rulers were as follows:
Ptolemy's kingdom (Egypt) was south of Palestine. The kingdom of Seleucus was a territory located north, west and south as you passed through Syria from Babylon. The activities of warring factions in Daniel 11 are the kings of these two kingdoms. Let's list them along with the verses where they are mentioned.
|Daniel 11:5||Ptolemy I Soter||323-285 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:6||Ptolemy II Philadelphus||285-246 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:7-8||Ptolemy III Euergetes||246-221 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:11-12||Ptolemy IV Philopator||221-204 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:17||Ptolemy V Epiphanes||181-145 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:25||Ptolemy VI Philometer||181-145 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:5||Seleucus I Nicator||312-281 B.C.|
|Not mentioned in Daniel||Antiochus I Sober||281-262 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:6||Antiochus II Theos||262-246 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:7-9||Seleucus II Callinicus||246-227 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:10||Seleucus II Soter||227-223 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:10-11, 13, 15-19||Antiochus III the Great||223-187 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:20||Seleucus IV Philopator||187-176 B.C.|
|Daniel 11:21-32||Antiochus IV Epiphanes||175-163 B.C.|
Let's have a prophetic history lesson (Daniel 11:1-34)
1 “Also in the first year of Darius the Mede, I, even I, stood up to confirm and strengthen him.)
2 And now I will tell you the truth: Behold, three more kings will arise in Persia, and the fourth shall be far richer than them all; by his strength, through his riches, he shall stir up all against the realm of Greece.
3 Then a mighty king shall arise, who shall rule with great dominion, and do according to his will.
4 And when he has arisen, his kingdom shall be broken up and divided toward the four winds of heaven, but not among his posterity nor according to his dominion with which he ruled; for his kingdom shall be uprooted, even for others besides these.
5 ¶ “Also the king of the South shall become strong, as well as one of his princes; and he shall gain power over him and have dominion. His dominion shall be a great dominion.
6 And at the end of some years they shall join forces, for the daughter of the king of the South shall go to the king of the North to make an agreement; but she shall not retain the power of her authority, and neither he nor his authority shall stand; but she shall be given up, with those who brought her, and with him who begot her, and with him who strengthened her in those times.
7 But from a branch of her roots one shall arise in his place, who shall come with an army, enter the fortress of the king of the North, and deal with them and prevail.
8 And he shall also carry their gods captive to Egypt, with their princes and their precious articles of silver and gold; and he shall continue more years than the king of the North.
9 ¶ “Also the king of the North shall come to the kingdom of the king of the South, but shall return to his own land.
10 However his sons shall stir up strife, and assemble a multitude of great forces; and one shall certainly come and overwhelm and pass through; then he shall return to his fortress and stir up strife.
11 ¶ “And the king of the South shall be moved with rage, and go out and fight with him, with the king of the North, who shall muster a great multitude; but the multitude shall be given into the hand of his enemy.
12 When he has taken away the multitude, his heart will be lifted up; and he will cast down tens of thousands, but he will not prevail.
13 For the king of the North will return and muster a multitude greater than the former, and shall certainly come at the end of some years with a great army and much equipment.
14 ¶ “Now in those times many shall rise up against the king of the South. Also, violent men of your people shall exalt themselves in fulfillment of the vision, but they shall fall.
15 So the king of the North shall come and build a siege mound, and take a fortified city; and the forces of the South shall not withstand him. Even his choice troops shall have no strength to resist.
16 But he who comes against him shall do according to his own will, and no one shall stand against him. He shall stand in the Glorious Land with destruction in his power.
17 ¶ “He shall also set his face to enter with the strength of his whole kingdom, and upright ones with him; thus shall he do. And he shall give him the daughter of women to destroy it; but she shall not stand with him, or be for him.
18 After this he shall turn his face to the coastlands, and shall take many. But a ruler shall bring the reproach against them to an end; and with the reproach removed, he shall turn back on him.
19 Then he shall turn his face toward the fortress of his own land; but he shall stumble and fall, and not be found.
20 ¶ “There shall arise in his place one who imposes taxes on the glorious kingdom; but within a few days he shall be destroyed, but not in anger or in battle.
21 And in his place shall arise a vile person, to whom they will not give the honor of royalty; but he shall come in peaceably, and seize the kingdom by intrigue.
22 With the force of a flood they shall be swept away from before him and be broken, and also the prince of the covenant.
23 And after the league is made with him he shall act deceitfully, for he shall come up and become strong with a small number of people.
24 He shall enter peaceably, even into the richest places of the province; and he shall do what his fathers have not done, nor his forefathers: he shall disperse among them the plunder, spoil, and riches; and he shall devise his plans against the strongholds, but only for a time.
25 ¶ “He shall stir up his power and his courage against the king of the South with a great army. And the king of the South shall be stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army; but he shall not stand, for they shall devise plans against him.
26 Yes, those who eat of the portion of his delicacies shall destroy him; his army shall be swept away, and many shall fall down slain.
27 Both these kings’ hearts shall be bent on evil, and they shall speak lies at the same table; but it shall not prosper, for the end will still be at the appointed time.
28 While returning to his land with great riches, his heart shall be moved against the holy covenant; so he shall do damage and return to his own land.
29 ¶ “At the appointed time he shall return and go toward the south; but it shall not be like the former or the latter.
30 For ships from Cyprus shall come against him; therefore he shall be grieved, and return in rage against the holy covenant, and do damage. ¶ “So he shall return and show regard for those who forsake the holy covenant.
31 And forces shall be mustered by him, and they shall defile the sanctuary fortress; then they shall take away the daily sacrifices, and place there the abomination of desolation.
32 Those who do wickedly against the covenant he shall corrupt with flattery; but the people who know their God shall be strong, and carry out great exploits.
33 And those of the people who understand shall instruct many; yet for many days they shall fall by sword and flame, by captivity and plundering.
34 Now when they fall, they shall be aided with a little help; but many shall join with them by intrigue.
Daniel prophesied the battles between these warring factions of the former Greek empire. These battles took place over 200 years after Daniel wrote about them in his prophecies, but secular historical records tell us that these battles did take place just as Daniel had prophesied. What you need to understand about chapter 11 are the players, the leaders listed in the tables above. Their battlefield in this chapter was the land of Israel. Why? These two nations were separated by Palestine. The only way they could fight was to go through Israel itself. To top it all off, Antiochus IV Epiphanes was particularly cruel to the Jews on his trip back through Israel after a defeat in Egypt. This event is seen in verse 31. He foreshadowed the cruelty of the antichrist who will appear during the tribulation in that he desecrated the Jewish temple in Jerusalem by offering a pig on the altar there and forced the Jews in that city to eat swine meat or die. These acts took place in December, 168 B.C. He was the epitome of a baaaaaaad man! It was the intent of Antiochus Epiphanes IV to stamp out Judaism completely. We looked at the horrific deeds of this man back in Daniel 8 (see notes) which prophesied concerning him as well. The apocryphal historical books of I and II Maccabees contain these accounts.
Now for the future (Daniel 11:35-45)
35 And some of those of understanding shall fall, to refine them, purify them, and make them white, until the time of the end; because it is still for the appointed time.
36 ¶ “Then the king shall do according to his own will: he shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, shall speak blasphemies against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the wrath has been accomplished; for what has been determined shall be done.
37 He shall regard neither the God of his fathers nor the desire of women, nor regard any god; for he shall exalt himself above them all.
38 But in their place he shall honor a god of fortresses; and a god which his fathers did not know he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and pleasant things.
39 Thus he shall act against the strongest fortresses with a foreign god, which he shall acknowledge, and advance its glory; and he shall cause them to rule over many, and divide the land for gain.
40 ¶ “At the time of the end the king of the South shall attack him; and the king of the North shall come against him like a whirlwind, with chariots, horsemen, and with many ships; and he shall enter the countries, overwhelm them, and pass through.
41 He shall also enter the Glorious Land, and many countries shall be overthrown; but these shall escape from his hand: Edom, Moab, and the prominent people of Ammon.
42 He shall stretch out his hand against the countries, and the land of Egypt shall not escape.
43 He shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt; also the Libyans and Ethiopians shall follow at his heels.
44 But news from the east and the north shall trouble him; therefore he shall go out with great fury to destroy and annihilate many.
45 And he shall plant the tents of his palace between the seas and the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and no one will help him.
