The Vision Of A Ram And A Goat
In the eighth chapter of the book of Daniel there is further revelation of the details regarding the world-ruling empires first identified in Daniel 2. In this chapter, Daniel sees in vision a ram with two horns and then a male goat with a single notable horn between his eyes conquering the ram. This chapter provides insight into the third world-ruling empire spoken of in Daniel 2 conquering the second world-ruling empire.
The historical fulfillment of this is Greece under Alexander the Great conquering the Medo-Persian Empire. For a careful study of the prophecy and additional explanation of what happened to Alexanders kingdom following his untimely death, see Daniel 8: The Vision of a Ram and a Goat.
We Dont Have To Compromise Our Values
The subtext of Daniels entire story is about faithfulness to the one true God.
It starts in the very first chapter when Daniel refuses to compromise his dietary restrictions with the kings rich food . It continues when Daniels friendsShadrach, Meshach, and Abednegorefuse to bow down and worship the gold statue that king Nebuchadnezzar had erected on the plain of Dura . We also see it in Daniels defiance of King Dariuss law against prayer .
Despite the fact that their rebellion could have cost them their lives , they refused to compromiseand God delivered them.
Its important to remember that throughout history Gods people have consistently found themselves in cultures where they were the minority, and they had to choose faithfulness despite strong pressure to conform. We dont have to fear any administration or political outcome, because our God is always with us through Jesus Christ, our Lord.
Book Of Daniel Sealed Up Until End Time
See the End Time: its beginning and end.
Before the End Time, people could not fully understand the Book of Daniel because it was sealed up and even we see Daniel clearly stating that he could not understand. Dan 12:8 And I heard, but I understood not.
But now, End time, we fully understands the book. Realize that the Book of Daniel was written around 600 B.C, before Jesus first coming to the world, before the End Time.
Daniel was presented with the entire End Time prophetically but instructed to seal it up until the End Time when knowledge shall increase.
But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased . And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end .
When knowledge shall increase many shall be purified, and made white, and tried but the wicked shall do wickedly: and none of the wicked shall understand but the wise shall understand .
Yes! Only the purified, made white and wise are the only people to understand the Book of Daniel not the wicked. The Book of Daniel is only for the true Bride of Christ, true Christians, not hypocrites.
The Book of Revelation written in the End Time throws more light to the Book of Daniel, the Book of Daniel being the key to unlock the Book of Revelation.
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Vision Of The Seventy Weeks
In the first year of Darius the Mede, Daniel meditates on the word of Jeremiah that the desolation of Jerusalem would last seventy years he confesses the sin of Israel and pleads for God to restore Israel and the “desolated sanctuary” of the Temple. The angel Gabriel explains that the seventy years stand for seventy “weeks” of years , during which the Temple will first be restored, then later defiled by a “prince who is to come,” “until the decreed end is poured out.”
Each And Every Leader Of Government
As Daniel 5 concludes, this mighty city of Babylon, which was thought to be impenetrable, falls to a new ruler . But Daniel ensures that his readers know that it is the hand of Yahweh who initiates this change, as seen in the literal appearance of the hand of the Lord .
In this day, when kings were defeated, their hands were cut off as a symbol of utter defeat: the fallen king could no longer wield his scepter. Yahweh ensures that the rulers of Babylon know that He has not been defeated His hand was still active, so much so that His hand determined Belshazzars end and Darius beginning . In the very words of Daniel: the most High God is ruler over the realm of mankind andHe sets over it whomever He wishes .
Gods sovereignty encompasses all the leaders of government, no matter how righteous or evil.
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Daniel In The Lions Den
The account of Daniels being thrown into a den of lions is found in Daniel chapter 6. Most people know the outcome of the storythat God miraculously protected Daniel and that the men who accused Daniel of being disloyal to the king suffered the very fate they had tried to bring on Daniel.
But there is more to the story.
This story is also about how Daniel prayed to God, and it is about Daniels faith to continue to honor God through prayer even though a government edict forbade him to do so. In this story we are also reminded that even though God allowed the nation of Judah to fall to the Babylonians and permitted many of the Jewish people, including Daniel, to be taken captive, God was still the all-powerful God. He was superior to the Babylonian gods, and He could still protect those who honored Him.
This narrative reminds us that God has a history of intervening in the lives of those who love Him. To see a fuller explanation of this timeless story, see the article Daniel 6: Daniel in the Lions Den.
