Tonight we want to begin a study of the book of Daniel. The book of Daniel is to the Old Testament what the book of Revelation is to the New Testament. The two books really go hand in hand and we compare them to understand their meaning. Prophetically the book deals with the times of the Gentiles.
(LUKE 21:24) "AND THEY SHALL FALL BY THE EDGE OF THE SWORD, AND SHALL BE LED AWAY CAPTIVE INTO ALL NATIONS: AND JERUSALEM SHALL BE TRODDEN DOWN OF THE GENTILES, UNTIL THE TIMES OF THE GENTILES BE FULFILLED."
The first half of the book Daniel is historical and Daniel interprets the dreams of others. The last half of the book is prophetical and he is given visions of his own concerning the future of his people.
I. Daniel's Dedication, 1:1-21
A. Daniel's Circumstances, 1:1-7
1. New Home. v1-2
a. About 605 BC Nebuchadnezzar attacked and took control of Jerusalem.
b. He took the vessels of Gold from God's temple to be used in heathen worship.
c. He also took many young men of Israel to be trained in Babylonian ways.
2. New Knowledge. v3-4
a. Only the best were selected.
b. They were to be taught the language and learning of the 'Chaldeans'.
c. In the book of Daniel, the 'Chaldeans' were a group of priests who were the learned astrologers of Babylon.
3. New Diets. v5
a. Because of their special training, the king ordered that they be served a special diet.
b. They were to receive the best of training for three years and also the best food available.
4. New Names. v6-7
a. Daniel (God is my judge) became Belteshazzar which means Bel protect his life.
b. Hananiah (Jehovah is gracious) became Shadrach which means the command of Aku- the moon god.
c. Mishael (Who is like God) became Meshech which means who is like Aku.
d. Azariah (Jehovah is my helper) became Abed-nego which means the servant of Nego.
B. Daniel's Dedication, 1:8-16
1. The Purpose. v8a
a. He made this decision from the heart.
b. He felt that he would be defiled by this new diet.
2. The Proposal. v8b-14
a. He made request to Ashpenaz but was denied.
b. He made request to Melzar and was given a trial period. vll-14
3. The Profit. v15
a. They faired better than all the others who had eaten from the king's table.
b. They had even gained weight.
4. The Permission. v16
a. When Melzar saw their condition he agreed to the proposal.
b. They were granted permission to forgo the diet of meat and wine.
C. Daniel's Rise to Favor, 1:17-21
1. Their Endowment. vl7
b. Skill in learning.
d. Daniel was given understanding of visions and dreams.
2. Their Examination. v18
a. It had been three years since they were first taken captive.
b. Now they were brought before the king to examine how they had developed in the program.
3. Their Excellence. v19-21
a. He found Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Asariah to be far above the others in development.
b. When he questioned them, he found that they were ten times better than all the Chaldeans in his service.
c. Daniel continued in prominence for many years.
II. Nebuchadnezzar's Dream: The Great Image, 2:1-49
A. The Dream Received by Nebuchadnezzar, 2:1-6
1. The Dream. vl-3
a. It frightened Nebuchadnezzar.
b. He couldn't sleep.
c. He called for the wisemen.
2. The Failure of the Wisemen. v4-6
a. They were ready to interpret the dream.
b. They could only do so if the King would relate it to them.
c. All of them failed:
B. The Dream Revealed to Daniel. 2:7-23
1. The decree of the king. v5,9,13
a. The king promised great rewards if they could tell the dream and the interpretation.
b. Perhaps he was putting His wisemen to the test.
c. He decreed that they would all be destroyed if they were unable to tell the dream and the interpretation of it.
2. The excuse of the wisemen. vI0-13
a. They said that no man on earth could do what the king had asked.
b. They said only the gods could do such a thing.
c. They said that no king had ever asked such a thing.
3. Daniel's Prayer and Praise. vl4-23
a. The bold promise. vl4-16
1) He answered with confidence and wisdom.
2) He assured the king that he could tell the dream and the interpretation
b. The fervent prayer. vl7-18
1) He went to his house and called his friends together.
2) They prayed for God's mercy.
c. The revelation. vl9
1) It was an answer to prayer.
2) It was only revealed to Daniel.
d. The thankful praise. v20-23
1) He praised God's wisdom.
2) He praised God's power.
3) He praised God's knowledge.
4) He praised God for answered prayer.
C. The Dream Recited and Interpreted to Nebuchadnezzar, 2:24-45
1. His witness before the king. v24-30
a. He gives glory and honor to God.
b. He tells the king that God did not reveal it to Daniel because of any great wisdom that he possesses.
c. He tells him that God had one purpose in the revealing of the dream, and that was that the king might know the interpretation.
2. His retelling of the dream. v3l-35
a. He saw a great and terrible image.
b. The image's head was gold, arms and breast was silver, belly and thighs were brass, legs was iron and feet were iron and clay mixed.
c. He also saw a stone cut out without hands which smote the beast upon his feet and totally destroyed the image.
d. The stone then began to grow and eventually filled the entire earth.
3. His interpretation of the dream. v36-45
a. The head of gold = Babylonian kingdom.
b. The silver = the kingdom which would follow.
c. The brass = the next kingdom that would rule.
d. The iron = a very strong and destructive kingdom.
e. The iron and clay = not a new kingdom, but a division of the iron kingdom.
f. The stone = God's kingdom which shall never be destroyed.
D. The Promotion of Daniel, 2:46-49
1. Brings glory to his God. v46-48
2. Brings blessings to his friends. v4g
III. The Fiery Furnace: A Lesson in Faith, 3:1-30
This chapter deals with the matter of commitment. Too often in our Christian life we are more than ready to make a contribution to God, but we balk when it comes to total commitment. This chapter deals with three men who were totally committed to God.
A. The Test of Faith, 3:1-12
1. The decree to construct an image (1-3)
a. Perhaps twenty years had passed since the events of chapter two.
b. He decided to erect an image.
1) It may have been his personal image or it may have been an image to some heathen god.
2) It was probably not solid gold, more likely it was gold-plated.
3) This represents the work of man, looks good on the outside or to others.
c. The image was sixty cubits (about 90 feet) tall, and six cubits wide (about 9 feet).
1) he set it up in the plain of Dura, about 12 miles outside of Babylon.
2) this was a place where it could be seen from miles around.
d. He called all his governmental officials to come together for the dedication service.
2. The decree to consolidate worship. 4-7
a. Worship was to be universal.
b. Worship was compulsory.
1) at the sound of the music all were to bow
2) any who refused would be severely punished
c. Worship was orderly.
3. The Chaldean accusations. V8-12
a. no doubt they were envious of the positions held by the Jews.
b. they agitate the King by reciting his own decree along with their accusations.
c. they appeal to his pride of command and to his heathen polytheistic worship.
B. The Demonstration of Faith, 3:13-18
1. The King goes into a rage. V13-15
a. He immediately calls for Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego.
b. He questioned them with regard to worship.
c. He demanded their worship and reminded them of the punishment that would result from their refusal.
2. The refusal of the Jews. 16-18
a. They were not afraid to respond to him.
b. They refused to compromise.
1) they believed God would deliver them.
2) however, if He didn't. they still wouldn't compromise.
C. The Vindication of Faith, 3:19-30
1. The king was furious over their refusal. V19-25
a. he commanded the furnace to be heated seven times hotter than normal.
b. he commanded his strongest soldiers to cast them into the furnace.
c. The king was astonished at what he saw.
1) he saw that the Jews were loosed.
2) he saw that the fire had not hurt them.
3) he also saw a 'fourth man'.
2. He acknowledges God's intervention. V28
a. God had delivered them.
b. The only thing that was burned in the furnace were the ropes that had them bound.
3. He acknowledges God's power and authority. V28
a. to change the king's words (decree)
b. that they might serve God and He only.
4. The king issues a new decree. V29
5. He also promotes the three Hebrew men. V30
1) Why do you think that Daniel was not mentioned in this chapter?
a) to show us that these three young men were not just followers, but they also had some character.
b) to show us that just because your leader is not around you still should hold to the same convictions
2) Why do you think the king built this image?
a) he was a heathen polytheist.
b) he perhaps wished to strengthen his kingdom to prevent the prophecy of Daniel from coming true.
3) Why do you think that the king had the furnace heated seven time hotter than normal?
a) to make sure that they were destroyed their confidence caused the king to think that perhaps they would be delivered.
4) Why do you think that the king made the decree in v29?
a) in attempt to please God, out of respect for God's power.
5) Why do you think the king promoted the Hebrews?
a) so as to please their God, sort of get on His good side.
IV. Nebuchadnezzar's Vision of the High Tree, 4:1-37
A. The Vision Narrated by Nebuchadnezzar, 4:1- 18
1. Introduction. V1-3 2. The Dream Received. v4-18
a. Immediate events following the dream. (4-9)
1) The time of the dream. 4
a) the king was at rest in his own house.
b) the dream came at a time of prosperity.
2) The effect of the dream- 5
a) it frightened the king.
b) it worried the king.
3) The ineffectiveness of the wisemen. 6-7
a) the king told them the dream.
b) they were unable to interpret the dream.
4) The king's confidence in Daniel. 8-9
a) he called him the master of magicians.
b) he knew he was filled with the Spirit.
c) he knew he was wise and courageous.
d) he was confident Daniel could interpret the dream.
b. The dream recounted to Daniel. (10-18)
1) The great tree. 10-12
a) it increased in size until it reached heaven.
b) it increased in size until it could be viewed by all people.
c) it increased in size until the entire world was fed from Its generous fruit supply.
2) The message from heaven. 13-16
a) cut down the tree and scatter its leaves and its fruit.
b) leave the roots and stump to be banded. note: this was to prevent growth.
c) the tree represented a man who would be given the mind of an animal.
d) he was to remain in this pitiful state for seven-years (times)
3) The purpose of the events of the dream. 17
a) to reveal to man that God is in control.
b) God controls the kingdoms.
c) God controls the king.
4) The confidence of Nebuchadnezzar. 18
B. The Vision Interpreted by Daniel, 4:19-27
1. The effect on Daniel. (19)
a. He was astonied and troubled for one hour.
1) astonied = terrified
2) not terrified of the kings reaction, but he was terrified by the events of the dream.
b. He tried to prepare the king.
1) the interpretation was not something the king would want to hear.
2) the interpretation would rather please the king's enemies.
2. The interpretation of the great tree. (20-22)
a. It was king Nebuchadnezzar.
b. It represented the growth and dominion of his kingdom.
3. The interpretatation of the message from heaven. (23-26)
a. The judgment was to be on him.
1) he would live like a beast.
2) he would eat like a beast.
3) he would be this way for seven years.
b. The Judgment was to show him that God was in control.
c. The stump meant that his kingdom would not be completely destroyed.
1) it would be held sure for him.
2) it would be restored after he realized God was in control.
4. Daniel's counsel to the king. (27)
b. That God may lengthen his peace.
C. The Vision Fulfilled by God, 4:28-37
1. Nebuchadnezzar, the tree, is cut down. (28- 33)
a. One year after he had heard the interpretation of the dream. 28-29
b. The king was struck down while boasting of his great accomplishments. 30
c. The message came from heaven. 31-32 d. He is driven from his kingdom. 33
2. Nebuchadnezzar, the roots, begins to grow. (34-36)
a. It came at the end of the seven years.
b. His understanding returned to him.
c. New life came:
1) he praised God.
2) he acknowledged His sovereignty.
d. His reason returned.
e. He was re-established in his kingdom.
3. Nebuchadnezzar's conversion. V37
V. Belshazzar's Feast, 5:1-31
There Is about twenty years between chapter four and five. Nebuchadnezzar has passed off the scene. The king of Babylon is now the arrogant Belshazzar and his father Nabonidus. The city of Babylon is under siege by the armies of Cyrus the Persian. Belshazzar was so sure of his safety and security within the walls of Babylon that he was holding a feast. Historians tell us that he could have withstood a twenty-five year siege. So in this chapter the focus is on Belshazzar.
A. Belshazzar's Contribution to the Feast: Unrestrained Sensuality, 5:1-4
1. Possible reasons for the feast:
a. To show contempt for the Medo-Persian armies encamped outside the walls of the city.
b. To build confidence and morale within his kingdom.
c. To honor heathen gods in an effort to gain favor in battle.
2. Social aspect of the feast.
a. One thousand of his officials were in attendance.
b. Excavators have discovered a banquet hall that was 56 feet wide and 168 feet long. (9400 sq. ft.)
c. He broke tradition and drank before the crowd.
3. Sacrilegious aspect of the feast. (2-4)
a. 'While he tasted the wine' means he was under the influence of it or simply he was drunk.
b. He commanded that the temple vessels from Jerusalem be brought.
1) the vessels were originally made by the authority of Solomon.
2) they were sanctified for use in the house of God.
3) Belshazzar's command was in open defiance toward God.
c. They were defiled by Belshazzar.
1) all drank wine from them.
2) they were used in the praise and. worship of the Babylonian heathen gods.
B. God's Contribution to the Feast: Handwriting on the Wall, 5:5-6
1. It came at the same hour as did the defilement.
a. It was in full view of the king.
b. He could not discern the message.
"BUT THE NATURAL MAN RECEIVETH NOT THE THINGS OF THE SPIRIT OF GOD: FOR THEY ARE FOOLISHNESS UNTO HIM: NEITHER CAN HE KNOW THEM, BECAUSE THEY ARE SPIRITUALLY DISCERNED." 1 CO. 2:14
2. The effect- on Belshazzar. His countenance was changed. V6
a. earlier he had been laughing and mocking God.
b. he was suddenly sobered up.
3. His thoughts troubled him.
a. his mind immediately filled with guilt.
b. his thoughts had condemned him.
4. He trembled in fear.
a. he nearly sank in fear
b. his hip joints went slack
c. his knees were knocking
C. Daniel's Contribution to the Feast: Announcement of Doom, 5:7-29
1. Belshazzar cries out for help. (7-9)
a. He offered every earthly reward he could.
b. the best of clothing, the best of jewelry the best position in the kingdom
2. His wise men failed him.
3. His guests were astonished.
a. earlier he had appeared brave and courageous
b. now they saw him as a frightened, quivering mass of flesh.
4. His queens encouraged him. (10-12)
a. She told him not to worry.
b. She knew of one who could help him.
c. She reminded him of Nebuchadnezzar.
1) he had heard of what had happened to his grandfather.
2) perhaps the queen had warned him of his pride and ignorance of God.
5. The king tries to impress Daniel. (13-16)
a. He flatters him with words.
b. He tries to impress him with gifts.
c. He offers him the same rewards as before.
6. The man of God's answer. (17-24)
a. He wants nothing Belshazzar has to offer.
b. He reminds him of the example of Nebuchadnezzar
c. He makes the personal application.
7. The interpretation of the message. (25-29)
1) mene and tekel = Babylonian weights
2) U = and
3) pharsin or peres = to divide
b. The wise men could read the words, but they could not interpret their meaning.
c. Belshazzar rewards Daniel as he had said he would, but the rewards were of little worth.
D. Darius's Contribution to the Feast: Destruction of Babylon, 5:30-31
1. He was slain that night. (30)
2. Darius the Mede assumed command. (31)
a. Remember it was a Medo-Persian empire.
b. Cyrus was king of the empire.
c. Darius (Cyrus' military leader) became the king of 'the city of Babylon.
VI. Daniel in the Lions' Den, 6:1-28
A. The Position of Daniel, 6:1-3
1. The kingdom was divided into 120 provinces.
2. A prince was appointed over each province.
3. Over the 120 princes were appointed 3 president
4. Daniel was named as the first of the three presidents.
5. Because of Daniel's excellent spirit and wisdom the king was considering making him the official second ruler over the entire kingdom.
B. The Plot Against Daniel, 6:4-9
1. Purity of Daniel. (4-5)
a. The other presidents were jealous of Daniel's favor with the king.
b. They tried. to find some fault with regard to hid governmental position.
c. When they were unable to do so they sought to attack with regard to his worship of God.
d. However at this time there was no law against Daniel worshipping his God as he pleased.
2. The Plot (6-9)
a. They went before the king with their plot.
b. They lied to the king, they said all the presidents and princes had consulted together.
c. They appealed to the king's vanity.
d. They convinced him to sign the decree and thus make it immutable law.
C. The Prayer of Daniel, 6:10-11
1. Daniel was aware of the decree.
2. Daniel didn't alter his schedule in the least.
3. He opened his windows toward Jerusalem and prayed three times a day, as always.
D. The Prosecution of Daniel, 6:12-17
1. Darius was upset at himself for allowing them to trick him into signing such a decree.
2. He worked all day trying to find some way to deliver Daniel from judgment.
3. He was pressed into condemning Daniel to the den of lions.
4. He tried to encourage Daniel.
5. He sealed the den of lions with a stone.
E. The Protection of Daniel, 6:18-28
1. A Night of Deliverance. vl8-23
a. The Fearful Darius. (18-20)
1) He couldn't eat or sleep.
2) He wasn't interested in being entertained.
3) He hurriedly went to see if Daniel had been delivered.
4) He cried out with a lamentable voice.
a) lamentable = grieving or sorrow
b) he felt sure that Daniel was dead
b. The Faithful Daniel. (21-23)
1) He gives honor to the one who had condemned him.
2) He gives glory to God for his deliverance.
3) He declares his innocence before God and the king.
2. A Dawn of Destruction. v24-28
a. The Execution. (24)
1) The accusers and their family were thrown into the lion's den.
a) it is sad to see the innocent wives and children to be judged along with their husbands and fathers.
b) all too often sin is most destructive in the lives of the innocent.
2) There wasn't anything wrong with the lion's appetites for they had the mastery over those who were thrown in the pit.
3) The lions had them in their mighty jaws before they ever hit the ground.
b. The Exaltation. (25-28)
1) A new decree from Darius.
a) he was so happy that Daniel had been delivered.
b) he declared a time of peace to all earth.
2) He declared that all should fear the living God of Daniel.
3) He prospered Daniel during his reign.
According to Bible historians, Daniel was 80 years old when Darius the Mede took control of the kingdom of Babylon. Daniel had seen five previous kings take control and then lose their power to another. I'm sure by now he is even more convinced that the only one a person can count on is God. It is interesting to see that Daniel retained a position of respect and honor throughout all of these kingdoms. Now as we see the re-organization of the Babylonian kingdom under the authority of Darius, Daniel still retains an honored position.
1) Daniel's many promotions in the kingdoms of Babylon .prove what? you can succeed without compromise
2) How do we know Daniel's convictions have not changed during his life with the gentiles? he serves God
3) How could Daniel have avoided this confrontation? He could have given in and compromised.
4) How was Darius' reaction different than Nebuchadnezzar
5) How could Daniel be innocent if he broke the law? God's Laws supercede the laws of men
6) Why were the accusers judged so harshly? They had deceived Darius
VII. Daniel's Vision of the Four Beasts and the Ancient of Days, 7:1-28
A. Historical Data, 7:1-3
1. Time of the vision = in the 1st year of Belshazzar
2. Place of the vision = in the area of the Great (or Mediterranean) Sea.
3. Events of the vision = four beasts came up from the sea.
B. The Vision and the Interpretation, 7:4-28
1. Vision of the Four Beasts v4-8
a. The first beast = the Lion (4)
a) it had eagles' wings
b) the wings were plucked
c) it stood as a man
d) it was given the heart of a man
a)Lion = Babylon
b) wings = swiftness to conquer
c) wings plucked = loss of the swiftness
d) stood as a man = its natural strength was reduced
e)given a man's heart = its initial ferocity was reduced to human moderation
b. The second beast = the Bear
a) it was raised up on one side
b) it had three ribs in its teeth
c) it had authority to devour much meat
a) Bear = Medo-Persia
b)raised on one side = indicates the more aggressive Persians
c) three ribs = three recently conquered kingdoms (Libya, Egypt, Babylon)
c. The third beast = the Leopard
a) it had four wings
b) it had four heads
c) it was given dominion
a) Leopard = Greece
b) four wings - greater swiftness than those kingdoms before
c) four heads = four generals under Alexander
1) Ptolemy 2) Seleucus 3) Lysimachus 4) Cassander
d)dominion was given by God.
d. The fourth beast = Unnamed (7-8)
a) dreadful and. terrible
b) exceedingly strong
c) great iron teeth d. it had ten horns
a) Unnamed beast = Roman Empire
b) its destructive power was unmatched
c) ten horns represent ten powerful kings
a) the three previous beasts had passed off the scene in the same form as they appeared.
b) However, the fourth beast goes through a transformation
c) a 'Little Horn' appeared
1) he destroyed three of the first ten horns (perhaps a show of power)
2) he had eyes of a man and spoke great things (later we see they were blasphemy)
3) this is Antichrist = the beast out of the sea cf. Rev.13:1-2; 17:10-13
2. Vision of the Ancient of Days v9-14
a. Thrones of judgment (9-12)
1) Ancient of days sat on the thrones
2) Note: John's description Rev. 1:13-16
3) There are several judgments in view here
a) Sheep-goat judgment (Mt. 25:31- 46)
b) Judgment upon the anti-christ (Rev. 19:20)
c) Great white throne judgment (Rev. 20:11-15)
b. The kingdom of the Son (13-14)
1) He receives the kingdom from the Father
2) This kingdom is an everlasting kingdom
3. The Explanation vl5-28
a. The general meaning (15-18)
1) Daniel was troubled by the vision
2) It was not difficult to correlate the major portion of this vision with the one in Ch. 2
a) four metals = four beasts = four kingdoms
b) iron legs and 10 toes = iron teeth and the 10 horns
c) stone and everlasting kingdom = son of man and His everlasting kingdom
3) All of this was reinforced by the angel in the vision.
b. The specific explanation of the fourth beast v19-28
1) Daniel had received a new revelation in this vision
2) He was especially troubled by the Iittle 'horn'
3) This truth was further explained to him
1) Why do you think Daniel kept the matter in
2) Why do you think Daniel was so troubled over this vision? cf. v21
3) What is the difference between the vision of Nebuchadnezzar in Ch. 2 and Daniel's vision?
Four metals decreasing value; four beasts increasing in ferocity and destructive power his heart? cf. V1
VIII. Daniel's Vision of the Ram, Goat, and Little Horn, 8:1-27
A. The Vision, 8:1-14
1. Introduction v1-2
1) Daniel 1, 8-12 were written in Hebrew and deal primarily with the Jews.
2) We have seen the events that deal primarily with the Gentiles.
3) Daniel 2-7 were written in Aramic and the events center upon the times of the Gentiles.
4) The rest of the prophecy deals with the nation of Israel. This is significant to our understanding.
1) This vision came to Daniel in the third year of the reign of Belshazzar.
2) This was probably very near the end of his rule over Babylon.
1) At the palace in Shushan. (Note that Daniel was transported there much as John in Rev. 1:10)
2) This was the capital of the Persian Empire.
3) The Medo-Persian armies were closing in on the Babylonian Empire.
2. The Actual Vision V3-14
a. Two-horned Ram (3-4)
1) One horn higher = the strong Persian side of the alliance.
2) Pushing from the east and conquering in all directions.
b. One-horned Goat (5-8)
1) He came from the west.
2) He touched not the ground = indicates the swiftness of conquest.
3) He destroyed the ram.
4) The great horn was broken and four notable horns replaced it.
c. The little-horn (9-14)
1) Historical shadow of the 'little-horn'
a) Antiochus Epiphanes of Syria.
1] he was the 8th ruler from Seleucus
2] he ruled from 175BC to 164BC
b) He was anti-Semitic, on several occasions he murdered thousands of Jews. Note: 'Host of heaven' is a term often used for the people of Israel.
c) History tells us that on Sept. 6, 171 BC he desecrated the temple at Jerusalem and erected a statue of the god Jupiter.
d) On December 25, 165 BC, as a result of the Maccabean revolt, the temple was cleansed and re-dedicated.
e) The period of time elapsed was 2300 days.
2) Prophetical 'little-horn'
a) Antiochus Epiphanes was a type of the antichrist.
b) The vision received was partially fulfilled by him, but this was a vision of the time of the end. Cf v17
c) Antichrist will, at the time of the end;
1] Stop daily sacrifices of the Jews
2] Desecrate the temple by erecting an image of himself to be worshipped
3] He will set himself against the Jews
4] He will set himself against the prince of the host
B. The Interpretation. 8:15-27
1. The time of the vision. (15-19)
2. The Characters of the vision. (20-27)
a. The Ram = Medo-Persians v20
1) This is clearly stated by Gabriel.
2) A ram was the symbol of the Persians.
3) This ram had two horns; that is, two kingdoms (Media and Persia)
4) But one was higher than the other; and the higher came up last. Media, signified by the shorter horn, was the more ancient of the two kingdoms.
b. The goat = Greece 8:21-22
1) great horn = Alexander the Great
2) four horns = four generals who would have kingdoms of lesser power.
a) Ptolemy to the South in Egypt
b) Seleucus to the East in Syria
c) Cassander to the West in Greece
d) Lysimachus to the North in Asia Minor
c. The little horn = king of fierce countenance. 8:23-25
1) He will rise when transgressors are come to the full.
2) He will have great power, but it will come from another.
3) Note: the antichrist of Revelation 13
"AND THE BEAST WHICH I SAW WAS LIKE UNTO A LEOPARD, AND HIS FEET WERE AS THE FEET OF A BEAR, AND HIS MOUTH AS THE MOUTH OF A LION: AND THE DRAGON GAVE HIM HIS POWER, AND HIS SEAT, AND GREAT AUTHORITY." RE. 13:2
4) He will destroy the Jewish people.
5) He will stand up against Christ, the Prince of princes.
6) He will be destroyed without a hand.
3. The effect on Daniel 8:26-27
a. He was sick from the vision.
b. He was astonished at what he had seen.
1) Why do you think he was translated to Shushan? (Babylon was basically finished)
2) Why do you think he was afraid in verse 17? (He knew He had heard the voice of God)
3) Why do you think God reveals the actual names of the two symbols the ram and the goat? (So there would be no misunderstandings)
4) Why was Daniel so sick and amazed over what he had seen? (He had seen the desolation of the temple and specific details of the end of time)
IX. Daniel's Prophecy of Seventy Weeks of Years, 9:1-27
A. Historical Data, 9:1-2
1. This was in the 1st year of Darius' reign. (around 538BC)
2. Daniel understood the time of fulfillment.
a. It was given Jeremiah that there would be 70 years of desolation of Jerusalem. Note: Jeremiah 25:8-14
(JER 25:11) "AND THIS WHOLE LAND SHALL BE A DESOLATION, AND AN ASTONISHMENT; AND THESE NATIONS SHALL SERVE THE KING OF BABYLON SEVENTY YEARS."
b. Daniel knew that in 606 BC Nebuchadnezzar invaded Judea.
c. That meant only two more years remained before God would end the captivity in 536 BC.
3. When Daniel realized the time was near, he set about to pray.
B. Daniel's Prayer, 9:3-19
1. Note the nature of the prayer. v3-15
a. It was fervent; 'fasting, sackcloth, and ashes'
b. It was confession; 'I ... made my confession'
c. It was for all Israel; 'We have sinned...'
2. Note the direction of the prayer. vl6-19
a. It was directed toward God's mercy.
b. It was directed toward God's forgiveness
C. The Prophecy, 9:20-27
1. The source of the prophecy. v2O-23
a. God sent Gabriel to Daniel while he was yet praying.
b. Gabriel was sent to give Daniel understanding with regard to Israel's captivity.
2. The direction & purpose of the prophecy. v24
a. Seventy weeks ...
1) 'week' is a general term for quantity like we use dozen today.
2) these weeks were weeks of years, so 70 wee consisted of 490 years.
b. ...are determined...
1) this term means to appoint, or set aside.
2) here we have a special segment of time set aside for a particular purpose.
c. "...upon thy people ... upon thy holy city"
1) this prophecy clearly deals with the Jews and their holy city, Jerusalem.
2) this prophecy is not for the church!
d. The six-fold purpose of the prophecy.
1) 'to finish the transgression' = to remove sin from God's sight.
2) 'to make an end of sins' = to hide sin from sight.
3) 'to make reconciliation for iniquity' = to cover sin.
HERE WE HAVE THREE IMPORTANT WORDS USED IN REFERENCE TO SIN, (TRANSGRESSION, INIQUITY, SIN) AND. ALL THREE PHRASES POINT TO THE NEGATIVE ASPECT OF CHRIST'S MINISTRY. THERE ARE THREE REMAINING WORKS TO BE ACCOMPLISHED REVEALING THE POSITIVE ASPECT OF HIS MINISTRY.
4) 'to bring in everlasting righteousness' has reference to Christ establishing an eternal kingdom of righteousness.
5) 'to seal up the vision and prophecy' refers to confirmation by fulfillment.
6) 'to anoint the most Holy' is a reference to the millennial temple.
THE FIRST THREE GREAT PURPOSES OF GOD FOR THE 490 YEAR PERIOD WERE ACCOMPLISHED AT CHRIST'S FIRST ADVENT THROUGH HIS DEATH ON THE CROSS. THE REMAINING THREE SHALL BE ACCOMPLISHED WHEN CHRIST RETURNS TO THIS EARTH AT THE CLOSE OF THE 'SEVENTIETH WEEK'.
3. The time of the prophecy. v25-27
a. The beginning of the 'seventy weeks'.
1) it will begin with a decree to re-build Jerusalem. cf. Neh. 2:1-8
2) it shall extend until Messiah the Prince. cf. Zec. 9:9 and Lk 19:28-40
b. The interruption of the 'seventy weeks'.
1) after 483 years (69 weeks) Messiah shall be cut off
2) this means that He will not have His kingdom at that time.
3) because of national rejection and His crucifixion.
4) the city shall be destroyed by the people of the 'prince to come', who is the antichrist.
5) the Romans destroyed Jerusalem in 7O AD
c. The seventieth week.
1) the 'Prince that shall come' shall make a covenant for one week of years.
2) the covenant shall be broken in the midst of the week.
3) the abominations will continue until the consummation or end.
What does verse 2 tell us about Daniel?
Why did Daniel speak for all Israel since he had not been chosen as their spokesperson?
Why did Daniel use the term 'about the time of evening oblation' when there had been no sacrifices for years since the captivity began?
How do we know God was anxious to answer Daniel's prayers?
X. Daniel's Prophetic Panorama, 10: I - 12:13
A. Daniel's Vision. 10: 1 -9
1. A man in mourning. Vl -3
a. Daniel set aside 3 weeks as a time to be alone with God.
1) during this time he refrained from eating
2) he also drank no wine
3) he did not anoint himself with oil, which was usually done daily to guard against the fierceness of the desert sun.
b. Daniel was prompted to observe this time of sorrow because of:
1) the sins of his people
2) the long period of suffering (490 yr) his people were faced with
2. An man sent from God. v4-9
a. Daniel immediately grows weak at the sight of this man.
b. Many believe that this was the preincarnate Christ. Cf Rev. 1:12-16
c. Those who were with Daniel were frightened and they ran away. cf. Acts 9:7-8
B. Daniel's Strengthening, 10:10-11:1
1. The declaration of the angel (Gabriel). vl0- 12
a. he assured Daniel of God's love for him.
b. he declares that God had sent him specifically to Daniel.
c. he tells him that his prayers had been heard and that his coming to him was a direct answer to those prayers.
2. The cause for delay. Vl 3-14
a. he had been hindered by the prince of Persia
1) this prince was powerful - for he had blocked one of heaven's mightiest angels for 21 days.
2) he was perverted - for he withstood God's divinely appointed messenger.
3) he was obviously a powerful demon which controlled the demonic activities in the Persian kingdom.
4) Satan is often referred to as the prince of this world
b. he (the angel) had been helped by the archangel Michael.
1) we have here a glimpse of the spiritual warfare that believers, angels, and demons are engaged.
2) Note: Ephesians 6:12
"'FOR WE WRESTLE NOT AGAINST FLESH AND BLOOD, BUT AGAINST PRINCIPALITIES, AGAINST POWERS, AGAINST RULERS OF THE DARKNESS OF THIS WORLD., AGAINST SPIRITUAL MCKEDNESS IN HIGH PLACES."'
c. he now has come to give Daniel understanding of the vision of end times.
3. Daniel's response and the angel's strengthening. V15-19
a. at this Daniel collapses.
b. he is strengthened in order to be able to receive the vision.
c. once again, he is encouraged by the fact that he is 'greatly beloved'.
4. The determination of the angel. 10:20-1 1:1
a. he was determined to return to Persia and continue to fight against the prince of Persia (demon).
b. he realized that he would also have to fight against the prince of Greece, no doubt he was another member of the demonic army.
c. he was determined to give Daniel the truth with reference to the end time events.
d. he explains that Michael the archangel stood with him in spiritual battles.
e. NOTE: the phrase "Michael your prince' indicates that Michael was the guardian of Israel.
f. he further explains how he had helped Michael in a spiritual battle previously during the first year of Darius
C. Prophecies Concerning the Nations, 11:1-45
1. Persian Dominion (2)
a. Cyrus was in power at this time. 539- 529 BC
b. Four more rulers in the Persian Empire.
1) Cambyses 529-522 BC
2) Bardiya 522-521 BC
3) Darius Hystaspes 521-486 BC (Darius the great in Ezra 5-6)
4) Xerxes 486-465 BC - (Ahasuerus of Esther)
c. In 480 BC Xerxes made a full scale attack against Greece and occupied Athens for a period of time.
2. Grecian Dominion (3-20)
a. Alexander the Great 336-323 BC v3
b. His kingdom shall be broken and divided.
1) it was not given to his posterity.
2) shortly after his death the rightful heirs to the throne were all murdered.
a) His brother Philip
b) His legitimate son, Alexander II
c) His illegitimate son, Hercules
c. His kingdom was divided between his four generals: Ptolemy, Cassander, Seleucus, and Lysimachus.
3. Antiochus Epiphanes' Dominion (21-35)
a. His climb to power. v21-23
1) he was a master of deceit
2) he was untrustworthy in his agreements
3) he used anyone and anything to attain his position of authority
b. His campaign against Egypt. v24-30a
1) in 170 BC he defeated Ptolemy VI
2) this was due to betrayal within Ptolemy's own kingdom.
3) both Antiochus and Ptolemy were wicked kings
c. His cruelty against Israel. v3Ob-35
1) Note what Josephus, a Jewish historian, has to say about Antiochus Epiphanes.
2) this ended with the Maccabean revolt on December 25, 165 BC.
4. Antichrist's Dominion (36-45)
a. His exaltation. v36-39
1) he shall do everything according to his own selfish will--referred to as the 'willful king'.
2) he shall blaspheme God while magnifying himself.
(2 TH 2:4) "WHO OPPOSETH AND EXALTETH HIMSELF ABOVE ALL THAT IS CALLED GOD, OR THAT IS WORSHIPPED; SO THAT HE AS GOD SITTETH IN THE TEMPLE OF GOD, SHOWING HIMSELF THAT HE IS GOD."
(REV 13:6) "AND HE OPENED HIS MOUTH IN BLASPHEMY AGAINST GOD, TO BLASPHEME HIS NAME, AND HIS TABERNACLE, AND THEM THAT DWELL IN HEAVEN."
3) he shall prosper during the time of indignation (tribulation).
4) his god shall be his own military strongholds.
b. His enemies. v40-44
1) the king of the south = ptolemic powers which were established in Egypt and in North Africa.
2) the king of the north = Seleucid powers which includes portions of what is now know as Russian and elsewhere referred to as the land of Mahgog. cf Ez. 38:1-4
3) these two powers apparently form an alliance to come against the antichrist and his armies. v40
4) anti-christ will not be defeated by these attacks, but will go forth to conquer. v41-43
5) as he carries his battle into Egypt and prepares to conquer Libya and Ethiopia he receives an alarming message. v44
6) this would have reference to where the river Euphrates is dried up to prepare the way of the kings of the East (perhaps China and other Asiatic peoples) as in Rev. 16:12.
c. His end. v45
1) he establishes his world-wide headquarters at Mti Zion in the Holy Iand.
2) he remains there until he's destroyed. cf Re. 19:19-21
D. Prophecies Concerning Israel, 12:1-13
1. Michael's Ministry v1
a. He Is Israel's guardian angel.
b. He will have a part in Israel's deliverance from the tribulation. cf. Rev. 12.7-9
c. This latter portion of the verse is in reference to the saved remnant of Israel.
2. Two Resurrections v2-3
a. One to everlasting life.
1) this is a reference to the first resurrection
2) the first resurrection is a collective term.
3) note the chart on resurrections
b. One to shame and everlasting contempt
THE WORD USED FOR CONTEMPT IS ONLY FOUND IN THIS PASSAGE AND IN ISAIAH 66:24, AND BOTH ARE A REFERENCE TO THE HORRORS OF ETERNAL DEATH IN THE LAKE OF FIRE.
1) this is a reference to the second resurrection.
2) all of the unsaved will take part in this resurrection. 3) there is no general resurrection
3. Two Prophecies. (4)
a. At the time of the end: many shall run to and fro.
b. Consider the article about Newton and Voltaire.
AFTER THIS PASSAGE MANY YEARS AGO, THE GREAT SCIENTIST-CHRISTIAN, SIR ISAAC NEWTON IS REPORTED TO HAVE SAID: "PERSONALLY I CANNOT HELP BUT BELIEVE THAT THESE REFER TO THE END OF THE TIMES. MEN WILL TRAVEL FROM COUNTRY TO COUNTRY IN AN UNPRECEDENTED MANNER. THERE MAY BE SOME INVENTIONS WHICH WILL ENABLE PEOPLE TO TRAVEL MUCH MORE QUICKLY THAN THEY DO NOW."
THIS WAS WRITTEN 1680 AD NEWTON WENT ON TO SPECULATE THAT THIS SPEED MIGHT ACTUALLY EXCEED 50 M.P.H. SOME 80 YEARS LATER, THE FRENCH ATHEIST, VOLTAIRE, READ NEWTON'S WORDS AND RETORTED:
"SEE WHAT A FOOL CHRISTIANITY MAKES OF AN OTHERWISE BRILLIANT MAN! A SCIENTIST LIKE NEWTON ACTUALLY WRITES THAT MEN MAY TRAVEL AT THE RATE OF 30 OR 40 M.P.H. HAS HE FORGOTTEN THAT IF MAN WOULD TRAVEL AT THIS RATE HE WOULD BE SUFFOCATED? HIS HEART WOULD STAND STILL"
b. At the time of the end: knowledge shall be increased.
1) knowledge has reached a height that is unparalleled in all previous ages.
2) there are millions students in this country alone.
3) the ever-expanding world wide web offers more information than we could process in a lifetime.
4. Three Time Periods. v5-13
a. 1260 days. v5-7
1) this is 'time, times, and a half
2) this is a reference to the reign of the anti-christ.
3) the previous passage had just described the period of time. cf. 11:36-45
b. 1290 days. v8-11
1) here we have an additional thirty days added on to the 3 ½ years.
2) the purpose of this time is unknown to us.
c. 1335 days. V12
1) another period of 45 days is added.
2) these two additional periods obviously have reference to a transitional period prior to the establishing of the Millennial Kingdom here on earth.
3) even here in the U.S. there is a period of 70+ days for the transition of the administrations of presidents.
d. Daniel is comforted by the angel. V13