The Real Names Of Shadrach Meshach And Abed
Daniels three Jewish friends who were taken captive with him were Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. These three friends names were changed by the Babylonians to Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-Nego, respectively. Daniel was given the name Belteshazzar . These names incorporated the names of Babylonian gods.
The reason Daniel and his friends names were changed was likely to encourage them to forget their past and to adopt Babylonian customs. Expositors Bible Commentary notes: Obviously, pagan theophoric names like these must have been assigned arbitrarily to these four Israelite students without any consultation with them, since the new names contained the names of false gods .
But Daniel and his three friends determined to remain faithful to God. This would be demonstrated multiple times in the events told in the book of Daniel.
Daniels Contribution To The Scriptures
The Book of Daniel provides us with valuable insights into conditions in Babylon during the 70 years of Judahs Babylonian captivity.
The Book of Daniel testifies to the accuracy and reliability of the Word of God. All that God had said would happen to the southern kingdom of Judah did happen, as the Book of Daniel bears witness.
The Book of Daniel links the Old Testament to the New by prophetically revealing the events to take place in the 400 silent years between the two testaments. Bible students have often commented concerning that 400 year period in which no book of the Bible was written. While God may have, in one sense, been silent during the 400 years, He was not silent about the 400 years. Daniel describes some of the events which will take place during these four centuries with such accuracy, the critics insist it must be history rather than prophecy.
The Book of Daniel is perhaps the most comprehensive layout of Gods prophetic plans in all of the Old Testament. The theology, themes and symbolism of Daniel provide the student of Scriptures with the key to prophecy :
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.
The Interpretation Of Daniel’s Visions
8.1 The Identity of the Four World Empires. As has alreadybeen noted, the book of Daniel repeats a number of visions using differentimagery. The interpretation of the these visions has varied, but fortunatelykey sections are explained for the reader within the book itself. As Table8 illustrates the two prophecies given in Daniel 2 and 7 refer to thesame four world empires. The book itself identifies the first of these empiresas Neo-Babylon under the rule of Nebuchadnezzar . Up to the 18thCentury the majority view was that the next three were Medo-Persia, Greece andRome, a view still held by most Conservatives scholars. Since the Enlightenmentmost liberal scholars have argued for Media, Persia and Greece . Liberals have argued that Media was the second kingdom on the basis ofthe strong correlation between Daniel 11-12 and the events of the Maccabeanperiod. Characteristically they argue that Daniel was historically inaccurateabout Media, which was then thought never to have existed as a world empire, and was writing at the time of the Maccabeanrevolt. However, a number of Conservatives have recently argued on the basis ofnew information about the Median Empire that it was the second kingdom. As Table 8 shows this view is worthy of seriousconsideration.
8.3 Daniel’s Seventy Weeks: Three Views. A number of interpretations have been suggested of the prophecy given to Danielby Gabriel .
It best fits the evidence as the starting point of a non-literalperiod of seventy weeks .
Who Was Daniel The Prophet
Daniel started off his journey in his early years when the Babylonians sacked Jerusalem and took a great majority of its inhabitants into captivity . Some theologians have surmised that the latter half of Daniel when he received a number of apocalyptic visions, happened during some of those initial years.
Daniels name means may God be my judge and he often served as a judgment figure, much like many of the prophets. His story expands from his teenage years all the way to his 70s or 80s when he takes a quick trip to the lions den. Daniel spends the majority of his life in Babylon and never returns to Jerusalem with its inhabitants after the 70-year captivity ends.
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Insights You Didnt Notice In The Book Of Daniel
Now that weve established the historical context and meaning of the Book of Daniel, lets explore some insights you may not know about this book.
Daniel Was 14 or 15 When Taken into Captivity
Possibly younger or older, but we can solidly place Daniel in his teens . Nebuchadnezzar enrolls Daniel into a three-year school program where he and his friends must learn the Babylonian language, ways, and religion. More impressive is when Daniel refuses to eat the Kings food in Daniel 1. Many theologians have guessed the food went against the kosher diet, but no matter what the reason, Daniel risked death for his defiance of the King’s orders.
The Book of Daniel Was Written in Two Languages
Part of the reason why skeptics think someone else wrote the book is that this book contains two languages: Hebrew and Aramaic. We do have to keep in mind, however, that people in the Bible spoke multiple languages. Jesus, for instance, wouldve had to know Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek, and probably some Latin to get by in Roman circles.
No One Knows Where Daniel Was during the Fiery Furnace
Daniel Hails from the Line of David
According to Overview Bible, Daniel comes from the line of David. This makes sense given the narrative in Daniel 1.
In addition to that, the King of Babylon chose good-looking men to enroll in his education program. Sadly, they likely became eunuchs, so anyone swooning over them probably missed out on with them.
Daniel Cares about His Enemies
Did Martin Luther Remove Books Of The Bible
Luther included the deuterocanonical books in his translation of the German Bible, but he did relocate them to after the Old Testament, calling them Apocrypha, that are books which are not considered equal to the Holy Scriptures, but are useful and good to read. He also considered the relocation of the Book of Esther
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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! =)
Who Wrote The Bible: God Or Man
The Scripture says in 2 Peter 1:20-21, Knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit revealed to the prophets the messages of Scripture. The writers of the Bible wrote not according to their own will or whim, but only as they were moved, or controlled, by the Spirit of God. The Bible is Gods own book!
2 Timothy 3:16-17 says, All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. The Holy Bible affects human beings so profoundly, because all the Bible is God-breathed. Its more than a nice collection of moral principles its more than a great book its an inspired document, Gods book. The prophets who wrote the Bible related what they saw and heard in human language, but their message came directly from God.
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Position In The Canon
One of the arguments put forth which seems to indicate alate date for Daniel is its place in the canon. Englishversions of the Bible are based on the canonical order given in the LXX. Assuch, Daniel is grouped with the three major prophets. In the Hebrewcanon, however, the book is positioned with the Writings .
Critics believe that since the Writings were collected after the prophetic canon was closed,Daniel could not have been written in the sixth century. The criticsï¿½assumption is wrong. A number of the Psalms and Proverbs were composed betweenca. 1020 and 950 BC. The events in the Book of Job likely happened in the daysof Abraham . Therefore finding Daniel among the Writings does notrequire a late date. The Masoretes mayhave moved Daniel from the Prophets to the Writings since much of the book ishistory and because Daniel was not a commissioned prophet to a certain people.
Daniel Given Knowledge Skill And Understanding From God
God saw these fruits of Daniel and his three friends and gave them knowledge and skill in all literature and wisdom. To Daniel, God also gave understanding in all visions and dreams . As a result of Gods blessings upon Daniel and his three friends, the king found them ten times better than all the magicians and astrologers who were in all his realm .
When King Nebuchadnezzar had a dream that troubled him in the second year of his reign, God revealed the meaning of the dream to Daniel in a night vision . Then the king promoted Daniel and gave him many great gifts and he made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief administrator over all the wise men of Babylon .
At times, God sent an angel to deliver prophetic messages to Daniel, who then copied them down.
Then it happened, when I, Daniel, had seen the vision and was seeking the meaning, that suddenly there stood before me one having the appearance of a man. And I heard a mans voice between the banks of the Ulai, who called, and said, Gabriel, make this man understand the vision. So he came near where I stood, and when he came I was afraid and fell on my face but he said to me, Understand, son of man, that the vision refers to the time of the end .
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Daniel In The New Testament
10.1 Direct Quotations. Jesus reference to the abominationthat causes desolation spoken of through the Prophet Daniel indicates that Daniels words were to have a greater fulfilment that thedesecration of the Temple by Antiochus Epiphanes .Although it is not clear what the abomination was that Jesus was referring to, Josephus records that as early as 66 AD people wereleaving Jerusalem because of the threat of imminent attack by the Roman armies and viewed thedestruction of Jerusalem as the fulfilment of Daniels prophecy . Early Church writers record that Christians tooknote of Christ’s warning and fled across the Jordan to the city of Pella beforethe Roman legions surrounded the city .
10.2 Allusions. Table 10 shows thenumber allusions made by New Testament writers to the book of Daniel. The bookof Revelation is particularly indebted to Daniel, though it is worthremembering that the writer was drawing on a much wider range of sources thanmodern Christians are familiar with. It is more accurate therefore to say thatthe writer did not draw directly from Daniel, but took images from contemporaryapocalyptic familiar to his readership
Table 10: Allusions to Daniel inthe New Testament
Archer, Gleason L. 1985a. “Daniel,” F.E.Gaebelein, Gen. Ed., The Expositor’s Bible Commentary, Vol. 7. GrandRapids: Zondervan.
Archer, Gleason L. 1985b. A Survey of OldTestament Introduction, revised. Chicago: Moody Press
Â© 1999 Robert I. Bradshaw
Jesus And The New Testament
Matthew is quite pertinent to thisdiscussion: ï¿½Therefore when you see the abomination of desolation which wasspoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place ï¿½ï¿½ The ï¿½abomination of desolationï¿½is referenced three times in Daniel . Exactly what this is is beyond the scope of this article.
Regardless, in Jesusï¿½ view itwas the prophet Daniel who wrote the book that bears his name. That aloneshould settle the issue. His hearers did not question the implications by Jesusthat Daniel was an historical person who lived in the sixth century. Even thosescholars who are not in favor of dispensationalismadmit this conclusion. ï¿½Both in Matthew and in Daniel ï¿½ an individual living inBabylon during the exile is represented as prophesying events hundreds of yearsahead.ï¿½
It has been suggested that Jesus merely acquiesced to thestandard thinking of the day, and thus the statements of the previous paragraphare not certain. This is nonsense because He boldly challenged the thinkingof His day. In Matthew 15:6 Christ chided the Pharisees because they ï¿½invalidatedthe word of God for the sake of your tradition.ï¿½ ourLord would have been deceiving the people and that is impossible. In John 14:6He labels Himself as ï¿½the Truth.ï¿½
Furthermore, Josephusin his writings implies that Daniel is the author of the book bearing his name.The evidence which indicates that Christ was wrong about Daniel is virtuallynonexistent.
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When Did Daniel Live And When Was The Book Of Daniel Written
The biblical account of Daniel the prophet begins as he and other young men from Judah were taken captive by King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon in approximately 604 B.C. This captivity of citizens of Judah in Babylon lasted for 70 years, as God had foretold through the prophet Jeremiah .
During this time, Daniel served in prominent positions in the governments of several Babylonian and Medo-Persian rulers, including Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar, Darius and Cyrus.
In the first year of the reign of Darius , Daniel came to understand, or simply proved to himself again, the prophecy of Jeremiah that predicted a 70-year captivity of his people . The end of the 70 years was approaching at that time.
Daniel was likely in his 80s or 90s by that time. He lived a long life, but the Bible does not tell us how old he was when he died.
Daniel wrote the book of Daniel during the sixth century B.C. Because the book of Daniel contains so many detailed prophecies of things that happened centuries later, some skeptics have suggested that it is a fraud, written much later in history.
But revealing the future is what God does.
Through Isaiah, God declares: Remember the former things of old, for I am God, and there is no other I am God, and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure .
What Is The Book Of Daniel About
The Book of Daniel is odd in the fact that its split into two sections. The first contains Babylonian narratives of Daniel and his friends standing strong in their beliefs. The second section shows visions of historical events to come and End Times events . This is why we have reason to believe that Daniel wrote the book throughout his life, when he received visions and when he experienced the events from Daniel 1-6.
The book has a couple of purposes. First, it shows us how to stand firm in our beliefs in a hostile culture.Babylon wouldve been everything antithetical to Judaism. And yet, Daniel and his friends would not back down. Secondly, the book hints at events to come, that have happened in history and that have yet to take place.
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When Was The Book Of Daniel Written
According to some, the scholarly consensus on the dating of Daniel is that the book of Daniel was written in the 2nd century B.C. Such a consensus makes me wonder about whether scholarship is controlled by people who are skeptical of the supernatural inferences in Daniels prophecies. Accordingly, I will address the literature on this topic.
The book of Daniel begins in 604 B.C., which is eighteen years prior to the destruction of the first Temple in 586 B.C. Daniel and several other young men were deported from Judah to Babylon under King Nebuchadnezzar. The book ends two years after the seventy years of exile in 532 B.C. The book is written in both Hebrew and Aramaic. The Aramaic portion is in Daniel l 2:4 7:28. The first six chapters detail historical records of this time period, while chapters seven to twelve detail Daniels visions.
Perhaps its detailing of historical records led to its classification within the Jewish Scriptures as writings instead of prophets. Skeptics have often pointed to this classification to suggest that Daniels prophecies were of minor importance. It should be noted that Daniel is placed between the books of Esther and Ezra / Nehemiah, which also contain histories and were written in the early Persian period. Lamentations, written by the great prophet Jeremiah, is also in the writings. Furthermore, Jesus, who was considered a Jewish rabbi, referred to Daniel as a prophet in Matthew 24:15 and Mark 13:14.