Daniel 1: One Of The Most Detailed Prophecies In The Bible
Over the course of his life, Daniel had seen multiple changes in governments and world-ruling empires. He had experienced the fall of his beloved nation of Judah, been taken captive to Babylon and served in high government positions in both the Babylonian and Medo-Persian Empires.
Additionally, God had revealed to Daniel much prophecy about mankinds history that would occur after he passed from the scene. This history included a brief understanding of the coming of the Messiah, as noted in Daniel 9, and it included some very detailed prophecies in Daniel 11 about the human governments that would arise and continue until the second coming of Jesus to earth.
Of particular interest to students of prophecy is Daniels reference to the abomination of desolation. In Daniel 11 this referred to events that occurred in Jerusalem around 168/167 B.C.
In chapter 12 the abomination is in the context of the time of the end . Jesus later spoke of this same end-time event . For a thorough explanation of its historical and future fulfillments, see What Is the Abomination of Desolation?
Writing from his location in the Middle East, Daniel wrote of other powers coming into the region from the north and south. Daniel referred to these leaders as the king of the South and the king of the North . Of special interest to us, verses 40-45 speak of these same powers waging war at the time of the end.
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Daniel Sealed Up John Unsealed
We see in the Book of Revelation God clearly instructing the write, Apostle John, to seal not the book to unseal.
Rev 22:10 -10: And he said unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand. He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.
If you keenly look at the words in the verse, they are the same words inDaniel 12:4, 9 -10.
Yes!Daniel sealed, John unsealed.
Reason the Book of Daniel was sealed
One reason the Book of Daniel was sealed is because it contains the Revelation of Jesus Christ and Jesus had not revealed Himself to humanity when the book was written He had not yet came to the world to be with man and establish His kingdom.
After Jesus revealed Himself to man, being a man and staying in the word with man, He fully revealed Himself to us in the Book of Revelation. The Book of Revelation is the Revelation of Jesus Christ. The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave unto him. .
If you cannot understand the Book of Daniel, you cannot understand the Book of Revelation. And ask yourself, Am I a true Christian or a hypocrite? and none of the wicked shall understand but the wise shall understand .
Symbolic Imagery: The Tree And The Beast
Daniel 4’s tree parallels the similar image in Ezekiel 31, where the pharaoh of Egypt is compared to a mighty tree towering above all others with its top in the clouds, a symbol of human arrogance about to be cut down. The metaphor then switches to depict Nebuchadnezzar as a beast dependent on grace for its survival until he learns humility before God. Possibly significantly, the king is restored when he “lifts up” his eyes to heaven.
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Daniel Introduces Both Gabriel And Michael
You may have heard that there are two good angels who are explicitly named in the Bible: Gabriel and Michael. These two angels show up in both the Old and New Testaments doing cool stuff like announcing the coming birth of Christ or fighting Satan.
But guess where we meet them first? Yep: the book of Daniel.
Daniel meets Gabriel during one of Daniels troubling visions . Gabriel is told to tell Daniel whats going on . Gabriel shows up later to tell Daniel that God has plans to make an end to Israels sins .
We dont see any conversations between Daniel and Michael, but he is working behind the scenes in the later chapters of Daniel. Michael is a warrior angel who combats opposing forces from Persia and Greece . Daniel is told that at the time of the end, Michael will arise on behalf of Israel again .
I used my favorite Bible study tool, Logos Bible software, to do research that made this post possible. If youre a Bible geek like me, you might want to check it out.
Daniel Was Probably In His Eighties When He Was Thrown To The Lions
Daniel was taken to Babylon as a young manlikely before he had finished puberty. So lets say he was between 10 and 18 years of age.
The Babylonian captivity lasted 70 years, which would put Daniel in his eighties at the beginning of Darius reign in Daniel 6. This is when the whole lions den episode takes place.
If this is the case, then we may need to update some of our Sunday school artwork! =)
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Where Do I Find It
In the Christian canonA canon is a general law or principle by which something is judged. The body of literature in the Old and New Testaments is accepted by most Christians as being canonical for them. More, Daniel is the twenty-seventh book. It follows EzekielA prophet during the Babylonian exile who saw visions of Gods throne-chariot, new life to dry bones, and a new Temple. More and the Major Prophets and precedes HoseaProphet to the northern kingdom who married a prostitute to show Gods relationship to a faithless IsraelMore and the Minor Prophets.
Key Takeaways: Daniel The Prophet
- Daniel the prophet was the hero and traditional author of the book of Daniel.
