Daniel 11

Text Comments
 2 And now will I shew thee the truth. Behold, there shall stand up yet three kings in Persia; and the fourth shall be far richer than they all: and by his strength through his riches he shall stir up all against the realm of Grecia. .Truth
       The following passage from Gabriel's first explanation of that vision da0815-26 confirms its involvement with "truth" and indicates that "violent" ones would fulfill it:
    ". . . when the transgressors [pagan Rome da0707] are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up da0708. . . . .  and he shall destroy wonderfully [or "fearfully"], and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people. And through his policy also he shall cause craft [deceit] to prosper in his hand; and he shall magnify himself in his heart, and by peace [prosperity] shall destroy many: he shall also stand up against the Prince of princes; but he shall be broken without hand."
    In the vision itself and in the discussion of the holy ones after it, we saw this in different symbols:
    From the vision "And out of one of them [the winds] came forth a little horn, which waxed exceeding great. . . . and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them. Yea, he magnified [exalted] himself even to the prince of the host. . . .
    From the discussion "How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host [God's people] to be trodden under foot?" (Dan. 8:9-13).
.5 And the king of the south shall be strong, and one of his princes; and he shall be strong above him, and have dominion. . . .
 6 And in the end of years they shall join themselves together; for the king's daughter of the south shall come to the king of the north to make an agreement. . . .
 .South and North Concepts from Humberto Treyer.
  The king of the South may be seen as paganism/atheism Seleucid Syria and Egypt both fell to Rome (who also was king of the North at one point. Then South and North were civil and religious powers). Jeremiah connects South and North je4620. Compare v24 of the same chapter.
  The true king of the North is God See ps04801f, ps07506, ez0104, ez0902.
  The false king of the North is Satan and his agents See is1412ff, je0113f, je0406, je0601, je4606, je4613.
  More about the king of the NorthGog and Magog against God's people ez3815 king of the North finally driven out, jl0220.
14c And in those times there shall many stand up against the king of the south: also the robbers of thy people [or "sons of the violent ones of your people"] shall exalt themselves to establish [fulfill] the vision; but they shall fall. .Fall
    At first thought, we might ask whether this indicates the failure of an attempt to fulfill the vision. Failure to fulfill it would be very unlikely because, seeing the meaning of the vision, it is unreasonable to expect that anyone would want to fulfill it. There is a better explanation.
    The violent ones may be seen as the horn power (medieval church). They would succeed for a long time but eventually would fall. Pagan Rome was transformed into the horn power da0723-5 which shattered the holy people for a period of 3½ times (1260 year-days) da1207. But it would fall after a final display of fury against the end-time people who reveal its falsehood v44f.
    Thus here in the middle of the long narration we get a glimpse of the larger picture of the wicked king.  We see an evil power arising among God's people but are immediately assured of its eventual fall which is explained at the end of the chapter.
    Then we may read the latter part of 11:14 as follows: "And sons of the violent ones of your people will lift themselves up in fulfillment of the vision, but they will fall."
    We begin to see the picture. The vision would be fulfilled by the rise of violent (or "rebellious") ones among the descendants of Daniel's people. Indeed Paul also predicted this. Remember that pagan or imperial Rome was in power when Paul wrote.
   "Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. . . . that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;" (2 Thess. 2:2, 3). Also ac2029ff.
    The fall is assured in other passages, too. In da0711 Daniel watched until the terrible beast was burned. Then his attention was directed back to the topic being revealed. In Revelation, we see a beast rise from the sea re1301, but are told that one killing with the sword will be killed re1308ff. And in 2 Thess. 2 where the "man of lawlessness" is predicted, his destruction is mentioned twice (verses 3 and 8) 2th0203. So here in 11:14 it is reasonable to see a projection on to the end of the power which is being introduced.
    An alternative interpretation of verse 14 would reveal the failure of the actions of Antiochus IV as a fulfillment of the same vision (of Chapter 8). Although he and his warriors would be successors to oppressors of God's people, the explanation doesn't fit the prophecy re1305c-po.
Text Comments
.21 And in his estate [or "place"] shall stand up a vile person, to whom they shall not give the honour of the kingdom: but he shall come in peaceably, and obtain the kingdom by flatteries.
In addition to Tiberius we may also see here the wicked king. The situation of Tiberius thus represents the rising Roman church.

  In his estate [place] After Augustus or after the preceding line of Cæsars we see a "person" with an evil character portrayed in the reign of Tiberius. We saw him in chapter 8 as the wicked king pictured from this verse forward. The symbol of "king" of the last part of the chapter is equivalent to the "little horn" in the first part.
  They shall not give ... kingdom Justinian gave the Bishop of Rome power over all the churches. (The new papacy soon had political power, too).
  Peaceably A church would not be expected to be dangerous.
  Flatteries Or deceit. In particular, the church pretended to offer salvation for observing the ceremonies resulting in a false sense of security.

.22 And with the arms of a flood shall they be overflown from before him, and shall be broken; yea, also the prince of the covenant. ..Covenant  The following passage identifies the covenant in relationship to Christ.  Zacharias was here prophesying about the one for whom his son, John the Baptist, was to prepare the way:
   "Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, for He has visited [us] . . . and hath raised up a horn of salvation for us . . . To perform the mercy promised to our fathers, and to remember his holy covenant; The oath which he sware to our father Abraham." (Luke 1:68- 73).
   Identifying Christ as the Prince of the Covenant in relationship with His being broken (his execution) connects His death with the covenant.  Why did He die? To save us from our sins mt0121, 1co1503.  And what is sin?
   "To commit sin is to break God's law; for sin is lawlessness. You know that Christ appeared in order to take away sins. . . ." (1 John 3:4, 5, REB).
   So the gospel good news for Abraham and for us is that Jesus was broken for our sins 1co1123ff.  Many today teach that God's covenant is no longer binding that the church can rewrite or ignore parts of it. It is true that God wants to make it new by writing it on our hearts he0810, but that doesn't change its terms. If God's law could be changed, he would certainly have made an exception so His Son would not have needed to taste the death that we deserve!  In fact, our security for eternity depends on the atmosphere of love that the law expresses.
   The messianic prophecy of Malachi also refers to the covenant and its Prince, there called a Messenger mal0301.
.34  Now when they shall fall, they shall be holpen with a little help: but many shall cleave to them with flatteries.   Cleave Or "unite."
  Flatteries The Hebrew word is slightly different from the one translated "flatteries" in v32. It is chalaqlaqqah instead of chalaqqah. Both could be translated "smooth words." Here with the extra syllable it is apparently more intense.
.35 And some of them of understanding shall fall, to try them, and to purge [or "try by them"], and to make them white, even to the time of the end: because it is yet for a time appointed.   some . . . shall fall  Because this verse is similar to v33, we are led to ask why it is significant.  The falling again may be understood to represent additional persecution and apostasy after Protestantism became popular.  Those joining by intrigue (or hypocrisy) would have played a part in it.  The new Protestant church in England and those in other countries followed the course of the papacy in intolerance of people whose study of the Bible led them to different viewpoints.  The "new world" in North America became a haven for many persecuted Christians such as Separatists, Anabaptists, and Puritans.
   Also the papal church had initiated the "Counter Reformation" which produced new biblical interpretations to discredit accusations of the Protestant reformers. Compare 2pe0316f.
.39 Thus shall he do [or "work"] in the most strong holds with a strange god, whom he shall acknowledge and increase with glory: and he shall cause them to rule over many, and shall divide the land for gain. ..Strange god  God told Jeremiah to speak to Judah from the gate of the Lord's house. They were worshipping pagan gods including "the queen of heaven." We may see in it the parallel Gabriel used in describing this new god to Daniel. je0704, je0716ff, je0725.
   The "queen of heaven" may well have been one of the pagan mother goddesses still worshiped early in the Christian era. We know about Isis of Egypt and Artemis- Diana of Ephesus ac1927.  Isis was thought to bring fertility and comfort and to perform magic.
   Apparently to attract people who worshiped these deities, the church began taking a different view of Mary. The idea of her divinity and her ability to perform miracles developed gradually. In 431 Cyril, Archbishop of Alexandria, in a speech at Ephesus, ascribed to Mary many of the attributes recognized for the goddess, Artemis-Diana.  The title "Mother of God" was sanctioned the same year in the Council of Ephesus.  (The term had first appeared in church writings during the previous century.)  The doctrine of Mary's "immaculate conception" and hence her supposed sinlessness and divinity, was not adopted officially by the Catholic Church until the pronouncement of Pope Pius IX in 1854.
   Archaeological evidence gives us reason to believe that the hot cross buns eaten on Good Friday were adapted from pagan sacred cakes and that the pictures of Christ or the Virgin Mary on Simnel cakes eaten on Mid-lent Sunday replaced representations of pagan deities on the religious cakes that apparently prompted the custom. (Gordon J. Laing, Survivals of Roman Religion, Longmans, 1931, pp. 165, 172.)
   In pointing out these connections no condemnation of sincere Catholic Christians is intended. By studying the Word of God we all grow and are led by the Holy Spirit to cast off error in favor of greater light.
   Did Jesus recognize His mother as in a different class from other godly people? lu0819ff.
..Divide the land for gain In the experience of the Children of Israel in the wilderness, may be seen the soul's journey from the slavery of sin to the promised land of heaven.  Here in Daniel 11 the "king" tells sinners that they must meet his conditions in order to have an inheritance in the heavenly Canaan.  The system is like selling salvation for the king's gain in the sense that he requires certain ceremonies and holds himself as the one who may grant or deny spiritual blessings.
.41 He shall enter also into the glorious land , and many countries shall be overthrown: [Literally "many will be caused to stumble"] but these shall escape out of his hand, even Edom, and Moab, and the chief of the children of Ammon.
These events may be seen as still future. We can learn some of the meaning by comparing with other prophecies.

..Glorious land  This would originally have meant Judah or Palestine. Modern Israel is anything but "glorious" and, except for geography and name, has no spiritual connection with ancient Israel. We are looking for a more spiritual conflict because, from re1315ff, the end-time power is religious, demanding worship. The glorious land would be where God's end-time faithful are.
  Many Although we found Protestants becoming corrupt earlier v35, we may see them here as the "glorious land." They are most prominent in the United States. Major churches are basically recognizing the papal leadership and renouncing distinctive doctrines (2001). Even those who are loyal to Bible truth may fall at the final shaking re0612cb.
  Edom and ... These then join the ranks of the remnant. Remember that we are dealing with symbols so the geographical areas where these countries once existed are not likely in view. Jeremiah gives us an idea je4011f. He reports that Jews from these countries would go back to join the remnant that had been left in Judah. Near the end of the conflict, people who had been in the ranks of enemies of God will join His remnant people.

Back to Daniel 11a main page

Back to Daniel 11b main page