Everything mentioned in Daniel 11:1-34 happened as Daniel prophesied over a period of 300 years or so. Daniel 11:35 is a pivotal verse in this chapter, "And some of those of understanding shall fall, to refine them, purify them, and make them white, until the time of the end; because it is still for the appointed time." This verse introduces the fact that the historical record of this prophecy (for us) ends with Antiochus IV Epiphanes and that the rest of this chapter is reserved for a period yet future - "because it is yet for a time appointed" (verse 35). That's a "time appointed" beyond that of Antiochus Epiphanes. Most students of prophecy agree that the remaining verses speak of the activities of the beast (aka antichrist) of Revelation 13 (see notes) who will appear during Daniel's seventieth week (the tribulation) referenced in Daniel 9:24-27 (see notes), a period yet future to us. The battle that takes place in verse 40 would appear to be the battle of Revelation 6:12-17 (see notes) just prior to the midpoint of the tribulation, after which the beast assumes the role of God by displacing sacrifices in the rebuilt temple and requiring that everyone worship him as God. (Read all about the tribulation by clicking here to read the notes on II Thessalonians 2.) Notice Daniel 11:45, "And he shall plant the tents of his palace between the seas and the glorious holy mountain; yet he shall come to his end, and no one will help him." The two seas mentioned are the Mediterranean Sea and Dead Sea. That's where the beast (aka antichrist) will establish his kingdom, RIGHT THERE IN JERUSALEM! Notice also in that verse that "he shall come to his end." The reign of the antichrist will be terminated at the Battle of Armageddon found in Revelation 19:11-21 (see notes).
Incidentally, we are told in Daniel 11:41 that the reach of the antichrist will not involve Edom, Moab and Ammon - east of Israel. That fits nicely with the prophetic theory based upon Micah 2:12-13 (see notes) that this is where the fleeing remnant will hide during the last three years of the tribulation period.
Protection and resurrection (Daniel 12)
1 “At that time Michael shall stand up,
The great prince who stands watch over the sons of your people;
And there shall be a time of trouble,
Such as never was since there was a nation,
Even to that time.
And at that time your people shall be delivered,
Every one who is found written in the book.
2 And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake,
Some to everlasting life,
Some to shame and everlasting contempt.
3 Those who are wise shall shine
Like the brightness of the firmament,
And those who turn many to righteousness
Like the stars forever and ever.
4 ¶ “But you, Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book until the time of the end; many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall increase.”
5 ¶ Then I, Daniel, looked; and there stood two others, one on this riverbank and the other on that riverbank.
6 And one said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, “How long shall the fulfillment of these wonders be?”
7 ¶ Then I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, when he held up his right hand and his left hand to heaven, and swore by Him who lives forever, that it shall be for a time, times, and half a time; and when the power of the holy people has been completely shattered, all these things shall be finished.
8 ¶ Although I heard, I did not understand. Then I said, “My lord, what shall be the end of these things?”
9 ¶ And he said, “Go your way, Daniel, for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.
10 Many shall be purified, made white, and refined, but the wicked shall do wickedly; and none of the wicked shall understand, but the wise shall understand.
11 ¶ “And from the time that the daily sacrifice is taken away, and the abomination of desolation is set up, there shall be one thousand two hundred and ninety days.
12 Blessed is he who waits, and comes to the one thousand three hundred and thirty-five days.
13 ¶ “But you, go your way till the end; for you shall rest, and will arise to your inheritance at the end of the days.”
This last chapter of Daniel ties it all up. A resurrection is promised for the righteous Jews and ultimate deliverance for the Nation of Israel. How long will this final onslaught against God's people last. Well, verse 7 says, "it shall be for a time, times, and half a time; and when the power of the holy people has been completely shattered, all these things shall be finished." That's Daniel speak for time (1 year), times (2 years) and half (1/2 year) - a total of 3 1/2 years. That certainly must refer to the last half of the tribulation. Then we get some interesting references to additional days in verses 11 and 12. We see a reference to 1,290 days and another reference to 1,335 days. No one is certain what these days mean. They fall at a time of transition between the tribulation and millennium. Perhaps it refers to the time required for the judgments that will take place at that time. Revelation 11:2-3 (see notes) fixes the actual period of the last half of the tribulation at 1,260 or 42 months. I guess we'll have to wait until we get to heaven to see the exact schedule of tribulation-ending, millennium-beginning events.
Take particular notice of Daniel 12:2, "And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, Some to everlasting life, Some to shame and everlasting contempt." While nearly all of the prophecies of the Old Testament deal specifically with Israel's repossession of an everlasting kingdom under the Messiah, here is a direct reference to the resurrection of those who have passed away.
One more point is to be particularly noted here - the appearance of "the abomination of desolation" in verse 11. We saw this reference in Daniel 9:27 (see notes) and know this to be a reference to the "beast" of Revelation 13 (see notes). Jesus makes reference to this "abomination of desolation" in Matthew 24:15, Mark 13:14 and Luke 21:20 (see notes) in his prophetic message given on Mount Olivet the week before his crucifixion. Paul, in II Thessalonians 2, gives us a detailed look at how the beast carries out this "abomination of desolation."