- Daniel was a young man of Jewish nobility taken into captivity by Nebuchadnezzar in the third year of Jehoiakim and renamed Belteshazzar.
- Prophet Daniel was trained in the king’s court and then elevated to a high rank in the Babylonian and Persian kingdoms.
- Daniel was known for wisdom, integrity, and faithfulness to God.
- Daniel had the ability to interpret dreams and visions.
Daniel means “God is my judge,” or “judge of God,” in Hebrew however, the Babylonians who captured him from Judah wanted to wipe out any identification with his past, so they renamed him Belteshazzar, which means “may protect his life.” In Babylon, Daniel was trained in the king’s court for service. He quickly established a reputation for intelligence and for absolute faithfulness to his God.
Early in his retraining program, they wanted him to eat the king’s rich food and wine, but Daniel and his Hebrew friends, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, chose vegetables and water instead. At the end of a test period, they were healthier than the others and were allowed to continue their Jewish diet.
It was then God gave Daniel the ability to interpret visions and dreams. Before long, Daniel was explaining the dreams of King Nebuchadnezzar.
The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God.
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Gods Sovereignty Always Brings Himself Glory
Once Daniel is freed, Darius writes a public proclamation that travels throughout the land, ascribing ultimate glory to the God of Israel .
Darius decree acknowledges that Daniels God is not dead, nor has He been defeated to the contrary, He is alive and steadfast, actively bringing to pass His divine plan. Even though Jerusalem and its temple lay in ruins, Darius proclaimed to the world that the one true and living Gods rule is eternal and will never pass away . The God of Israel is far different than the false gods of the Babylonians, the Medes or the Persiansthe gods who have eyes but cannot see, ears but cannot hear, and mouths but cannot speak . Daniels God is the only God who is able to deliver, rescue, and perform signs and wonders. Only the God of Israel was able to shut the mouths of the lions.
So why did God allow the evil plans of the commissioners and satraps? Why did God allow Darius to sign the injunction? Why did God allow Daniel to be thrown into the lions den? Why did God deliver Daniel from the lions den? Why does God do what He does?
Back to the question we started with: what are Gods next steps?
The answer to all of these questions is the same: all of this took place so that the message of the greatness of the glory of God would be proclaimed throughout the world.
Gods glory being put on display was the ultimate purpose for everything that took place in this storywhich is the ultimate purpose for everything God does .
Gods Sovereignty Trumps All Human Effort
As Daniel was praying, the commissioners and satraps barged in on him . As they had expected, Daniel had not stopped his daily devotions with his God.
When the king heard of it, he was deeply distressed . He exerted all of his political clout, exhausted all of his resources , and he searched for every loophole in the decree to free Daniel. But to no availhis hands were tied .
The king was forced to give the orders, and Daniel was brought in and cast into the lions den. The king spoke and said to Daniel, Your God whom you constantly serve will Himself deliver you .
A more accurate translation of this would be your God whom you constantly serve, He must deliver you. In other words, Darius throws up his hands and says: Ive done everything I can Ive made my best effort and failed the only one who can save you now is your God.
No human hand could interfere, not even the king of the world.
Daniel is tossed to the lions, and his fate seems certain. But what man cannot do, God can. God would not permit the lions even to so much as touch Daniel.
Notice, the lions do not touch Daniel. Why? Because they listen to the voice of their Creator. The Creator is in total control of His creation.
Gods sovereignty extends from the lions, to the wind, to the seas, to the bacteria, even to viruses.
All of creation bows at His word
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Our Prayers Are Heard
In the ninth chapter of Daniel, were given a glimpse into one of the most moving and powerful prayers in Scripture. Daniel knows that Jeremiah has prophesied a seventy-year captivity, but hes still diligent in his prayer.
This prayer is an expression of Daniels personal repentance and confession of sin for himself and his nation. He recognizes Israels sin that has put them in the position theyre in, and he contrasts their unfaithfulness with Gods loving-kindness and faithful covenant. From confession, Daniel moves to petition. While acknowledging Gods righteous judgment, Daniel asks God to show Israel mercy in accordance with His character. Its an ideal picture of the words in 2 Chronicles:
If My people who are called by My name humble themselves, and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14
The most profound thing Christians can do if were feeling anxious and passionate during this election season is pray. We need to acknowledge our lukewarmness and loss of love, we need to recognize Gods faithfulness to us, and we need to ask for His mercyall the while remembering that the Holy Spirit is at work among us to strengthen us and keep us steadfast in the true faith.
Spend some time in Daniel this season.
Here are some great resources to get you started: